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Santiago (Chile)

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Travel Guide South America Chile Santiago

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Introduction

Santiago

Santiago

© All Rights Reserved Journeyman

Santiago (or Santiago de Chile) is the capital of Chile, with a population of approximately 5.5 million people. Alongside Buenos Aires and Sao Paulo, Santiago is one of the leading economic hubs of South America. But Santiago is also stunningly beautiful, its modern skyline set against the backdrop of the snow capped Andes mountains.

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Neighbourhoods

  • Cerrillos
  • Cerro Navia
  • Conchalí
  • El Bosque
  • Estación Central
  • Huechuraba
  • Independencia
  • La Cisterna
  • La Florida
  • La Granja
  • La Pintana
  • La Reina
  • Las Condes
  • Lo Barnechea
  • Lo Espejo
  • Lo Prado
  • Macul
  • Maipú
  • Ñuñoa
  • Pedro Aguirre Cerda
  • Peñalolén
  • Providencia
  • Pudahuel
  • Puente Alto
  • Quilicura
  • Quinta Normal
  • Recoleta
  • Renca
  • San Bernardo
  • San Joaquín
  • San Miguel
  • San Ramón
  • Santiago Centro
  • Vitacura

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Sights and Activities

  • Cerro Santa Lucia - a hill in the centre. The site where Pedro de Valdivia founded the city.
  • Pablo Neruda Museum.
  • National Museum of Fine Arts (Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes).
  • Parque Metropolitano is a 700+ hectare park and recreation area complete with swimming pools, a zoo, restaurants and a botanical garden. On a clear day, you can experience sweeping views of the city from Cerro San Cristóbal, the city's highest point.
  • Plaza De Armas - the city's main square.
  • Wander the streets of Bellavista and Bellas Artes.
  • La Moneda Palace - the presidential palace.
  • Mercado Central - the city's distinctive wrought-iron market.
  • If you want to see something different, you could go to either Mercado Bio Bio which is on the yellow metro line, metro station Franklin or Mercado La Vega which is on the same line between the metro stations Puente Cal y Canto and Patronato. These are poorer markets than Mercado Central so be careful.

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Events and Festivities

  • Santiago's Annual Love Parade - Santiago's Annual Love Parade is a celebration of love and freedom in the city attracting thousands dancers and party goers every year in January. Expect bedazzled floats, loud music, great food, drinks, and street parties that last through the night.
  • The Santiago Jazz Festival - The Santiago Jazz Festival features both local and international musicians that come to the city for a week of great outdoor live music. Many different styles of jazz are represented, and all of the concerts are free. Event takes place in late January or early February.
  • Vinos de Chile - Vinos de Chile is a wine festival brings over 30 of Chile’s vineyards to Santiago to show off their best wines. The week-long event is typically held at the Plaza San Francisco Hotel in March. Visitors can expect wine tastings, competitions, and other fun events.
  • Easter - Since Chile is a predominately Catholic nation, Easter week is regarded as one of the most important weeks of the year. Expect to see parades, events, and religious ceremonies all around town beginning on Good Friday.
  • Dieciocho (01 Sep 2013 - 20 Sep 2013) - Dieciocho, the 18th of September, marks the independence of the Chilean people from Spanish control, and it is one of the most celebrated events on the Chilean calander. Parties consume the month of September, springing up in nearly all the parks of the city, and the nightclubs get full to the brim with people dancing the Cueca (Chile's national dance) and drinking Chicha. Chicha is arguably the best bevarage to come out of this traditional country and is made from either grapes or apples to produce a beautifully sweet drink that is only sold during the festivities of this month, so catch it while you can.
  • The Santiago International Short Film Festival - The Santiago International Short Film Festival is one of the most important events in Latin American cinema. The festival features short films by both established and up-and-coming artists.

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Weather

The warm days start from November and lasts well into March, with an average temperature from 25 °C to 35 °C during the day and around 15 °C to 22 °C From April to August the weather is relatively cold (still mild though) and unstable, mostly haze, cloudy, and sometimes rainy with temperatures from -2 °C on some nights to 15 °C or a little more on the warmer days. The sun starts to shine again in September and October, but be careful because some days looks like summer and the next day could be rainy.

