Chile

Chile travel tips – all you need to know about visiting Chile

Last Updated on 20/05/2024 by kami

Traveling to Chile has been my dream for years. I remember when I was 14, didn’t go to school because I was sick and as I was flipping through the travel magazine I saw a picture of Torres del Paine. It was so surreal and so beautiful I’ve dreamt of visiting this place right away.

I didn’t really expect I will actually make it there one day but a good deal on flights to Chile popped up and I didn’t think twice of booking the ticket! After all, it’s good to make dreams come true!

Chile travel tips

I spent 10 days in Chile (with a quick side trip to Bolivia) and my Chile itinerary was crazy busy but manageable. To be honest, it was one of the most challenging trips for me, for numerous reasons, but at the same time I’m extremely happy I went because Chile didn’t disappoint. And seeing the places I’ve been dreaming about for 20 years was a truly magical experience worth all the effort.

Before I start telling you about the Chile trip properly I should start with some of the practical aspects so you might find them useful when planning your own trip to Chile. I went there solo, without knowing Spanish and I managed just fine. Here you have some of the Chile travel tips so you can organize your own trip to this beautiful country!

Chile essentials

Planning a trip to Chile? Here are the services I always use and personally recommend:

  • Accommodation: I always book a place to stay on Booking.com
  • Tours: when I decide to go on a tour I either use Viator
  • Get insured for your trip to Chile with SafetyWing

How to get to Chile

Chile is far away. And I mean really far away. I flew directly from Barcelona and it was 14 hours of flying to get there (and then 16 in return but that’s because we had to land in Brasilia due to the medical condition of one of the passengers). You can watch 5 movies, sleep a bit, read a book and still not be there (I’m talking from my own experience). But even if the journey is long it is worth all the hassle.

I flew with Level airlines from Barcelona to Santiago de Chile. It’s a low-cost kind of airline so I’d have to pay extra for the checked luggage or food onboard – I didn’t as I don’t even have a backpack big enough to check it hence I mostly travel with carry-on only and I prefer to buy my own food as I had some bad experience with onboard meals on Iberia flights (and Level is part of Iberia). But then I could have chosen for free the preferred seat or use the onboard entertainment (not the most exciting one but there were a few good movies).

For my return flights Barcelona – Santiago de Chile – Barcelona I paid exactly €301,24 ($337) which is insanely cheap. That’s actually why I bought the tickets to Chile in the first place, you hardly ever see such a good deal on flights to the other side of the world. Together with flights between Poland and Spain (Warsaw – Valencia, and Barcelona – Warsaw) the tickets cost me €450 ($500) so a pretty sweet deal!

Other main airlines and airports that fly to Santiago de Chile are Air France from Paris, Alitalia from Rome, British Airways from London, Emirates from Dubai, Iberia from Madrid, KLM from Amsterdam, Qantas from Sydney, American Airlines, Delta and United Airlines from a few airports in the USA. There are also flights from most of the capitals in South America.

I also cross the overland border between Chile and Bolivia when going to/from Uyuni. While leaving Chile was easy and straightforward on the way back to the country it took two hours for the bus full of people to go through customs. But all was good, even if time-consuming.

Chile travel tips

Detailed control at the border betwen Chile and Bolivia

Visa to Chile

Citizens of 93 countries don’t need a visa to visit Chile for the period up to 90 days. The list includes most of the European countries (Belarus is the only exception), South-East Asia, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and the majority of the countries in both Americas.

What you can / cannot bring

There are actually pretty many restrictions what you can’t bring to Chile but don’t worry, everything is explained in the declaration form you need to fill before crossing the border (you can find it here). Basically, you are not allowed to bring any plant and animal products and if you are unsure what to do you can either ask the SAG officer during the control or just declare it.

I had a pack of nuts still from Poland (not opened) with me when crossing the border both at the airport and from Bolivia. In the first case I asked and they told me it’s all good, on the second border I declared them in the form and again it was all good, I could take them with me.

If some products are suspicious they will take them away from you but it is really worth to declare everything to avoid fines. Better safe than sorry.

Immigration papers

Immigration was very quick, straightforward and just fine, I wasn’t asked any questions and the whole process took a minute maybe. When entering Chile, doesn’t matter through which border point, you will be given a piece of paper similar to the bill from the shop with all your information. Keep it in a safe place as you have to give it back to the officer when exiting the country.

