Chile stretches nearly 3,000 miles from north to south, bound by the Andes to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. The scenery is extraordinarily diverse, from the lunar landscapes of the Atacama Desert in the north to the sculpted peaks of windswept Patagonia in the south.
The capital, Santiago, is a modern metropolis with an historic heart, spectacularly set against the snow-covered peaks of the Andes. Surrounding the city are some of the New World’s best wineries, particularly in the valleys of Maipo and Colchagua.
In the far north lies the Atacama Desert, one of the most hauntingly beautiful places on earth, where flamingoes flock to giant white salt pans. In the center of the country the still waters of the Lake District reflect the conical peaks of snowcapped volcanoes. It’s a picturesque region of lakes and forests that slowly gives way to the awe-inspiring beauty of pristine Patagonia.
Nowhere can you appreciate this beauty more than in Torres Del Paine, Patagonia’s flagship park, whose mountain peaks blush pink in the rising sun. And let’s not forget enigmatic Easter Island. Just a five-hour flight from Santiago, this tiny speck of volcanic rock boats lava formations and white-sand beaches. The main attractions, however, are the hundreds of stone moai – mysterious monoliths of unknown origin that continue to fascinate both travelers and scholars alike.