go to content go to search box go to global site navigation

San Pedro de Atacama

History

San Pedro was once a pre-Columbian pit stop on the trading route from the highlands to the coast. It was visited by Pedro de Valdivia in 1540, and the town later became a major stop on early 20th-century cattle drives from Argentina to the nitrate oficinas of the desert.

Locals still practice irrigated farming in the ayllus (a-ee-oos; small indigenous communities). Many still farm on terraces over a thousand years old.