Blogs from Santiago, Santiago Region, Chile, South America


South America » Chile » Santiago Region » Santiago July 2nd 2014

This past weekend I had the opportunity to take a 3 day weekend and fly up North to visit San Pedro de Atacama and the Atacama Desert. All of the "top things to do in Chile" lists say this is a must see, and I think they are spot on. This place is otherworldly and stunningly beautiful. I would highly recommend it to anyone who is considering going. I'll give you a short recap of the weekend and the things we were able to enjoy. Friday we flew into Calama where the wind chill at the airport was a balmy -25C when we stepped off the plane, and that prepared us for the cold nights and mornings we were to encounter all weekend. My roommate has friends in Calama so we spent the day with them ... read more
Oldest Church in Chile
Church doors
Oldest church in Chile

South America » Chile » Santiago Region » Santiago June 15th 2014

I've lost track of time. When was the last time I blogged? I don't know. But, tracing it back from Peru, I left Cusco bright and early a couple of days past for the flight back to Lima. I remember at the Lima Airport the masses of people following the World Cup. Soccer (football... hah-hah) is basically the official religion in this part of the world, and people take their watching of the event very seriously. One guy I saw blocked the view of another, and they almost started throwing punches. A cop at the airport literally had to intervene! I then took a 5 or so hour flight South the Santiago, the capital of Chile. This big city, for me at least, is only a break to catch my breath, meaning that Santiago doesn't really ... read more
More Santiago
The Andes
My Apartment

South America » Chile » Santiago Region » Santiago June 14th 2014

Santiago had an odd feeling to it as we took our first steps on unfamilar streets. Warnings of danger made us extremely apprehensive as it became apparent how gringo we looked. Hostile glances from local workmen made us even more wary ... however it then dawned on us that anyone working early on a miserable Wednesday morning wouldn´t be over the moon to see fresh vacationers strutting about (one in shorts too). Our first impression quickly changed as we experienced just how friendly the Chileans are. We began in true socilalite style and drank with the fellow hostellers the first night and experienced a gringo night in the city... not quite the cultural blast we wanted but not a bad start! The following morning began groggily, but after suitable rest we headed to a bar for ... read more

South America » Chile » Santiago Region » Santiago June 6th 2014

This is a blog post that I've actually worked on to prepare for a little bit. I've been completely neglecting studying for the LSAT and instead either being a completely lazy bum, or writing in my journal and making some notes/thoughts about differences in culture that I notice here. Obviously, Santiago is very different from NJ, although similar in many respects. But I want to write for a while about things that I find to be interesting/unique/odd/terrible/awesome, etc. In no way is this meant to be an exhaustive list on differences in Chilean culture and also note that it is simply my observations. So, here we go! Most people here have two last names, one taken from their mother and another from their father. I've yet to ask/figure out how they determine which last name gets ... read more

South America » Chile » Santiago Region » Santiago May 19th 2014

Think of your last trip to a city or country none of your friends or family had been to. Think of the one question everyone probably asks you everytime. Maybe it's different, but for me, everybody always asks me when I travel, "What was X like?" It's one of the most challenging and frustrating questions for me because I want to tell and share EVERYTHING I do with everybody I know. But how can you sum up the essence of a city, a nation, a culture? When I was in Thailand 6 years ago, everybody asked me what it was like, and I loved talking about it, but it always frustrated me because there's absolutely no way that you can answer that question in adequate manner. I'd always want to come back to it and add ... read more
A couple blocks from my apt


South America » Chile » Santiago Region » Santiago May 13th 2014

I didn't realize it's been over 2 weeks since I wrote anything here! Crazy how time flies. Fortunately the past two weeks have been keeping me pretty busy, both at work, but more importantly, during my free time. Since Labor Day, aka Workers Day, is celebrated on May 1 almost everywhere but in the US, I had May 1 and 2 off from work (how did I never know this before? It was cool to learn that the US does not celebrate Labor Day on May 1 because they originally want to disassociate themselves from any potential ties to socialist/workers reform movements that were common in the late 1800s, despite the fact that the holiday originated out of the Haymarket Riots in Chicago!). So I made good use of my free time and was able to ... read more
Monumento Nacional El Morado
Monumento Nacional El Morado2
Monumento Nacional El Morado3

South America » Chile » Santiago Region » Santiago May 9th 2014

Days 79 - 81 After saying goodbye to the remaining 5 from our original group tour who are continuing onto Rio we set out for the Plaza de Armas to pick up a half day free guided walking tour of the city. Our guide Franco is quite famous & works for well deserved tips. Although Santiago covers a large area, the city centre is quite compact and fairly easy to get around. The city's centre is roughly triangular in shape with the Plaza de Armas, the main plaza and home to the Cathedral, sitting in the centre. Panning out from here are wall-to-wall shops, restaurants and parks. We had a coffee break at the Barrio Bella Vista area & known as Santiago's 'Paris Quarter'. The rest of the day was spent wandering around town before retrieving ... read more

South America » Chile » Santiago Region » Santiago May 7th 2014

Days 76-78 Our final long bus ride (8 hrs) was spectacular, crossing the Andes by the Paso Los libertadores, a mountain pass between Argentina & Chile & on to the capital, Santiago. From the Argentine side the route is a slow, gentle incline until entering a tunnel at 3200 mtrs while on the Chilean side the slope has a far steeper grade descending down 28 hairpin curves over 7 km's. The path can be closed during heavy snow falls as was the case a few days ago. Happy that this was the last slow border crossing before heading home. Our stay was for 2 nights in a hostel before the tour officially finished. We had a quick orientation tour of the city before heading out to dinner. We won't be short of good restaurants to try! ... read more
Road to Chile border
Road to Chile border
Decent from Chile border

South America » Chile » Santiago Region » Santiago April 26th 2014

I'm not quite sure what drew me to sit down and write tonight, but I know I haven't been very good with posting about my everyday activities, particularly when it comes to work. So I'm going to try my best to remedy that now and give more insight into what my experiences have been like working here so far. I know I've written some already about how my program is supposed to be a co-teaching program, but for some unknown reason, the supervisor at my school has decided that I should just teach on my own for each day that I visit my classes. If I hadn't taught previously, that would be a daunting challenge. It's still challenging, but it is something I can certainly handle and excel at. So, what is a normal day at ... read more

South America » Chile » Santiago Region » Santiago April 20th 2014

Nothing is constant in this world except for change. I came here with the expectation that I'd teach for 5 months, move back home, and move on with my life and career. Yet here I am almost exactly 2 months into my time in Chile, and all of that has changed. I'm now staying here for 10 months (maybe a little longer if I can afford to travel when I finish teaching), then I will be moving back home to move on with my life and career, but in a much different and more positive way than I originally envisioned. I have decided and made the commitment to remain here to teach for the entire school year and while it was a decision I really agonized over, all along I've known it's the right choice for ... read more

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