Your Chile Travel Guide

Welcome to Your Chile Travel Guide..... In this section I have tried to pack in as much info about Chile as I can. I spent over a month in Chile and met some great people. Some of which I still keep in touch with today. I found this country to have a much more westernised feeling than any other country I toured in South America. I really enjoyed my time in Chile too. I learnt a lot, I ate a lot, I drank a lot and I watched a lot of football.

As you probably already know, Chile is massive and it stretches from the glacial south to the arid north. So as you can imagine, there are a huge range of things to do in this country. You simply have to find the time to fit them in.

Facts About Chile

I should probably start this Chile travel guide with a few facts about this fascinating country. Only 35 years ago you would not have been able to travel freely around Chile, but the country is now liberated and you can explore all this country has to offer.

P1080955.JPG, El Calafate, Argentina
This travel blog photo's source is TravelPod page: One big glacier; more stunning views....22-26 Nov

Chile's coastline is around 2,700 miles long running from the Atacama desert in the North, passing through the lush valleys, mountains and forests until it reaches the glacial south. The most famous southern group of islands in Chilean waters, Tierra Del Fuego, marks this point and is a huge tourist destination. You probably already know Chile is skinny from top to bottom. It is never actually more than 110m wide.

There are many more fun facts about Chile

Chile Weather Conditions

I am not sure I should make this joke but Chile is not always Chilli! ...... Sorry.......

As previously mentioned the weather in Chile is completely dependent on where you are and at what time of year you are there. If you are down south then you will definitely need a warm coat, a bobble hat and a pair of gloves. If you are up north, maybe in Iquique, then you will need good sun tan lotion, flip flops and shorts. Being on the western side of South America, Chile is one of the countries that is greatly affected by by El Niño. So at times, the weather can be un predictable and forecasts unreliable.

For more info on Chile Weather Conditions click here.

Chile Food

When I was travelling I loved the food here and so I thought it was a good idea to include a little section in the Chile travel guide about it. It is often thought that the food in Chili is hot and spicy however this was not what I experienced at all. As you can imagine, a country that has a coastline spanning thousands of miles, seafood is very common. There are loads of types of different seafood and the markets on the weekend are filled with tasty foods that are typical to each area.

Empanada de Pino
This travel blog photo's source is TravelPod page: Pablo Neruda and Empanadas

Another one of the most famous Chilean foods, well drinks, is wine. Central Chile has a perfect climate for the creation of wine and vineyards can be found everywhere. You should definitely consider taking a tour of the vineyards. I found it really interesting to see the different types of vineyards (commercial and family run.... And the tasting session might leave you a little dizzy! For more info on Chile Food and Drink click here.

Chile Beaches

No Chile travel guide is complete unless it shows you where to lie back and relax on the beaches!
Iquique
My view of the beach from the hostel hammock in Iquique

There are 2700 miles of coastline in Chile so there are all types of beaches. There are pebble beaches, rocky beaches, grainy beaches and nice sandy beaches. The sea water can also be nice and warm or pretty cold. Due to the El Niño effect a current called the Humboldt affects the beaches of the north. This can create dangerous conditions to enter the water as the under-current can be very strong. The Humboldt current also brings cold waters so it's not comfortable to enter anyway! In the Southern glacial region, again the water is very cold and water temperature can be way below 0°C.

So as you probably guessed, the best beaches to enjoy in Chile are in the central region. There are some lovely beaches that get very crowded during the summer months. The people from Santiago travel to the coast and take over Viña Del Mar.

I spent a couple of weeks in Iquique and had a great time. It is a perfect destination for water sports and a spot of sun bathing!

Click here for more on Chile's Beaches

Tourist Attractions in Chile

There are plenty of tourist attractions in Chile that could keep you entertained for years! In our Chile travel guide I have created a more detailed section on this but wanted to mention is here so that you don't miss out on any of the great things to do in this great country.

garden city vina del mar
Garden City in Viña Del Mar

So get your travel senses buzzing with a skiing trip, vineyard tours, sand boarding, tour of the Atacama Desert, windsurfing, normal surfing or paragliding over the dunes in the north. For more info visit Chile tourist attractions

Chile Ski Resorts

Something I thought I had to include in my Chile travel guide was a skiing section. With the Andes spanning almost the entire length of Chile, there is no surprise that in some parts conditions for skiing becomes perfect. The ski resorts surrounding Santiago reach heights of around 3650 metres and have incredible views for skiers and they are also great for snow quality! You should probably think about acclimatising.

The Piste
This travel blog photo's source is TravelPod page: Snow Skiing in the Andes

The ski season in Chile starts around the middle of June and runs until October. However the best skiing conditions in Chile starts at the beginning of July until early September, but the busy Chile holidays are during July, so you probably want to consider that when you are planning your trip.

Here you will find more info on Chile Ski Resorts.