Back from Mendoza our Chilean family Theresa and Julio welcomed us to their home in Santiago.
We spent the next week exploring Santiago and surroundings as well as hanging out on the balcony with a good of wine and yummy BBQ to celebrate meeting old friends after a long time.
Santiago is a very modern, clean and energetic city. Compared with other South American capitals Santiago has a European feel to it with people walking and biking and small artsy neighborhoods.
We took a free walking tour which started in the historic center which was the most southern part of the Inca empire until Pedro Valdivia arrived. His plan was to set up the capital further South as a trade port but since he couldn’t defeat the Mapuche indigenous tribe he had to settle for Santiago. Chile by the way means cold in Quechua and it had a reputation of being an impossible place to live due to deserts, mountains and climate.
Chile had some difficult times in the last 50 years due to the military putsch in 1973. We visited the state-of-the-art Museo de La Memoria to learn more about it.
Besides the historic center there a some charming neighborhoods such as Barrio Italia or Lastarria with small shops and restaurants.
The outdoor loving inhabitants enjoy spending time in the numerous parks. We climbed San Cristobal by bike and had a great view of the city.
The city has many nice restaurants and delicious wine. Just south of the city you can find various wineries – we visited the biggest one Concha y Torro (with their famous Casillero del Diablo) as well as Cousiño Macul.
Santiago was a place of meeting friends – we also had a very good friend who came to Santiago for holidays and we celebrated her birthday together. We also had some BBQ and Piscolas with a former Kuoni work colleague.
We are coming back friends!
- Museo de la Memoria y Derechos Humanos. Free entrance. Take your time and an audio guide.
- Osaka restaurant at the W hotel – amazing Japanese Nikkei cuisine
- Mestizo restaurant Parque Bicentenario
- Patio Bellavista for bars ans shops
- Barrio Italia – take a stroll down and go into the courtyards
- Take the metro to travel around – it’s super easy