Santiago is a city of architectural contrasts. On Nueva York St, you will find three iconic Renaissance-inspired buildings located on a wedge-shaped city block: Santiago Stock Exchange, Edificio Ariztía and Edificio Ex Hotel Mundial. A 17-minute drive from this area will take you to the county’s commercial hub, Providencia, home to Gran Torre Santiago. At 300 metres to its tip, it is currently the tallest building in South America.
Explore the city on foot and soak up some of its history. Start your tour by walking through the verdant gardens of Cerro Santa Lucía , Santiago’s founding location. In the Barrio Paris-Londres, you will find one of the city’s oldest streets and many examples of its historic architecture.
The main square of Santiago is Plaza de Armas, which was levelled when the city was founded in 1541 by the Spaniards. It houses the Museum of Pre-Columbian Art and a string of cafés, and is where locals go to play chess or feed the pigeons. The square also serves as a platform for street performers.
Don’t miss La Moneda, the grand presidential palace, a beautiful neoclassical building. Within the palace’s complex is the Cultural Centre Museum, which exhibits Chilean, Latin American, and international artefacts.
Barrio Bellavista is the Bohemian arts district of the city. Here you can find one of Nobel Prize-winner Pablo Neruda’s houses, containing books and manuscripts related to his life and works. The Museo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología is an excellent place for a day out with your kids. The museum’s interactive exhibits and models will keep their curious minds busy.