Is it time to start planning your next big adventure?
The majestic country of Chile is hot on our list for 2024. This article has you covered with our absolute top picks for the best places to visit in Chile for 2024.
From sampling the finest Chilean wine in the vineyards of the Colochagua Valley, basking in natural hot pools in the Atacama Desert, to exploring the rugged scenery of the Chilean Patagonia, I can point you in the right direction for your ultimate Chilean bucket list.
If you’re ready to Go off the beaten path on your next trip and experience some genuinely vibrant scenery, here are the best places I suggest to visit in Chile in 2024!
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What is the most beautiful part of Chile? Best Places to Visit in 2024
Maria, I have only two weeks for my trip to South America, and I want to go to so many places!! I know I want to go to Chile, but What is the most beautiful part of Chile?
This is a common question I receive from our travelers during our Consultation Call for their trip to South America.
And this is what I SAY:
Chile is an incredible destination to discover! Whether you’re team active and outdoorsy or team city lover and foodie, there are places for you in Chile.
This list will give you plenty of inspiration for where to head when visiting Chile.
But, before I go on...
If You are an independent traveler who loves traveling and would love to visit Chile and other destinations in South America but looking on the internet to do it yourself makes you want to stay home.
Get in touch with my team and me, and we can customize a perfect trip to Chile and South America, including access to a selective choice of our own experiences to discover the ‘real’ South America.
We specialize in custom travel planning and concierge Services, taking all the hassle of planning a trip to South America. We will craft a unique itinerary based on your interests, Tastes, and Budget.
Now, let's dive into the best places to visit in Chile!
Discover the surreal beauty of the Atacama Desert.
The Atacama Desert is a do-not-miss destination if you are visiting the Southern Hemisphere. Its desolate beauty and ever-changing arid landscape make it absolutely one of the best places to visit in Chile.
Framed by the Pacific Ocean and the Andes Mountains to its east, the Atacama desert is one of the driest deserts on Earth. Its harsh desert environment has sculpted the surroundings, punctuated with glistening white and pink salt flats, vast salt lakes, and vibrant oases.
Despite being arid, the Atacama supports a delicate ecosystem and a variety of wildlife, from Andean and Chilean flamingos that gather in the salt lakes and flats to colonies of Viscachas, small rabbit-like rodents native to the Andes.
Visitors to the Atacama Desert can expect to be blown away by its stark, otherworldly beauty. The endless, flat desert stretches as far as the eye can see, dotted with hills, mountain ranges, and volcanoes. Cacti are scattered across the desert, and its isolated location adds to its wild and untamed charm.
San Pedro de Atacama makes an excellent jumping-off point for exploring the Atacama.
Nestled at high altitude in the Andean Plateau, this small town is considered one of the desert oases due to its proximity to water sources. The city has a rich cultural heritage as it has been a center for human settlement for thousands of years.
Located in the Central Volcanic Zone of the Andes, the area around San Pedro de Atacama is known for its geothermal activity. It presents a unique opportunity for visitors to explore the surrounding hot springs and geysers.
Soak in lush natural hot pools such as the Puritama Hot Springs. This series of eight pools is framed with lush vegetation and offers the perfect relaxing activity after a day out exploring the desert. Or take an excursion to the spectacular El Taito Geysers, one of the most extensive geothermal fields in the world, to witness the raw power of mother nature.
The iconic Valle de Luna, or Valley of the Moon, lies within easy reach of San Pedro de Atacama. The rusty-colored rock formations and patches of bright-white crystalized salt create a unique visual spectacle. Sunset tours to the Valley of the Moon offer a stunning play of light amongst the rugged burnt-red landscape.
Exploring the vast Atacama desert is a definite must-do for your bucket list. This region of Chile offers many premium activities for the discerning traveler, from private tours, desert star-gazing, and hot air balloon rides to exquisite gourmet picnics at the side of stunning natural hot pools.
San Pedro de Atacama has several up-scale accommodation options, from boutique hotels to lush private villas that offer expansive views of the surrounding desert.
The World Travel Awards, also known as the Oscars of Tourism, chose the Atacama Desert as the Best Romantic Destination in South America for the fifth time in 2022!
Experience the Wonder of Isolated Rapa Nui
Visiting remote Rapa Nui, otherwise known as Easter Island, is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Approximately 3,000 miles west of mainland Chile, isolated Easter Island lies deep in the Southeastern Pacific Ocean. This remote island outpost combines its stunning natural beauty with its rich cultural history, making it one of the best places in Chile to visit.
If you’re lucky enough to go to Easter Island, a host of unforgettable experiences lie in wait for you.
It's Polynesian history.
