Viña del Mar
With almost four kilometers of coast, Viña del Mar is the getaway of choice for many citizens of Santiago and many tourists from Argentina, who prefer to spend their vacation time by the ocean every year. Not only because of its beautiful beaches, but because it is a clean city with wonderful gardens, big shopping malls and a cultural agenda that is at its peak in the summer.
There are 13 beaches that you can cover by car thanks to the coastal road, a street that was expanded this year so now transit is faster and better on the way to more exclusive beaches like Reñaca y Cochoa.
Besides the beaches and the natural beauties of Viña del Mar, the city also features important buildings and palaces you can visit, a great way of seeing the architecture of Europe in the 19th century. These are places that create a dreamy postcard once they are framed by the sun and the Pacific Ocean.
Amongst the castles you can visit are Wulf Castle, where there is a permanent exhibit of photography and paintings; Ross Castle, where the Arabic Union Club has its premises; Vergara Palace, where you can visit the Fine Arts Museum of the city right next to the famous Quinta Vergara (venue of the International Music Festival of Viña del Mar each February); Rioja Palace, where there is a museum now; the Presidential Palace, summer home of all presidents of the republic, and Carrasco Palace, where the Historic Archive and the Tourism Office of the city have their offices.
Viña del Mar is a city of history with many museums where visitors can review past times of several different institutions and periods in the region. For those who are interested in that kind of tourism, the offer is big and it includes museums, cultural houses, palaces, castles, libraries and other cultural patrimony.
Those who are looking for something more sporty or out in the open where they can enjoy the sun and fresh air, and that is not necessarily at the beach, Viña del Mar offers parks and squares open all year.
The Botanic Garden features over three thousand species of trees, plants, flowers and other types of vegetables in open exhibition; is administrated by CONAF (Forestal Corporation) and there you can walk around, do picnics and explore the ground near the artificial lake.
Other places for you to visit are the Quinta Vergara Park, with a fabulous display of trees from around the world; Sausalito Lagoon, created to practice water sports; granadilla Country Club, a private club where you can play golf; and the Flower Clock, one of the more popular spots in the city.
This summer go to where the sun shines, the ocean roars, the white sand is soft and many entertaining activities wait for you and your family, travel to Viña del Mar.