Published: December 16th 2008October 16th 2008
Chile is one of the most developed countries within South America (I can say that now for sure after visiting some of the others). I arrived in Santiago and didn’t really have any plans about what and when I wanted to see things. The flight from Auckland to here really knocked me out and it also effected some of the other people I spoke to. Major jet lag set in.
I was lucky to meet up with two girls I had travelled a little with in NZ who had a plan of action. So we firstly headed to Valparaiso, which is a lovely city full of colour set in amongst hills. To enable the locals access there are a sequence of cable car / lifts spread across the town and varying levels and distances. The town has some quaint little alleys and some views of the harbour which is used by the navy.
Next door is Vina del Mar which is more of a large beach resort sort of place. Although the weather wasn’t amazing when we were there it would be a nice place to lay back and take some rays or a light bit of
retail therapy. We spent two nights there but an early start day trip from Santiago would be just as good.
We then headed up to San Pedro de Atacama which is a ridiculously long bus ride I think it worked out 30 hrs total so if you can break it up I would do so. San Pedro was a quite desert town which has been converted into loads of restaurants and tour operators. There are loads of things to see here if you have the time.
The highest level water geysers (Tatio Geysers) are great to see at sun rise so you get to full affect of the steam as well as swimming in the surrounding hot pools. Being the desert there is little light pollution so we went on an astrology tour at the local observatories. The sky is so clear here and I have never seen so many stars by the naked eye. Even more when using the telescopes. Loads of other tours available. One good one is hiring a bike and a sand board good fun hurtling yourself down a sand dune.
After Pedro off to Arica not really worth that
Vina del Mar
That was some night out
much of a visit unless on your way to Peru a fine stop off for one day. We were lucky to see the parade/ carnival in the shopping streets as we walked around but this is a monthly occurrence.
If you do Chile it is easy to get round but plan your route as I had to go back to Santiago for my flight so if you can go straight up or down that would be best.
There are more photos below