From deserts, to the ice fields and glaciers of “Patagonia”, to vast lakes, the Andes mountain range and fiery snow-capped volcanoes, Chile boasts a great variety of landscapes and a wealth of untouched wilderness. In the north, the driest desert in the world boasts some of the most incredible scenery on earth and has become one of Chile’s most visited tourist locations, with the oasis town of San Pedro de Atacama receiving many foreign visitors all year round. While local tour operators in San Pedro profit hugely from tourism, the majority of the local indigenous people in surrounding villages are still not benefiting from this activity. This program includes voluntary work with an indigenous community who are eager to protect their cultural and historical heritage, maintain and prevent the potential damage from tourism, and create the means to self-sustain their community, now and in the future.
This trip is ideal for those seeking unique adventures that include volunteering components, and can be customized to meet groups’ needs. It is a great fit for high school trips, whether for a senior class trip that focuses on volunteering for students, or for a high school trip that includes touring and a combination of activities.
- Visit the driest desert in the world: the Atacama Desert
- Volunteer work with a local indigenous community
- Share classes with local children, including activities such as teaching English, games, theater classes, singing
- Share with the communityand learn about their way of life
- Bathe in a lagoon with such a high mineral content that you float like you would in the Dead Sea
- Like snowboarding but on sand… sandboarding in the desert
- Play football with local school children
- Art workshops to learn and make indigenous art while documenting this forgotten artwork
- Llama shearing: learn how it’s done
The chance to make a difference through voluntary work. Cultural immersion with local indigenous people in a way that as a standard tourist you could never experience. Activities with the local children. Visits to archaeological ruins, bathing in lagoons, and sandboarding!
In the local school (former boarding school) or locally run accommodation.
Best Time to Go
All year round.
- Trip is focused on community service work such as construction for new tourism facilities, community greenhouses, and helping with sports competitions for local schools.
- Each project is owned, managed and overseen by local community members to ensure sustainability and compliance with local needs.
- Meals, accommodation and basic services provided by the local host community.
- Small group sizes to minimize local impact (max 15).