Iquique is the capital of the Chilean region of Tarapaca, the main fishing port of the country, as well as a free economic zone where you can save on purchases. Tourists also feel comfortable here, to whose services the picturesque beaches of Playa Waikique, Playa Blanca and Playa de Brava. The water here is clean and warm – from +16 to +20 °C, the sea breeze is refreshing and invigorating. According to populationmonster, Portillo is one of the largest cities in Chile.
How to get there
In Iquique, Lan Chile airlines fly daily from Santiago, the journey takes 2 hours and 15 minutes.
Attractions and attractions in Iquique
The main attraction of the guests is Baquedano Street, which is still the main promenade of Iquique. The houses framing the promenade attract attention with ornate verandas, balustrades, carved window casings, and lancet columns.
The pearl of the city is the air palace of Astoreca, which now houses the museum of the era and the department of Arturo Prata University.
It’s hard to resist the temptation to take a peek into South America’s largest free trade zone, covering 240 hectares of warehouse space in the northern part of Iquique City. The Sofri free trade zone is located in the large shopping center “Sona Franca de Iquique”, and goods here are cheaper by 19%. True, there is a restriction on purchases: one person can spend no more than 1000 USD.
In addition to natural beauties, guests of the city will be able to supplement their travel program with trips to the museums of Iquique, which store in their halls details of the historical development of the mining industry in Chile. For example, the Regional Museum in the former courthouse presents an exposition of the traditional Altiplano village, alcoholized baby animals at different stages of development, Chinchorro mummies covered with death masks, and elongated skulls. The building houses the Maritime Museum.
2 things to do in Iquique:
- Rush into the Atacama Desert on mountain bikes or on foot. The tour will cost 80 USD.
- Visit the gigantic Humberstone and Santa Laura saltpeter factories in the Tarapaca region of northern Chile. They are located 48 km east of Iquique. Now production is on them, and monumental buildings have become national monuments and are open to tourism.
La Serena is a small old town on the Pacific coast. In the 19th century copper and silver were actively mined here, which made it one of the richest cities in Chile, and today it lives and still thrives quite well due to tourism and agriculture – first of all, winemaking.
The city is famous for its chic beaches, large and small private wineries, colonial architecture that has been preserved in the old city, and the largest Tololo observatory in the southern hemisphere is located here.
Entertainment and attractions of La Serena
The main historical and cultural attractions of La Serena are concentrated in the Old Center, where many buildings of the colonial era have been preserved. Many of them were destroyed during the earthquake of 1730, but some managed to survive.
The most famous landmark of the Old Town is the building of the ancient mint. Today there is a museum dedicated to the history of minting silver coins in the country. There are 29 churches in the city, the most famous of them is the Cathedral of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese, built in neoclassical style in 1856 and declared a national treasure in 1981.
The symbol of La Serena is the Faro lighthouse, which still remembers the attacks of the pirate Francis Drake. Today, from there you can observe gorgeous views of the bay.
On the outskirts of the city there is a long 8-kilometer beach, where Chileans themselves from all over the country come to relax during the summer holidays. which during the holiday season in January and February is filled with Chileans from all over the country. There is another remarkable place on the coast – the port of Coquimbo. This is the main city port, but today only fishing boats come here.
There are several museums in La Serena: the Museum of Archeology, the Museum of Religious Art, the Museum of Mineralogy of Ignacio Domeiko, and from the unusual – the Museum of Ufology.
The sky in this region is considered the cleanest on the planet, so not far from the city is the largest observatory in the Southern Hemisphere Mamaluk with 18 powerful telescopes.
Portillo is a resort for true lovers of snow and a relaxing holiday, one of the most famous ski resorts in the world, where major international competitions are often held. The resort is located at an altitude of 2880 meters above sea level at the foot of the highest mountain in the Western Hemisphere – Mt. Aconcagua (7.266 m) – in the center of the Andes mountain system. There is only one hotel for 600 guests, while the staff is 450 people. This is an old ski center in Chile, whose history began in the early 20th century.
The resort is located on the shores of a picturesque lake, 150 km from Santiago. The ski season lasts here from mid-June to mid-October. During the whole period the tracks are covered with good snow. During the season – 80% of sunny days.
Pistes of Portillo
There are excellent conditions for skiing: 12 lifts and several “black” slopes (Roca de Jack, “Jack Rock” are the coolest), while more than half of the slopes are suitable for beginner skiers. Trails start right at the door of the hotel.
The resort has two lifts Va et Vient – specially designed for those slopes where there is a risk of avalanches.
Attractions and attractions Portillo
An outdoor swimming pool and many sports and entertainment facilities have been built: a restaurant, a discotheque, a bar, a cinema hall, shops, a clinic. And also: a sauna, an ice skating track, a gym, a massage room, a rental and repair of ski equipment, a ski school, a children’s room.