Recent Searches
Clear
Things to do in Santiago

Things to do in  Santiago

Welcome to Santiago

Santiago, Chile’s thriving capital, unites the best of modern city life with a prime geographical position between the Andes mountains and the Pacific Ocean. Mixed into the melting pot of colonial architecture and Latino flair, Santiago highlights such as Bellavista, thronged with street art and chic bars; San Cristobal Hill (Cerro San Cristobal); Plaza de Armas; and Mercado Central (Central Market) top the list for most travelers—and are easy to tick off, plus more, on a hop-on hop-off sightseeing tour. Just 1.5 hours west of Santiago, Valparaiso is a UNESCO World Heritage port city with a historic quarter full of winding alleys; colorful houses; and 19th-century funiculars (cable railways), which take you up Concepción and Alegre hills. Neighboring Viña del Mar, or the Garden City, boasts pretty parks and historic architecture—visit both in one day on a day trip from Santiago. And no visit to Santiago is complete without a jaunt into its valleys. Maipo Valley, or El Cajon del Maipo, is a beautiful natural spot for camping, hiking, and a variety of sports. Just as impressive as the gorge is its array of famous wineries: the vineyards and cellars of Concha y Toro Winery, Santa Rita Winery, and Undurraga Winery all offer wine-tasting tours.

Top 15 attractions in Santiago

Viña del Mar

star-52,432
Nicknamed the Garden City and located just an hour from Santiago, Viña del Mar is a charming seaside town famous for its flowers and its beach. Top attractions include the seafront Wulff Castle, the Flower Clock (Reloj de Flores), and Francisco Fonck Museum, the entrance of which is marked by a stone moai statue from Easter Island.More

San Cristobal Hill (Cerro San Cristobal)

star-4.51,137
The Santiago skyline is dominated by San Cristobal Hill (Cerro San Cristobal), a forested mountain rising 2,821 feet (860 meters) above the city. The site is protected as part of the Santiago Metropolitan Park (Parque Metropolitano), one of the most famous city parks in Chile. Today, the park serves as a scenic escape above the smog that can grip Santiago on winter days, and offers fantastic views across this city of 6.5 million to the Andes Mountains.More

La Moneda Palace (Palacio de la Moneda)

star-4.51,204
The presidential palace known as La Moneda Palace (Palacio de la Moneda)is one of Santiago’s architectural icons. A giant Chilean flag billows before the white, neoclassical building, which houses movie theaters, art galleries, and an independent bookstore. Look for the statue of former president Salvador Allende at the southeast corner of Plaza de la Constitución.More

Concha y Toro Winery

star-4.5548
Open since 1883 and ranking among South America’s largest wine producers, Concha y Toro Winery is one of Chile’s most famous winemakers. The winery has vineyards all over the country and produces a huge variety of wines, including the world-renowned Don Melchor cabernet sauvignon. Its Pirque winery is a favorite Maipo Valley destination for oenophiles.More

Santa Lucia Hill (Cerro Santa Lucia)

star-4.51,093
Threaded with staircases and punctuated by plazas, the 230-foot-high (70-meter-high) Santa Lucía Hill is a landmark of downtown Santiago. Climb the 200+ stairs to the Torre Mirador viewpoint for panoramic views over the city and Andes beyond, catch the ceremonial cannon fire at noon, and people watch in the colorfully tiled Pedro de Valdivia Plaza.More

Plaza de Armas

star-4.51,469
The site on which the city was founded back in 1541, Plaza de Armas is both the heart of Santiago de Chile’s historic district and the epicenter of the modern city. The leafy, palm-fringed plaza is surrounded by grand monuments and architectural landmarks, and it’s abuzz with activity at all hours of the day and night.More

Santiago Central Market (Mercado Central de Santiago)

star-4.5530
Located in downtown Santiago, the Central Market (Mercado Central is a great place for visitors to get a peek into the hustle and bustle of local life. Its wrought iron interior houses fruit and vegetable vendors, a fish market, and multiple restaurants where you can enjoy a delicious, authentic, and affordable meal.More

