Experience the thrill and physical challenge of sandboarding down 120 meter dunes in Death Valley!
Experience the thrill and physical challenge of sandboarding down 120 meter dunes in Death Valley! On this 3.5 hour trip, you will meet your local guides in San Pedro for a quick safety briefing and then proceed by van on a short drive to the mysterious and desolate Death Valley. Here, you will receive sandboarding boots and a board and follow your guide up the dune for a brief lesson. After that, you are free to sandboard the dune as much as you want! Your driver will also film the experience and upload it online in case your camera is not sand proof!
Night Sandboarding San Pedro de Atacama
Some Saturdays, you can go sandboarding at night! This tour runs from 21:00pm – 12:30am (30 minutes past midnight). Note that during Chilean winter (~April-October), night time sandboarding might be prohibitively cold. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to double-check the current conditions in San Pedro de Atacama.
Please note that in order to reserve this tour, we need to pay the operator immediately, so all bookings are final. If you have any questions before booking or want to confirm a certain date, please email us at email@example.com.
For the day trips, you will be sandboarding in the sun, so be prepared with a hat and sunscreen and/or long sleeves. Note that during Chilean winter (~April-October), night time sandboarding might be prohibitively cold. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to double-check the current conditions in San Pedro de Atacama.
It has been wildly proven that for centuries people have been practicing sandboarding, even though it has only more recently become more of a developed sport. Though there is agreement that sandboarding dates back to ancient civilizations, there is dispute over which group is the exact founder. Many people believe the claim belongs to the Ancient Egyptians, however there is evidence supporting the possibility that ancient civilizations of either Brazil or the Arabian Peninsula could’ve founded it before them.
Regardless of when exactly it was invented, it has only become more of a sport in the past handful of decades, following on the heels of the further development of surfing and snowboarding. Due to the more remote locations where this sport often tends to be more popular, it often doesn’t get the same level of recognition. However, there are competitions throughout the world from the Western United States to Australia to Japan to Namibia to Dubai to Chile.
The Atacama Desert has been inhabited for over 10,000 years, though the first organized tribes began to wander the area as hunter-gatherers roughly 7,000 years ago. The Loa River is the main water source of the desert with sustained agricultural and llama-herding villages scattered around it and San Pedro de Atacama since about 900 BC. Near Lake Titicaca, the Tiwanaku culture rose to power, and its influence is still seen today in the region’s textile iconography. As this culture began to fade, the Atacamenos took control in the desert in 1000 BC by developing a system to transport goods from the coast to the Andes. Then, the 15th was marked by the rise of the Inca Empire.
Tales of gold somewhere south of the Inca Empire was what first led Europeans to the Atacama Desert, and so Spanish conquistador Diego de Almagro first set foot in the region. From there, the Spanish invaded and brought the downfall of the Incas and Atacamenos, who had so far resisted European rule. The Atacamenos were massacred before they signed an agreement to remain subjects of the Spanish.
Chile claimed the Atacama Desert as part of its territory following the War of the Pacific (1879-1883), and labeled the indigenous groups in the area as Chilean nationals. Tribes were torn apart as the national borders between Chile, Peru and Bolivia broke ties. Many Atacamenos engaged in silver nitrate and copper mining in the 19th century until the silver nitrate industry collapsed in the early 20th century, which led to an economic crisis. In 1933, the government finally acknowledged the Atacamenos as one of nine indigenous groups in Chile. However, the state failed to redistribute the tribe’s ancestral land, which they view as sacred.
Recently, tourism has created new economic opportunities for indigenous groups and other peoples in Atacama. Cultural tourism acts as a critical source of income for locals in tiny villages that practice llama herding or mining, and some find they no longer need to migrate to larger cities such as Calama to support themselves and their families.
After you book your experience, you will receive a confirmation email from us confirming that your payment went through. You will then be connected directly to the tour operator, in case you have any further questions. We are also happy to answer any questions about the tour, or travel in general in your country of destination.