Chile

Snaking its way along South America’s western coast, Chile flows across parched deserts and glacial plains, collecting all the hallmarks of this remarkable continent on its way. From smooth Santiago to remote southern lands, the world’s longest country has an even longer list of essential experiences.

Chile Tours & Travel

Top holiday deals in Chile

Departing Days Price USD
1 Apr 2017 Best of Chile & Argentina 8 $2308
11 Feb 2017 Best of Chile & Argentina 8 $2398
12 Nov 2016 Best of Chile & Argentina 8 $2619
13 May 2017 Best of Chile & Argentina 8 $2493
15 Apr 2017 Best of Chile & Argentina 8 $2308

All our Chile trips

DAYS
47
FROM
USD $5,683
CAD $6,282
AUD $7,470
EUR €5,175
GBP £3,840
NZD $7,875
ZAR R68,870
CHF FR5,295
Discover the lush beauty of the Amazon, the elegance of Buenos Aires and the awe-inspiring history of the Incas in...
DAYS
40
FROM
USD $5,251
CAD $5,796
AUD $6,645
EUR €4,595
GBP £3,415
NZD $7,145
ZAR R61,255
CHF FR4,695
Journey through South America, from Lima to Buenos Aires, and explore stunning landscapes, buzzing cities and ancient...
DAYS
21
FROM
USD $5,899
CAD $7,155
AUD $7,555
EUR €5,455
GBP £4,295
NZD $8,122
ZAR R96,335
CHF FR6,035
Travel through South America by way of jungle, waterfalls and ancient ruins. In 3 weeks, take in the Amazon, Lake...
DAYS
10
FROM
USD $10,995
CAD $14,290
AUD $15,000
EUR €10,000
GBP £7,400
NZD $16,455
ZAR R141,035
CHF FR10,850
This voyage of a lifetime gives you unparalleled access to the white shores of Antarctica. Fly from Punta Arenas to...
DAYS
11
FROM
USD $15,395
CAD $20,075
AUD $21,200
EUR €13,100
GBP £10,200
NZD $22,795
ZAR R243,280
CHF FR15,240
Embark on an adventure of a lifetime while crossing the Antarctic Circle. Discover South Shetland’s King George...
DAYS
10
FROM
USD $11,595
CAD $15,055
AUD $15,800
EUR €10,600
GBP £7,800
NZD $17,330
ZAR R148,555
CHF FR11,425
Cruise through the Drake Passage to the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetland Islands, then catch a flight back to...
DAYS
8
FROM
USD $11,495
CAD $14,965
AUD $15,800
EUR €9,800
GBP £7,600
NZD $17,005
ZAR R224,690
CHF FR11,375
Visit Antarctica and travel through the Drake Passage and the South Shetland Islands.
DAYS
8
FROM
USD $8,995
CAD $11,625
AUD $12,200
EUR €8,200
GBP £6,000
NZD $13,380
ZAR R114,705
CHF FR8,825
Visit Antarctica and travel through the Drake Passage and the South Shetland Islands.
DAYS
11
FROM
USD $14,595
CAD $18,865
AUD $19,800
EUR €13,300
GBP £9,800
NZD $21,720
ZAR R186,185
CHF FR14,320
Embark on an adventure of a lifetime while crossing the Antarctic Circle. Discover South Shetland’s King George...
DAYS
27
FROM
USD $8,298
CAD $10,057
AUD $10,624
EUR €7,375
GBP £5,810
NZD $11,425
ZAR R130,250
CHF FR8,160
Packed full of highlights, this journey showcases the diversity of wonders across the Andes and Amazon, taking in...
DAYS
63
FROM
USD $8,131
CAD $8,901
AUD $10,585
EUR €7,335
GBP £5,435
NZD $11,385
ZAR R97,595
CHF FR7,505
Prepare yourself for the ultimate South American adventure starting in Ecuador. From the dizzying heights of the...
DAYS
56
FROM
USD $7,425
CAD $8,203
AUD $9,760
EUR €6,760
GBP £5,010
NZD $10,495
ZAR R89,980
CHF FR6,920
Explore stunning scenery, incredible natural sights and experience food, music, and culture like never before as you...
DAYS
8
FROM
USD $2,473
CAD $2,703
AUD $2,894
EUR €2,006
GBP £1,483
NZD $3,115
ZAR R26,681
CHF FR2,052
