For those who cannot afford to miss weekdays, weekends are the perfect time to escape Santiago’s smog and breathe in new surroundings. An ideal location for such a trip is the charming seaport of Valparaíso.
VALPARAÍSO — The city is known for its seaside views, colorful street murals and funiculars that make it seem like a life-size game of Chutes and Ladders. Valparaíso is only an hour and a half away by bus, and a roundtrip ticket leaving on Friday afternoon and returning anytime on Sunday will cost around CLP $9,000. Things to do in Valparaíso and Viña del Mar:
Palacio Baburizza: also known as the Museo Municipal de Bellas Artes deValparaíso. This is a beautiful Art Nouveau-inspired mansion located at the peak of Cerro Alegre. It contains European and Chilean works of art that were collected by Pascal Baburizza, a saltpeter mogul.
Plaza Sotomayor: the main plaza of Valparaíso. The Plaza is surrounded by historical sights and is filled with street vendors.
La Sebastiana: one of Pablo Neruda’s three houses in Chile. Just like his other houses in Santiago and Isla Negra, La Sebastiana is filled with many of Pablo Neruda’s eccentric decorations and collectibles. The interior of his home is almost as spectacular as the view!
Viña del Mar: the beach town is about a 15 minute drive fromValparaíso. There are many beachside restaurants and shops. It was absolutely beautiful to see the sunset while lying in the sand.
Icing on the cake: to finish off a day at Valparaíso with a boat tour to witness the bright lights of the city, and maybe even spot a Chilean marine otter.