At the foot of massive Cerro San Cristóbal, compact Bellavista is a walker’s delight. In the daytime, Santiaguinos cross the Pío Nono bridge to stroll its leafy streets, parks, and plazas and enjoy modest lunch specials at some of the city’s most innovative restaurants. At night, they crowd the same places for elaborate dinners before a night at nearby bars, discos, theaters, and other diversions. Daytime visitors, by the way, may not even realize that this is a nightlife nucleus—most dance clubs, for instance, do not open until 1 a.m. or so, and few have prominent signs.
While most visitors see Bellavista as a single discrete neighborhood, there’s a clear division—Avenida Pío Nono—between the two comunas that comprise the barrio.
North of the river, the first major landmarks are Parque Gómez Rojas, with a weekend crafts market stretching up the west side of Avenida Pío Nono, and the Facultad de Derecho de la Universidad de Chile (law school) to the east. On weekends, Avenida Pío Nono becomes a frenetic blend of crafts market, cheap sidewalk restaurants, and beer joints that, while not so bad as that might sound, is less appealing than the barrio’s perpendicular and parallel side streets.
For a notion of Bellavista’s best, relax on a bench at Plazuela Camilo Mori, a small triangular plaza at Antonia López de Bello and Constitución. Walking north, turn into the Márquez de la Plata cul-de-sac where poet Pablo Neruda lived at the house he called La Chascona . A short stroll northwest, Plaza Caupolicán is the main entry point to the 722-hectare Parque Metropolitano , a hillside and hilltop public park.
At the north end of Avenida La Paz, famous figures from Chile’s past, as well as many ordinary Chileans, are among the two million who repose in the Cementerio General  (General Cemetery), whose imposing frontispiece dates from 1897.