Santiago Activities & Tours

Santiago Activities & Tours

Things to Do in Santiago Chile

Tourist activities in Santiago Chile are evident, but they are certainly not the high profile touristy things that you might find in other South American cities. And Santiago is certainly not Paris or New York City!

To absorb and appreciate what Santiago has to offer, you may need to be patient. Do some people watching over coffee and cake at one of the many cafes in Barrio Bellas Artes, a trendy little district. Go to a carrete (party) in Bellavista, wander the streets of Barrio Brasil, or go shopping in Providencia. To experience Santiago, you have to do what the locals do.

That being said, there are a small number of attractions within the city and surrounding areas. You can DIY for some of these activities or you may find it easier to get spoon fed by one of the Santiago tour companies.

Santiago Ski Tours

There are various tour operators that provide day trips up to the Tres Valles ski resorts, and in addition to transport they may provide ski rentals, guiding or ski lessons, and lunch.

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Centro Santiago Activities

Centro is the centre of tourist life. The district is home to lots of architecturally interesting buildings. Combine this with lots of tacky little shops, fast food cafes, and bustling workers, and you’ve got a hot pot to feast the eyes on. The hub of the city is the Plaza de Armas, and other attractions in the area include the Presidential Palace (Palacio de la Moneda), Cathedral Metropolitana, the Museo Historico Nacional, and Museo Chileno de Arte Precolumbino.

Get a little high at Cerro San Lucia (San Lucia Hill) or further elevate yourself at Cerro San Cristobal where you’ll get great views of the city and the Andes (depending on the winter smog, for which Santiago is famous). After burning off all that energy, you could join the frenzy at the Mercado Central and grab a fab lunch.

Day Tours from Santiago

There are various tour companies that offer a city tour that covers some of the major attractions or bike tours that include some of the lesser known parts of the city.

Other options are day tours to the beach resort of Viña del Mar and the eccentric, history-rich port town of Valparaíso.

Maipo Valley Wineries

Whether you’re an oenophile or like to scull wine, it is probably compulsory to include some wine tasting on your Chile ski trip. The Maipo Valley is just south of Santiago, and is the oldest wine producing area in Chile and the most well known. This valley is renowned for its bold Cabernet Sauvignon as well as other big bodied reds. Maipo Valley has big high profile wineries in addition to boutique winemakers.

If you’ve got a car (and a designated driver) you could do a self-tour of the wineries. Alternatively avoid driving whilst drunk and go on a winery tour.

Other Winery Tours

Various tour companies also offer tours that depart from Santiago to other wine regions that are just a little further afield. The Aconcagua Valley (north of Santiago near Los Andes) specialises in Carménère, a red grape not grown in many places other than Chile. The Powderhounds LOVE this medium bodied wine, with our favourite being the Vina Von Siebenthal Reserva.

Another option is a day tour to Colchagua Valley or some tours may include an overnight stay in the quaint town of Santa Cruz. This wine valley is getting lots of international recognition, so check it out before it becomes overly trendy.