The 12 Best Fun Activities to Do in Santiago

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Welcome to Santiago, the bustling capital city of Chile! This city is known for its breathtaking mountain backdrops, rich cultural heritage, and a vibrant food and nightlife scene. Whether you’re visiting for a few days or planning an extended stay, there is no shortage of things to do and see in Santiago. From exploring its historical landmarks to tasting delicious Chilean cuisine, we’ve curated a list of the best attractions and activities to help you make the most of your time in this magnificent city. So, let’s dive in and discover the best things to do in Santiago!

The 12 Best Fun Activities to Do in Santiago

  1. City Tour Santiago Walking Typical Tastings Teleferico and Funicular
  2. Private Maipo Valley Wine Tour Cousino Macul and Aquitania
  3. San Cristobal Hill Bike Tour
  4. Small Group San Cristobal Hill Mountain Bike Tour
  5. Full Day Trip to Aconcagua Park Incas Bridge and Incas Lagoon from Santiago
  6. Day Trip to the Top 3 Most Famous Wineries in Maipo Valley
  7. Mountain Bike Tour to El Yeso Dam and Maipo Valley
  8. Full Day Wineries Tour from Santiago
  9. Santiago 1 Day Hop on Hop Off Bus Ticket and Cable Car
  10. From Santiago Cajon Del Maipo and El Yeso Dam With a Picnic
  11. Private Valparaiso and Vina Del Mar Day Trip from Santiago
  12. Concha Y Toro Winery Half Day Tour

The 12 Best Fun Activities to Do in Santiago

1. City Tour Santiago Walking Typical Tastings Teleferico and Funicular

Explore the best of Santiago in an eco-friendly way with this walking tour that uses public transportation. You’ll start by visiting the must-see attractions in the city center, such as Plaza de Armas and the Stock Exchange. After that, it’s off to Bellavista to sample some of the finest empanadas in the city. Your next stop is the San Cristobal hill, where you’ll take a cable car to the top for amazing views of Santiago. Then descend back to the city by funicular. Along the way, you’ll stay hydrated with free bottled water and enjoy local snacks at no extra cost. With small group sizes, you’ll receive personal attention from your guide. This tour is perfect for those who want to experience the city like a local.

2. Private Maipo Valley Wine Tour Cousino Macul and Aquitania

Come and experience an amazing private tour of two Alto Maipo Valley boutique wineries with guided tours of the vineyards and tasting sessions. Sip on delicious wines in the shadow of the majestic Andes Mountains. The tour starts at Viña Haras de Pirque where you’ll learn about their winemaking and barrel-aging process followed by a tasting of three wines, including Albaclara Sauvignon Blanc Reserva de Propiedad and Hussonet Cabernet Sauvignon Gran Reserva, in their memorable “fountain” tasting room. Later, we’ll visit Viña El Principal, also located at the foot of the Andes, for another unforgettable wine tasting experience. Don’t miss the chance to relax and enjoy award-winning wines in the stunning location of Alto Maipo.

3. San Cristobal Hill Bike Tour

Enjoy a thrilling 3-hour private bike tour to San Cristobal Hill and take in the panoramic views over Santiago. Challenge yourself to reach the 860-meter summit before a thrilling descent back down. Absorb the local atmosphere as you cycle the city streets and admire the entire city from the Mirador Terraza Bellavista viewpoint. All necessary equipment, including Trek 3900 or Mongoose bike, helmet, bike gloves, and water bottle are included. Choose from a morning or afternoon departure and enjoy pickup from a centrally located meeting point at El Comendador 2060. Food and drinks, gratuities, and hotel pickup and drop-off are not included.

4. Small Group San Cristobal Hill Mountain Bike Tour

Mountain biking to San Cristobal Hill is an excellent way to explore the city of Santiago. This small-group tour lets you ride through back roads and narrow tracks with stunning views of Santiago. You will be accompanied by an expert biking guide who will take you to a central location in Santiago. From there, you’ll hop onto a cable car that will take you to San Cristobal Hill where you will explore a network of dirt and gravel trails.

During the tour, you’ll get to enjoy panoramic views of Santiago and also get to make an exhilarating 6-mile (10-km.) descent to Bicentennial Park and the Mapocho River. This private tour is perfect for people who are comfortable on a mountain bike.

The tour is inclusive of a Mountain Bike Trek 3900 or Mongoose, a mountain bike helmet, gloves, and a water bottle. However, food, drinks, hotel pickup and drop-off are not included in the tour price. The meeting point is at El Comendador 2060 Providencia Santiago Región Metropolitana Chile.

Book this tour for an unforgettable mountain biking adventure in Santiago.

