Teds Travels – Rod in Santiago, Chile part one
Seems like the team at Contours has taken over Ted’s Travels once again! This is Rod here, in charge of this weeks’ entry. I have been working with Contours Travel since 2012 and South America is what I love. I recently went on famil to South America and the team thought it would be good to share it with you. Three destinations, three stories to tell. Here we go!
The trip started with a direct flight from Melbourne to Santiago with LATAM Airlines and a night at Holiday Inn Santiago Airport hotel, before travelling south to Vik Chile, a beautiful destination hotel situated less than two hours drive from Santiago, in the Colchagua Valley to spend the night. Nature is all around, and it is hard to image a place like this exists so close to Chile’s capital city. Horse riding, hikes, cycling and wine tasting are among the many things you can do… plus, the infinity pool… that was a highlight!
We drove back to Santiago the next day, and for someone that has been there a couple of times, this city keeps surprising me. It keeps changing and evolving– it’s now home to a very dynamic cultural landscape and bursting with energy. Spread out under the Andes, Santiago deserves your time. A walking tour was perfect way to explore. We went to the Central Market, La Vega, Bellas Artes, Forestal Park, Barrio Lastarria to explore its multiple small boutiques and unique wine stores, climbed Cerro Santa Lucia to take in a panoramic view with the Andes on the horizon, and ended up having dinner at a typical Chilean restaurant to enjoy Chilean ceviche and pastel de choclo (corn pie) with of course, Chilean wine and pisco sour. Yes, you are about to book a plane ticket now, aren’t you? Next day, we went the port city of Valparaiso. Here I just let the city reveal itself to me. The colourful houses were constantly shining on the hillside and the street art was like being at a pop-up gallery. However, my favourite part was on our way to Valparaiso as we stopped at Santa Emiliana winery – an organic vineyard you must visit!
Next morning, we flew to Punta Arenas, Chile to embark on an amazing experience through the Chilean Fjords with a landing on Cabo de Hornos, on the new Ventus Australis Cruise. But let’s not spoil that story… you will have to wait until next week for more. Stay tuned!
Ted Dziadkiewicz is Director and Founder of Contours Travel, Australia’s longest running tour operator to Latin America. He has been more than 100 times to Latin America over the past 40 years and visited over 20 countries. If you want to know more visit www.contourstravel.com.au