Chile
Cerro San Luis

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19 travelers at this place

  • Day3

    Day 1 - Continued

    December 29, 2018 in Chile ⋅ ☀️ 26 °C

    After resting at the hotel, we went up to the hotel's terrace bar for a drink. From the seventh floor terrace, we had a view of the Cerro Santa Lucia (Saint Lucia Hill) just a few hundred feet from the hotel entrance, Cerro San Cristobal (Saint Christopher Hill), the east side of the city, and the Andes rising further east. Santiago is plagued by smog, which is quite bad in winter (July to September) but not too bad now. Gail ordered a Pisco Sour, the national drink. Pisco is a liquor made from Muscat grapes and taste a bit like grappa or tequila. The Sour is a mixed drink with lemon juice and a dash of bitters. There were a smattering of other guests and I picked out Spanish, Portuguese, and French as well as English among the different tables.

    We headed over to the Lastarria neighborhood. This is the "bohemian" area with many restaurants, street vendors, street performers and boutique shops on the other side (east) of Cerro Santa Lucia. We heard the drums long before we got there. As we came to Lastarria street, we passed a troop of folk dancers performing on the corner to their drums. The vendors had there wares set up on tables or laid out on the ground. For sale they had books, antiques, trinkets, marijuana brownies, small art works, and much more. Moving along the street, packed with Friday night revelers, were mobile vendors with paper birds that flutter in the breeze. On other corners buskers playing and singing music from classical violin to Queen. The restaurants were packed but we found a place and had a great ceviche and a clam chowder. We wandered back to the hotel in the twilight - it's summer here and the days don't get dark until about 9:00 pm. It had been a long day without much night so we went to bed about 10:30 - early by Chilean standards.
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  • Day666

    Excitement in Santiago

    November 9, 2019 in Chile ⋅ ☀️ 31 °C

    I was pretty nervous heading to Santiago - were the news reports true about the intense rioting happening in the city, or were they exaggerated? I wasn’t sure. We got our first glimpse of the answer right when we got to our hotel in Providencia, one of the nicest neighborhoods in Santiago - the front door was boarded up and we had to use a nearly secret entrance through the garage “for our safety.”

    Once inside the hotel, all seemed safe and normal. We headed out to an early dinner across the street, being told it’d be best to be back before dark. Our nice meal on the patio of a Japanese-Peruvian restaurant was cut short when hoard of people started appearing on the nearby street, with flags, masks and bandanas, clearly ready for the night’s protest. We were ushered inside quickly, finished our meal then headed back to the hotel. From our window, we saw giant military trucks drive by covered in spray paint and people throwing rocks at the police cars and heard chanting and banging on pots and pans. Exciting for our first night.

    The next day assured it was nice and calm during the day, we headed out for a walk. The streets are beautiful, lined with massive trees. But also you can see the distress - political graffiti on most businesses, nearly all shops on street level had boarded windows, either from being smashed or in precaution. It felt both safe, especially seeing the locals go about their days, but also you could notice the tension.

    Then as we walked down the street by the largest skyscraper, our eyes started to water and throats felt on fire. Everyone around us put scarves over their mouths. Tear gas. We’d just been hit by tear gas, well not really hit as much as we felt the effects from last night’s tear gas. Still pretty potent.

    After that we were more apprehensive but continued on, happened upon a great cafe for lunch, a swanky mall to buy a couple last minute hiking things, and a nice spot for dinner and drinks. We still managed 8.5 miles of walking around the city and no other issues.

    Our last day was the most uneventful with a walk in a large beautiful park, some tasty ice cream to cool off from the hot temps and even our hotel’s front door back open.

    Overall thankfully it was a much easier trip to Chile’s capital than I feared. But also more of an experience!
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  • Day68

    Bye bye Santiago

    January 12 in Chile ⋅ ☀️ 26 °C

    Zum Abschluss unseres Santiago-Aufenthalts stand eine Mischung aus Touri-Sightseeing und Vorbereitung auf unser Patagonien-Abenteuer auf dem Programm. Zum Abschluss gab es am Samstagmorgen einen ausgedehnten Spaziergang zu den Hotspots von Santiago - von den Markthallen, verschiedenen Pärken über die Innenstadt bis zum Palast war alles dabei. Ein toller Morgen, auch wenn man vielen Sehenswürdigkeiten (ausser dem komplett gesicherten Palast) und vor allem den Parks die Spuren der vergangenen (und laufenden) Proteste doch sehr, sehr deutlich ansieht. Krönender Abschluss bildete ein Besuch in angeblich einer der 25 besten Gelaterias der Welt (Insider-Tipp: Wer italienische Gelaterias gewohnt ist wird nicht wirklich ein Aha-Erlebnis haben😉).
    Am Sonntagnachmittag dann der zweite Spaziergang in der Stadt (diesmal gestärkt nach Leberkäse, Spätzli und Rotkohl im deutschen Restaurant😎) durch Downtown sowie den (mit Abstand) schönsten und gepflegtesten Park, den Parque Bicentenario. Ein toller letzter Abend in der City.
    Zwischen dem Sightseeing lagen mehrere Recherche-Stunden, Waschgänge und (schlussendlich erfolgreiche) Packversuche. Patagonien, wir kommen!
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  • Day15