5. Full Day Trip to Aconcagua Park Incas Bridge and Incas Lagoon from Santiago

Escape the bustling city of Santiago and discover the natural beauty of Aconcagua Park. With this full day trip, you’ll have the opportunity to visit both the Inca Bridge and Inca Lagoon, two stunning sights that offer a glimpse into Chile’s rich cultural past.

Your tour includes breakfast and lunch, as well as the services of a professional driver and guide. National park fees are also included, so you won’t have to worry about any additional costs.

The tour departs at 06:00 AM and pickup is available from a variety of hotels and B&Bs in Santiago. Please select your preferred pickup point when making your booking.

Please note that this tour is not wheelchair accessible and is not recommended for individuals with heart problems or other serious medical conditions. The minimum age for participation is 18 years, and the dress code is smart casual.

You may be accompanied by a multilingual guide on this experience.

If you need to cancel your tour, you can do so up to 24 hours in advance for a full refund. Cancellations made less than 24 hours before the tour start time will not be refunded. Any changes made less than 24 hours before the tour start time will not be accepted.

Don’t miss your chance to explore the wonders of Aconcagua Park on this unforgettable full day trip.

6. Day Trip to the Top 3 Most Famous Wineries in Maipo Valley

Visit three of the most famous wineries in Chile’s Maipo Valley on this guided day trip from Santiago. Your itinerary includes visits to Concha y Toro, Santa Rita, and Undurraga where you’ll receive behind-the-scenes tours of their cellars and production systems while hearing the legends behind their famous wine brands. Of course, you’ll also get to taste wines at every location. Lunch is included, and hotel pickup and drop-off is available from all hotels in Santiago City, Arturo Merino International Airport, or the Central train station. Book this tour to experience the best of Maipo Valley’s wine industry in just one day.

7. Mountain Bike Tour to El Yeso Dam and Maipo Valley

Unleash your inner adventurer on a full-day private bike tour to El Yeso Dam and Maipo Valley from Santiago. Alongside a qualified instructor, you’ll travel deep into the heart of the Andes mountain range and embark on a mountain biking excursion around the magnificent El Yeso Dam. On arrival, begin a 12-mile (19-km) downhill bike ride, the difficulty level of which can be adapted according to your skill level, and then enjoy a picnic before returning to Santiago. A guide will adapt the difficulty of your route according to your skill level as you cycle downhill on a variety of terrains for 12 miles. Hotel pickup and drop-off, picnic breakfast, mountain bike helmet, and bike gloves are all included. Additional food and drinks are available, and pickup points are available at 7:30 AM. Experience the beauty of Cajon del Maipo and enjoy a full-day bike tour of El Yeso Dam and Maipo Valley from Santiago.

8. Full Day Wineries Tour from Santiago

Discover the secrets of Chilean wine on a full-day tour of the vineyards around Santiago. The tour includes hotel pick-up and visits to two of Chile’s top wineries – Concha y Toro and Undurraga. You’ll go behind-the-scenes of the wineries and get guided tours of the production rooms and cellars. Expert-led tastings are also included. All taxes, fuel surcharges, and service fees are included in the price of the tour. Hotel pickup and drop-off are provided, and transportation is by car or minibus. Food and drinks are not included unless specified. Gratuities are also not included. The tour starts at 8:30 AM and pickup is available from hotels and accommodation centrally located in the districts of Providencia, Las Condes (until PADRE HURTADO STREET), Vitacura, and Santiago Centro. If your hotel is outside the pickup zone, a meeting point closest to your hotel will be advised. Free admission to top local attractions is included in the tour.

9. Santiago 1 Day Hop on Hop Off Bus Ticket and Cable Car

Discover some of the most iconic places in downtown Santiago with this 1-day Hop-On-Hop-Off bus tour. Hit all the main touristic spots, take the time to visit the sites of your interest, and continue the route to learn more about the city and its attractions from the onboard recorded commentary. Take stunning photos of Santiago from an alternative perspective and enjoy the Cable Car city view from the Santiago Teleferico cable car and Funicular in the famous Cerro San Cristobal, the largest urban park in Latin America. Explore the Santiago Patrimonial route and the Modern Santiago route to discover the many faces of the city. Hop off to explore sites such as the Metropolitan Cathedral, the Casa Colorada, the Museum of Santiago, and the National History Museum. Take a panoramic bus ride to the summit of Cerro San Cristóbal and enjoy aerial views included in your first day. Book your Santiago 1 Day Hop on Hop Off Bus Ticket and Cable Car experience now to immerse yourself in the rich culture and history of the Chilean capital.

10. From Santiago Cajon Del Maipo and El Yeso Dam With a Picnic

Discover the natural beauty of the Maipo Canyon in the Andes with a day trip from Santiago. Pass by the Tinoco Tunnel and marvel at the picturesque Cajón del Maipo gorge. See the large El Yeso reservoir and discover why it is a major water source for Santiago. Enjoy a light picnic lunch overlooking the shimmering El Yeso Dam and breathe in the fresh mountain air as you sip on a glass of wine. This guided day trip includes hotel pickup and drop-off and transportation in an air-conditioned van. Your guide will provide insightful commentary along the way. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to experience the stunning Andes Mountains.

