Santiago Journals

Santiago and Valparaiso

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A March 2000 trip to Santiago by Todd W.

Valparaiso Photo, Santiago, Chile More Photos
Quote: Santiago is a great base from which to explore the rest of Chile. Be sure to stay a night or two and sample the food and nightlife in the neighborhoods of Las Condes or Bellavista before you head off to the rest of the country.

Santiago and Valparaiso

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Overview

Santiago Photo, Santiago, Chile
Quote:
The first two things you'll notice flying into Santiago: 1) The incredible Andes, including Aconcagua (if you're lucky), and 2) the horrible pollution. Unfortunately the pollution is a fact of life in Santiago throughout the warm months. The neighborhoods of Las Condes, Bellavista, and Providencia are beautiful places to stay, with resturants, nightlife, shops, arts fairs, and accommodations. I stayed downtown, which was a little bit of a walk to get to any of the entertainment districts. The city parks (Cerro San Cristobal, for one) are good and central places to get away from the traffic and noise. Quick Tips: As mentioned above, downtown is not the most exciting place at night. Be sure...Read More

Hotel Vegas

Hotel

Quote:
The Hotel Vegas is in a historically preserved part of downtown; evidently this area of the city was very chic in the early 20th the century, then fell into disrepair. It''s just recently been restored. It''s not particularly close to any restaurants or bars though, so you''ll either have a long walk or a short taxi ride when you want to go out. The Vegas, while pleasant, was not really my kind of place. The outside is very charming, but the inside definitely feels like a hotel. The rooms were comfortable and clean, although decorated with late 70s/early 80s colors and furniture. The attached bathroom was sparkling. Noise was fairly minimal - be warned, though, that Chileans in the city love thei...Read More

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on October 29, 2000

Hotel Vegas
Londres 49
Santiago, Chile

Mercado Central

Attraction

Quote:
This is a great place to get lost and wander for a few hours. You'll find original art, shoes, leather items, crystals, Che Guevara posters, knickknacks put together by traveling hippies short on money, old LPs and books, and just about everything else you can imagine. Prices, of course, are very negotiable. If you're looking for Mapuche goods and crafts, however, you won't find much here.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 29, 2000

Mercado Central
San Pablo 967 interior
Santiago, Chile
+56 2 6968327

One night in Valparaiso

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Story/Tip

Valparaiso Photo, Santiago, Chile
Quote:
During my stay in Chile, I took an hour and a half bus ride from Santiago to Valparaiso (Valpo for short) for a quick side trip. Valpo is slightly seedy (like a lot of port towns); its historic center is crumbling, and there isn''''t too much to see, but some of the neighborhoods and the views from the hills are wonderful. I stayed on Cerro Alegre in the excellent Hotel Prat (it''''s the big yellow house on the edge of the hill looking down on the town), which had a great view from both the outdoor cafe below and the room windows above (but the noise at night was horrible - there''''s a bar at the base of the hill that is extremely loud). The hotel also had a nice bar on the bottom floor. ...Read More

Welcome back, Pinochet

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Story/Tip

Quote:
Pinochet returned to Chile while I was there. The front page of one of the major papers headlines was "Dead Man Walking" - he was released from his prison in exile in England because he was "physically unfit to stand trial" and had to be taken to the airplane in a wheelchair, but when he landed in Santiago he walked off the plane and waved vigorously to his supporters. The reaction in the city was not a forceful as I thought it might be - there was a heavy police presence around the Palacio de la Moneda, but few protesters. That night, I did see a large student rally in downtown, with bands, banners waving, and many students shouting anti-Pinochet slogans. There was also a rally planned at the...Read More