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Getting There

By Plane

Santiago International Airport, also called Comodoro Arturo Merino Benítez International Airport or Pudahuel Airport, is the main airport in Chile and located in Pudahuel, west of the capital. It's the largest airport in the country with almost 10 million passengers a year.
LanChile is the national carrier of Chile, but many other major airlines fly into Chile as well, including Iberia, several South American airlines and airlines based in the USA.

Some travellers arriving by air are required to pay a "processing fee." This processing fee is in response to fee levied against Chileans travelling abroad, and will match the amount of the fee charged to the Chileans. Citizens from the USA pay $US 45, Citizens from Canada pay $US 55 and citizens of Australia pay $US 30. This fee can be paid in US dollars, Chilean Pesos or with travellers checks.

To/from the airport

  • Bus: TurBus and CentroPuerto provide regular buses from the airport to a number of stations in Santiago, including the main metro stations.
  • Minivan: Tur Transfer and Transvip provide shuttle services by van.
  • Taxi/Car: Taxis and rental cars are widely available.

By Train

  • Metrotren offers the service between Santiago and San Fernando.
  • TerraSur offers the service between Santiago, Chillán, and Concepción.
  • Buscarril offers local service between Talca and Constitución.
  • Biotren offers local service between Talcahuano and Hualqui.
  • Local Service between Talcahuano and Renaico.
  • Local Service between Temuco and Victoria.

More info at Empresa de Ferrocarriles del Estado (EFE).

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Getting Around

Try to avoid the rush hours during the week. In the morning, rush hours are between 8:00am and 10:00am, while in the evening between 6:00pm and 8:00pm.

By Public Transport

Transantiago
Transantiago is the public transport system in Santiago. It operates buses and Metro systems across the different zones in the city. The minimum fare for a bus ride is 500 pesos. Use the journey planner (Spanish only) to find your way around the city.

Bip!
Bip! is a pre-paid contactless smartcard used to pay for the bus and metro services in Santiago. You can get this card at all Metro stations and Bip! offices. The card is available for 1,200 pesos and can be topped up with more credit later.

Taxi
There are two types of taxis:

  • Taxi (black and yellow), operated by individuals.
  • Radio Taxi (generally navy blue), operated by a company.

Tourists are recommended to use Radio Taxis.

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Eat

Chile, due to its common history with its neighbours, shares many of its typical dishes. There is one thing however that people will tell you is Chile's speciality and they'll be right. That is of course, mariscos or seafood there are many seafood dishes in Chile such as Ceviche and seafood empanadas and they get better along the coastal towns. One famous and delicious dish that you should try is the Paila Marina a soup filled to the brim with mariscos of many shapes, sizes and colours that will leave you very content.

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Drink

Once a year for only a couple of weeks around the most celebrated day in the Chilean calander, the typical and delicious alcoholic drink appears for all to enjoy. Chicha can be made from either apples or grapes and both types make a strong but incredibly sweet beverage that can be deceptive. It is a relatively cheap drink that you can buy in huge quantities from the bodegas that open up around two weeks prior to the 18th of September.

Due to the German influence in the south of Chile, many German style beers can be found and are generally favoured by locals and foreigners. One such typical example would be Kunstman.

