We only spent 3 days in Santiago, having extended our Argentina stay in an attempt to see Iguazú falls by moonlight. But from what we saw, it’s a pretty cool town. And by cool, I mean dry, hot and smoggy.
The people in Santiago seem a little more outgoing than those in Argentina, and more willing to speak English for you when they see you struggling in Spanish – I kinda liked that.
We stayed at Chilhotel, a slightly funky but very friendly place with the best breakfast of any hotel we visited in South America. good wifi, too – but no air conditioning. (Sorry, I didn’t take any pictures)
We visited the central fish market, where it was nice to eat some tasty seafood for a change.
And we rode the teleférico up to Cerro San Cristobal, a large hill overlooking the town, dotted with parks, trails and communications towers.
Oh, and a really huge statue of the Virgin Mary:
One of my favorite things were the prices – at nearly 600 Chilean Pesos to the dollar, all the prices seem astronomical. It’s fun to go to the ATM and choose 300,000 as the witdrawal amount! At one point before I paid our hotel bill, I had a million pesos in cash:
Oh well, we didn’t really get to see enough of Santiago to really appreciate it. All too soon, it was time to say goodbye to both Santiago and South America, as we boarded our LAN flight for Easter Island. South Pacific, here we come!