SCL: Country 31 for me and Chile’s largest, most cosmopolitan city – Santiago. I actually thought that it felt bigger than Buenos Aires because of the different neighborhoods and how spread out our activities were. There is so much that Santiago has to offer – The history, the active hiking, wine, and more!
WHERE TO STAY: If you are looking for a safe area with the chain hotels, this will be in Las Condes. Unfortunately it is far from everything else and we had to take uber’s but safety was priority. We also had a huge complex next to us with lots of restaurants and shops. Did you know that Santiago was “famous” for it’s malls? In Las Condes, check out the Marriott options.
Lastarria was a cute neighborhood with lots of bars and restaurants that we came across on one of our tours. I would recommend this area for those that enjoy good food and nightlife. Check out Las Cumbres. For a more boutique, high end option, The Aubrey is your “go to” accommodation. This is located in the neighborhood of Providencia, at the bottom of San Cerro Cristobal.
WHAT TO DO: It was great to experience the wines of Santiago and learn about the different grapes in the Chilean region. We did a full day wine tour to Cousino Macul and Concha Y Toro with an authentic Chilean lunch. Explore the Mercado Central and La Vega Food Markets – this is where all of the locals buy their produce. While I opted out of the Fish market experience, that is another option.
Although we did not have the opportunity to explore the Andes Mountains, this is definitely something I would suggest. Many tour companies offer day tours to the Andes whether the Lagoon, Volcano, by horseback, and more. This was one experience I wish I had heard about prior to the trip and planned!
HOW TO STAY ACTIVE: I would definitely recommend a city walking tour in Santiago to learn the history and see a lot of the highlights. This was about a 3-4 hour experience and gave us a great overview of the city.
We also spent one afternoon hiking San Cerro Cristobal to the top, and spent a few more hours in the park. San Cerro can be reached by 45-60 minute hike to the Summit or cable car (we opted to hike to get in our workout for the day). This 722 hectare green space gives you amazing views overlooking all of Santiago. There are gardens, a zoo, workout classes, and even event space located within the Parque. This is a must-do experience for a free afternoon!
Santiago was a great destination and really offered something for everyone of all interests. Want to get in touch with a Travel Specialist for this city? Email me at TravelFitLove@gmail.com