Puritama Hot Springs (Termas Baños de Puritama)
The name puritama simply means "hot water" in an ancient, pre-Inca indigenous language, suggesting that these medicinal springs have been used for millennia. Long used by the Atacameño people, the sodium sulfate waters are recommended for those suffering from rheumatism, arthritis, stress, physical fatigue, and other ailments. The hot springs are run by the luxury Explora Hotel and, although most pools have been left in a relatively natural state, there are changing rooms, eateries, campsites, trails, handicrafts vendors, and other developments all around.
Things to know before you go
- A visit to Puritama Hot Springs is an ideal way to relax and unwind.
- There is a fee to use the springs.
- It is recommended that you bring sunscreen.
How to get there
Puritama Hot Springs is a 30-minute drive north of San Pedro de Atacama. There are no public buses that run to the hot springs so, if you don’t have your own car, book a guided tour or hail a taxi in San Pedro.
When to get there
Temperatures in the pools hover around 91°F (33°C), so they aren't ridiculously hot, making daytime visits a treat. The springs can get quite crowded, however, so it is recommended to visit early in the morning to beat the crowds.
What to See in the Surrounding Area
The area surrounding Puritama Hot Springs is known for such archeological sites as Pukará de Quitor and Tulor. You are also well-placed to visit the Valley of the Moon, Atacama Salt Flats, El Tatio Geysers, and artisans’ villages, such as Toconao. The easiest way to get to all without driving is by taking a multi-stop guided tour.
- Cejar Lagoon (Laguna Cejar)
- Pukara de Quitor
- Institute of Archaeological Research and R. P. G. Le Page Museum (Instituto de Investigacio
- Church of San Pedro de Atacama
- Rainbow Valley (Valle del Arcoiris)
- El Tatio Geysers
- Atacama Desert
- Tulor Village
- Moon Valley (Valle de la Luna)
- Los Flamencos National Reserve (Reserva Nacional Los Flamencos)
- Ojos del Salar
- Tebenquiche Lagoon
- Atacama Salt Flats (Salar de Atacama)
- Chaxa Lagoon (Laguna Chaxa)