Atacama virtual: English

Atacama Region, Chile: Cities and villages


Museo Virtual, Atacama

W. Griem, 2020

Yesterday and today

Pic Copiapo Centro
The town
La Plaza (town square)
Streets of the centre
Centro Coimbra
Chapel of Candelaria

Streets of Copiapó
Calle O´Higgins / Calle Chañarcillo
Infante / Rodríguez
Atacama / Los Carreras

Pic escudo de Copiapo
General information

Hotels and accommodation

Copiapo Museos
Regional Museum
Mineralógical Museum
Ex-Museo del Ferrocarril

Pic Cartas de Copiapo
Maps of Copiapo
total centro

Pic Letrero Copiapo
Festivities of Candelaria
Cultur in the square
Anniversary of Copiapó
Shop "El Botón"
Shop "El Herrerito"

Pic Historia de Tres Puntas
History and Chronology, Timeline of Copiapó

PIC FFCC de Copiapo
Railroads of Copiapó
Copiapo railway station
Copiapo railway station (Historic documents)
Burmeister: Pabellón - Copiapó
Steam locomotive La Copiapó
Line at Carreras
Old centre line (Carreras)

Pic Estadistica Lomas Bayas
Demographic development

Pic Copiapo - Hoy ayer
Copiapó today and yesterday ....
a comparison

Atacama street 1989 / 2005
O'Higgins street - Gana
O'Higgins street - Corona (2005 - 2010)
House at Atacama street (1997 / 2005)
La Alameda (1989 / 2004)
O´Higgins street near la Plaza
Carreras street 1922 y 2005
Carreras street with Maipú (1989/2005)
Pan-Americana near the Universidad
Chacabuco street to Atacama street
Los Carreras street / Bavaria (1990/2005)
Copiapó from Cerro La Cruz (1989 / 1997)

Mining school of Copiapo
Salas históricas ("B")
Timeline of the mining school
Historical photo of Mining school
Pan-American Motorway near UDA

Vida Atacama

Next page in geovirtual, Atacama
Start virtual tour Copiapó

Pic Textos historicos
Historical Records
Historical texts

Charles Darwin about Copiapó (1835)
Domeyko about Copiapó (1840)
Paul Treutler about Copiapó (1851)
Center of Copiapó (by Treutler (1851)
Education in Copiapó (Gilliss, 1852)
Philippi about Copiapó (1853)
Burmeister: Earthquake of Copiapó (1859/60)
Pérez Rosales about Copiapó (1859)
Tornero about Copiapó (1872)
Hugo Kunz about Copiapó (1890)
Enrique Espinoza - Copiapó (1903)
Ramírez, 1932

Pic imagen historico
Images of the past

Chañarcillo street, R. Tornero (1872)
Atacama Street, Bowman, 1913
Theatre of Copiapó (1913)
Plaza of Copiapó de R. Tornero (1872)
Overview at Copiapó, R. Tornero (1872)
Plaza of Copiapó, R.A. Philippi (1860)
Overview Copiapó, Paul Treutler 1854
Photo aerial  1937 La Chimba
Railroad station of Copiapó
Photo aerial, railroad station 1937
Mining school of Copiapo at 1934
Bodega lake  (1910)
Map of Copiapó (1892)
Map Copiapó 1920

Informative Chart
● Place: Copiapó
● The capital of the Atacama Region
● UTM Location: E368.240 / N69.72.260
● Altitude: 390 m
● Distance: 806 km north of Santiago
● Population: 162,000 (2012)


Copiapó is the capital of the Atacama Region, located in the north of Chile. With 162,000 inhabitants, the city is located about 70 kilometers inland in the fertile Copiapo Valley and is also the heart of an important mining center in South America: copper, silver, gold and iron are the most important raw materials mined here.

The history of Copiapo goes back to pre-Spanish times, the Copiapo Valley was inhabited by pre-Spanish cultures for a long time. Around 1832, large silver deposits were discovered and developed; around 1870, Copiapó was one of the largest silver producers in South America. At the same time as copper and gold mining, a considerable wealth moved into the small desert town. The rapid industrial development was also reflected in technical progress: the first railway from Caldera to Copiapó, deep-sea cables, mining school, street lighting and a variety of innovations quickly reached Copiapo. Around 1900 the silver mining industry was extinguished, and copper mining was also severely reduced. Only in the fifties the copper industry recovered and to this day it is one of the main sources of the region and the country.
Today Copiapó is a small town, you can still see its rich history, but there is still an atmosphere of the fifties in some streets.

Copiapó offers accommodation for every budget: from cheap residences to exclusive hotels. Restaurants of all price ranges can also be found everywhere. Museums, cafés, the Plaza and many other places invite you to visit. Copiapó can also be chosen as the starting point for many Andean tours.

So why Copiapó?  I'm going to say . . .
Copiapó has always been a city where people produce silver, copper, gold and grapes. Copiapó may not be beautiful - but it is certainly interesting, Copiapó is authentic. The streets of the city grew with the mining industry. Unfortunately, the economic development in the mining industry is never straightforward - this can be seen very clearly in the inner city area of Copiapó. Houses of the noblest kind built perhaps 150 years ago are now facing decay - if they are not restored for reasons of monument protection.
In Copiapó, we can look back on an era which unfortunately can hardly be observed in other places. It is worthwhile to hike the side streets in the inner city area with your eyes wide open and to explore the different phases of urban development. The once glamorous buildings of the rich citizens of the "Tres Puntas" or "Chañarcillo" period (1840-1890). The buildings in Art Nouveau and Bauhaus style from 1920 to 1950, as well as the architectural building sins from the 1960s  and 1970s, which are also part of the development.


Any new publication not authorized by the authors is expressly prohibited. This applies in particular to electronic publications:  Usage guidelines.
If you have old photos or other (historical) material of the Atacama region, we would be very pleased to implement this in our pages: Contact

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Geology (Spanish)
Apuntes Geología General
Apuntes Geología Estructural
Apuntes Depósitos Minerales
Apuntes Exploraciones Mineras
Geological periods
Literature and Citation
Geological index (spanish)
Virtual museum
Virtual Museum: First page
Geological excursion
Some Minerals
History of Geosciences
Mining in historical literature
Fossils in historical literature
Historical authors mining and geology
Geological index (spanish)
Images of Chile and Atacama
The Coquimbo Region, Chile
The Coquimbo Region
History of the Coquimbo Region
Railroad history of Coquimbo
Names and places
Images from Chile
Atacama Region, Chile
Journey to Atacama
Atacama sightseeing places
History of Atacama
Mining history of Atacama
Geology of Atacama, Chile
The railroad history of Atacama
Flora Atacama
Animals of the Atacama Desert
Virtual viewpoint Atacama
Atacama en b/n
Road - maps /
Morphologic 3-dimensions
Climate history of Atacama
Books & Collection of Books
List of names and places of Atacama
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Virtual Museum of Atacama desert and Atacama Region, Chile
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Published: 25.12. 2005; updated: 19.9.2017, 23.12.2018, 30.01.2021
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Any new publication not authorized by the authors is expressly prohibited. This applies in particular to electronic publications: Usage guidelines
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