Bitten by the travel bug but don’t know where to go? Today’s featured travel and landscape snaps by Brazilian photographer and retoucher Felipe Ballin should provide a good idea: Chile. So, pack your bags, prepare your gear, and make sure to wear something comfy. You’ll want to take your time exploring the South American country, making sure not to miss the world-famous Atacama Desert and its surroundings.
The Atacama Desert should be on everyone’s bucket list, not only because it’s photogenic but also because it’s one of the most geologically fascinating places on earth. As LiveScience reminds us, it’s the driest non-polar desert in the world, stretching roughly 600 miles (1,000 kilometers) between the Cordillera de la Costa mountain range and the Andes Mountains. It’s also the oldest desert on the planet. According to a paper in the November 2018 issue of Nature, it has experienced semi-arid conditions for about the past 150 million years. All this makes the Atacama a fascinating location for science, travel, and of course photography.
The Atacama landscape is primarily comprised of rocky terrain, salt lakes, and sand. Ballin shared that the desert temperatures range from 0° C at night to 40° C during the day. Because of these conditions, there are only a handful of towns in the area. One of these is the famous San Pedro de Atacama, which sits at an altitude of 2,408 meters. Well isolated, it’s seen as an oasis in the middle of the desert and the main meeting and jump-off point for travelers from around the world.
Ballin’s Atacama Desert series embodies all the elements that make a wanderlust-inducing body of work: stunning vistas, scenic scenes on the road, and all the vibrant hues. His colorful treatment of the chosen landscapes makes them seem larger than life and even more enticing both to travelers and photographers alike. The clash of the unique desert flora and the surrounding jagged peaks make for a beautiful display of contrast and colors.