Embark on an unforgettable journey through the amazing landscapes and captivating cities of Chile and Argentina. Tour...
DAYS
3
FROM
USD $485
CAD $565
AUD $595
EUR €420
GBP £295
NZD $655
ZAR R5,590
CHF FR430
Get under the skin of Santiago on this adventure that takes in vibrant backstreet bars, unsurpassed neighbourhoods on...
DAYS
4
FROM
USD $712
CAD $832
AUD $875
EUR €617
GBP £452
NZD $960
ZAR R8,227
CHF FR632
Visit South America and travel to Easter Island to discover the history of one of the most remote islands on Earth.
DAYS
10
FROM
USD $3,501
CAD $4,027
AUD $4,690
EUR €3,155
GBP £2,430
NZD $5,140
ZAR R44,045
CHF FR3,220
Visit South America and travel to Patagonia to experience the 'W' Trek in Torres del Paine National Park. Experience...
DAYS
20
FROM
USD $2,871
CAD $3,298
AUD $3,845
EUR €2,585
GBP £1,990
NZD $4,085
ZAR R35,740
CHF FR2,645
Get off the tourist trail on this extraordinary adventure through Bolivia and Argentina. Visit historic Potosi,...
DAYS
15
FROM
USD $4,270
CAD $4,675
AUD $5,004
EUR €3,465
GBP £2,569
NZD $5,382
ZAR R46,116
CHF FR3,546
Trek through South America's Patagonia region on an overland trip to Chile and Argentina. Discover the beauty and...
DAYS
21
FROM
USD $1,760
CAD $2,344
AUD $2,327
EUR €1,576
GBP £1,190
NZD $2,508
ZAR R23,989
CHF FR1,755
Travel from La Paz to Buenos Aires and discover the heart of South America. This vacation has it all, from a Salar de...
DAYS
23
FROM
USD $1,870
CAD $2,499
AUD $2,457
EUR €1,675
GBP £1,260
NZD $2,645
ZAR R25,691
CHF FR1,846
Adventure through the wilds of Patagonia on a journey that begins in Ushuaia in the south of Argentina and travels to...
DAYS
23
FROM
USD $1,886
CAD $2,520
AUD $2,479
EUR €1,690
GBP £1,271
NZD $2,669
ZAR R25,005
CHF FR1,790
Tour Patagonia and discover one of the world's most amazing regions. Travel from Santiago to Ushuaia and explore...
DAYS
36
FROM
USD $5,022
CAD $5,548
AUD $6,600
EUR €4,570
GBP £3,390
NZD $7,095
ZAR R60,830
CHF FR4,680
Visit South America and travel through Bolivia, Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil. Visit Potosi, Salar de Uyuni, Buenos...
DAYS
3
FROM
USD $447
CAD $522
AUD $550
EUR €387
GBP £285
NZD $602
ZAR R5,170
CHF FR397
From Santiago's historical centre to a celebrated nearby winery, this captivating stopover shows you the wealth of...
DAYS
3
FROM
USD $270
CAD $327
AUD $345
EUR €225
GBP £177
NZD $370
ZAR R3,960
CHF FR247
From Santiago's historical centre to a celebrated nearby winery, this captivating stopover shows you the wealth of...
DAYS
21
FROM
USD $1,792
CAD $2,350
AUD $2,483
EUR €1,614
GBP £1,241
NZD $2,670
ZAR R28,520
CHF FR1,787
Visit South America and travel through Chile, Argentina and Bolivia. Tour Santiago, Mendoza, Cafayate and Salta....
DAYS
112
FROM
USD $9,878
CAD $12,924
AUD $13,644
EUR €8,864
GBP £6,814
NZD $14,667
ZAR R156,614
CHF FR9,845
Visit South America and travel through Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Bolivia, Peru and Ecuador. Follow the Inca trail and...
DAYS
21
FROM
USD $1,788
CAD $2,382
AUD $2,363
EUR €1,598
GBP £1,209
NZD $2,542
ZAR R24,248
CHF FR1,783
Visit South America and travel through Bolivia, Argentina and Chile from La Paz to Santiago. Visit Potosi, Salar de...
DAYS
34
FROM
USD $2,832
CAD $3,715
AUD $3,922
EUR €2,546
GBP £1,960
NZD $4,217
ZAR R45,059
CHF FR2,827
Visit South America and travel through Argentina and Chile, from Santiago to Buenos Aires via Ushuaia. Experience...
DAYS
112
 
