The Best Things to See and Do in Chile
Sunset in Chile's Mountains © Max Besser Jirkal / flickr
Spanning 2,653 miles in length, Chile is incredibly vast and offers experiences as diverse as its landscape. From cities to small towns to complete wilderness – Chile is a dream destination. Here are Culture Trip’s suggestions for the best things to see and do on your next visit to the southern cone.
Did you know Chile is famous for its wine? A trip to Chile’s wine country is a must. Located between Santiago and coastal city Valpariso, Casablanca Valley is the fastest growing wine destination. With cooler temperatures and a Mediterranean climate, this is a perfect place for biking through fertile vineyards. And, what better way to end the day, than with a view and glass of Chile’s finest? Another popular tourist destination, Colchagua Valley is full of rolling hills and hundreds of vineyards. With good climate and vines to match, this is a great place for winery tours on bike.
Looking for farmland, forests, snowcapped volcanoes and clear lakes? Then head south to the Lakes Region. You’ll arrive in Puerto Montt’s airport; just 20 minutes away is Puerto Varas – a popular tourist destination with a view of Volcanoes Osorno and Calbuco. Puerto Varas, Puerto Octay, Frutillar surround Lake Llanquihue, Chile’s second largest lake, can be easily visited by the lakeside route. Other attractions include: ski destination Volcano Osorno, Puyehue National Park and Vicente Perez Rosales national park.
Chile offers distinct ski resorts with stories to speak for themselves. From Olympic medals in northern Chile to hot springs in central Chile and volcano descents in Patagonia, the country’s ski resorts will impress. Ski season is mid-June through October, so you’re just in time. Read up, layer up, then get out there – the slopes are calling.
Check out the best resorts here.
Consider yourself an islander? Then you won’t want to miss Chile’s largest two: Easter Island and Chiloé Island.
Easter Island is isolated, located in Polynesia – central and southern parts of the Pacific Ocean, consisting of thousands of islands – and makes up 163.6 square kilometers (63.1 sq miles). This island is known as Rapu Nui in the islander’s native tongue and offers a sense of mystery. With pink beaches, volcano cones, grasslands and the iconic moai statues, Easter Island is a unique experience, waiting for you.
Chile’s largest island, Chiloe covers 5,704 square miles (9,181 km) and offers an array of sights including wild beaches, thick forests, colorful churches and marine wildlife. From trekking to whale watching and everything in between: horseback riding, kayaking, ferry rides and fun meals, Chiloe will keep the whole family entertained.
Patagonia’s most popular park, located in the Magallenes Region and Chilean Antartica, Torres del Paine is known its preservation of the wildlife and land in which it inhibits. With glaciers, valleys, crystal lakes and adventure activities, there is so much to take in. One of the most unique experiences to have is staying the night at Eco Camp Patagonia, a sustainable touristic destination. Here you’ll stay in a cozy dome that can sleep couples or families of four, comfortably. Complete with a low-emission wood stove, an open terrace, cultural decorations and a compostable toilet, Eco Camp Patagonia is a stay you can feel good about.