Sunday, 20 May 2007

Ghost Towns

From San Pedro, William and I took a bus across the Atacama to the pacific town of Iquique.

This area was once part of Bolivia, but Chile gained it during the 1870`s Pacific War. A war fought over nitrate, for up in the barren Atacama nitrates abounded. The British helped or rather controlled the nitrate trade in Chile. Building plants in the remote wastes, and establishing towns next to these processing factories. These were towns featuring theatres, swimming pools, hotels, schools and churches. All were abandonned once artificial nitrates were invented.

These plants and towns are now totally abandonned and lie clanking in the hot winds.

Ghost towns for sure, now joining the ancient and mysterious geoglyphs lining many of the hills in these parts.