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Photographer's Note

Iquique is a city in northern Chile, capital of Tarapacα Region, situated on the Pacific coast. It had a population of over 200,000. It has one of the largest duty-free areas of South America (around 2.4 km2) known as Zofri and is home to a growing number of high rise resort hotels along its beaches.

During colonial times, Iquique was part of the Viceroyalty of Peru as much of South America was at the time, and remained part of Peruvian territory until the end of the 19th century. Iquique's early development was due in large part to the discovery of mineral riches, particularly the presence of large deposits of sodium nitrate in the Atacama Desert (then part of Peruvian territory). Territorial disputes between Bolivia and Chile triggered the War of the Pacific in 1879. (Peru entered the war on the Bolivian side.) The Battle of Iquique was one of the most important ones - it was fought on May 21, 1879 and that day is now commemorated as Navy Day, an annual public holiday in Chile. The outcome of the war gave Chile this portion of its territory.

In 1868 and again in 1877 earthquakes devastated the city. Yet another earthquake hit the city in 2005.

Photo was taken from the moving car - we were on our way to San Pedro de Atacama. Another photo I took when our guide stopped the car for a short while is in the workshop.

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