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Santiago

Slap-bang in the middle of Chile, Santiago is a modern city with a European feel, and is the place where most visitors begin their trip. It’s not a particularly attractive city, since frequent earthquakes have gradually claimed most of the colonial buildings here. Santiago also lacks the 24-hour party reputation of other Latin American capitals, so a couple of days should be sufficient to see all the main attractions before heading out into the countryside.

 

Despite its flaws, Santiago’s European flavor and the proliferation of modern conveniences, such as high-quality hotels and restaurants, make the city a good base for exploring the nearby regions. Day or overnight trips to the wine country to the south, the beaches to the west, and the Andean ski resorts to the east can easily be arranged in the capital. See Around Santiago for more information about these trips.

The Plaza de Armas, Santiago’s official center, is always buzzing with life. Schoolchildren, families, workmen on their lunch-break, and tourists all come here to soak up the atmosphere and watch the world go by.

 

Chile’s most impressive museum,The Museo Chileno de Arte Precolombina, features 3,000 pieces of Precolombian art from more than 1,000 Latin American cultures, all laid out in a manageable and interesting display.

 

On a clear day, the high Cerro San Cristobal gives fine views over both the city and the Andes. Head up to the summit on the funicular railway and enjoy a picnic in the park at the top. Or, as clear days are rare in Santiago, make the summit at dusk to watch the golden-orange glow of the sun setting on the hazy city.

 

Santiago’s Latin Quarter, Barrio Bellavista, gets particularly lively on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights when Chileans and foreigners pour into the restaurants, bars, cafés and ‘salsatecas’ that line the narrow streets.

 

 

Neighborhoods in Santiago: Barrio Ñuñoa, Barrio Brazil, Barrio Lastarria, Around Santiago, Providencia, Bellavista, Las Condes, Center, Cajón del Maipo,

Other places in Chile: Pichilemu, Chile Chico , Mamiña, Castro, Horcon, Lago Ranco, Parque Nacional Hornopirén, Ralún, Reserva Nacional Futaleufú and Pisagua.







18 Feb 2010

Top Things to See and Do in Santiago

Cerro San Cristobal Funicular

126183On a clear day, the view from the top of Cerro San Cristóbal is spectacular, providing the best view in the city of the stunning contrast between Santiago and its surrounding mountains. The hill is ...
City Park
Santiago, Chile

La Chascona

Museo Casa La Chascona is the former home of Chile’s Nobel Prize-winning poet, Pablo Neruda. La Chascona means “uncombed” and is a reference to the unruly hair of Matilde Urrutia, his secret ...
Museum
Bellavista, Santiago, Chile

Museo Chileno de Arte Precolumbino

This museum, specializing in pre-Columbian Chile, is one of the country’s best. Located in an elegant white building in the center of Santiago, the museum is a journey through time. It displays a ...
Museum
Center, Santiago, Chile

Plaza de Armas

The Plaza de Armas dates back to 1541 when Pedro de Valdivia founded Santiago. The square was used as an army training ground, with a protected area in the middle that was used to store arms. The ...
City Plaza
Center, Santiago, Chile

National Aeronautic Museum

122432At this indoor/outdoor museum, plane buffs can discover the history of Chilean aviation. The museum holdings range from Chile’s very first plane, right through to an example of the jets used in ...
Museum
Center, Santiago, Chile

Zoológico Nacional

122788The Zoológico Nacional of Santiago features more than 150 animal species. The park spans 4.8 hectares at the base of Cerro San Cristobal, just beyond the Funicular. The “Zoocine,” a small indoor ...
City Park
Bellavista, Santiago, Chile

Feria de Bellavista

122789South America is known for its handcrafted masterpieces. This is no exception in Santiago. One craft fair (feria) that offers many treasures to take home is the Feria de Bellavista. These artisans ...
Market
Bellavista, Santiago, Chile

Parque O'Higgins

Parque O’Higgins, named after Chile’s liberator, covers an area of 77 hectares and is Santiago’s second largest park. It used to be the playground for the rich, but is now popular with the ...
City Park
Center, Santiago, Chile

Laberinto

A crowd of Santiago’s hippest and stylish often gathers at this club in Ñuñoa. Laberinto has several dance floors with varying sounds such as indie, rock, techno or house music. While it is the ...
Entertainment
Santiago, Chile

Bunker

Bunker is a the hotspot for travelers looking to find the gay scene in Santiago. The club’s disc jockey bounces head-pounding beats off the walls of the renovated theater. Don’t worry about being ...
Other Activity
Santiago, Chile

Horseback Riding around Santiago

The best options for horseback riding around Santiago are in the Central Valley. Riding has long been part of the culture here and there are plenty of pastures, peaks and rivers for wanna-be cowboys ...
Horseback Riding
Around Santiago, Santiago, Chile

The most happening bars in Santiago

Dublin

Part of the fancy Patio Bellavista food court, although accessible from outside, the Dublin pub offers a variety of beers, (not including Guinness), in a mock-Irish setting. The music hails from the ...
Bar
Bellavista, Santiago, Chile