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Sleep

Budget

PropertyAddressTypePopularity
Aconcagua HostelRoman Diaz 41Hostel-
Almirante Riveros HostelAlmirante Riveros 025Guesthouse85
Andes ApartmentsMonjitas 506APARTMENT87
San Cristobal Suites ProvidenciaSuecia 151, Providencia,APARTMENT-
Atacama HostelRoman Diaz 130Hostel81
Atacama Student HouseCondell 857 - ProvidenciaHostel-
Bella Vida ApartmentIsmael Valdez Vergara 492 La FloridaApartment-
BH Bed & BreakfastCapellan Abarzua No 143 BellavistaGUESTHOUSE-
Bellavista HostelDardignac 0184 - Providencia Barrio BellavistaHostel86
Apart Hotel CambiasoAv. Pedro de Valdivia 150 of. 1217, Providencia SantiagoApartment87
Casa Club La ReinaAxel Munthe 7710 La ReinaGuesthouse-
Casaltura HostelSan Antonio 811,Guesthouse83
Chilli Hostel SantiagoTriana 863Hostel85
DepacentroAmunategui 471 Apto. Fguesthouse-
Dominica Hostel SantiagoDominica 24Hostel83
Don Santiago HostelAv. Ricardo Cumming 95Hostel88
Eco HostelGeneral Jofr 349BHOSTEL84
Footsteps BackpackersAlmirante Simpson 50Hostel-
Green HouseMarcoleta 537 metro Santa LuciaGuesthouse83
Happy House HostelMoneda 1829 Barrio BrasilHostel85
B&B Rio Amazonas-Barrio BrasilRosas 2234 Santiago Centroguesthouse-
Hostal AmericanoCompañia de Jesus 1906Guesthouse-
Hostel de la BarraJose Miguel de la Barra 449HOSTEL82
Hostal ForestalCoronel Santiago Bueras 122, Barrio LastarriaHostel79
Hostal ProvidenciaVicuña Mackena 92-AHostel85
Hostal RomandiaRomán Díaz 1403Guesthouse88
Hostel Lucia SuitesAv. Santa Lucia 168HOSTEL78
Hostal SantiagoCompañía 3023,Santiago Barrio Patrimonial YungayGuesthouse-
Hostel AyekantunCatedral 2225Hostel85
Hostelling International Santiago de ChileCienfuegos 151Hostel81
Hotel Angamosangamos 367Hotel85
Hotel Plaza LondresLondres 77Hotel74
House SantiagoBarros Borgoo 199 - ProvidenciaHOSTEL-
Juan Carlos ApartmentManuel Montt esquina 11 de SeptiembreApartment-
KasatobalabaSan Pio X 2441 ProvidenciaHostel-
La Casa RojaAgustinos 2113 Barrio BrazilHostel80
La Chimba HostelE. Pinto Lagarrigue 262 Barrio BellavistaHostel87
Marilu´s Bed and Breakfast246 Rafael Cañas Street 1st and 3rd Floor ProvidenGuesthouse88
Mela Blu ApartmentsVillavicencioapartment-
Moai Viajero HostelToesca 2335Hostel86
Newen Kara HostelCalle La Sierra 1441 a pasos del Metro Manuel Montt - ProvidenciaHostel83
Nuevo Horizonte HostelAvenida Brasil 723Guesthouse80
Plaza de Armas HostelCompaia 960 Dp. 607HOSTEL81
Residencial Plaza ItaliaAv. Vicuña Mackenna 6, 6 Floor,1Guesthouse84
Santiago Private Apartments and Suitescasilla 51404Guesthouse-
Student Housing HorizonteMaturana 557 Barrio Brasilhostel-
Terra Extremus HostelVicuna Mackenna 38Hostel70
Urania's Bed and BreakfastBocaccio N°60 Street Las Condes AreaGuesthouse86
Ventana Sur HostalClaudio Arrau 0340 ProvidenciaHostel86
Vita AparthotelAmerico Vespucio Norte 22 Metro escuela Militarapartment-
Pure Lounge HostelErnesto Pinto Lagarrigue 160 RecoletaHostel-
Hostel So BeAlmirante Latorre 31 Santiago CentroHostel-
Hostal el RacoSanta Domingo N° 2816Guesthouse-
Intiwasi HotelJosue Smith Solar 380Guesthouse-
Hostal del BarrioGeneral Ekdhal 159 BellavistaGuesthouse84
Che Lagarto Hostel SantiagoSan Antonio 60HOSTEL-
Chile HostalesRoman Diaz 140 ProvidenciaHostel87
Hostal Rio Amazonas - Plaza ItaliaVicuña Mackenna 47Guesthouse88
Kvtravelchilefrancisco antonio encina 1781 departamentos,204,205,303,1703 1804,704,401,1809Apartment-
Hotel del PatioPío Nono 61Hotel-
The Princesa Insolente HostelMoneda #2350Hostel85
Hostal Casona ProvidenciaAv. Suecia 1860 ProvidenciaGuesthouse-
Landay Barcelo HostelErasmo Escala #2012Hostel84
Luz Azul HostelMoneda #2350 Barrio BrasilHostel-
Hostel Caracol SantiagoGeneral Ekdhal 151Hostel81
Santiago BackpackersMac Iver 661Hostel82
Elegebe Apartmentcalle esmeralda 772 bandera 898Apartment-
Gato Verde Bed and Breakfastcarrera pinto 1905 ÑuñoaGuesthouse-