Chile travel tips

Best time to visit Chile

I visited Chile at the end of April / beginning of May and the weather was perfect. In most places (Santiago, Valparaiso, Atacama) it was warm, a bit over 20C, and often sunny. Patagonia was much colder, between 0 and 10 C, but at least it wasn’t raining.

I enjoyed traveling in Chile at that time of the year but this might not be the best time to visit Chile as the season ends in April and some of the attractions, especially in Patagonia, might not be available.

Chile is a big (and long) country and has a few climate zones so there is no universal time to visit. If your main goal is to see Patagonia at its best then November to March is the peak season with the best weather. But since it’s a summertime in the southern hemisphere you might experience hot days in other parts of the country.

Chile travel tips

Autumn in Patagonia

How many days you should stay in Chile

I spent 10 days in Chile (with a side trip to Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia) and while I’ve seen all I wanted to see it was a bit exhausting. I think the optimal time to spend in Chile is around 2 weeks, add few more days (3 to 5) if you would like to visit Easter Island. In this time not only you can see all the great places, but you can also deal with the jetlag easily and then get used to the altitude changes.

What to see in Chile

The main Chile attractions are Patagonia and Atacama desert and they are famous for a reason as both regions are just spectacular.

You will most likely fly to Santiago de Chile and I recommend spending a day or two in the capital as well. You don’t travel to South America for cities but for nature however, the capital of Chile isn’t such a bad city. You can also go for there for super easy day trips from Santiago to Valparaiso and/or Vina del Mar.

Other interesting places to visit in Chile (that I didn’t manage to get to) include Easter Island, Carretera Austral road, Chiloe island, Villarrica Lake or wine regions around Santiago.

Chile travel tips

Atacama



Chile travel tips

Patagonia – Torres del Paine



Chile travel tips

Valparaiso



Chile travel tips

Santiago de Chile

How to get from Santiago airport to the center

Getting from Santiago airport to the city was actually fairly easy. There is a bus that departs every 10 minutes to the center (Los Heroes metro station) via Las Rejas, Universidad de Santiago, Pajaritos and Estación Central metro stations. It operates between 6:00 am and 11:30 pm in 10 minutes intervals and during the night in hourly intervals.

The bus stop is in front of the airport exit no 4. One way ticket costs 1 900 CLP, return 3 400 CLP. At the airport, you buy the ticket before boarding the bus (you wait in line and there is a man selling the tickets), when going from the center you buy the ticket from the driver.

If you have an early morning or late departure flight or want a more comfortable ride directly to your accommodation you can use taxi, uber or book the transfer before. My flight to Punta Arenas was at 6 am so I took the taxi booked by the hostel to the airport. It was 18 000 CLP but uber at the same time was slightly more expensive – 20 000 CLP. I could have played it smarter, used pre-booked transfer.

By the way, you can also get directly from the airport to Valparaiso or Vina del Mar.

Chile travel tips

How to get around Santiago

I walked a lot around Santiago and used the metro to some more distant areas. There are also buses running around but the traffic can be bad in Santiago so metro is much better.

To use metro you need to have a so-called BIP card, there is no way to travel without it. The card itself costs 1 500 CLP and then you need to charge it for the rides, the minimum amount is 1 000 CLP. The metro ride fare depends on the time you are using the metro, varies between 610 and 720 CLP. it’s more expensive at peak hours.

You can buy the card at the stations, either in the machine or from the ticket stand. I recommend the second option. When I tried to buy the card from the machine after a long time of processing it eventually failed, but at least it returned me the money. At the ticket stand, it’s rather impossible to find someone speaking English but you will manage just find get the card and charge it afterward without knowing Spanish.

Chile travel tips

How to get from Santiago to Valparaiso

Valparaiso is the most popular and super easy day trip from Santiago. The bus between the cities takes around 1,5 hours and the departures are very frequent every 20 or so minutes. You can basically go to the bus station without checking the schedule and there will be a bus leaving shortly.

There are two main companies serving this route, Turbus and Pullman, and they both offer more or less the same standard and price.

To get to Valparaiso from Santiago first you need to get to Pajaritos bus station which is directly above the metro station with the same name (L1 red metro line). Once there you go to the ticket office (they are clearly marked with the name of the company) and get your ticket. I chose Turbus only because it had a shorter line.

