Santiago de Chile
Trip Start Feb 25, 2012
54Trip End Aug 13, 2012
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EN: We arrived by early morning bus to Santiago from Valparaiso, where we spent Easter. Honestly, we did not expect anything extra from Santiago. Our guide book does not say much about it and in comparison to other places, where we are going later in South America, Santiago is not so big tourist magnet. But finally we were nice suprised. Sometimes is better not expect much and be pleasantly suprised.
At first, however, we had little trouble with the hotel that we had booked online. After arrival the owner said that there is no room for us and for another one available he wanted more money than was our reservation. However, we insisted on our right, because we know how it works. Finally, we benefitted the best way from it, as the owner offered us his complete furnished apartment close to the center that was available just for us
We did a lot of walk throughout the city and found out, that Santiago has something to offer to tourists and is easy walkable. Although there are now so many historical sites due often devastating earthquake, local museums and city parks are worth to visit. Nevertheless we would not say that this city has 6 million inhabitants. The same feeling we have throughout our travel in Chile and Argentina. A place where statistics say that has for example 50 000 inhabitants, in our eye, is in size comparable to european little 5 thousend town. For example, Ushuaia, the southermost city at the very end of the American continents. According to statistics, the city has 60 000 inhabitants. When viewed from the surrounding mountains, you could not believe that. The city of such size would not have in Europe more than 10 thousand people, and in Canada no more than 5,000 people. I think that Canadian Revelstoke, where we lived before with its 8000 people, was in size certainly larger than Ushuia. Well, statistics either lie or we do not understand where all these people live, even when you consider that every second house or so in these cities are used as a acommodation facility for tourists. The explanation is probably simple. There is still strong tradition that in family house is shared by all generations and few young people move into their own house
Although Santiago is located near the Andean giants, which grow as a wall in height of 6000 meters east of the city, due to smog and haze, which holds over the city, we hardly could see any mountain range. We found Santiago as safe city, where we felt almost like "at home".
CZ: Do Santiaga jsme přijeli ranním busem z Valparaisa, kde jsme strávili dva velikonoční dny. Popravdě, od Santiaga jsme nic extra neočekávali. Turistický průvodce toho moc nepopisuje a v porovnání s jinými místy jižní ameriky, není Santiago až takové turistické lákadlo. Ve finále jsme však byli docela mile překvapeni. Mnohdy je lepší příliš neočekávat a pak být příjemně překvapen, než naopak. Zprvu jsme však měli malé trable s hotelem, který jsme si online bukli. Po příjezdu na místo nám majitel tvrdil, že pro nás žádný pokoj nemá a za jiný chtěl víc peněz, než byla naše rezervace. My si však stáli za svým, pač dobře víme, jak to chodí, a věděli jsme, že v právu jsme my. Nakonec jsme na tom vytežili úplně maximálně, neboť nám dal majitel k dispozici komplet jeho vybavený byt kousek od centra, který jsme měli k dispozici jen pro sebe
Přestože se Santiago nachází v blízkosti andských velikánů, které rostou jako hradby to výšky 6000 metrů na východ od města, kvůli smogu a oparu, který se nad městem drží, jsme Andy odsud příliš pozorovat nemohli. Santiago nám jinak přišlo jako bezpečné město, kde jsme se citili „jako doma".