6 Must-See Places In Chile Before You Die
- Published:March 8, 2017 10:20 am
Chile’s great length extending 4,270km makes it both an exciting and challenging country to explore. And if you’re heading here for your next adventure, you should be able to select the best places to visit in Chile to save you effort and time in planning.
Check out below for a guide.
Top 6 Must-See Places in Chile Before You Die
- Elqui Valley
Stretching all the way from the majestic beach town of La Serena, which is about a 7-hour travel north of Santiago to the Argentina’s border, Elqui Valley is a dramatic place that lets you witness an awe-inspiring contrast between lush greens and mountainsides. And in the rich valleys are where great farming for papayas, oranges and grapes is. There are little towns dotting these valleys and you can stop by and visit distilleries for wine tasting. But aside from this popular activity, you can also do stargazing in the night skies.
While here, you can also check out Vicuña to sample some local food in the eateries and restaurants lining up the place. If you love adventure and sports, you can try horseback riding, trekking, cycling and off-road driving tours.
[At night, witness the spectacular display of stars – the reason this place is named the first “International Dark Sky Sanctuary”]
- Atacama Desert
Another must-see place in Chile before you die is the Atacama Desert (Desierto de Atacama), which is the driest and highest desert on the planet.
Expect salt lakes and stony terrains in the world’s driest desert with no rainfall that could be recorded for up to four years (central sector), or only with an average rainfall of 1 millimeter annually.
Get firsthand experience and take some photos of massive rock formations – Dinosaur Valley, Death Valley and Valle De La Luna.
These rock formations are going to leave you speechless and wonder how these all could be possible, at all!
[Exploring Atacama, you might have to spend a couple of days here, so you should look for an accommodation before going. Atacama covers 1,000-kilometer land strip west of the Andes mountains and on the Pacific Coast. The desert proper covers 41,000 sq mi (105,000 sq km) or 49,000 sq mi (128,000 sq km) if the Andes’ lower slopes will be included.]
- Torres Del Paine
The Torres Del Paine is the three granite peaks of the Paine Massif, extending up to 2,500 m above sea level. It boasts rivers, glaciers and lakes as well as valleys.
This national park has some of the most amazing sceneries you should not miss in Patagonia, including the Cerro Paine mountain range, especially if you’re a trekker. Alternatively, you can either hike or drive around to see the landmarks in two days.
- Tierra del Fuego
Also called the Land of Fire, Tierra del Fuego sits at the South American continent’s bottom end and splits between Argentina and Chile. Chilean’s slice of the land includes a small group of islands (many uninhabited), Isla Navarino and Isla Grande’s half mainland.
There are only 7,000 Chileans inhabiting the place, making it the least populated area in the country.
Porvenir exudes a rugged and rough charm – travelers come to relish its emptiness, adventurers visit the Parque Nacional Yendegaia and anglers are attracted in the inland lakes.
[Developments are underway in the region. In the next years, there will be a direct crossing to the Isla Navarino from Tierra del Fuego, Chile, as well as a road from Estancia Vicuña to PN Yendegaia (expected completion, 2021)].
- Easter Island
The Easter Island is one of the most remote places on earth that you should not miss – not only for its remoteness but also for its mysteriousness.
The place is famous for Moai statues seemingly paying homage to their creator and green hillsides as well as among hikers for different hiking opportunities and water sports enthusiasts for diving and snorkeling on the white beaches.
History had it that the people’s lineage in the Easter Island can be traced back to Micronesia and Polynesia. But more or less, only 5000 people inhabit the island – half of them are indigenous (Rapa Nui or pascuenses – for the mainland Chileans). They are fine-boned, make a living through tourism, speak Rapa Nui and Spanish, and live in Hanga Roa, the island’s only settlement.
[The only way getting here is the LAN airlines from Santiago or Peru.]
- The Lake District
Lake District is a region of dense forest, lush greens, clear lakes and snowcapped volcanoes. The area stretches 339 kilometers from Temuco (North) to Puerto Montt (South).
The entire district was covered in thick forests until small farm settlements arrived.
Visitors can expect a whole host of volcanoes – the largest being the Villarrica standing 2,847 meters high. And because there are many volcanoes here, the sand in many of the beaches is black because it is from solidified lava formations that turned to fine powder later.
Overall, there are 16 large lakes and many other smaller ones in the place.
[Villarica is smoking and active but has not erupted since 1971. There are tours that will take you to the top of the volcano – how does that sound?]
Atacama Desert, Torres Del Paine, Elqui Valley, Easter Island, Tierra del Fuego and the Lake District – they are the six must-see places in Chile that you should visit before you die. Each destination is an adventure for every kind of traveler and offers a memorable experience you won’t forget in this lifetime.