V & V

Valparaiso Travel Blog

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Sarah in cold water
Viña del Mar (Viña) and Valparaiso (Valpo) are two coastal towns facing the pacific ocean in Chile, Valpo being the larger of the two. Our days here involved lots of sun, sand and surf (although I attempted a swim, it was freezing and the waves too big to let your feet off the ground).
It was beautiful.
 
There are some distinct differences between the two we found.
Viña is where all the rich from Santiago flock to in the summers and long weekends. Meaning there are lots of high rise apartments with sea views, a starbucks and Sheraton hotel. The white sand beaches are lovely but I can image they get a bit over crowded in the peak times. Really easy to walk along the whole coast and at points where the sand disappears there were cool rocks that catch the spray and someone had gone to great lengths to paint bible verses all the way along.
Colourful houses
Inspiring as you sit there to watch the sunset in the evenings.

A few nice parks and an old manor house gardens are dotted around when you need a break from the sand, but other than that it is a very relaxing town with not a huge amount to see or do. Found a nice pasteria for breakfasts, fun to try some new foods - I particularly liked the custard filled breads, Luke liked the fresh bread.

Valpo on the other hand is a port town - the major Chilean one. Set in the hills, houses painted with very bright colours make the look-outs very attractive. Its haphazard with wires and steep unfinished roads and smelly fish markets, but has a great feel to it and lots of artists & poets influence its culture. We visited the house of Neruda, a famous Chilean poet and politician, who was also a little eccentric and collector of random stuff which he liked to display in his homes.

We liked this city with its old cable cars and narrow steep streets and it would have been good to have a bit more time here to try a few more cafes and art stores, but as always there is more to see and fit in than time allows.

Overnight bus to Mendoza, Argentina, for our final weekend in South America then its on to Santiago to prepare to fly to NZ.

Love to you all
Sarah xx
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Sarah in cold water
Sarah in cold water
Colourful houses
Colourful houses
Looking down to the port
Looking down to the port
Valparaiso
photo by: montecarlostar