A trip to Santiago is bound to be unforgettable because this city is fantastic. But to make the most out of your experience, you need to take in all the best sights. So, plan your itinerary to include visits to the most amazing places this magnificent city has to offer.
10 Best Places to Visit in Santiago
1. Cerro San Cristobal
Any journey of discovery through Santiago should start with Cerro San Cristobal. This is the number one of all tourist sights in the city, and it definitely deserves its title. The panoramic view of the city that opens from this hill is spectacular. Like there are many ways to see the San Fran skyline, there are many places in Santiago that offer a great view. However, none of them compare to this iconic hill.
When you’re done being amazed by the view, be sure to take a walk through city’s biggest and one of the most beautiful parks, the Santiago Metropolitan Park. It’s located on the hill and offers many attractions, including two public pools. At the foot of the hill, you’ll find the Chilean National Zoo. It’s a part of the park complex and houses 158 species of animals from all over the world.
2. Plaza de Armas
Plaza de Armas is another of the top tourist attractions. Free walking tours in Santiago will usually take you there as it’s the historical center of the city. The square houses the Metropolitan Cathedral, one of the most magnificent architectural monuments in the city. The Royal Court Palace and Central Post Office aren’t far behind in terms of beauty and are located there as well.
Plaza de Armas is also the place you should go to if you want to buy the works of talented Chilean artists. They sell their paintings right there and you can enjoy looking at the fruits of local talents while nursing a cup of delightful Chilean coffee.
3. Los Dominicos Village
Shop for souvenirs at the Los Dominicos Village, the biggest Santiago crafts and artisans market. Here you can find a variety of beautiful handmade pieces that will make perfect mementos of the trip. You can also use this opportunity to learn more about the native Chilean crafts and traditions.
The ‘village’ is located at the end of a beautiful park and houses over 200 stores. Some of those are cafes where you can taste local delicacies.
4. La Chascona
Any list of places to visit in Santiago must include La Chascona, the home of one of the most prominent figures in the history of modern Chile. The house currently serves as a museum of its owner, Pablo Neruda. He was a diplomat, a poet, and the Nobel Prize for Literature winner in 1971.
La Chascona is the home made by Neruda for his secret lover Matilde Urrita. It’s one of the most original and romantic buildings in all of Santiago.
5. Museo de la Memoria
One of the most original of Santiago’s museums, the Museum of Memory and Human Rights is dedicated to the memories of Pinochet’s dictatorship victims. The entry is free, and you definitely should visit this place as it shows the tremendous spirit of the Chilean people, who managed to overcome this horrible period in their history and come out stronger for it.
6. Museo Chileno de Arte Precolombino
This is one of the most interesting places to visit in Santiago as this museum provides insight into the people, who inhabited this land centuries ago. The Chilean Museum of Pre-Colombian Art houses 10,000 years of history in the artifacts collected all over the South and Central America.
7. Museo de Arte Contemporaneo
The number one among the places to visit in Santiago if you are an art-lover. The Museum of Contemporary Art has the permanent collection of 3,000 magnificent pieces, and it often houses exhibits from a variety of artists. Be sure to check its website when planning your trip as the museum often organizes interesting events.
8. Palacio de la Moneda
The Presidential Palace is a vision of luxury and architectural beauty. When visiting it, pay attention to the amazing sculptures in the garden, which are made by Chilean artists. You can also enjoy the Changing of the Guards ceremony, much like you would in London.
9. Parque Quinta Normal
Despite its unassuming name, the Quinta Normal Park is one of the main reasons why you should use every trick to find more opportunities to travel and visit Santiago. It’s an urban park that houses numerous museums and offers you a chance to enjoy a barbecue and traversing a lake on paddleboats.
10. Cementerio General de Santiago
The cemetery is one of the stranger places to visit in Santiago, but this adventure will make your trip more memorable. This cemetery is the final resting place of almost all Chilean presidents. Each of their tombs is 2-3 stories high and is a unique monument to the person buried there and the mark they left on the country.