    Ankunft Santiago de Chile

    February 9, 2019 in Chile ⋅ ☀️ 26 °C

    Wolfgang war bislang derjenige, der die Dankesrede für die jeweiligen Reiseleiter hielt. Bei Cornelia, zuständig für die Seenlandschaft und total unattraktiv und langweilig, weigerte er sich strikt. Nun gut, ich übernahm diesen Part. Und dann ging es flott mit dem Flieger von Puerto Montt nach Santiago de Chile. Dort nahm uns die Quasselstrippe Oliver in Empfang - ein Glücksgriff. Oliver hat uns nach eine Minipause im Hotel sofort zu einem Stadtrundgang abgeholt. Zuerst ging es in das moderne Bankenviertel von Santiago des Chile und dann mit dem Bus hoch hinauf auf den Cerro San Christóbal. Von dort oben hat man wunderbare Blicke auf die gesamte Stadt und Oliver fand Zeit uns in die Geschichte, Wirtschaft und Politik von Santiago und Chile einzuführen. Santiago liegt in einem Talkessel: im Osten liegen die Anden und im Westen die Küstenkordillere. In der Hauptstadtregion leben ca. fünfeinhalb Millionen Einwohner und damit mehr als ein Drittel der gesamten chilenischen Bevölkerung. Wow. Die Luftverschmutzung konnten wir vom Aussichtshügel sehr gut sehen. Alles befand sich trotz strahlendem Sonnenschein unter einem Grauschleier. Wieder unter angelangt ging es zum Mercado Central, der großen Markthalle. Der dortige Fischmarkt ist beeindruckend. Weiter ging es zum Plaza de Armas, dem zentralen Platz der Altstadt. Dieser wird dominiert von dem Palacio de la Real Audiencia von 1808, in dem sich heute das Historische Museum befindet. Auf der anderen Seite befindet sich die Catedral Metropolitano aus dem 18. Jahrhundert. Auf dem Plaza de Armaz steht auch die große Maphuce Statue zum Gedenken an die indigene Bevölkerung Chiles, die Mapuche Indianer. Abends fand dann in einem Drehrestaurant hoch über den Dächern von Santiago de Chile unser gemeinsames Abschiedsessen statt: natürlich Steak. Lecker 😋, aber auch ein bisschen traurig, weil sich die Reisegruppe am nächsten Tag auflösen würde. 😢Read more

  • Day19

    Last night in Santiago

    November 28, 2019 in Chile ⋅ ⛅ 23 °C

    Well, it seems the rumours were true. This morning, a van containing dozens of people’s luggage destined for the same cruise as I’ve just completed was hijacked at gun-point on its way to Santiago airport. The van is gone, along with everyone’s belongings. My hotel lobby is full of distraught people whose holiday of a lifetime is now over before it has even begun. You can’t go to Antarctica with no luggage, it’s just not an option. Nor is it an option to go buy more winter clothes at the mall - it’s spring here in Santiago now. What an awful thing to happen. And I can’t stop thinking that could so easily have been our group. It doesn’t bear thinking about, and I’m so sad for those people downstairs who are now trying to book flights home. I know how I would feel. Santiago, along with most of Chile, is in the grip of some very bad times. On delivery to our hotel, our guide insists that we don’t stray far from the immediate vicinity this evening, and certainly to go nowhere near the downtown area of the city. So, apologies if my pictures look pretty much the same as last time, but unfortunately Santiago is not the place for tourism at the moment. I don’t know whether this incident has anything to do with the protests, or if - as seems the case in other parts of the world - social unrest just becomes a carte blanche for lawlessness, but if organised gangs are now targeting the very tourism on which many areas financially depend, then it’s hard to remain hopeful that things are going to be resolved quickly.

    I have a private transfer booked tomorrow at 12:30 to get me back to the airport, after which I shall feel a little more at ease. But for now, it’s room service and a film in bed.
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Cerro San Luis

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