11. Private Valparaiso and Vina Del Mar Day Trip from Santiago

Explore the UNESCO-listed towns of Vina del Mar and Valparaiso on this combined full-day private tour. With hotel pickup and drop-off, you will travel in comfort by private vehicle with your English and Spanish-speaking guide to visit top area attractions such as the Flower Clock, street art installations, and Chile’s first historical casino. Gain insight into the distinct history and culture of each town during your visits to local residential neighborhoods and other main attractions. This private tour is limited to only 10 people or fewer to ensure an intimate and personalized experience. Take advantage of this unique opportunity to explore two popular Santiago day trips in just one day, without the hassle of planning and transportation logistics.

12. Concha Y Toro Winery Half Day Tour

This half day tour provides the perfect introduction for first-time visitors to Chile’s famous Concha Y Toro winery. Led by a local guide, the tour takes you behind-the-scenes of the winery to learn about its 100-year-old history and peek into the wine cellars. You’ll also get to enjoy magnificent views over the vineyards and finish the tour with a complimentary glass of wine. The tour includes hotel pickup and drop-off in an air-conditioned minivan and free admission to top local attractions. Pickup points are available from centrally located hotels in Santiago Centro, Providencia, Las Condes (until Manquehue street), and Vitacura. Confirmation will be received at the time of booking. Food and drinks are not included unless specified. Gratuities are also included in the tour. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to experience one of Chile’s top wineries.

Frequently Asked Questions About Santiago: Answers From a Local

Santiago is the capital city of Chile, known for its rich culture, breathtaking scenery, and vibrant cuisine. As a proud resident of Santiago, I’ve put together some answers to the most frequently asked questions by tourists about this wonderful city. Whether you’re planning your first trip to Santiago or you’re a seasoned traveler, this guide will provide you with valuable insights and tips.

1. What is the best time to visit Santiago?

The best time to visit Santiago is during the months of September to November (spring) and March to May (fall). During these seasons, the city experiences pleasant weather with mild temperatures and fewer crowds. However, Santiago is a year-round destination, and each season has its unique attractions.

2. What are the must-visit tourist attractions in Santiago?

Santiago is home to several breathtaking tourist attractions that are worth visiting. Here are some of the top picks:

2.1 La Moneda Palace

La Moneda Palace is the seat of the President of Chile and a symbol of the country’s political history. This neoclassical palace was built in the 18th century and has a stunning Renaissance-style facade.

2.2 Cerro San Cristobal

Cerro San Cristobal is a hill situated in the heart of Santiago and offers a panoramic view of the city. This hill is accessible by a funicular or a cable car, and the top features a statue of the Virgin Mary and a pool.

2.3 Bellavista Neighborhood

Bellavista is Santiago’s bohemian neighborhood situated on the northwestern side of the city. This neighborhood is known for its vibrant nightlife, cultural heritage, and street art.

2.4 The Central Market

The Central Market is a bustling marketplace that sells seafood, fruits, vegetables, and souvenirs. This market is situated in the heart of Santiago and showcases the country’s culinary heritage.

2.5 Santa Lucia Hill

Santa Lucia Hill is a natural park that features a stunning hilltop castle, fountains, and gardens. This hill is an oasis in the middle of the city and offers a peaceful retreat from the bustling city life.

3. What are the best places to try Chilean cuisine in Santiago?

Chilean cuisine is a unique blend of indigenous, colonial, and European culinary styles that reflect the country’s cultural heritage. Santiago is home to several restaurants and cafes that serve delicious Chilean cuisine. Here are some must-try dishes and places to sample them:

3.1 Empanadas at Fuente Mardoqueo

Fuente Mardoqueo is a traditional restaurant that serves delicious empanadas, a Chilean pastry filled with meat. This restaurant is located in the Bellavista neighborhood and has a cozy ambiance.

3.2 Seafood at Mercado Central

Mercado Central is the city’s seafood market and has several restaurants that serve fresh seafood dishes. El Galeon is a must-try restaurant in Mercado Central that serves delicious seafood stew.

3.3 Pisco Sour at The Pisco Museum

The Pisco Museum is a museum and a bar that showcases the history of Chile’s national drink, Pisco. This museum has an extensive collection of Pisco brands and offers a tasting experience of different varieties of Pisco sour.

4. How to travel around Santiago?

Santiago has an excellent public transportation system that includes buses, trains, and a metro. The metro is the most efficient and affordable way to travel around the city. The metro operates from 6 am to 11 pm, and the fares start at CLP $720 (approx. USD $1).

