Chile’s long and narrow territory, located on the western side of the southern tip of South America, stretches for 4,200 kms from north to south between the Andes Mountains and the Pacific Ocean, and has an area of 756,096 km2 on the South American continent and 1,250,00 km2 in Antarctica, San Felix, San Ambrosio, Salas y Gomez, Easter Island, Juan Fernandez Island, and Diego Ramirez Island’s are also part of the national territory. The current population is 13,348,401 inhabitants.
Located 3600 kilometers west of Chile is Easter Island, home to the mysterious moai idols.
748,800 sq km (289,112 sq miles)
Santiago, Valparaiso, Concepcion
Nevado Ojos del Salado (6,879 meters)
Roman Catholic (89%), Protestant (11%), small Jewish population
Banks: Monday through Friday: 9.00 am to 2.00 pm. Money exchange houses: Monday to Friday 9.00 am to 2.00 pm and 3.00 pm to 5.00 pm. Business: business hours vary from city to city. Museums: Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10.00 am to 5.30 pm. Sundays from 10.00 am to 1.30 pm. (Schedules may vary)
The climate varies from North to South: In the North Zone, from Arica to La Serena, the climate is in general mild and dry. Temperatures range from 18 degrees Celcius to 30 degress Celcius. Central Zone and South of Chile: From La Serena to Puerto Montt, seasons are well defined, with temperatures ranging from 0 to 13 degrees in the winter, to 35 degrees Celcius in the summer. The Austral Zone south of Puerto Montt is much colder, and gradually colder as you travel southbound. Puerto Williams may reach -15 degress in the winter. Summer runs from December to February, and winter from June to August.
Public phone boxes are unreliable, and visitors will find it cheaper to use phones in centros de llamadas (call centres) in towns, or at internet cafes. Roaming agreements exist with most international mobile phone companies. Coverage is good in built-up areas, less so outside of the towns.
Geographically quite isolated, Chile has managed to maintain a rich, colourful culture not mimicked anywhere else in the Americas. This country is considered to be one of the best spots in the world for adventure tourism. Visitors can pedal or road-trip the relentless gravel of the Carretera Austral, climb in Torres del Paine National Park or surf the brutal, expert only waves of Punta de Lobos. The world’s most impressive observatories are at your disposal in the Atacama desert, music lovers can enjoy the native Andean music, travellers can learn about the very vibrant Mapuche Indian culture and foodies will be in heaven, enjoying fresh seafood, empanadas and slow grilled barbecued lamb. The local currency is the Chilean Peso ($). Coins are in $100, $50, $10, $5 and $1 peso values. Bills are printed in denominations of $10,000, $5,000, $2000, $1000 and $500. Normally accepted credit cards include: American Express, Diners, Master Card and Visa. Travellers cheques may be changed at exchange houses and hotels. Money may be exchanged at some airports, hotels, banks, and exchange houses Changing houses are available in downtown. The current in Chile is 220v, 50Hz. The plug is a 2 or 3 rounded pin type as is used in Europe. Tourist information is available free of charge from the Servicio Nacional de Turismo, SERNATUR, throughout the country. The main offices of SERNATUR are located on Avenida Providencia 1550, Phone (56-2) 236 1430
Airport taxis and shuttle services are available in all Chilean Cities. In Santiago, there is also a bus service from the airport to the downtown area for a moderate price ($1200 pesos or AUD$5.00). Taxi Ride from Airport to Santiago should be between USD15 and USD20. Taxis and bus transport is available in all Chilean cities. Chile's biggest bus company is Tur Bus offering services throughout the country. It is advisable to ask the bus driver about the route. The bus fares is shown on the front window and varies from $130 and $200 pesos (AUD$0.50 TO AUD$0.75 ). Taxis are black with a yellow roof and an orange licence plate. All rail tickets are bought from Central Station in Santiago or from the Metro Universidad de Chile.