Again there was a bit of a language barrier when buying the ticket but we managed just fine. It’s better to buy the return ticket as it’s cheaper. I paid 5 800 CLP for the return instead of 3 000 CLP one way.

The bus departed within 10 minutes, the platforms are clearly marked on the screen, there are also screens with the destination in front of the bus. On the ticket there you have the allocated seat but not for the return. The buses are semicama which are very comfortable, especially for such a short journey.

When I wanted to go back from Valparaiso to Santiago I just went to the bus station and found a Turbus bus going to Santiago (it was departing in 2 minutes), showed the ticket to the driver and was let in. I could then chose the seat, fortunately the bus wasn’t full so there was plenty of options.

Chile travel tips

How to get from Santiago to Patagonia

Patagonia is one of the highlights of Chile that you have to visit. It is also located a bit far away from Santiago (like over 2 thousand kilometers) but fortunately getting there isn’t that difficult as there are numerous flights connecting Santiago de Chile with Punta Arenas.

Three airlines that fly this route are LATAM, Sky and JetSmart, the flying time is around 3 hours (that’s how long it takes me to fly from Poland to Georgia and I always thought it is far away).

Eventually, I booked flights with Sky, early morning departure from Santiago and an evening return 3 days later. It’s a local airline so obviously, I didn’t know it before but everything was fine and on time.

It’s easy to get from Punta Arenas airport to the city. As soon as you leave the arrivals there are people holding the signs with the shared transfer or taxi options. The transfer is 5 000 CLP and taxi 10 000 CLP. I opted for the shared transfer, was taken to the bus parked just outside of the terminal and a few minutes later, when the bus was almost full we left to the city. But before the driver took the addresses from all the passengers so everyone was dropped off exactly where they wanted to.

On the way back to the airport I used the taxi, asked the hostel owner to order me one. Again there was a language barrier so I couldn’t really explain I was interested in the transfer but the taxi was just fine.

I went to Punta Arenas to see Torres del Paine, one of my dream destinations, and was not disappointed but the town was pleasant enough too, with plenty of things to do in Punta Arenas.

Chile travel tips

How to get from Santiago to the Atacama

Just like with Patagonia, your best option to get to the Atacama from Santiago is flying. The closest airport from the Atacama is Calama, from where it is some 100kms to San Pedro the Atacama, the main (even if really tiny) town in the desert.

Again, there are three airlines mentioned above: LATAM, SKY and JetSmart serving this route and each of them offers numerous departures through the day so it is really easy to plan the trip according to your needs. I flew SKY here as well and again all was good with no delays.

From Calama airport, you can easily get to San Pedro de Atacama. There are a few shared transfer providers who wait for you in the arrivals hall and then take you to their stand where you buy the ticket. The price is the same – 12 000 CLP for one way trip and 20 000 CLP for the return. Just like in Punta Arenas they take you directly to the address you give them.

You can also go to the town of Calama (although the only reason why you might need to do that is to catch the bus somewhere else, like to Uyuni in Bolivia which is what I did), then the transfer from the airport is 5 800 CLP. Unfortunately, there is no public transport but the shared transfers work just fine.

If you plan to go only from San Pedro de Atacama to Calama airport you can also use the shared transfer, for 12 000 CPL. I did it, used this website and it worked fine, with no issues at all.

Chile travel tips

How to get to Easter Island

This is one of the must places to visit in Chile that I didn’t have time to make it to (although I considered switching Uyuni for Easter Island but the weather forecast wasn’t the best). If you would like to visit this iconic island you can fly there.

The only airline that flies from Santiago to Easter Island is LATAM, there is at least one flight per day and the journey time is around 5 hours. This part of your Chile trip might be a bit more expensive than everywhere else but no one I talked to was disappointed about the place.

How to get from the Atacama to Uyuni without the tour

The most popular way to travel between San Pedro de Atacama and Uyuni is by the organized 3 days tour where everything is taken care of and you visit some beautiful and interesting places along the way. But what if you don’t have time for such a trip? That was the case with me. There isn’t much information online about traveling by the regular bus between the cities but I can assure you it is possible, although it’s a long journey.

I first went from Calama to Uyuni, which was 6,5 hours (fortunately the border went smoothly and took us only half an hour with all the paperwork on both sides) and then a few days later from Uyuni to San Pedro de Atacama. The return trip was much longer, a bit over 10 hours as the bus went via Calama and we spent around 2 hours at the border (the customs control on the Chilean side was very detailed).

