When we arrived in San Pedro it was pitch black so we got the trusty lonely planet out to take us to our hostel. So we had the map upside down and ended up in the back of some poor girls house, luckily after half hour in the wrong direction she pointed us the right way. We headed down this dusty street, which happened to be the town centre it was really quirky - reminded me of Nepal and Laos very undeveloped but so much character and although so many tourists it's not spoilt by us. We had trouble finding out hostel again as every road looked the same but after another half hour we are arrived at Hostel Rural, what should of been 5 mins from the bus terminal whoops. The hostel had a real hippy vibe but the staff were lovely and the although basic, it had a big campfire, hammocks and weird artwork around the place.
That evening we headed out for some food we went to a restaurant called 'Abode' best meal yet I had lamb Kofta with Quinoa, It was so yummy and felt so healthy compared to what we had been eating! Fresh Fruit and Veg seems to be hard to come by lots of cheese and bread! We had a few coronas and enjoyed a Chilean band play after a bonfire. Heading back to the hostel we brought a bottle of wine for £1.50 and chatted to people from the hostel. There was a guy from Nimbin, which is a hippy area of Australia, who had had been bitten by one of the many dogs but he said the dog was attacking another dog so he jabbed the dog in his eye and now has to have rabies jabs every week for 8 weeks - you decide whether he decided the bite! Anyhow it was cool hanging out but at 12 it was end of curfew and we told to go to bed - no lie.
The following day we had a productive day of booking tours and getting washing done. In the afternoon we hired bikes and went into the desert, it was the high 20's and was so hot to pedal. We went 10k to some ancient ruins, which to be honest is no St Albans. We had 2 dogs that followed us all the way from San Pedro and back, they are ridiculous. The scenery is just incredible no picture will never show the vast beauty.
When we got back, we headed out for some dinner and then went out for drinks with a few people from the hostel. There was a pub though that stopped serving to the foreigners at 12 but locals 2 apparently this is so we go on the tours or get up and book them - the cheek of them.
Sandboarding was the activity the following morning, well this was an adventure. We went to a sand dune in the middle of Death Valley (like the one on the US west coast). We had to get all the gear on, which was snowboard and boots. Sebastian our guide was great, we followed him up the dune. It was so steep, they really could do with a drag lift or to have my dad here to carry up my board, just like he does with my skis!
He gave us a lesson on how to snowboard, I could Barely even stand up. My first go wasn't that bad to be honest - I was quite impressed, I did fall over almost 7 times the first time though, but we had another 5 goes. Each time I was getting better until I applied sun tan lotion and did a kamikaze fall. Coming up like the Sandqueen, sand in my eyes, ears, nose and stuck to my arms!
It was pretty funny and the tour company filmed so we have that treat to look forward too.
That evening we went stargazing it was incredible. I thought when they said there was 10 telescopes it was gonna be 1 between 2 people and you just look at the sky. But when we got there, it was actually at a observatory and we were greeted by a Canadian called Lans who had been studying the stars since he was 10 and now was 60! We stood in the pitch black and he pointed out lots of amazing things using a super cool laser pen like Saturn, South Pole, star signs, Juniper and Venus as well as well known constellations. (Sophie and I reminisced our Mallorca holidays with laser pens). I also saw 6 shooting stars. I felt as though I was in the 'Truman show' in a dome of a million stars. After a brief talk we went and used the ultra telescope they were amazing we saw Saturn and its rings and even got such a close look at the moon we were able to take a photo through the telescope showing mountains and craters! After this the tour was finished with a hot chocolate it was absolutely freezing. It had been such an amazing day and a fantastic end to our time in Chile, Bolivia in the morning!