Discover the island's ancient Polynesian history and come face to face with the formidable Moai statues. Carved directly from volcanic rock by the indigenous Rapa Nui people, these colossal carvings make for an incredible sight with their distinct staring eyes, pronounced noses, and elongated bodies.
A visit to the spectacular Rano Raraku is a humbling experience. This vast volcanic crater acted as a Moai quarry, and around 400 Moai statues lie scattered around the picturesque slopes of the crater, with about half unfinished.
Efforts have been made to preserve Rapa Nui’s mysterious history, with the entire island now designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site.
This truly isolated destination showcases island living at its finest.
Make the most of the ocean with a dip in the water at idyllic Anakena Beach, the epitome of Pacific Beach beauty with its white sand, turquoise water, and swaying palm trees.
One of the best places in the world to star gaze
The island's extremely remote location makes it one of the best places in the world to star gaze. Take a stargazing tour and gaze upon the same stars the Rapa Nui used to navigate. The incredible view of the Milky Way set in the inky darkness of the Pacific Ocean is like nothing you have ever seen before.
A large population of wild horses lives on Easter Island, and there is no better way to explore than on horseback. Witness wild horses in their environment as you enjoy the serene beauty of this wild and remote island.
Visiting Easter Island is an experience that will stay with you for a lifetime, and this incredible place deserves a spot on our best places to visit in Chile's bucket list for 2024.
Embark on a Road Trip Like No Other on the Carretera Austral
The epic Carretera Austral, or Chile's Route 7, is my ultimate Chilean road trip recommendation.
With numerous National Parks and jaw-dropping scenery from lush forests to snow-capped mountains, fjords and glaciers, and remote villages en route, this a road trip for the adventurous souls out there.
The Carretera Austral gets our vote for one of the best places to visit in Chile due to its incredible diversity of landscapes.
From the Pacific to the Andes
Let Chile’s natural beauty blow you away as you trace this isolated highway from the coastal city of Puerto Montt to the remote town of Villa O’Higgins, nestled deep in the Aysen Region of Patagonia.
This route takes you from the shores of the Pacific to the slopes of the Andes in an epic 1200-kilometer journey.
The isolated nature of the Carretera Austral transports you through the wild and untamed Chilean Patagonia, cutting through vast stretches of untouched wilderness and winding its way across several stunning mountain passes, giving incredible views of the rugged Andes Peaks.
Due to the remote nature of the highway, driving conditions can be challenging in some parts. Expect gravel roads, river crossings, and tight curves. Road repairs may be few and far between, and accommodation, shops, and fuel stations are limited, especially in certain sections of the highway.
It is essential to be well-prepared when driving the Carretera Austral and keep a close eye on weather conditions, as Patagonia is known for its unpredictable weather conditions.
Taking this route in winter is not recommended due to the risk of heavy snowfall and ice. However, despite the road's challenging driving conditions, a host of natural wonders awaits the intrepid traveler as you venture into this untouched and sparsely populated area of Southern Chile.
A network of National Parks lies along the highway. The vast Pumalin Douglas Tompkins National Park encompasses huge sections of temperate rainforest, pristine rivers, waterfalls, fjords, heavily forested dormant volcanos, and an incredible selection of wildlife, flora, and fauna.
Or stop off to admire the dramatic scenery of the Queulat National Park, with its numerous glaciers, gushing waterfalls, vibrant blue glacial lakes, natural hot pools, and formidable glaciated mountain peaks.
The Queulat Hanging Glacier is easily accessible and provides jaw-dropping views of its hanging lip that appears suspended in mid-air. Framed by lush rainforest, the glacier's meltwater flows into the turquoise waters of the glacial lake Laguna Tempanos, adding to the exquisite beauty of this region's unspoiled scenery.
With its abundance of connected National Parks, there are incredible opportunities for visitors to enjoy a raft of outdoor activities while on the road, from world-class hiking, kayaking, and white water rafting to making the most of the spectacular setting of Southern Patagonia while soaking in a natural hot pool.
The Cerro Castillo National Park offers stunning hiking options, from single-day treks to the iconic Cerro Castillo Circuit. It is a challenging multi-day hike that takes you through the heart of the park and offers expansive views of the formidable snow-dusted peak of Cerro Castillo Mountain and its glacier.
Use your time following the Carretera Austral and take an excursion to the Futaleufu River, which offers some of the best rafting in the world, or explore the idyllic Aysen Fjords by boat.
The Carretera Austral ends in Villa O’Higgins, a tranquil village that acts as a jumping-off point to explore the Patagonian Ice Field. From here, adventurous travelers can discover this untouched glacial environment.