Blondie

Blondie draws hip and youthful bar-seekers to its four-floor dance club and can pack in as many as 2,000 dancers. Each level features different genres of music, but the main floor draws the most ...
Bar
Santiago, Chile

Brannigan’s

Brannigan’s is a little more up-scale and not exactly the place to lose control. Still, this swanky corner pub in Providencia is a fine place to listen to some music while being able to maintain a ...
Bar
Santiago, Chile

Oz

This is a high-priced option for those looking for a place to dance into the early morning. Chileans with a lot of style and money populate this techno club in Providencia. ...
Bar
Santiago, Chile

Boomerang

Locals and foreigners alike mix together at this popular spot in Providencia. The dance music is loud, but there are also pool tables to distract drinkers or tired dancers. The drinks are not ...
Bar
Santiago, Chile

El Tunel

Miss the 1970s? Out of nostalgia or because you weren’t born yet? Either way, El Tunel provides the blast from the past you’ve been craving. The disc jockeys spin classics from more than 30 years ...
Bar
Santiago, Chile

Flannery’s Irish Pub

In general, Irish pubs abroad are tourist traps, and Flannery’s is no exception. This is not all bad, however. The bar food is good, there is Guinness and, if Chilean football is not your cup of ...
Bar
Santiago, Chile

Bokhara

Bokhara is another lively disco, and popular part of Santiago’s gay scene. It regularly features drag shows, and the service is generally friendly. ...
Bar
Santiago, Chile

Las Lanzas

This is a popular spot among locals to find a cheap drink in Ñuñoa. It is in full bloom during the summer months when patrons spill out into the street. Head here to mix with the hip Chileans and ...
Bar
Santiago, Chile

La Casa En El Aire

La Casa En El Aire is a very cool bar that doubles as an art gallery. The artworks on the walls provide interesting topics to muse over while sharing a drink with friends. The owner hosts live music ...
Bar
Santiago, Chile

Club La Feria

Club La Feria is a typical disco, with disc jockeys that scramble electronic beats into the early morning hours. The place fancies itself as trendy, so do not wear sneakers. Guys in too tight ...
Bar
Santiago, Chile

Santiago's coolest hostels

Ají Hostel (previously Chilli Hostel)

Only a block from busy Providencia, this converted 1930s house is a surprisingly tranquil hostel. Paintings by local artists decorate the walls, and the original staircase and large wooden doors give ...
Hostel
Providencia, Santiago, Chile

casa club la reina

This hostel is located in a quiet residential sector, close to buses, supermarkets, banks and restaurants. ...
Hostel
Santiago, Chile

La Chimba Hostel

La Chimba Hostel offers a safe and cozy refuge for backpackers. Come to this clean and friendly place for a good night’s rest; the beds are remarkably comfortable by hostel standards. Staff members ...
Hostel
Bellavista, Santiago, Chile

Happy House Hostal

Any guests visiting with large luggage should be aware of an awkward-to-negotiate and beautiful door that opens to a wide and ornate wooden staircase. Once you reach the top of the stairs, it opens ...
Hostel
Barrio Brazil, Santiago, Chile

Hostal Americano

More of a B&B than a hostel, Hostal Americano offers single, double, triple and quadruple rooms and is a favorite among travelers in their mid-20s to 30s. It’s one metro stop from the Plaza de ...
Hostel
Center, Santiago, Chile

Hostal Santa Lucia

Hostal Santa Lucia is right in the heart of the city, just a stone’s throw away from Cerro Santa Lucia and also within easy reach of Barrios Brazil, Lastarria and Santiago Centro. This cozy hostel ...
Hostel
Center, Santiago, Chile

El Moai Viajero

Set inside a pretty colonial house, El Moai Viajero is just minutes away from historical downtown and the bars and restaurants of Barrio Brasil. With its chilled-out atmosphere, El Moai Viajero is a ...
Hostel
Center, Santiago, Chile

Andes Hostel

Andes Hostel is trying really hard to be the coolest hostel in Santiago—and doing a pretty good job of it. The hostel is modern and funky and has a living room, terrace, bar, pool table, pinball ...
Hostel
Center, Santiago, Chile

Che Lagarto Santiago

Che Lagarto Santiago is one of a chain of hostels located throughout South America. If you want cheap, no-frills accommodation and a chance to meet with other like-minded backpackers, this will be ...
Hostel
Center, Santiago, Chile

Footsteps Backpackers

The best thing about Footsteps hostel is its location. Just a few minutes from Metro Baquedano, it’s within walking distance of Bellavista, Parque Metropolitano, Museo de Bellas Artes, Lastarria ...
Hostel
Providencia, Santiago, Chile

Casa Condell

With only seven rooms, Casa Condell really is a home away from home. The guesthouse is set in a period house on a quiet residential street in Providencia but is still within walking distance of the ...
Hostel
Providencia, Santiago, Chile
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