Chile is a paradox. It is two extreme ends, stretching their hands out to join it together. Chile welcomes you like you are their long-lost family. It is the home to some of the most beautiful places on our planet, so it is not a place to miss out on.
Chile is one very long, winding road. It is the road trip along the coast you have to take. Along with this road trip, you will see all of the life that passes by. Nature zooming past you. The kind that numbs your eyes with its beauty. Chile gives you that instant connection with your origins.
It is an adventure in slow motion. You never knew where Chile will lead you to. And while you sit in an orchard somewhere plucking the juiciest of apples, you will realize that this is something you will never forget.
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When to visit?
As with most countries every season has its own appeal. If you are looking to go to the south, then head from October to March. Santiago and the desert areas are pretty hot throughout the year. Skiers can go from June to August. Those in the mood for some autumn orchards and crunchy leaves under your feet, try Chile out in April.
Average Cost per Person
The costs to live in Chile are not as high as Brazil but still higher than a lot of South American countries. The flights will take the most money out of you for sure. The travel in Chile itself is relatively cheap and will save a lot of money. Devoid of the flight it will cost you close to 50,000 rupees to manage a relatively polished trip. Further, for luxury solutions, money will shoot up.
Chile does not require a Visa from most countries. These countries are the USA, the rest of the Latin American countries and so on. The rest of the nations should check with the embassy for changes in procedure. India requires all passport documents up to date. We get a Visa stamp of 90 days on our passport itself.
Where to stay?
Santiago is city life in sync with its natural origins. It lets you stay rooted to your spot and still experience all the adventures of the world. Santiago is the best city for a stroll. Every brick here has a story to tell. The nightlife takes over everything as the sun goes down. The art scene is fighting for recognition with some beautiful work, and the restaurant culture is developing too. Santiago is one step in the past and one in the future.
Best Places to stay in Santiago
Valparaiso is a mess. An absolute, poetic, colorful mess. Pablo Neruda was inspired continuously by Valparaiso and looked at it as someone who hadn’t had time to comb their hair, nor is dressed well, but someone who life has always surprised. This is the town with spontaneity and flushed cheeks. With mansions stacked on each other and alleys that lead to nowhere. The spot for sailors and artists looking for a getaway.
Best Places to stay in Valparaiso
This place is indescribable. It is a bit of everything. It is like a steaming bowl of Cazuela. When a mix of ingredients come together like this, they taste like Punta Arenas. It is a metropolis on the banks of the Strait of Magellan. It is rusty red buildings clubbed with the urban sprawl on change. It is a port town. It is a countryside. The petrochemical industry suddenly rose here, and that changed the city up completely.
Best Places to stay in Punta Arenas:
In the almost abandoned island in Chile lies its solo, quiet town. But one thing you should not do is underestimate small towns. More often these towns are full of life and stories from generations beyond. Also, it is also the only town here. The apparent stop in your journey. All the sights here are in your clear view. It has a picturesque fishing harbor and a few quiet surfing zones. For peace, stop at Hanga Roa.
Best Places to stay in Hanga Roa:
This splash fest of a city is a refreshing place for all to visit. It is this same stuck in water town throughout the year. You can go here anytime and find yourselves rejuvenated in the surfing spots and beach life. If you are able to get yourself away from the sea, then visit the cliff top which was once the battleground of El Morro. Visit Azapa Valley which houses a few of the first mummies ever heard of.
Best Places to stay in Arica
Monkey Puzzle Trees
Chile’s Lake District is a perfect mix of live volcanoes and sparkling lakes. It is also the home of the tribe of Araucarias also known as the monkey puzzle trees. Kayaking, rafting, and hiking are a must here.
Santiago Pisco Sour
The city’s bohemian area is the perfect setting to sip on to the official drink of Chile, pisco sour. Santiago was voted by Nat Geo as under the top 5 best markets in the world. Even voted the top three cities to live in. It has got to count for something.
Valparaiso Dine Scene
Atop a table with the perfect view of the Pacific Ocean and holding the hand of your beloved in your hand is the best place to be. And you will only get that with a dinner in Valparaiso. A visit is incomplete without taking a walk to the hills and eating some fresh Pescado.
Horseback Riding in the Andes
A trip to Chile is not really a trip to Chile without hiking in the Andes. Take yourself a horse as your mate and venture into the beautiful curves and cliffs. El Colorado is a very famous spot for hiking and for skiing in the winters.
Drive into Argentina or Bolivia as easy as driving across a city. This is not technically a Chile experience, but it is fantastic nonetheless. All you have to do is take a short car ride across Los Glaciares National Park and tada here you are!
Travel Smart with these tips
When it comes to Chile, do not expect the weather to work according to your needs. The terrains here are real extremes, and hence this leads to the most extreme of climates. So, carry your umbrellas for all sorts of reasons here. You won’t regret it.
This seems like the thing that happens here quite often. The locals are used to it and barely have to think about it. You may experience one here, but even if it affects other countries a lot, it hardly affects Chile. Chile is usually adept at dealing with these. Just look at the locals for cues.
To move around in Chile, you have to buy a card known as a BIP card. It costs about 1350 pesos. You can fill the card in 500s or 1000s, and this can be used anywhere from micros(buses) to metros(subways). Even a few shops accept BIP cards.
If you do know Spanish, you may feel like you will have an edge here. And even though it will be so till an extent do not expect yourself to be able to talk with the ease with the locals. The Chilean dialect is entirely different from Spanish, but you will pick it up soon.
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