Top Attractions and Sites of Interest in Chile

There's a lot see in this western South American country. Here are some of the favorite spots tourists and residents of Chile visit below.


Los Pinguins National Monument
Los Pinguins National Monument, Photo by Cordyph/Flickr

Los Pinguinos Natural Monument

Located in southern Chile, Los Pinguinos Natural Monument is the main region where you will find in excess of 120,000 Magellanic penguins. This massive number of penguins are located on the little island of Magdalena.

It is a 2 hours away from the center of the Straits of Magellan and 22 miles (35km) northeast of Punta Arenas. Every year in September or October, the birds migrate back to the island to find their mate. The penguins waddle back to sea towards the end of March.


Pucon, Araucania Region, Chile. Photo by Ilya_ktsn

Pucón

An enchanting place situated next to Lake Villarrica but takes a back seat to the ominous presence of Villarrica Volcano repeatedly in one's eyesight on the horizon. Other places to see include Mapuche Museo, Ojos de Caburgua, Park Huerquehue, Canoyping, and the Hot Springs.

 

Torres del Paine. Photo by Cordyph

Torres del Paine in Patagonia

This national park is in the extreme south of Chile and the park itself is quite some distance from just about everything. Torres del Paine has some of the most beautiful scenery you will ever see. The incredible landscape features large granite mountains bordered by crystal clear lakes and a range of well preserved trails and weather that constantly changes from ideal and sunny to rain and strong winds, the Escoba de Dios (God's Broom). Incredibly, trees grow horizontally in this region due to cold gale force winds. The 5-rating it gets at TripAdvisor lends more support as a must-see place in Chile.

Photo by David Berkowitz /Flickr

Moai Statues - Easter Island

On Easter Island (Isla de Pascua in Spanish), also known as Rapa Nui, there are nearly 900 giant human-like figures carved in volcanic stone, known as the Moai Statues, that date back to the period from 1250 to 1500. In 1995, UNESCO named Easter Island a World Heritage site.

The island is the most isolated in the world located 2300 miles off the coast of Chile in the South Pacific. It is currently home to a diverse group of people totaling 4,781. They are primarily of Polynesian descent and from the Long-Ears and Short-Ears descendants. To fly into Easter Island, your choices are just one airline LAN.

 

two tourists viewing Santiago from Cerro San Cristobal
Photo by Szymon Kochański /Flickr

Cerro San Cristóbal

A hill situated in northern Santiago with a stunning scenery of the city, and on occassions when there is a clear sky, the Andes Mountains in the east. The summit can be reached by a cable car, regular automobile, the funicular (a mountain tram railway) or a lengthy hike. Upon reaching the top of the hill, one will find a 22 meter tall statue of the Virgin Mary as well as a church.

Santiago's biggest public park , the Parque Metropolitano is based in Cerro San Cristóbal along with a zoo, botanical gardens, and two swimming pools. These attractions have a fee while viewing at the top is free.

metropolitan cathedral santiago
Front view of Metropolitan Cathedral in Santiago. Photo by Nellu Mazilu /Flickr

Metropolitan Cathedral (Catedral Metropolitana)

An absolutely gorgeous cathedral with beautiful vaulted ceiling frescoes and a magical ambiance with people praying in this historical church. It is located around the Plaza de Armas and it continues to operate presently.

No fees required to enter but being respectful of others and peaceful while viewing the artwork is a silent rule.

Atacama DesertPhoto by Shaun Dunphy /Flickr

Atacama Desert

Spanning a 600-mile area on Chile's Pacific coast, the Atacama desert is the driest in the world. It gets a small amount of rainfall due to the Andes mountains in the East. A frequently visited area is Moon Valley ("Valle de Luna") with stunning views and extreme landscapes.

 

 

 

mano del desierto Antofagasta Province, Antofagasta Region, Chile Photo by Marcos Escalier /Flickr.

The Hand in the Desert

The protruding "Mano de Desierto" was created in the early 1980s by Chilean sculptor Mario Irarrázabal. It is 11 meters tall and can be found about 70km south of Antofagasta, ChileThe sculptor has similarly themed works in Punta del Este, Uruguay, Madrid, Spain, and Venice, Italy.



Guide to Chile


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Top Attractions & Places of Interest in Chile

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