Bellavista

star-4.5596
Bohemian Bellavista—sandwiched between San Cristóbal Hill and the Mapocho River—is one of Santiago’s most walkable neighborhoods, known for varied nightlife, some of the city’s most colorful street art, and numerous boutiques. A particular Bellavista highlight is La Chascona House-Museum, Pablo Neruda’s former residence.More

Metropolitan Cathedral (Catedral Metropolitana)

star-4.5706
Santiago's Metropolitan Cathedral (Catedral Metropolitana is considered one of the finest pieces of religious architecture in South America. This is the cathedral’s fifth incarnation (not including numerous additional touch-ups since a church was first dedicated on this spot in 1561. The structure has dominated the west side of the Plaza de Armas for centuries and serves as the heart of the city.More

Plaza de la Constitucion

star-4.5964
At the heart of Chile’s political landscape, the Plaza de la Constitucion is a vast, paved square occupying a full square block in the center of Santiago’s civic district. Surrounded by government buildings like the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Justice, and the Banco Central de Chile, the most impressive site of all is the square’s Palacio de la Moneda.Designed by the Italian architect Joaquín Toesca and built in the late 18th century, the Palacio de la Moneda is said to be one of the finest neoclassical buildings in South America. Originally intended as the Royal Mint, today the palace houses the Chilean presidential offices.Every second morning, here’s where you can see the changing of the guard set to the Chilean national anthem, and while you can’t go inside the palacio, you can wander its inner courtyards. In front of the south side of the Palacio Moneda, it’s worth visiting the Centro Cultural Palacio de la Moneda. Opened in 2006, the cultural center features temporary exhibitions of South American art and photography.More

Palacio de Bellas Artes

star-4.5406
Constructed in 1910, at the height of Latin America's frilly neoclassical-meets-art-nouveau architectural wave, the graceful Palacio de Bellas Artes still strikes an imposing figure amidst modern Santiago's cold skyscrapers. Its ornate stone facade and permanent artistic merit make it the perfect home for the National Museum of Fine Arts and its paintings, sculptures, and drawings dating from the colonial period to present day.More

Forestal Park (Parque Forestal)

star-4.5513
Forestal Park (Parque Forestal), the natural green lung of Santiago, provides a peaceful break from the frenetic bustle of Chile’s capital city. Stretching from Central Market to Plaza Italia, this area offers walking paths shaded by leafy trees and two popular museums: the MAC (Museo de Arte Contemporáneo) and Palacio de Bellas Artes.More

Undurraga Winery (Viña Undurraga)

star-4.5356
Learn about the history of Chilean wine production, sample full-bodied reds, and explore underground cellars at Undurraga, an award-winning, internationally recognized vineyard outside of Santiago. The winery’s gardens, designed by Pierre Dubois in the 19th century, appeal to nature lovers and wine buffs alike.More

Central Post Office

star-4374
From the outside, the French-styled Correo Central (Central Post Office) is a frothy white wedding cake of a building, while inside its all tiered galleries topped by a beautiful glass dome. Built in 1882 on the northwest corner of Santiago's Plaza de Armas, the Central Post Office, designed by Chilean architect Ricardo Brown, has been a national monument since 1976.Next door to the Palacio de la Real Audiencia de Santiago, aside from buying your stamps, the Correo Central is also home to the Museo Postal y Telegrafico. Dedicated to Chile's postal history, here you can see a huge collection of stamps from around the world.More

Cajón del Maipo

star-5430
Cajón del Maipo, a narrow canyon where the Maipo River flows, begins just 16 miles (25 kilometers) southwest of Santiago, but its picturesque scenery, fresh air, and charming mountain towns feel worlds away from Chile’s capital city. Thanks to its close proximity to Santiago, though, Cajón del Maipo is one of the more popular day trip destinations for an easy escape to Chile’s famed wilderness.More