I researched and bought the tickets on this website and although I was a bit nervous, especially about the buses running on those very days or not having the allocated seat, but everything was fine. I printed the tickets and with this, I went to the company’s stand at the bus station in Calama and in Uyuni to exchange the printed ticket for the real one and then I had the seat reserved included. Even with the language barrier in Uyuni everything went smoothly.

The buses both were semicama, although by different companies and the one from Calama to Uyuni was slightly better. But still, I think semicama buses should be a standard all over the world for any journey over 2 hours and even 10 hours from Uyuni to San Pedro de Atacama was bearable. Not to mention the views along the way, breathtaking!

Chile travel tips

How to see Torres del Paine from Punta Arenas

The main reason I’ve decided to visit Patagonia was to see Torres del Paine. It’s been my dream since I was 14 and I couldn’t have missed such a chance. Unfortunately, your only option to get there from Punta Arenas is either by tour or by rental car. I opted for a tour and it was a good decision. It was a long day but worth all the hours spent on the bus as the views were mind-blowing!

Chile travel tips

How to see the Atacama

As much as I loved Santiago, Valparaiso or Torres del Paine, it was Atacama desert that was the highlight of my trip to Chile. I didn’t expect such a beautiful scenery really! It is also a vast area so you might want to prepare yourself how to see it.

I had two days in the Atacama which obviously was not enough but I still managed to see a bit. There are lots of options of organized tours and finding something, either online or at the spot, shouldn’t be a problem.

On the next day, I was considering going for a tour to geysers but at that point of my trip, I was already a bit tired and just wanted to relax. Instead, I just walked all the way to the Valle de la Muerte, some 15kms return trip from the town – a very pleasant and rewarding hike in the beautiful scenery.

Another option was to rent a bike for a day but since I’m not very good with bikes (and especially uphill on bikes) but I love walking I’ve decided to just hike around.

Chile travel tips

Altitude change

For the first time ever I’ve experienced the altitude sickness and let me tell you this is a real thing. It was partly my fault as in a bit less than 24 hours I went from 0 meters above the sea level (Punta Arenas) to 3 700 meters (Uyuni, Bolivia).

I had a headache, felt dizzy and nauseous and I was getting tired so easily that walking up to the 3rd floor without losing my breath was a challenge. It was so weird, I didn’t really know what was happening with my body and how to stop it.

As soon as I went back to the lower parts I felt much better. So keep in mind that the altitude change might affect your travels too. It’s nothing too serious, just annoying.

Solo female travel in Chile

I traveled to Chile solo and was all fine although I haven’t met all that many solo female travelers there (exactly two). But I didn’t find it to be very challenging in general, to be honest.

Of course, I stayed mostly in the touristy places and used my common sense and a typical precautions like everywhere else but there weren’t any situations where I felt even slightly in danger.

But I wouldn’t recommend Chile for the first solo trip as it’s a bit difficult sometimes, especially when you don’t know Spanish.

Chile travel tips

Traveling without knowing Spanish

I don’t know Spanish besides “hola”, “gracias” and a few other basic words. Usually, I travel in the countries when I can communicate a little bit in the local language or where the language I know (English or Russian) is well known. But South America is always difficult, I remember having this issue before in Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay and it was the same in Chile.

While Santiago de Chile was surprisingly good and everyone I encountered, except bus and metro stations, spoke decent English to communicate other parts of the country were a bit of a challenge. Which surprised me a bit as these were touristy areas.

As everywhere else I smiled a lot when trying to communicate and it really helped, people immediately warmed up and even if there was a language barrier I didn’t have any major problems. I also downloaded Google Translate and in some critical situation where there was no chance we could understand what the other person meant it helped a lot.

Unfortunately, a few really good museums I visited in Santiago de Chile had the descriptions only in Spanish which was a bit disappointing, especially in the Museum of Memory and Human Rights.

Chile travel tips

Safety in Chile

South America has a bad reputation when it comes to safety. It played the tricks with my mind a bit during my first visit, especially in Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires and Montevideo. But the common sense and general safety rules were enough there so I was a bit more confident before visiting Chile.

I read before about some scams in Santiago (the most common was, aimed at backpackers, is when one person was throwing something that looked like poo on your backpack and the other helped to clean it up – when you take care of your bigger dirty backpack the small one where you most likely keep the valuable things disappears) so was aware of these.

