Nestled in a valley surrounded by mountains, Santiago is an awe-inspiring place. As both the political and cultural capital of Chile, Santiago vacations are a great choice for anyone who wants to visit the country. This huge city is teeming with excitement from the streets to the peaks.
Out and About in Santiago
The Plaza de Armas, or Central Square, is a great place to start exploring Santiago. From there, you can visit some of Santiago's many museums, such as the Museo de la Moda fashion museum. La Chascona, one of poet Pablo Neruda's homes, is another popular site, as is the Centro Gabriela Mistral, which is worth a visit just to see the venue itself, even if you don't catch a performance. The Parque Metropolitano, Santiago's largest green space, has botanical gardens along with sweeping views of the city. Outdoorsy types will love Santiago's proximity to both the coast and the Andes Mountains, which makes for amazing mountain climbing as well as skiing during the winter months.
Eating and Drinking
Great restaurants are scattered throughout the city, but Providencia and Bellavista are good bets to find a great meal. Breakfast is included with most Santiago hotels, but the main meal of the day is lunch, which is usually large and paired with a glass of wine (and a nap). Most chilenos eat a lighter meal in the evening and don't often eat a big meal at night, although restaurants do offer hearty dinners. Seafood is very popular because of the country's expansive coastline, but Santiago is an international city and many upscale restaurants cater to a diverse international palate. Because the region is known for growing grapes, wine is inexpensive and excellent. Pisco, or grape brandy, is another common Chilean drink made from grapes. It is used in the pisco sour, a popular mixed drink. To get a taste for yourself, book Santiago flights and find cheap hotels in Santiago with Travelocity. With Travelocity, search over 400 airlines and more than 510,000 hotels worldwide to help you get the best deals on flights and hotels in Santiago.