A Few Weekend Explorations in Santiago

Trip Start Aug 15, 2007
Trip End Jun 01, 2012

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Flag of Chile  ,
Sunday, December 26, 2010

After living in Santiago for the past 4 months my family and I have finally settled into our feelings that this is "home". Santiago is a city surrounded by stunning mountains in all directions and as the Santiaguinos say, You can never really get lost in this city for that's all you need to do is look up, scan the mountain peaks and get your bearings... and as a newcomer to this metropolis I can attest to this working every time... almost every time!
Our weekends are usually filled with a few family tasks, like grocery shopping, filling the vehicle with gas, long runs or bike rides and an activity or two that is centered around "seeing the city". If one were to dive into a travel book's pages on Santiago, they would probably find comments attesting to it's lack of tourists sites and activities to partake in, it's strange mixture of architectural styles due to numerous earthquakes wreaking havoc on older buildings and it's unique setting, wedged between the Andes and the Coastal Range separating it from the Pacific Ocean... that can be terribly marred by an inversion of pollution as the city sits in a bowl of massive peaks.  It might also say that a day or two is all one needs before they should get out and head to the coast to surf, sail or kayak past sea lion and penguin colonies... or head north to the driest desert in the world, the Atacama and take it a lunar landscape filled with massive desert wetlands filled with thousands of flamingoes wading about with herds of camelid vicunas and guanacos grazing on the lush grass growing on the water's edge... or south to the lakes district for a multitude of "nature activities" through a land of many shades of green that has been likened to the German Alps... or way south to Patagonia, considered to be one of the last "remote and wild" places left on the planet...   As awesome and exciting all of those activities sound, and as much as a traveler should get out to go and enjoy them , I am a resident of the city and am excited about "taking in" not only the common corners of the city, but the crevices filled with the hidden treasures that are hiding in the shadows that most unknowingly pass by. Included in this entry are a few of those sights that have been discovered... mostly the well known ones on the tourist path... and a few unearthed mysteries that my family and I have discovered.   

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