When people consider traveling to South usa the usual suspects are Brazil, Peru, Bolivia and Argentina in order to become more precise, Rio, the Inca trail, Salt Plains and Patagonia only the Argentine part. These are all stunning places and certainly worth a visit at some point, but let's remember the long strip of land joined to the west of Argentina referred to as Chile!
Often written off as boring, dull or expensive, america has recently exploded into life with lots of stunning sights that aren't fully discovered because of your average person tourist on the South America holiday.
Stretching over 2,700 miles from tip foot and averaging just 109 miles wide the environment contrasts dramatically as you descend from the driest desert in the world within the north to 1 of coldest and most desolate places to live in the world within the south. The contrasts from end to finish are simply stunning and well worth touring in your Chile trip.
~San Pedro de Atacama is a small village you could base yourself at the beginning of your Chile trip. Although the town is fairly it does not offer much more than the usual tourist attractions you realized. The USP with this town may be the location. You could go out to the desert late one afternoon and climb up of a sand dune to watch the sunset and the moon rise. This really is stunning as you can watch the color from the desert floor change as the sun drops and also the moon rise. Heaven is beautifully clear which means that the heavens are really visible. The Milky Way will have never appeared so clear or close!
Just to add incredible area you can take tours towards the Altiplano lakes where flamingos live, go to the Tatio geyser first thing in the morning to watch the sunrise because the geyser erupts or take some relaxation time on your Chile holiday in the many hot springs dotted round the area. Be careful though, an abrupt rise in blood temperature could make you feel a little dizzy in the beginning but that is just part of the fun. San Pedro is also a start/finish place for tours to the Salt Plains and ties in nicely with Bolivia.
Heading south may be the Parque Nacional Nevado Tres Cruces which throughout the summer is home to flamingos, vicunas and guanacos but more importantly offers stunning hiking and climbing opportunities with the snow topped mountains and beyond the clear blue lagoons. On top of that though, this place is simply not on the tourist trail YET so to get away from everything head here.
The next likely stop is going to be Santiago, capital of this vast country. Keeping it simple and to the point there are much better cities on the planet than Santiago. However, it will have its draws and is worth a couple of nights from your holiday period to explore. Climb to the top of Cerro San Christobal (you cannot miss it as being there is a 14m high white marble statue from the Virgin Mary perched on its peak). Here you will see the town with the Andes mountain range within the back ground (assuming the smog is not too thick on your chosen day of visit), then take the cable car down which winds around the hillside. In the afternoon explore the centre and also the overnight head to Valparaiso and Vina del Mar coastal towns just a few hour's north-west from the capital. This where the locals head for that weekend and holidays to swim, soak-up the sun and party.
For people, the Casablanca Valley is where Chile's best Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot grapes are produced. For a small fee you can have a tour of the vineyards then sample the produce, surely a highlight of your Chile tour. Should you fancy buying a few bottles you can do this and shipped home.
Continuing our windy way south is Pucon, the outdoor adventure capital of Chile. If you want thrilling through your veins and feeling alive by pushing the boundaries beyond your normal limits then Pucon is perfect for you. Set upon the gorgeous Lago Villarrica having a volcano overlooking it really is an ideal setting for taking your lifetime into your own hands. Ride up it, jump off it, slip it etc. Pucon is the best Chile adventure holiday destination.
Continuing on the theme of chance and adrenaline, jump on a bus and carry on south a little more (you will probably notice the weather getting a little cooler now). There are lots of National Parks in Chile but a specific favourite has a handful of 2,000m high granite towers that dominate the sky line, these gave the National Park its name Torres del Paine which translates to the awesome term 'Towers of Pain'!!
Torres is a haven for all those looking for Chile adventure holiday, for hikers, ramblers and climbers alike, even if you're not too in love with walking you can still go out together with your camera to take photos from the look at the lakes, forests and of a stunning blue glacier which just adds to the diversity from the area.
Torres is among the most popular parks so it can feel busy at times and the hostels do fill up quickly so always book ahead of time, however the place is so vast that to find tranquility is simple.
Patagonia is a huge area but the main placed you are likely to base yourself throughout every season is Punta Arena, which is an ideal point for continuing your Chile travel from our area using the main draw being the penguins across the Magellan Straight. The two main colonies that inhabit the area are on Seno Otway as well as on Isla Magdalena. These are not the huge penguins which are found in the Falklands but nether-the-less are still mighty impressive, even just in just amount with 6,000 at Seno Otway and around 50,000 on Magdalena Isla. The only method to visit these places would be to employ a car or have a tour as there are no public buses to the area. Fom Punta Arenas if you are feeling adventurous and energetic then definitely keep heading south to Cabo Froward which is the most southerly point on the continent. The two day hike is going to be windy and cold because it is an exposed road to the harsh natural elements, as you would expect when this near to Antarctica and can surely be considered a highlight of your Chile itinerary.
A pinnacle associated with a Chile tour would need to be Easter Island-a stunning isolated tropical island littered with Moai statues is much more than 2,300 miles from the west coast of Chile. An easy island without the influx of tourism and gaudy hotels. Employ a car to drive the 50 odd km of anti-clockwise roads, some of them concrete, some gravel yet others nothing more than dirt. No insurance coverage is required, but then again there's barely any traffic so accidents should not happen and when they are doing often cash changing hands will sort the issue. The statues are merely magnificent, considering how subjected to the harsh elements they've been for hundreds of years, they are incredibly well preserved and do not look dated or tired- ideal for you to definitely take pictures for your Chile holiday album. They are all over the island, 12 meters high, 2/3 meters wide plus some have hats.
With just one town and that includes a few bars, restaurants and the odd souvenir shop you do not come here for luxury, just enjoy the simplicity and allow your mind wander about the possible ways the statues were not only carved but then moved, and ultimately what exactly are they're for, and will they represent something? After all, your guess is really as good anyone else's.