We retraced our route to Calama and then headed south initially to Antofogasta, but it was only 250 km. There were several ruins along the way.
This is a sign you do not see very often and just after the traffic was crawling for 10 km following the biggest dump truck ever. It took up two lanes and nearly took out several barriers and signposts.
Another milestone today we passed the tropic of Capricorn.
There are many of these geoglyphs along the roadside.
Another 75 km south of there is the famous hand in the desert so we stopped there for some photo op’s.
Instead of back tracking the 25 km to the road to the coast we continued south, “because the will be another road”. Unfortunately there was not and we were stuck on the Pan Americana where there was really nowhere to stop for the night unlike on the coast road, until we reached 630 km at Taltal. This is quite a nice ocean front town. There is a pretty square and waterfront area.
30 minutes after we arrived at the hotel Claudinei and Fatima from Brazil arrived. They had been in San Pedro also and left about 30 min after us this morning but did the coast road. Together we enjoyed a great fish dinner and Spinglish with a little Portuguese conversation.
We were all going the same direction and to Bahia Inglasia just 240 km away.
We tracked back to the Pan Americana for about 100 km and then exited to the Camino de Pan de Azucar. Someone had told us about this great road last year. The route is off road, but very solid and the views are amazing. This then heads to the coast and meets up again with the #5 highway.
Just before this you cross the playa in strong winds and blowing sand.
Arriving in Bahia we finally found a place with cabinas that had kitchens to spend 2 nights. This is a beach town just south of the city of Caldera.
Since all 4 of us are wearing these helmets we had to have lunch at the Shark restaurant.
Some really great new friends!
Heading south 411 km we aimed for La Serena. This was a pretty boring ride down the #5 until the last 45 km along the sea.
I love a welcome drink!