Best time to go, and places, in Chile

Travel Forums Central/South America & The Caribbean Best time to go, and places, in Chile

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1. Posted by nappyk (Budding Member 4 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

I am planning to go to Santiago sometime in December or January. Is this a good time? Where are the best places to go?

2. Posted by GregW (Travel Guru 2635 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

I was there in January of 2003. The weather was beautiful - sunny and very warm - temperature was in the 30s (celcuis) every day. In additional to Santiago, the Andes mountains are nearby for mountain hikes or horseback rides, do a winery tour and also hit the beach on the Pacific ocean.

After a few days in Santiago, I headed south to the Lake District (Pto. Varas). Very nice area, though colder than Santiago. You will definately need a jacket and long pants. A good area to do some hiking or other adventure sports. Lots of good German food in the area. The weather can be cold and rainy, but the scenery is beautiful.

I headed farther South to Patagonia. The area is so beautiful - wind swept plains and jagged mountains. Check out the Penguins at one of the reserves near Punta Arenas (specifically Isla Magdalina), a Glacier hike (either Glacier Gray in Torres Del Paine or across the border in Argentina at Perito Moreno) and a day (or a week) hiking in Torres del Paine. It is significantly colder than Santiago - highs in the mid-teens (celcius). But the scenery is definately worth putting up with the cold.

I ended up back up Arica in the far north of the country. Very much a beach town - just relax at the beach and have drinks on the patios at night. Sunny and warm the entire time.

Enjoy Chile!

3. Posted by georged1 (Budding Member 11 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!


Dec, Jan is Summer, so no Ski.

It is hot (around 30 Celsius) so I will think going to the beach were everyone will be. For this, Viña del Mar (Nice beaches, nice town, good party, 2 hour bus ride from Santiago) is the choice. Valparaiso (An old port filled with bars, restaurants and some of the most incredible arquitecture - Valpo has been built by its inhabitants without any palnning so you will find there some of the most unique houses and streets) is only 15 min from Viña (And also around 2 hours form Santiago - Viña and Valparaiso are almost the same city... they are very close)

Up north Viña you can find many beaches, Take a trip to Orcon, a fisherman very small port with forests and nice beaqches around... it is kind of a Latin Hippie place, quite interesting. (By the way, sea in this area of Chile is quite cold, even in Summer. Warmer ocean starts at "La Serena" at the North.

A good beach is also Pichilemu (Wich is at the coast of Rancagua - South from Santiago) Good surf and party there.

Being Summer, it is the Lake district season so, if your busget is not to tight, think about Pucon and souroundings (Lots of lakes, nice towns, volcanoes, some of the best world national parks). They will be full of people of course as chileans prefere lakes to ocean.

It will also be the Patagonia season and in Patagonia you must visit Torres del Paine National Park and Tierra del fuego... I could talk for pages and pages about the many amazing destinations at the far south Patagonia... If you decide to go, let me know and I give you a hand with further info. Be aware that Patagonia is VERY expensive.

Hope this helps.



[ Edit: sorry, take it easy on the promo's please. ]