4.1 Taxis

Taxis are also available in Santiago, but it’s important to use licensed taxis or ride-hailing apps like Uber, DiDi, Cabify, or Beat. The fares are metered, and it’s advisable to negotiate the fare before the ride.

4.2 Bike Tours

Bike tours are a fun and eco-friendly way to explore the city’s attractions. Several bike rental companies offer bike tours, and the city has designated bike lanes.

4.3 Walking Tours

Walking tours are a great way to explore the city’s landmarks and hidden gems. Several tour companies offer walking tours, and the guides provide valuable insights into the city’s cultural heritage.

5. What are the safety tips for travelers in Santiago?

Santiago is a safe city, but it’s important to take certain precautions to ensure a hassle-free trip. Here are some safety tips for travelers:

5.1 Stay Alert in Crowded Areas

Pickpocketing and bag-snatching are common in crowded areas like markets and tourist attractions. It’s important to stay alert and keep an eye on your belongings.

5.2 Avoid Street Demonstrations

Street demonstrations and protests are common in Santiago, and it’s advisable to avoid them. These demonstrations can turn violent, and it’s better to stay away from such situations.

5.3 Use Licensed Taxis or Ride-hailing Apps

It’s important to use licensed taxis or ride-hailing apps like Uber or DiDi to avoid getting scammed by unofficial taxis.

5.4 Stay in Safe Neighborhoods

It’s important to stay in safe neighborhoods like Providencia, Las Condes, or Vitacura. These neighborhoods are popular among tourists and have several amenities.

How to Spend Your Time as a Tourist in Santiago

Santiago is the capital city of Chile that is known for its rich history, scenic beauty, and contemporary architecture. If you’re planning to visit Santiago as a tourist, here’s a guide on how you can spend your time in the city.

1. Visit the historic landmarks

Santiago is home to many historic landmarks that are a must-visit for any tourist. The first landmark that you should visit is the Plaza de Armas, which is the heart of Santiago’s historic downtown. The plaza is surrounded by stunning architecture, including the Metropolitan Cathedral, Central Post Office, and the Palace of La Moneda, which is the seat of the Chilean government. Another historic landmark that you should visit is the Cerro San Cristobal, a hill that offers a stunning panoramic view of the city. You can take a cable car or hike to the top of the hill, where you’ll find a statue of the Virgin Mary, the National Zoo, and an amusement park.

2. Explore Santiago’s cultural scene

Santiago is home to many museums, theaters, and art galleries that showcase Chile’s rich cultural heritage. One of the city’s most famous museums is the Chilean Museum of Pre-Columbian Art, which boasts an impressive collection of indigenous art from the Americas.You can also visit the Museum of Memory and Human Rights, which documents Chile’s turbulent past under the military dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet. If you’re interested in contemporary art, you can go to the Museum of Contemporary Art, which features works by local and international artists. You can also catch a performance at the Teatro Municipal, one of the top theaters in South America.

3. Enjoy Santiago’s cuisine

Santiago is famous for its unique cuisine, which combines indigenous, Spanish, and other international flavors. Some of the must-try dishes in Santiago include:- Empanadas: A type of pastry filled with meat, cheese, or vegetables.

– Churrasco: A sandwich made with thin slices of beef, tomatoes, mayonnaise, and avocado.

– Completo: A hotdog with a variety of toppings, including mayonnaise, diced tomatoes, and sauerkraut.

– Pastel de Choclo: A savory dish made with ground beef, onions, olives, and corn.You can find these dishes at local restaurants and at street food stalls throughout the city.

4. Shop at Santiago’s markets and malls

Santiago is a shopper’s paradise, with everything from local handicrafts to high-end fashion brands. One of the best places to shop in Santiago is the Central Market, which is a bustling marketplace that sells fresh seafood, fruits, and vegetables.Another popular shopping destination is the Costanera Center, which is one of South America’s largest malls. The mall features more than 300 stores with a mix of local and international brands, as well as restaurants, movie theaters, and a rooftop observation deck.

5. Day trips from Santiago

If you have a few extra days in Santiago, you can take day trips to nearby attractions. Some of the popular day trips include:- Valparaiso: A colorful port city known for its bohemian vibe and unique architecture.

– Viña del Mar: A beach resort city that offers a variety of outdoor activities, including surfing and parasailing.

– Cajon del Maipo: A mountainous region that is ideal for hiking, skiing, and hot springs.

Book Your Tour Now

Santiago is a vibrant and dynamic city that offers something for everyone. Whether you’re interested in history, culture, or food, Santiago has it all. By following this guide, you can make the most of your time in the city and create unforgettable memories.

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The 12 Best Fun Activities to Do in Santiago

Experience Adventure Like Never Before: Book Your Tour Today!