The first thing I did when I was out sightseeing in Santiago was observing what locals do. I was based in the center of the capital and, to my great surprise, a lot of people wore backpacks in the front or hold bags really tightly. Even if I didn’t have any valuables besides my camera in my backpack I started doing the same thing, just in case. It wasn’t the most comfortable thing to do and in the areas that felt and look safer, I was wearing it normally. Fortunately, nothing happened.

The other tricky place was Calama bus station when I had to spend 2 hours waiting for the bus to Uyuni. I read a TripAdvisor thread titled “is there anyone who have not been robbed at Calama bus station?” and it made me a bit paranoid but again nothing happened, I just sat on the bench next to the ticket office so women working there could look after me for all the time and no one bothered me during that time.

I felt also a bit uneasy walking along around the hills in Valparaiso but it was more my imagination than the real vibe of the place as all was good there too. In the touristy destinations of Punta Arenas and San Pedro de Atacama I felt safe for all the time.

I’m not saying Chile is a 100% safe country as there is not such a place in the world. Quite the opposite actually, you need to be careful there and use all the safety precautions. But when you are aware of all the possibilities what might happen you should be fine really. That’s the bonus of solo travel, when you are on your own you are 100% focused and paying attention to everything that is happening around.

Chile travel tips

What to pack for the trip to Chile

Depending on the season you either need to pack warm clothes, hat and gloves or the sunscreen. Or all of these if you are going to visit both Patagonia and Atacama.

Funnily, I forgot these essential things from the home so as soon as I landed in Santiago de Chile I googled where I can find the nearest H&M to get myself a hat and gloves for Patagonia (buying these was the smartest idea of this trip). I didn’t get the sunscreen after all and well, even now, a week later, my arms are a bit in pain after the sunburn I got on my last day in the Atacama. So don’t be like me, pack both sunscreen and winter clothes when going to Chile.

Other than that there is nothing special you need really. Wear comfortable shoes as you might walk a bit and a comfortable day pack. I also can’t imagine this trip without a kindle as well as Netflix and Spotify on my phone, I spent hours traveling between places and these entertainments definitely helped!

Chile travel tips

Vegetarian in Chile

As you might know, I’m a vegetarian, haven’t eaten meat for over 20 years simply because I don’t like the taste of it. Chile was one of the most challenging countries I’ve traveled to. Vegetarian options were almost non-existent there so I was living on pizza, cookies and occasional vegetarian empanadas when I managed to find them. Not the best diet ever and I actually felt at some point my body doesn’t really like this poor food.

Actually, the best food I ate during this trip was when I went for organized tours in Atacama and Uyuni in Bolivia as well as when on my last night I stayed at Holiday Inn in the airport and the breakfast was to die for (or so I felt after 10 days of eating rather poorly).

Maybe I was also unlucky but if you are a vegetarian traveling in Chile don’t expect a spectacular culinary experience like in Lebanon or Georgia (where I could travel solely for food).

Chile travel tips

Electricity plugs

Before traveling to Chile, I checked what electricity plugs are there and the internet told me about European. It was partly true as they were like in Italy, meaning I could easily charge my phone but computer plug (with a bit thicker pins) was too big.

So the first thing I did on my first day in Chile was going to the local electronics shop to get the adaptor. Actually, it was much easier than I expected.

A bit of research told me I should head to Casa Royal. Fortunately, there were plenty of them around so I easily found one in the center of Santiago. I didn’t have to explain too much, the seller knew exactly what I need. The adaptor was fairly cheap too, just under 2.000 CLP.

Later on, I saw street sellers who had adaptors in stock too. But if you can you should definitely bring the electricity adaptor with you, it would save you so much hassle.

Money in Chile

I was positively surprised that I could pay almost everywhere by card. The majority of shops and restaurants used the contactless terminals so it was quick and easy. My Revolut card worked just fine everywhere, I was only sometimes asked if it’s credit or debit.

I also took money from the ATM a few times and while my card doesn’t have any fees the ATMs had. I used Santander, Bank of Chile and one random bank I don’t remember the name of. Each of these had its own fee, the cheapest one turned out to be the no-name bank on the petrol station in Punta Arenas but for withdrawing 40.000 CLP from Santander I had to pay a fee of 6.000 CLP so quite a lot.

