Chile is situated in the southwestern tip of South America between the Andes and the Pacific Ocean. Its extensive length (4,200 kilometers, similar to a tour of Europe from Lisbon to Moscow) offers a huge variety of landscapes and climates throughout its territory, from the Atacama Desert –the driest in the world — in the far north to Patagonia’s millennia–old glaciers in the south.
The total population reaches over 17.000.000 and the country is divided in 15 administrative regions from north to south, being Santiago, its capital city and the place where over 1/3 of the population lives (quite a lot!). The official language is Spanish, and 69,5% of the people declare themselves as Catholic.
Noted for its stability and sustainable growth, Chile is one of the great economic success stories of Latin America and one of the few countries that has maintain a sustainable growth during the last crisis. The main economic activity is mining, being copper the main mineral since Chile produces 1/3 of the total production of the world. Chile also is well known for its wines and salmons both worldwide known and a must try during your visit!
Some Cool & Fun Facts!
– Chile is one of the few countries that has territories in 3 different continents: the mainland located in America, Eastern Island in Oceania and the territories in Antarctica.
– Chile is one of only two countries in all of South America that does not border Brazil
– Over 1/3 of the world’s copper production is produced in Chile (did we already said that before? haha).
– Chile has one of the longest recorded dry spells in the Atacama Desert it did not rain for 40 years.
– The number one world exporter for Salmon is Chile, It topped the united states in the early 2000s
– Contrary to popular belief soccer is the most popular sport in Chile
– Along the mountainous region of Chile, there are over 1300 volcanoes and a number of them can still be active.
– Chile declared itself as an independent nation in 1818 but the Spanish Colonial Rule only recognized it in 1913.
– Chile has the largest annual fireworks show in all of South America, in the City of Valparaiso for new year´s eve.
– Chile has one of the world’s largest and most deserted deserts known as “Atacama”
– The city at the very tip of Chile called Punta Arenas it is the southern most city on a continent in the world.
– The southernmost village in the world is also in Chile Called “Puerto Williams”
– Chile also has the one of the highest lakes above sea level in the world called “Lake Chungara”
– Chile has one of the longest coastlines in the world, but also one of the smallest at being 6500 km long (including Antarctica) and 200 km wide.
– The official currency is the Chilean Peso. For trade conversion visit http://www.xe.com/ucc/
Is not just because we are saying it, but Santiago is really amazing! One of the coolest and more modern cities of South America with some really cool places where you can really chill out. The city offers you everything from 5-stars hotels, super big shopping malls, cool neighborhods with fancy cafes, fun parks, museum and a modern subway that is our pride and will make you find your way around Santiago a lot easier. And best of all, from Santiago you´ll be just on a 1-hour-ride to be skiing in the Andes Mountains or swimming in the Pacific Ocean, depending what is your mood! Which other city in the world can offer you that?? Only Santiago!
Resting on an inland plain, with the Andes glimmering in the distance, Santiago, the capital of Chile, is the fifth largest city in South America. Santiago is a city that seems destined for growth. Today, it is one of the most modern cities on the continent, home to nearly 5 million inhabitants–over a third of all Chileans. The city is one of the largest in South America and Chile’s center of commerce.
Santiago is also the central point of a region filled with attractive sites and activities. Only 60 km away are the main South American ski centers, and the beautiful beaches of the Pacific are only an hour’s drive to the northwest. Just south of Santiago lie the rich and beautiful vineyards of the Maipo Valley, one of the world’s most esteemed wine producing regions.
The city is bisected by the Rio Mapocho, which gently weaves through from East to West, before descending to the flood plain below. The Mapocho marks the northern border of the city center, which is defined on the west and south by the Via Norte Sur and the Avenida Libertador Bernardo O’Higgins (known to Santiagans as the Alameda). Within this area can be found all the major museums, monuments, and architectural sights the city offers.
The very heart of Santiago is the Plaza de Armas, which lies along the Alameda about five blocks south of the river. The city’s European heritage is evident in the Parque Forestal, designed by a French landscaper on the model of Parisian parks. Walkers pass down tree-lined paths along the Mapocho, past small squares and the Museo de Bellas Artes. The Mercado Central is of British design, with wrought-iron ceiling parts that were imported from England in the mid 19th century. Today the market sells a wide variety of fresh, exotic produce.
Across the river, the Bellavista neighborhood is home to many restaurants and cafes. The Parque Metropolitano is Santiago’s playground, with walking trails, picnic areas, and a zoo. For stunning views of the city, visitors should head to the top of Cerro San Cristòbal, accessible by bus, funicular, or by a vigorous hike. Also in the Bellavista area is La Chascona, the house designed by Nobel-Prize-winning poet Pablo Neruda –whose work recently gained popularity in the film “Il Postino”.