Posted by: RasmaSandra | December 3, 2017

Exploring Chile

chile 2

Our armchair travels took us through the capital of Chili, Santiago. Now we will explore the rest of Chile which is a fascinating country. There are impressive mountains, glaciers and many lakes and rivers. There are national parks that offer wonderful scenery and hiking adventures.

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Valle de la Luna means Moon Valley and is located 13 kilometers west of San Pedro de Atacama in the north of Chile close to the border with Bolivia.

chile desert

Here you can find a most rugged landscape right in the very heart of the Atacama Desert. It is amazing how much this area resembles the surface of the moon which is an effect created by sand erosion and stone features as wind and water has gone over it over countless millennia.

chile valle

Among the most interesting features here are the dry lake beds, white from deposited salt and creating natural saline outcrops. The desert has many caverns some which have pictographs once made by early man. Here some of the world’s oldest mummies have been found known as the Chinchorro mummies, now on display at the archaeological museum in San Miguel de Azapa.

chile easter 1

The fantastic but remote Easter Island was first visited by Europeans in 1722. It has been inhabited for lots of years by Polynesians. It is located over 3,500 kilometers from the mainland of Chile. Visitors enjoy seeing the unusual stone sculptures. Altogether there are 887 statues which are known as Moal. These were created by the early Rapa Nui population. They are now protected by Rapa Nui National Park. The island has been declared as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

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The most amazing collection is at Ahu Tongariki where 15 statues have been re-erected on the island’s largest Moai platform.

chile easter father sebastian

Other highlights here include the Father Sebastian Englert Anthropological Museum in Hanga Roa which is the island’s main community.

chile lake district

Chile’s Lake District stretches for over 330 kilometers from Temuco to Puerto Montt. The area here resembles the alpine regions of Europe. Here in the Andean foothills is rich farmland with snowcapped volcanoes rising above.

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There are think forests and deep lakes. The farmers who settled here came from Austria, Germany and Switzerland.

chile lake district osorno

Their influence can be seen in towns such as Osorno

chile lake district valdivia

and Valdivia. Visitors here can enjoy hiking and biking as well as climbing volcanoes, whitewater rafting, kayaking, canoeing, horseback riding and in the wintertime skiing.

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Valparaiso is Chile’s third largest city in a lovely location between the sea and the coastal mountain range. It is popular for its beautiful harbor and beaches.

chile val lord cochrane

Among the highlights here are Lord Cochrane’s Museum offering a look into the country’s maritime history

chile val maritime

and the excellent Naval and Maritime Museum that displays item associated with the War of the Pacific of 1870 between Chile and allied Peru and Bolivia.

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Lauca National Park stretches for 1,300 square kilometers in the far north of Chile. Among the highlights here are pristine mountain lakes like Cotacotani and Chungara, reflecting the surrounding scenery. The park also has some important archaeological sites.

chile lauca chilean-flamingos

This is a wonderful place for birdwatchers and is home to more than 140 species among them Andean geese, crested ducks, Chilean flamingos

chile lauca condor

and the huge Andean condor.

Chile Buying Argentina

Pumalin Park was established as a nature sanctuary in 2005. Today it is one of Chile’s most important and popular conservation areas. It is a vast territory of about 715,000 acres that stretches from the Andes to the Pacific. Here you can find pristine coastline and thick forests.

chile pumalin alerce

The world’s oldest tree species is there the Alerce. For visitors there are trails, campgrounds and visitor facilities.

chile penguins

Los Pinguinos Natural Monument is located 35 kilometers northeast of the city of Punta Arenas at the southern tip of the island.

chile penguins magadalena island

It includes the lovely Magdalena

chile penguin marta

and Marta Islands. Pinguinos is Spanish for penguins. This monument is home to one of Chile’s largest penguin colonies. There are some 60,000 breeding pairs of Magellanic penguins. This can be accessed only by guided boat tours. There are also seals and sea lions.

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