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6 Reasons Why You Should Visit This Exciting South American Destination This Winter

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South America is a fascinating continent rich in history, culture, and beautiful places.

One of the countries that makes up this amazing continent that seems to be getting a bit more attention of late is Chile.

Girl looking at the amazing mountain views of the turquoise waters from the Embalse del Yeso (Cast Lake) close to Santiago de Chile city in Andes mountains. Snow mountains and water reflection

This narrow slither of land along the western edge of the continent features some of its most diverse and dramatic scenery, and right now is one of the best times to explore it for yourself.

A Warmer Winter

Because Chile is in the southern hemisphere, it means it’s summer there while the U.S. endures winter.

Regions such as Patagonia, Rapa Nui, and the lakes and volcanoes of the south are best visited at this time of year, not only for the better weather, but because more tourist services such as campgrounds and activity organizers are open.

beach at la serena chile

Chilean summer is not usually roasting hot but relatively mild, but the main benefit is that it is much drier between November and February compared to other times of year.

Fantastic Food And Wonderful Wine

Like many South American nations, Chile’s food is a delicious blend of traditional dishes and concepts brought to the country by European colonizers.

Perhaps most famous are Chilean empanadas, the corn-based dish humitas, and machas a la Parmensana, which is a clam topped with different cheeses.

If you know even a little bit about wine, you’ll know that Chile is a world-famous producer of it.

Chilean vineyards are known for mixing innovation with tradition and can be found largely in three main regions: the Colchagua Valley, the Maipo Valley, and the Elqui Valley.

wine tasting in chile

You can stay at many of the wineries and some, such as Valparaiso, even have golf courses and wellness centers on site.

One Word: Patagonia

The trendy outdoor clothing brand that you are probably well familiar with got its name from this stunning region in the far south of Chile that it shares with next-door neighbor Argentina.

This is a magnificent landscape of stunning mountains, wide open valleys, unspoiled lakes, hot springs, and majestic fjords.

It’s an amazing destination for trekking, fishing, and other outdoor pursuits, as well as learning more about the history of gaucho and their horses on the wide-open plains here.

torres del paine national park patagonia chile

This nature paradise is also home to glaciers and can be a point from which you can sail to Antarctica.

Your Money Goes A Long Way

Chile can be a very affordable place to enjoy an unforgettable adventure.

It’s not unreasonable to find accommodation in the $30 to $50 a night bracket and you can save even more money by enjoying the vibrant hostel scene in the country.

Food is relatively inexpensive and public transport is a real steal, with a transport ticket in the capital Santiago costing less than a dollar.

Chile uses the Chilean Peso, and one U.S. dollar equates to about 880 pesos, which can make working out conversions a little tricky.

aerial view of city in chile

Be sure to have a few key amounts learned to heart if you visit to avoid being ripped off.

Rated As One Of The World’s Best

Another string in Chile’s bow is that the country was named as one of Lonely Planet’s Best In Travel countries for 2024.

This honor is only bestowed upon 10 different countries each year, which shows just how much pulling power Chile has as a hot tourism destination.

As if that wasn’t enough, the Atacama desert, located in the north of the country, was named on the 2024 Cool List for Latin America by National Geographic.

woman looking out over atacama desert in chile

This region is known for being an incredibly dry environment and home to an annual super bloom of wildflowers from September to November each year.

Generally Safe To Visit

Chile usually ranks well for safety when compared with other countries around the world.

The most recent Global Peace Index has Chile listed as the world’s 58th safest country, with Argentina (54th) and Uruguay (50th) the only South American countries ahead of it in the list.

Naturally, you should take the usual sensible precautions in larger cities, but if you are out in the countryside or visiting some of Chile’s amazing natural beauty, crime is not usually a major concern.

statues in Chile

The U.S. Department of State rates Chile as Level 2 on its travel advisory scale, with the main concerns being crime in cities and some civil unrest.

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Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.

Carli Paz y Miño

Saturday 2nd of December 2023

Thank you for this article. As a Chilean living abroad it was so nice to read and view outstanding photographs. I do wish, in a positive light the references to European Colonization would be also portrayed in all equality to the dishes and culinary also being a main component of Andean American culture. Chile is a predominately metizo culture rich with it's indigenous ancestors belief tied to the land and food, especially in the Southern and Northern Regions. Both go hand in hand, without the other, as being a land of the Southern Continent.