(*)Live part of Chile?s literary history by visiting Santiago La Chascona, one of the houses of famour Chilean poet Pablo Neruda. Tours available every hour.
(*)Take the teleferico (cable car) or funicular (train) up to the top o Cerro San Cristobal to get panoramic views of Santiago and the Chilean countryside.
(*)People-watch, see great architecture, and watch all manner of street performance at the Mercado Central, where you can grab a bite at any number of delicious food stalls. Seafood is a specialty.
(*)Take a tour of Concha y Toro Winery just outside Santiago and be sure to cap your visit off with a tasting of one of their world-famous wines.
(*)Get cultural at the Museo de Artes Visuales, a six-level contemporary art gallery with many great collections.
When to go
Santiago has hot dry summers (Nov-Mar) and humid winters (Jun-Aug) with cold mornings and nighttime temperatures nearing freezing. Summer is by far the best time to enjoy Santiago outdoors, but with the right jacket winter can also be a great time to get to know the city.
How to get there
(bus)Santiago is a transportation hub for all modes of transport through Chile, and will likely be your first stop upon entering the country. Flights can be taken into Arturo Merino Benitez Airport on all major airlines. Within the country, inexpensive buses are available for backpackers and travelers of all budgets to make their way into the capital.
Visas are not required for citizens of most countries,, with the exception of New Zealand, Cuba, most African and some Eastern European countries. Travelers from other countries will be granted a 90 day tourist visa when they enter the country. When crossing into Chile at the Santiago airport, a ?reciprocity fee? may be assessed depending on the country of origin. This fee varies based on what the country of origin charges Chilean citizens for entering their county, but is around US$100 for US citizens, US$132 for Canadians, and US$30 for Australians. This fee is normally not assessed when crossing into Chile by boat or land.
At restaurants the normal tip is 10%, though 15% is always appreciated for excellent service. Slightly less is generally given in bars and cafes, and porters generally receive an amount corresponding to 50 cents per bag. Taxi drivers are not tipped.