Bounded by the Pacific Ocean to the west and the Andes mountains to the east, Chile is a long-stripped narrow land that shares borders with Bolivia and Argentina. Located fifteen kilometers from the country’s capital, Santiago International Airport, which is also known as Arturo Merino Benitez International Airport is the largest aviation facility in the enire country. It is the gateway of Australian and other Oceanian airlines to the rest of South America. In fact, during 2010, more than eleven million passengers were served by the airport. So, here is a quick Chile travel guide to maximize your stay in this beautiful country.
If you are seeking the comforts of staying in a hotel, Chile is the perfect place for you as several hotel chains such as Marriott, Sheraton, Holiday Inn, and Ritz have chains here. But don’t worry if you’re a backpacker as hostels are also available throughout the country. Mountain ski centers are also popular in Chile, including the world renowned “Valle Nevado”, Portillo, and the “Termas de Chillan” resorts and hot springs.
In the Eastern side of the Andes, you’ll find the Torres del Paine National Park. Located in Region XII, it’s here where you’ll see three granite towers rising from the Patagonian steppe. In addition, the park has beautiful valleys, breathtaking lakes, and wildlife-rich forests so don’t forget to bring cameras with you.
Not to be missed in your itinerary is the Valle de la Luna. It’s where the towering Andes meets the vast Atacama desert. The best time to come here is during sunrise or sunset where a mixture of colors decorate the sky. If you’re the adventurer type, take yourself to the cone-shaped, snow-covered Villarrica Volcano. Hike through the active volcano and upon reaching the summit, make sure to take a peek into the crater’s lava lake.
When touring the city, drop by the presidential palace called La Moneda. Be there at 10AM and witness the changing of guards in the Plaza de la Constitucion. Look also for the statue of former president Salvador Allende. Other spots to visit in Chile are Pablo Neruda’s hometown in Isla Negra, Chiloé’s Churches, La Chascona, LaSebastiana, and the central coast beaches.