Hostal Luna CalypsoManuel Antonio Prieto 0184Hostel-
Hostel Bella 269Bellavista 269 Esquina LoretoHOSTEL85
Hostel El CastilloLoreto 229Hostel-
Traveller's Place HostelAlmirante Barroso, 457Hostel84
Departamentos Amoblados Nueva de lyonNueva de lyon 170 Providencia, SantiagoApartment-
MV SantiagoDr Ramon Corvalan 8 Santa Rosa 25Apartment-
Casagrande Mini HotelAv Vicuña Mackenna 90Hotel-
Kcar Hostel BoutiqueArzobispo Larrain Gandarillas 99 Providencia SantiagoHOSTEL-
H Rado HostelPio Nono 5, Providencia Barrio BellavistaHostel91
Personal Aparts DowntownMonjitas 744Apartment-
Hostal Oveja VerdeEliodoro Yañez 1336 Providencia SantiagoGuesthouse84
SweetapartBarros Borgono 44 ProvidenciaApartment-
Castillo Surfista HostelCalle Maria Luisa Santander 0329Hostel87
Hotel Monte LeonRosas 1991 Comuna de Santiago ChileGUESTHOUSE81
HDS Chile - Hotel Don SantiagoFernando Manterola #0550Hotel-
Alto Suite ProvidenciaPedro de Valdivia 150Apartment-
Blend HostelArzobispo Gonzalez ,425 Barrio BrazilHOSTEL-
DelparqueAv. Santa Maria 571A Departamento 2604 RecoletaApartment-
Santiago ApartamentosMerced no. 562 Depto 2017APARTMENT-
Providencia Bed and BreakfastAlberto Magno 1398GUESTHOUSE-
Casa AllegroLuis Beltran 1828GUESTHOUSE-
Selknam HostelSazie n° 1885HOSTEL-
L'AmbassadeSuiza 2084 ProvidenciaHOTEL-
F&F HostelAntonia Lopez De Bello 0325HOSTEL-
Hostal KarukinkaCalle Europa 2176, Providencia SantiagoGUESTHOUSE-
AbracadabraMaturana 567GUESTHOUSE-
Hostel El Arco de IrisGeneral Flores 217, ProvidenciaHOSTEL-
Casa Ibarra Wine HotelCamino Lo Ermita Parcela 8 Calera de TangoHOTEL-
Casa Mosaico HostelCalle Loreto 111, Barrio BellavistaHOSTEL-
Hostal Casa De TrianaViña del mar 015 ProvidenciaHostel-
Departamentos amoblados Global-cityzenMiraflores 455APARTMENT-
Monarca Hoteles las CondesAvenida America Vespucio 22HOTEL-
Nomades HostelBellavista 0318HOSTEL-
Hostal ColonialManuel Montt 520, ProvidenciaGUESTHOUSE-
Apart Santa luciaSanta Rosa 265APARTMENT-
AMS Apartments MonjitasMonjitas 744APARTMENT-
Bed & Breakfast Casa DarochToms Andrews 059-ProvidenciaGUESTHOUSE-
Hotel RALota 2476, Comuna de ProvidenciaGUESTHOUSE-
Hostal SoleVirginia Subercaseaux 4000 - 22GUESTHOUSE-
Wally Gator CatedralWally Gator Catedral Nº 1933, Departamento 603APARTMENT-
Wally Gator LibertadLibertad 1270APARTMENT-
Apart-Santiago 801BCalle Cóndor 773 Apartamento 801-BAPARTMENT-
Apart-Santiago 403ACalle Cóndor 793 Apartamento 403-AAPARTMENT-
San Cristobal Suites Bellas ArtesHuerfanos 547 Santiago - CentroAPARTMENT-
apART AltamiraHuérfanos 547 Of.2117 Torre B, SantiagoAPARTMENT-
El Magnolio Bed and BreakfastAv Concha y Toro s/n, PirqueHOTEL-
Hostel FriendlyPasaje Folo n743, Ñuñoa, SantiagoHOSTEL-
Loreto HotelLoreto 170HOTEL-
Bellas Artes SuitesMac Iver 551APARTMENT-
Apart Hotel El MesónCalle Encomenderos 200APARTMENT-
Hotel BalearesAlmirante Simpson 59HOTEL-
Heidelberg Haus Apart HotelLos Nogales 843HOTEL-
Hostal Parque BustamanteAv. Rancagua #0111 Ramon Carnicer #111GUESTHOUSE-
Provi Bed and BreakfastCarlos AntunezGUESTHOUSE-
Hotel Boutique Paris LondresLondres 54HOTEL-
Apoquindo ApartsCoimbra 110 Oficina 701 La Gloria 34APARTMENT-
Urbano UnoPedro de Valdivia 263, Providencia.APARTMENT-
Hostal AhinValenzuela Castillo 1646 ProvidenciaGUESTHOUSE-
Hostal Lago de PlataHuerfanos 2460HOTEL-
Apart-Santiago 1009BCalle Cóndor 773 Apartamento 1009BAPARTMENT-
Apart-Santiago 804ACalle Cóndor 793 Apartamento 804AAPARTMENT-
Apartament CentralPortugal 38 Torre 5 dpto 45 Almirante Riveros 025APARTMENT-
SantiagoApartNataniel Cox 135, centroAPARTMENT-
Conchita Flores B&BManuel Montt 526HOTEL-
Kv Travel Chile LtdFrancisco Antonio Encina #1781- Providencia- SantiGUESTHOUSE-
Santiago Downtown Apartments LiraLira 238APARTMENT-
Bellavista Rent ApartLoreto 350APARTMENT-
Hostal AmericanoCompanía 1906GUESTHOUSE-
Makus HostelRomán Díaz 186, ProvidenciaHOSTEL-
Poker HostelPadre Luis de Valdivia 361HOSTEL-