 
Visit South America and travel through Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Argentina, Chile and Brazil. Follow the Inca trail,...
DAYS
34
FROM
USD $2,832
CAD $3,715
AUD $3,922
EUR €2,546
GBP £1,960
NZD $4,217
ZAR R45,059
CHF FR2,827
Discover penguins, glaciers and eye-popping cities on an epic South American adventure. Travel from Buenos Aires to...
DAYS
42
FROM
USD $4,326
CAD $5,762
AUD $5,748
EUR €3,885
GBP £2,932
NZD $6,181
ZAR R57,352
CHF FR4,142
Visit South America and travel through Peru, Bolivia and Argentina from Lima to Buenos Aires. Follow the Inca Trail,...
DAYS
60
FROM
USD $6,114
CAD $8,153
AUD $8,128
EUR €5,492
GBP £4,145
NZD $8,739
ZAR R79,004
CHF FR5,709
Go Overland from Lima to Rio with Intrepid Travel. Uncover hidden treasures from Peru to Brazil via Bolivia and...
DAYS
207
FROM
USD $16,280
CAD $21,310
AUD $22,500
EUR €14,610
GBP £11,235
NZD $24,190
ZAR R258,200
CHF FR16,270
Travel the length of the Americas from North through Central and to the very tip of the South. From Anchorage to...
DAYS
19
FROM
USD $17,995
CAD $23,625
AUD $24,800
EUR €16,400
GBP £12,100
NZD $27,205
ZAR R233,175
CHF FR17,935
See the best of Antarctica on this unique expedition. Fly across the Drake Passage and sail to remote locations along...
DAYS
7
FROM
USD $8,695
CAD $11,270
AUD $11,900
EUR €7,400
GBP £5,700
NZD $12,810
ZAR R179,935
CHF FR8,570
Visit Antarctica and travel through the Drake Passage and the South Shetland Islands.
DAYS
14
FROM
USD $5,121
CAD $5,602
AUD $6,665
EUR €4,615
GBP £3,430
NZD $7,170
ZAR R61,440
CHF FR4,725
Visit South America and travel through Chile, Argentina and Brazil on a tour from Santiago in Chile to Rio de Janeiro...

Chile trip reviews

Our Chile trips score an average of 4.57 out of 5 based on 148 reviews in the last year.

Bite-size Break Santiago , June 2016

Brigid van Wanrooy

Chile, Argentina & Brazil , January 2016

lydia fus

Articles on Chile

What’s hot in South America? We ask the world’s best travel bloggers

Posted on Wed, 17 Aug 2016

We asked our favourite bloggers to give us their must-sees in South America...

Read more

You Should Go To Patagonia If You Want To Feel Small

Posted on Wed, 18 May 2016

It was Friedrich Nietzsche that said “all truly great ideas are conceived by walking”, but Nietzsche had obviously never walked in Patagonia.

Read more

“It was just so beautiful”: trekking Patagonia with Youtube pro Hey Nadine

Posted on Fri, 15 Apr 2016

Youtube star and pro blogger Nadine Sykora knows a thing or two about travel. So when she says Patagonia blew her away, it pays to listen up.

Read more

Chile is South America’s unsung hero

Posted on Thu, 18 Dec 2014

If you could trace a beaten track through South America, there’s a good chance you won’t find the wilds of Chile anywhere near it.

