, a sophisticated and worldly modern capital city that has preserved its 16th century colonial central square and streets. Founded in 1541 after the Spanish Conquistadors led by Pizarro had conquered Cuzco in Peru, Santiago today caters to the conquistadors of commerce from venture capitalists to adventurous travelers. Spectacularly backed by the towering Andes Mountains, Santiago is lush with tall trees and parks ripe for picnicking, rich cultural attractions and fabulous shopping, as well as delightful dining from sidewalk cafes and pubs to upscale restaurants. Your then takes you to explore San Pedro de Atacama, a town set on an arid high plateau in the Andes Mountains of northeastern Chile. Its dramatic surrounding landscape incorporates desert, salt flats, volcanoes, geysers and hot springs. The Valle de la Luna in nearby Los Flamencos National Reserve is a lunar-like depression with unusual rock formations, a huge sand dune and pink-streaked mountains. This independent lets you set the pace and enjoy every step of your travels.