When over 90% of the country is covered with fog and under below zero temperatures, the northern part of the country is under rays of light and sun, in an eternal spring that marvels tourists from all over the world. Antofagasta is an ideal place to visit, especially if you want to escape from the cold winter.
Beaches, big avenues, craftwork, natural monuments and an agreeable climate all year, turn Antofagasta into a wonderful destination to enjoy with family and friends.
The main attraction in the city is a geographical accident known as La Portada, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. It is a rocky formation created by the action of water and wind for millions of years, creating a sculpture known all over the world, being the trademark of the city and a perfect postcard to send back home.
For those who enjoy nature, you can see a wide mix of things while you visit. La Chimba National Reserve, for example, in the Coast mountain range, includes microclimates that make possible for almost a hundred different flora and fauna species to coexist in a place where it almost never rains.
Another important spot is Lullaillaco National Park in the Andes, which is administered by the National Forest Corporation. In the park you can see volcanoes and hills, as well as a piece of the driest desert in the world: the Atacama Desert.
The desert extends to the north to Atacama, and it is also home for animals and plants that need very little water to survive. Vicuñas, guanacos, llamas and vizcachas gather around to breed and coexist in the deserts’ nearby land.
Back in the city, Antofagasta keeps an important financial and commercial district. Here you can also see one of the most important piers in the country, where products from all over the world are delivered to be later sold in Chile and nearby countries.
At the same time, the city lightens up at night to welcome tourists from all sorts of countries, with a variety of pubs, discos and restaurants where they can spend an agreeable evening. Fish and shellfish are the strong plates, as well as desserts and drinks prepared with fresh and colorful fruits. Don’t forget to try the Pisco Sour.
At night, you can also go to the beach. A few years ago people started going for a swim at night, trying to get away from really high temperatures in summertime, and they still do it now considering the water in the area is warm, unlike the coast in the rest of the country.
Just in time for winter break in Chile, in mid-July, the famous Tirana festivity takes place. It is a religious celebration that includes spectacular customs, dances and a feeling of love for the Earth, the city and Virgin del Carmen.
During the celebration in Antofagasta, as well as Arica and other smaller towns, you can try delicious food and see craftwork made with native elements. It is an important religious festivity, where children and adults are invited to participate in the carnivals.
Another important celebration is the Festival of Foreign Groups, where members from European and Asian colonies that came to Antofagasta once and never left, participate too.
There is a lot of food, music, crafts and commerce organized by all the different delegations, which come from countries like Yugoslavia, Spain, Greece, Croatia, Peru, Bolivia, Italy, Germany, Argentina, China and Arabic countries too.
Antofagasta is a sunny place, ideal to see on foot, taking walks by the coast while you enjoy the beautiful nature all around, or simply resting, knowing that the next day will be as full of surprises as this one.
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