Unfortunately, I don’t think there is a way around it so try to use the card everywhere you can (and again, it wasn’t a problem at all) and take only as much cash as you need. I remember I had to pay by cash for the airport bus, the entrance fees to the national parks, a random shop in Patagonia, when buying water from street vendors or in one restaurant in San Pedro de Atacama.

I only had one issue with the ATM, Santander at the airport (national departures) that eventually didn’t give me the money but afterwards, I saw others had issues with it too and Revolut returned me the whole amount blocked on my account within 2 days.

Prices in Chile

I knew Chile is expensive but I was expecting prices similar to Western Europe and sometimes, especially in Patagonia and Atacama, it was more like in Scandinavia. High prices really surprised me, I haven’t counted yet how much I have spent there but I know a lot. But at the same time – it was all worth it, after all it’s one in the lifetime kind of trip!

So when planning your budget for a trip to Chile add 30% more to what you have already planned, and then have some backup money too.

Chile travel tips

Charming cafe in Punta Arenas

Internet in Chile

At first, I was considering getting a local SIM card so I could use the internet everywhere but then I figured it’s my holidays and it’s good to be offline a bit. So I rely only on the wifi and to be honest it wasn’t the best.

I’m used to free public wifi in the downtowns, at metro stations and other popular areas but it wasn’t the case with Chile. What’s more, there were also surprisingly many restaurants and cafes that didn’t have wifi. The internet I had in my accommodations also wasn’t super fast and happened to disconnect every now and then.

Places I can recommend for public, free wifi are H&M, Centro Cultural Palacio de la Modena and Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Santiago and the main square in San Pedro de Atacama.

Chile travel tips

Museum of Fine Arts where you can use free wifi

Useful applications

As always maps.me were my lifesaver, this is seriously the best offline maps application and it’s free. Other apps I’ve been using during this trip are Google Translate, Revolut for managing my finances and Currency to quickly check how much things cost. And of course, Netflix and Spotify for long hours spent traveling.


I think I’ve covered all the Chile travel tips I have for you. Hopefully, you will find them useful before your own trip to Chile. If you have any questions feel free to comment below and I will be happy to help if I can.

Happy Chile trip!

Chile travel tips

Further reading

I published many articles about Chile that you might find useful when planning your trip there. Here are some of them:

If you are looking for articles about a specific destination – check out the map with all the articles I’ve published (and their locations).


Travel Resources

You can find the best accommodation options at Booking. They have many discounts and excellent customer service. Click here to look for the place to stay in Chile

Never travel without travel insurance, you never know what might happen and better safe than sorry. You can check the insurance policy for Chile here.

I recommend joining organized tours to get to know the place better and to visit more places during your trip. You can find a great selection of tours at Get Your Guide – click here.

Make sure to have the offline map always installed on your phone, they can save you so many troubles. I always use the free app Maps.Me.


For the end I left a few announcements that might interest you:

  • Sign up to my newsletter or follow me on Bloglovin to get updates about the new posts
  • Join my Facebook group about Eastern Europe, the Balkans and former USSR and connect with fellow travellers and enthusiasts of these regions – just click here!
  • I’ve included a few handy links of services and products I personally like and use so you can plan your own trip to Chile too. They are often affiliate links. This means I will get a small commission if you book/purchase anything through my links, at no extra costs for you. Thank you!

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Chile travel tips


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14 Comments

  • Reply
    Anna
    21/05/2019 at 03:24

    A really great write up Kami. Chile is a fantastic country, it’s been 10 years since my visit! I missed the north so need to get back. I still have dreams of Patagonia even after all these years….. One of my best holidays ever! Love your blog x

    • Reply
      kami
      25/06/2019 at 17:29

      Thank you, Anna! I hope you will go back to see the north of Chile, Atacama was spectacular! All the best!

  • Reply
    Lee Nelson
    05/07/2019 at 15:29

    What a great post! We are planning our trip to Chile for next year, and this gave us a lot of food for thought. Thank you!

    • Reply
      kami
      20/07/2019 at 12:23

      I’m glad you enjoyed the article! You will love Chile for sure, it’s such a beautiful country!

  • Reply
    Annie
    03/10/2019 at 20:41

    Hi Kami! Thank you for the post. I’m heading to Chile (Santiago, San Pedro de Atacama and likely Valparaiso) next month. I am mostly excited, but now have been reading quite a few stories about pick pockets/stolen luggage/robberies and am psyching myself out. When you traveled by bus, did you check luggage in the luggage compartment at all or keep it on you at all times? Did you feel safe having your phone in your hand to help navigate or did you keep it stowed as you explored? Thanks!

