Arica Journals

Arica: Desert Ocean

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A travel journal to Arica by SeenThat

El Morro de Arica Photo, Chile, South America More Photos
Quote: "Dramatic" is not a strong enough adjective to describe Arica’s landscape; Chile’s northern tip is a narrow strip of desert by the Pacific Ocean, placed just where the Andean Plateau finish its sudden and rapid decent to the coast. Beaches, cliffs, desert, cacti, and llamas delimit this cute town.

Arica: Desert Ocean

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Overview

El Morro de Arica Photo, Chile, South America
Quote:
Arica is a small town that offers the tourist mainly its amazing natural surroundings and an exit point to the neighboring countries. Surprisingly enough, the citizens limit their visits to the beach to their vacations, and thus the coast is pleasantly empty, even in warm seasons, enough to enter the water. The best beaches are north and south from downtown, and the southern coast hosts a beautiful promenade along the ocean. The Morro de Arica, an impressive cliff at the southern side of the town, dominates the landscape and gives the city its very peculiar look. From its top there are awesome views of the area. The 185km to Bolivia is something not from this world; in a few hours, you climb more t...Read More

Donde Sebastian

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Restaurant

Quote:
Arica is full of snack restaurants, all of them sharing the same basic design: a rectangular bar in a room open to the street. Conveniently, they display their specialties and prices on big signs attached to the walls so that you can compare them quickly and efficiently. Another shared quality is that all of them sell variations of fast food: hot dogs, hamburgers, pailas, and coffee and tea are the staples. The most popular dish in the mornings is the paila, consisting of a couple sunny-side-up fried eggs served in a small frying pan in the pleasant company of fresh, hot buns. Other popular choices are big meat empanadas called pino, which are filled with meat, onions, olives and ...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on September 26, 2005

Donde Sebastian
Manuel Baquedano 569
Arica, Chile

To Bolivia

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Story/Tip

Bolivia Photo, Bolivia, South America
Quote:
Even if you are not planning to continue to Bolivia, even if you just entered from Peru and are eager to reach Santiago, I do strongly recommend reaching at least the limit between Chile and Bolivia in Tambo Quemado. Few places in the world allow you to climb from sea level to well over 4km in less than 200km of well-paved road. The morning buses leave at 9:30am and costs 7000CHP. It would be a sin to take the night buses, as well as uncomfortable, since they leave after midnight in order to arrive at time for the pass opening in the morning. Most of the way climbs through a very arid landscape, with occasional llamas and cactuses, but 150km after the departure, you will arrive to Putre, the Tarapa...Read More

To Iquique

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Story/Tip

Iquique Photo, Chile, South America
Quote:
If Arica is a beach town outpost in the far north, Iquique (pronounced Eekeekae) is a commercial hub with a big port serving northern Chile and Bolivia. Its duty-free zone attracts hordes of traders searching for the latest gadgets and cheap clothes from the Far East (well, from here it is to the west). While traveling in the central west areas of South America, Iquique is the place to refill your backpack. Arriving there from Arica is very easy, as several companies do the 301km way between the bus terminals. The trip costs 3500CHP, plus 100CHP terminal fee, and takes a little more than 4 hours. The terminal fee is a bad practice adopted in most of South America and is the reason why most buses leave...Read More

Arica: A Day by the Beach

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Story/Tip

El Morro de Arica Photo, Chile, South America
Quote:
Arica is the perfect spot for renewing a Bolivian visa: this facet of such a visit is a modern variation of its colonial history.ClimateThe climate is arid: hot during the day and cold at night; the humidity is low at all times.Prehistoric TimesArica was populated by the Chinchorro culture, which is notorious for its mummies; those date eight-thousand years back and predate the Egyptian ones. Technically they are not mummies, since all the muscles and soft tissues were removed from the bodies and then vegetal fibers were used to fill the gap between the bones and the skin. They can be watched in the Museo Arqueológico San Miguel de Azapa, twelve kilometers away from downtown Ar...Read More

About the Writer

SeenThat

SeenThat
Tel Aviv, Israel

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