Read more

 

About Chile

At a glance

Capital city: Santiago (population 4.6 million)
Population: 16.7 million
Language: Spanish
Currency: CLP
Time zone: (GMT-04:00) Santiago
Electricity: Type C (European 2-pin) Type L (Italian 3-pin)
Dialing code: +56

Best time to visit Chile

The best time to visit depends largely on your chosen activities and destinations as Chile’s substantial length ensures that the climate is incredibly varied. Summer (December to March) is possibly the best time to visit Chile, as the Parque Nacional Torres del Paine and lakes region are reasonably warm. The trade off however, is that the Atacama Desert can be very hot during this time. Summer is also festival time, so it's a good chance to experience Chile’s unique culture. For the central and northern regions, autumn is a comfortable time to visit, however during this time it can be quite cold in the south, especially at night. Snow fall is common during winter (July to September) in the south of the country, so this is the ideal time for a skiing or snowboarding holiday.

Chile weather chart

Geography and environment

Chile Easter Island
Chile is a land of quirky geographical characteristics, most noticeably its incredible length. Measuring in at over 4600km long, yet only 430km wide, Chile covers a massive geographic scale that includes a variety of unique landscapes as well as an impressive coastline. Straddled by the epic Andes, this gigantic mountain range acts as a natural border with Argentina in the east, while the Pacific Ocean - including the remote Chilean territory of Easter Island - forms Chile’s western coastline. The capital and largest city, Santiago, lies inland, roughly in the centre of the country. Further north, Chile shares a border with Peru and Bolivia, as well the largest section of the parched Atacama Desert, one of the world’s driest places. South of Santiago, Chile unfolds into the wilderness playground of Patagonia - a largely uninhabited, prehistoric landscape brimming with forests and enormous glaciers.

Top Picks

Peppers

Top 10 Must-Try Foods in Chile

1. Empanadas de Pino

This scrumptious portion of pastry stuffed with meat, olives, raisins and onions is a budget street food favourite.

2. Caldillo de Congrio

This famous Chilean stew is made from deep-fried, seasoned or baked eel. While not to everyone's taste, this is popular with locals… so popular that Chilean Nobel laureate Pablo Neruda once wrote an ode to the dish.

3. Pan de Pascua

This sweet Chilean cake is usually eaten around Christmas. Flavoured with ginger and honey and packed with fruit and nuts, it was brought to Chile by German migrants.

4. Humitas

Popular throughout most South American countries, this popular vegetarian dish features mashed sweet corn baked in a corn husk with spices and butter.

5. Pastel de Choclo

This succulent casserole of beef and/or chicken and vegetables, topped with corn batter is a local favourite in Chile.

6. Asado Chileno

A method of cooking that involves grilling meat over hot coals. Traditionally includes delicacies such as intestines and udders, but for the regular traveller, chicken and beef is just as tasty.

7. Paila Marina

With a coastline this huge it's no surprise that Chile has some of the freshest seafood in world. This aromatic shellfish stew spiked with garlic, cilantro and other herbs and spices is cooked and served in an earthenware bowl.

8. Flan de Lucuma (Custard Flan)

This tasty Mexican dish is also popular in Chile, where locals and visitors love to savour its delicious sugary goodness.

9. Merken

This aromatic seasoning made from dried peppers is a common ingredient in Chilean cuisine. Be warned, one sprinkle of this is all it takes to turn a meal from mild to searing hot.

10. Charquican

Although dried llama meat might not be everyone’s cup of tea, this famous dish is well worth a try. Fried and served with boiled potatoes, white corn, hard-boiled egg and fresh cheese, the charquican is complemented by a delicious sauce made from tomato and chilli.

FAQs on Chile

CHILE RECIPROCITY TAX:
All passengers with passports from Australia and Mexico must pay a reciprocity tax before entering Interpol control. The amounts are as follows:
Australia - US$117
México - US$23