Trip ideas

Operators have paid Viator more to have their experiences featured here

Recent reviews from experiences in Santiago

star-5
Excellent guide and driver making day exceptional
RUTH_A, Jan 2023
Private Full Day Tour in Santiago
Guide was highly knowledgeable, good English, flexible, responsive to questions and requests of sights to see, and a wonderful sense of humor.
star-5
A must do when in Santiago
Robert_H, Jan 2023
Santiago Markets Small Group Bike Tour
the guide was very knowledgeable and amazing experience to get to see Santiago with a very interesting itinerary
star-5
Maipo Bueno
Patrick_C, Jan 2023
Small-Group Cajón del Maipo Full-Day Tour and Picnic
This is my first visit to Chile and I wanted to see more than Santiago.
star-5
A great way to get a taste of the Andes Mountains
Lydia_W, Jan 2023
Inca Lagoon in Andes Mountain Range - Visit Local Vineyard with Tasting included
Benjamin was a fantastic guide and I highly recommend this if you're looking for a way to see a little bit of the mountains surrounding Santiago.
star-5
Great customer service!
Melina_M, Jan 2023
Full Day Valparaíso and Viña del Mar
There was some miscommunication on my trip and I was accidentally put in the Spanish-speaking tour group, instead of the English-speaking tour group.
star-5
Fun day in paradise
spalmer0201, Jan 2023
Full-Day Tour of Valparaiso Port and Viña del Mar from Santiago
This is a great way to see Chile outside of Santiago.
star-5
Great tour with a local
Sharon_R, Dec 2022
Santiago Like a Local: Customized Private Tour
Maria Jose is a great guide and spoke English well.
star-5
Great day out of Santiago
susan_d, Dec 2022
Cajon Del Maipo from Santiago Including Empanadas & Wine in Local farm
What a great way to see the Andes and leave the hustle of Santiago for a day.
We perform checks on reviews

All about Santiago

When to visit

Chile’s capital is at its brightest and boldest during September's Fiesta Patria, when traffic halts, offices close, and streets fill with makeshift shacks fitted with dance floors and open barbecues. Alternatively, the springtime months of October and November guarantee plenty of cool and sunny days that prove perfect for exploring.

People Also Ask

What is Santiago best known for?

Vibrant, cosmopolitan Santiago is known for its alluring location, nestled in a valley surrounded by the snow-capped Andes. The city offers the diversions of a modern metropolis with the bonus of nature on its doorstep. Here you’ll find top-flight museums and restaurants, plus diverse neighborhoods, each with its own character.

...More
How many days are enough in Santiago?

Two or three days is enough time in Santiago to see the main attractions and get a feel for the city. If you have longer, you can make Santiago your base for day trips to nearby wineries, ski slopes, or even as far as the coastal city of Valparaiso.

...More
Is Santiago a cool city?

Yes. Santiago is a cool city. In the past, it had a rather staid reputation, but nowadays, thanks to its revived cultural and food scenes, Santiago has become a South American hot spot. The best way to get a feel for the city is by exploring its diverse, art-filled bohemian neighborhoods.

...More
What do people in Santiago Chile do for fun?

Get a taste of local life at one of Santiago’s colorful markets, such as the Central Market where you can pick up fresh fruit and enjoy a seafood lunch or at the shops of Barrio Italia. You’ll often find local Santiagans heading to the mountains and vineyards in their free time.

...More
What can you do in Santiago for free?

You can wander around Santiago’s colorful bohemian neighborhoods and the historic Plaza de Armas for free, or you can walk up the hills of Cerro San Cristóbal and Cerro Santa Lucía for city views. You can also visit the Metropolitan Cathedral and the Museum of Memory and Human Rights.

...More
Is Santiago a safe city?

Yes. Santiago is generally a safe city. However, be vigilant, particularly in crowded areas, as pickpocketing and bag snatching can occur. Santiago is a hub for peaceful demonstrations throughout the year, but travelers should be cautious on Sept. 11, the anniversary of the 1973 military coup.

...More

Santiago information

Number of Attractions

58

Number of Tours

653

Number of Reviews

11,651

Currency

USD
Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What are the top things to do in Santiago?
Q:
What are the top things to do near Santiago?
A:
Q:
What do I need to know before visiting Santiago?