Not only is Santiago the capital of Chile, but it is also one of the most modern cities in South America and the main gateway to the country as it receives all international flights. It is the perfect starting point for discovering Chile. I would recommend spending only a few days in Santiago and then setting off to discover La Serena, Torres del Paine, Valdivia, Frutillar…..the real Chile.
Here are my top 5 things to see and do while you are on holidays in Santiago.
- La Moneda
To avoid excessive noise and pollution, I would advise any tourist to visit the city centre of Santiago at the weekend when it is somewhat quieter and calmer. La Moneda is the name of the official Chilean presidential offices and it lies in the very heart of the city. It is a beautiful neo-classical building and an absolute must-see.
- Cerro San Cristóbal hill
There are numerous hills in Santiago; the most important is San Cristóbal.
San Cristóbal is great for sport. At the weekend it is packed with runners, cyclists and walkers who tackle the uphill climb. There are a number of restaurants and kiosks located on the way up, not to mention swimming pools, gardens, parks and a zoo.
- Concha y Toro Wine Tasting
Concha y Toro is one of the most famous wineries in the world and it is located just 17 miles from Santiago at the foot of the Andes.
- Mercado Central
At Santiago’s central market you can find all sorts of fruits, vegetables and fish. If you fancy sampling some local cuisine, this is the place to go as there are lots of little restaurants.
- Pueblito Los Dominicos
If you are looking for somewhere nice to purchase souvenirs, you should go to the Pueblito Los Dominicos. This is a market where you can find all sorts of crafts. To get there you should take line 1 of the metro to “Los Dominicos”.
Written, as a guest post, for the Backpacking Chica online audience.