This tax applies only to travellers entering Chile via its international airport in Santiago. This tax doesn't apply to those entering Chile by another form of transport.
Leaving an extra 10% on top of your restaurant bill is considered polite in Chile, as is tipping porters and other service workers. Feel free to leave spare change or tip extra if the service is particularly good.
Internet access is widely available in cities and tourist areas where there are many internet cafes and Wi-Fi hot spots. Internet access is less frequent in rural and remote areas.
You'll be able to use your mobile phone in most urban areas of Chile, although some of the more remote areas may not have network coverage. Ensure you have global roaming activated with your mobile carrier before you leave home if you wish to use your mobile while in Chile.
Toilets in Chile will vary depending on what area you are travelling in. Flushable, western-style toilets are common in the cities, large hotels, malls and clubs but more modest squat toilets are the standard in rural areas and while camping. Either way, carrying a supply of toilet paper and soap is a good idea, as these aren’t always available in public toilets.
City bus fare = 350 CLP
Cup of coffee in a café = 400 CLP
Beer in a bar = 900 CLP
Simple lunch = 2,000 CLP
Dinner in a restaurant = 8,500 CLP
Drinking tap water isn't recommended in Chile. For environmental reasons, try to avoid buying bottled water and fill a reusable water bottle or canteen with filtered water instead. It's also advisable to avoid ice in drinks and peel fruit and vegetables before eating.
Major credit cards are widely accepted by large shops, hotels and restaurants in Chile. However, they may not be accepted by smaller vendors such as small family restaurants, market stalls or in remote towns and rural areas. Make sure you carry enough cash for purchases, since credit cards aren't always an option everywhere in Chile.
ATMs are found widely throughout Chile, so withdrawing cash shouldn't be problematic in most areas. Some smaller villages and rural areas may not have ATM access, so prepare for this before venturing too far from a city or major town.
Absolutely. All passengers travelling with Intrepid are required to purchase travel insurance before the start of your trip. Your travel insurance details will be recorded by your leader on the first day of the trip. Due to the varying nature, availability and cost of health care around the world, travel insurance is very much an essential and necessary part of every journey.

For more information on insurance, please go to: Travel Insurance
Jan 1 New Year's Day
Mar 29 Good Friday
Mar 30 Holy Saturday
May 1 Labour day
May 21 Navy Day
Jun 29 St Peter and St Paul *
Aug 15 Assumption
Sep 18 Independence Day
Sep 19 Army Day
Oct 12 Discover of Two Worlds Day
Nov 1 All Saints' Day
Dec 8 Immaculate Conception
Dec 25 Christmas Day
* If these holidays fall on a weekend, then they are observed on the following Monday.

Please note these dates are for 2013. For a current list of public holidays go to: http://www.worldtravelguide.net/Chile/public-holidays

Health and Safety

Intrepid takes the health and safety of its travellers seriously, and takes every measure to ensure that trips are safe, fun and enjoyable for everyone. We recommend that all travellers check with their government or national travel advisory organisation for the latest information before departure:

From Australia?

Go to: http://www.smartraveller.gov.au/

From New Zealand?

Go to: http://www.safetravel.govt.nz/

From Canada?

Go to: http://www.voyage.gc.ca/

From US?

Go to: http://travel.state.gov/

From UK?

Go to: http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/

The World Health Organisation

also provides useful health information:
Go to: http://www.who.int/en/

Responsible Travel

Chile Travel Tips

Intrepid is committed to travelling in a way that is respectful of local people, their culture, local economies and the environment. It's important to remember that what may be acceptable behaviour, dress and language in your own country, may not be appropriate in another. Please keep this in mind while travelling.

Top responsible travel tips for Chile

1. Be considerate of Chile’s customs, traditions, religion and culture.

2. For environmental reasons, try to avoid buying bottled water. Instead, fill a reusable water bottle or canteen with filtered water.

3. Always dispose of litter thoughtfully, including cigarette butts.

4. Learn some local language and don't be afraid to use it - simple greetings will help break the ice.

5. Shop for locally made products. Supporting local artisans helps keep traditional crafts alive.

6. Refrain from supporting businesses that exploit or abuse endangered animals.

7. Please ask and receive permission before taking photos of people, including children.

Further reading

Recommended reading

Title Author
Clandestine in Chile: The Adventures of Miguel LittinGabriel Garcia Marquez
The History of ChileJohn L Rector
The Obscene Bird of NightJose Donoso
My Tender MatadorPedro Lemebel
The Mermaid and the DrunksBen Richards
Desert Memories: Journeys through the Chilean NorthAriel Dorfman
My Invented Country: A MemoirIsabel Allende