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Work

Teaching English

Santiago has a good stable economy that has been powering on despite the current crisis. If you want to live and work in a South American country, Chile could not be easier for English teachers. Due to the government's attempts to open up its economy to the world and their current policy of 'English opens doors' the demand in Santiago for English classes is huge. Unlike Europe, a TEFL certificate is not even necessary (although I would recomend it) and you can find many private institutes that are willing to take on new-comers and give them some training. VISAs can be acquired in the country once you've found the institute you want to work with so no prior paperwork is needed before you arrive, many people even work on tourist VISAs and just leave for Argentina every 3 months.

Your wages will be around 500,000 pesos per month for around 22 hours teaching time, which is ok but no brilliant. Chile can be quite expensive in some areas such as food produce. It is however, enough to live well, enjoy life and save a little for further travel around the country.

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Keep Connected

Internet

There are cybercafes in every major and midsize city and at all tourist destinations. Some libraries are in a program called Biblioredes, with free computers and Internet. Wifi is getting more and more common. They're usually in metro stations, airports, malls, cafes, public buildings and several public spaces. Check for the ones that say gratis - for free. McDonald's and Starbucks are chains which almost always have free wifi.

Phone

See also International Telephone Calls

The country calling code to Chile is: 56. To make an international call from Chile, the code is: 00. Emergency phone numbers include 131 (Ambulance), 132 (Fire) and 133 (Police).

Public phones located on streets are very likely to be tampered or vandalized, so it's better to use a phone located inside a commerce or a station. Prepaid cards for mobile phones and public phones are sold at most newspaper kiosks, supermarkets, gas stations, pharmacies and phone dealers. Mobile GSM networks are ubiquitous in all major cities and most of the territory of central and southern Chile. A basic prepaid cellular phone usually costs about 15,000 pesos, most frequently charged with 10,000 pesos worth of prepaid minutes. No ID is required to buy a prepaid phone. GSM SIM cards from ENTEL, Movistar or Claro are usually available for 5,000 pesos, but without credit, so you'll need to buy some prepaid minutes to be able to call. Money can be charged into a cellphone from some pharmacies (Ahumada, Cruz Verde and Salco Brand) on the counter and in cash, or by using a credit card through an automated service operator, with directions in Spanish or English.

Post

Correos de Chile is the national postal service, and although relatively slow it is reliable with post offices throughout the country. On the website you can find more information about prices to send letters, postcards and parcels, both domestically as well as internationally. Post offices are generally open Monday to Friday from 9:00am to 6:00pm and Saturday until 2:00pm, although there are sometimes longer opening hours in the bigger central post offices and shorter ones in small places. Ask around. If you want to send packages internationally, you might consider companies like DHL, TNT or UPS, which are fast, reliable and usually competitively priced as well.

Quick Facts

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Coordinates
  • Latitude: -33.46912
  • Longitude: -70.641997

Contributors

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Santiago (Chile) Travel Helpers

This is version 63. Last edited at 9:03 on Feb 11, 14 by Utrecht. 43 articles link to this page.

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