Traveling through Northern and Southern Patagonia on the Carretera Austral offers out-of-this-world scenery and a chance to explore this remote, pristine landscape. It takes in some of the world's most beautiful places, making it one of the best places to visit in Chile in 2024.
Marvel at the Luminous Columns of the Marble Caves
Deep in the Chilean Patagonia sits General Carrera Lake. A vast glacial lake that spans Chile and Argentina and is one of the most impressive lakes in South America.
Fed by several glaciers, the lake is renowned for its vivid blue and emerald-green waters. The surrounding glaciers and towering mountain peaks make an unbelievable backdrop against the glistening water.
The Marble Caves sit on the lake's western shore. This incredible geological phenomenon is one of my top picks for the best places to visit in Chile. A trip here provides an astonishing day out exploring the most epic surroundings by water.
Carved by thousands of years of erosion, these caves are made entirely of marble. The unique rock formations reflected in the lake's bright blue water, creating a beautiful spectacle. Marval at the stunning swirling patterns the lapping water has left on the marble columns in myriad blues.
Boat or kayak tours allow visitors to get up close and personal with these gorgeous caves. The best time to visit is during the summer months when increased glacier melt intensifies the lake's vibrant colors.
A visit to Marble Lake on the idyllic shores of mighty Lake General Carrera is to discover one of Chile’s hidden gems. Tucked away in the most tranquil locations, it truly is one of the best places in Chile to visit.
Immerse Yourself in Natural Splendour in the Torres Del Paine National Park.
Located in Southernmost Chile in the Magallanes and Chilean Antarctic region, the Torres del Paines National Park offers visitors unparalleled natural beauty and excellent hiking opportunities.
The park is one of Chile's most significant. Its mountainous terrain, mighty glaciers that flow from the Patagonian Ice Field, radiant glacial lakes, and vast expanses of the Patagonian Steppe make it an area of sublime beauty that is not to be missed.
It's one of the best places in Chile for hiking. Nature lovers will be in their element here. With a good network of hiking trails, including some famous multi-day hikes, there is much to explore here.
At the heart of the park sits the iconic Torres del Paine, three striking granite towers. Their sharp, jagged spires rise above the surrounding wild landscape, creating an awe-inspiring view. The park's diverse terrain is scattered with streams, waterfalls, and glacial lakes and is home to a vast array of wildlife, from pumas to Andean condors.
Puerto Natales is the gateway to the Torres del Paine National Park and a hub for adventure sports and outdoor activities exploring the surrounding area. Nestled on the shores of the Senoret Channel, the bustling city makes for a perfect base. As a former fishing port, plenty of fresh seafood is available in the city's restaurants and bars, making it the ideal place to indulge.
The premium travel market around this area is growing with luxury lodges set among stunning surroundings, spa and wellness facilities, exquisite dining options, and premium experiences available.
The Torres del Paine National Park delivers for those wanting to combine the best of nature with a touch of luxury. It’s 100 percent on my best places in Chile bucket list this year!
Linger over the Chilean Lake District.
Spanning several provinces, the vast Chilean Lake District has something for everyone.
Dominated by the Andean Volcanic Belt, striking snow-capped volcanos watch over the land below. The soil around this region is fertile due to volcanic activity. Dense evergreen forests, deep valleys, and abundant plains are dotted with small towns and villages, each with a distinctive character. Colorful wooden churches stand out amongst the greenery, making the region even more charming.
The Lake District is an area of active geothermal activity. It's our pick for the best place in Chile to explore hot springs, geysers, and even active volcanos!
There are many natural hot springs, perfect for relaxing and soaking in the mind-blowing scenery. Home to several active volcanos, the Lake District offers visitors the chance to get close to these humbling giants.
These mighty volcanos hold cultural and spiritual significance for the indigenous Mapuche people, and respect is essential when visiting the area as the volcanos are considered sacred sites.
Fiery Villarrica Volcano is the most active in the region. Nearby Pucon is a gateway for those exploring the volcano and the surrounding area. It is possible to take a guided climb to the summit, though caution is needed due to the volcano's active status.
In addition to the region's incredibly dynamic landscape, the Lake District is an incredible place to immerse yourself in the Chilean culinary scene.
With an emphasis on fresh, local ingredients, the food scene here is flourishing. Sample Patagonian lamb, freshly caught seafood, artisan cheeses, freshly grown produce, and craft beers. There’s an incredible array of restaurants, from fusion cuisine and fine dining to family-owned cocinerias serving authentic home-style Chilean cooking. Food lovers will relish embracing the tastes and flavors of Chile’s abundant Lake District.
