Vicinity of Santiago
An extraordinary number of interesting sights are near Santiago, suitable both for day trips and overnights. Among the many activities are winery tours, winter skiing and summer hiking, horseback riding, and white-water rafting and kayaking.
ADS Mundo (El Golf 99, Las Condes, tel. 02/3877070, www.adsmundo.cl) has the widest variety and greatest frequency of day tours for Santiago and vicinity, including coastal excursions such as Valparaíso and Isla Negra.
Activities-oriented operators include Cascada Expediciones (Don Carlos 3219, Las Condes, tel. 02/2329878, www.cascada.travel), which specializes in the Cajón del Maipo, and Altué Active Travel (Encomenderos 83, Las Condes, tel. 02/2321103, www.chileoutdoors.com), though its day excursions are substantially more expensive.
In addition to its human-rights focus, Chip Travel (Av. Santa María 227, Oficina 12, tel. 02/7775376, www.chip.cl) offers more traditional historical and cultural tours, winery excursions, trips to Pablo Neruda’s Isla Negra house, and visits to rural Caleu. Rates, with fluent English-speaking personnel, range US$25–45 per person for half-day excursions and US$50–100 per person for full-day excursions.
© Wayne Bernhardson from Moon Chile, 2nd edition