Santiago De Chile – It’s Time to Explore Chile’s Finest
Chile’s capital, Santiago De Chile is simply referred as Santiago is the most popular tourist destination in the country. Serving as Chile’s economic and financial center, the city also brags of numerous events, attractions and festivals along with high end restaurants and trendy pubs, making it a worthwhile tourist destination. At an elevation of 520 meters above sea level, Santiago is located in the Chilean Central Valley and is the largest city in the country. Santiago has been serving as the capital of Chile since the colonial times in 1541. Sprawling on an area of 641 km2, Santiago serves as home to 5,145,599 residents. The city is also home to regional headquarters of many multinational corporations and the city has been named after the biblical figure St. James. Several important industries, universities and South America's most extensive subway system, Metro de Santiago, is also located here. The city is ideally located within a few hours from the mountains as well as the Pacific Ocean. Surrounded by vineyards, one can enjoy clear view of the Andes chain from many points in the city. Though Spanish is the official language of the people, Galician and Castilian are the languages which are spoken widely.
All flights coming to Santiago land at the Santiago Airport, the primary international airport serving the city. It is 20 minutes away from the city and serves as base for many domestic as well as international flights. The city experiences semi-arid type of climate featuring warm summers and cold winters. A modern airport, it is directly connected to the city with taxis and buses. From December to March the city experiences dry and mild summer and the crowd is less. From March to May, day time temperature ranges can reach 35ºC. Winter in the city begins from June and lasts till early September and this is a good time to visit if you want to explore the snowy peaks. The best time to holiday in the city is during the months from September to November and from March to May, when the weather is cool and confortable. Fiestas Patrias in September, Festival del Barrio Brasil in January, Lollapallooza in March, Festival de Jazz de Ñuñoa in August, Fiesta del Vino in April, Santiago a Mil in January and Rodeo Season in September are the popular events and festivals celebrated in Santiago.
Begin your Santiago tours from Cerro Santa Lucia Hill. This is the landmark attraction in the city and the place where the original city was founded. Paris Londres Neighborhood is the oldest street in Santiago and id filled with numerous architectural splendors. Patio Bellavista is a beautiful plaza that is brimming with shops and restaurants and is a popular meeting place. Parque Araucano with its beautiful gardens, fountains, a bile park and playgrounds is among the largest parks in the country. Plaza de Armas is another landmark attraction.
La Moneda (serving home to the President is a beautiful building), Cerro San Cristobal (the highest point in the city, has an open air sanctuary and various statues along with offering spectacular views of the city), La Chascona (housing the private collection of Pablo Neruda), Parque Forestal (a local park), Barrio Brazil, Los Dominicos, Patio Bellavista and Plaza Nuñoa are some of the major sightseeing places one should not miss in Santiago De Chile.
Eating and Shopping
The city of Santiago is flooded with restaurants, eating joints and nightclubs. A cosmopolitan hub, tourists can find variety of cuisines options along with local food. Sea food is very popular among the tourists and it is best enjoyed at Mercado Central which is among the top ten food markets in the world as declared by National Geographic. Tirso de Molina Market is famous for its open food market and if you are craving for fresh fruits and vegetable then head to the Pueblito Los Dominicos.
The city has numerous malls which are thronged by tourists and locals alike. Mall Plaza Vespucio, Mall Portal La Dehesa, Mall Alto Las Condes, Mall Plaza Norte and Persa Bio-Bio are the most popular malls in the city. When in Santiago shopping in the local street and markets is an attraction in itself. Plan a visit to Alonso de Córdova Street and Nueva Costanera Avenue, the upscale shopping areas filled with luxury stored and branded outlets. Centro Artesanal Santa Lucia is the best place to purchase local and comparatively cheaper handicrafts. While Plaza Nuñoa is a good place to buy books, Patronato is the place to buy affordable clothes, foods and other stuff. Persa Bio-Bio is another shopping district from where you can buy antiques, handmade tools, crafts, hand crafted furniture along with cheap Chinese stuff and local foods. The city is also famous for its jewelry made out of lapis lazuli, wool scarves and pieces carved in wood.
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