    • Reply
      kami
      04/10/2019 at 19:45

      Hi Annie, thank you for your comment! I was freaking out about safety too as I read too many bad stories but there was not even one situation when I felt something is wrong. Maybe I was just prepared and super cautious. I always put my bigger backpack into the luggage compartment but I had all my valuables with me and even then I hold my small backpack all the time. I was checking the map on my phone whenever I needed directions and often walked with the phone in my hand and again no problems. But maybe I was just lucky or maybe only people who experienced something bad share their story online. I met quite a few travelers too and no one said a thing about safety issues. Of course, you need to be cautious and use common sense, it’s much more demanding place to travel than Europe, but it’s also not THAT bad! You will have a great trip for sure :)

  • Reply
    Shell
    08/11/2019 at 11:09

    Hi,
    m Amazed at the write up, it ws of great help in understanding
    i am from India and intend to travel there with my mother, she is 65
    could u please mention places in chile that will be easy for her to travel.
    i will fly to peru and then to santiago, i hv not booked tickets.
    also i heard a lot about airline ticket booking as international flight has check in baggage inclusion but the domestic flight does not have such inclusion.
    should i carry dollar or will i get money exchange to convert inr to cLP.
    awaiting ur reply.

    • Reply
      kami
      19/11/2019 at 12:01

      That’s true about the domestic flights, especially low-cost ones – you need to pay extra for the checked luggage. Chile is mountainous place so keep that in mind when planning a trip with your mother. However, there are organized tours that can take you to some amazing places without too much of the hiking and I would definitely recommend those. I took money from ATMs so don’t know much about exchanging money there.

  • Reply
    Louise
    08/11/2019 at 14:46

    I understand your blog is about travel, but I would advise you to take more care to inform yourself properly when writing about a country. Over a week before you posted this blog, Chile plunged into turmoil and a state of emergency. Perhaps in this moment it would be more useful to research and write about how the Chilean government is illegally terrorising and repressing its people, committing atrocious human rights abuses, including torture and sexual abuse, and now proposing to put in totalitarian laws to criminalise protest and give more power to the out of control police force. The veil of the ‘miracle of Chile’ has been pulled down and the roots of the dictatorship which have remained since PInochet’s days have shown their ugly faces in public again. You and your readers might want to think twice about coming to enjoy tourism here and instead support getting the word out. We need international people to know about this because right now the Chilean people are alone. The and corporate controlled media (including international) are incapable of doing this job so it is up to the people (such as bloggers) who have a real conscious (rather than wanting to be popular or make a buck) and an audience. At the very least, I recommend you update this blog post. Thank you.

    • Reply
      kami
      19/11/2019 at 12:23

      Actually this article was written in May, just after my visit and well before the unrests have started. The date you’ve seen was the date of the update, and there was the info about the current situation in Chile but I’ve moved it to the beginning now. But you are right, this is a travel website and I don’t want to get into too many details as it’s easy to misunderstand the situation by the outsider.

  • Reply
    Terra
    16/02/2020 at 22:00

    Thank you so much for this first hand information about your adventure to Chile as a single female. My son, of 22, is going to Chile and Brazil for 3 months. This has been a dream of his and he is going solo so I am obviously a nervous mother about how safe he will be. Of course nothing is guaranteed, but reading about your experience as a solo traveler and a female one at that, has set my mind at ease some, I have taken notes on the different tips you have mentioned and will share all of this with him. Thank you.

    • Reply
      kami
      05/05/2020 at 07:11

      Thank you so much for your comment. Traveling around Chile solo was actually really fine! Of course, one needs to be careful and use common sense but it’s really not that bad! Good luck to your son!

  • Reply
    Pannee
    08/03/2023 at 14:26

    Hello Kami,
    Thank you for your blog on traveling in Chili ‘Solo female traveller without Spanish”. Very interesting. And the photos are so inviting. In all it is a pleasant reading piece packed with ‘good to know before you go’ tips.
    You’ve done a wonderful job here.
    Looking forward to reading other accounts of your trips.
    Pannee

    • Reply
      kami
      02/04/2023 at 10:53

      Thank you!

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