Adventure Sports fans can indulge in various adrenalin-pumping activities, from white water rafting to horse riding, ziplining, mountain biking, and hiking. Explore the ancient Araucaria forest, an essential part of the Chilean landscape that has existed here for millions of years. The distinctive Araucaria trees are otherwise known as monkey puzzle trees and are considered one of the oldest tree species on the planet.
Whatever you’re into, the Chilean Lake District has it covered. It's simply one of the best places in Chile to visit for its diverse and staggeringly beautiful landscapes, friendly people, vibrant fresh cuisine, and dramatic volcanic backdrops.
Appreciate the Finer Things in Life in the Colchagua Valley
Visit one of Chiles's premier wine-growing regions, the picturesque Colochagua Valley.
Known for producing bold reds from silky Syrahs to plumy Malbecs, the Colochagua Valley is the ideal spot for a spot of indulgence. There are many wineries to explore here, from boutique vineyards and tasting rooms to larger producers.
The region benefits from a milder Mediterranean climate; summers here are typically long and hot. The sprawling vineyards are flanked by the Andes, and the valley’s volcanic soils add to the wine's unique characteristics.
With abundant agriculture and wine growing, the Colchagua Valley benefits from lots of fresh produce. Take a gourmet adventure as you sample farm-to-table cuisine in the area's restaurants and wineries and enjoy wine tastings paired with regional cuisine.
One of the best ways to get around the vineyards is by bike or arrange a private tour. Follow the region's Colchagua Valley Wine Route and learn about the history and winemaking process.
Exploring the cultural heritage of this world-class wine-producing region through a journey of taste and artisan produce is an incredible way to spend your hard-earned vacation. For those seeking an authentic gourmet experience, the Colchahua Valley is among the best places in Chile to visit.
Get on Island Time in the Chiloe Archipelago
Discover this group of islands' idyllic charm as you island-hop between destinations, seeking out secluded beaches, lush forest landscapes, and traditional Chiloe villages.
The Chiloe Archipelago is covered with lush vegetation thanks to its temperate rainforest climate. Its extensive forests, wetlands, and meadows support a variety of birds, insects, and amphibians, and the islands are a haven for birdwatchers.
With around thirty islands, Chiloe is the largest in the archipelago. Stop to admire the colorful stilted house in Chiloe’s capital, Castro, and browse the local market for traditional Chiloe crafts.
The island maintains its unique identity and rich cultural heritage. Learn more about the history of the indigenous Chiloe people, their strong community, and oral traditions of mythology and folklore. Many skilled artisans create beautiful traditional crafts, from pottery and textiles to wood carvings.
Let time slow down as you embrace your island break. Chiloe is one of the best places in Chile to kick back and relax. With hidden coves and a glorious coastline, it's the perfect spot to unwind.
Chiloe’s waters are rich in marine life and support Magellanic and Humbolt Penguins. Penguin colonies are on the archipelago, and during summer, it’s an excellent destination for whale watching.
It’s simply a pleasure to visit the stunning Chiloe Archipelago and soak up the tropical vibes. Exploring the Chiloe Archipelago should be on anyone's best places to visit in Chile Bucket List!
Say Hello to Sophisticated Santiago
Like most places in Chile, the majestic Andes Moutain Range is a permanent backdrop, and the capital, Santiago, is no different.
To the city's east, the snowcapped peaks remind of the wild, untamed country beyond. Santiago, meanwhile, is bustling with cosmopolitan urban energy.
This lively city is home to roughly 35 percent of the country's population and is one of the best places in Chile to immerse yourself in modern Chilean life.
Dip into the city's diverse cultural scene by exploring the neighborhood of Lastarria with its art galleries and boutique shops. Visit the Chilean National Museum of Fine Arts or the Museo Chileno de Arte Pre Colombino (The Chilean Museum of Pre-Columbian Art). Seek out Santiago’s vibrant street art scene, which adds to the city's unique character and offers an artistic release for social and political commentary.
Soak in the historical buildings around the elegant Plaza de Armas, Santiago’s central square and lively historic center. The metropolitan cathedral of Santiago, the National Historical Museum, the Central Post Office Building, and the Royal Court Place surround the square on each four sides.
The ambiance in Santiago is sophisticated and easygoing. Take in the city's lively nightlife, sample the local culinary scene, or stroll through one of the city's stunning parks or green spaces.
As a major transport hub, many visitors' journeys through Chile use Santiago as their starting point, and as a capital city, Santiago doesn’t disappoint. It has oodles of charm and plenty of tourist attractions to keep you busy.
Chile’s vibrant capital is a must-do for any travelers visiting the beguiling and beautiful country of Chile. Take the time to appreciate the capital's unique character, culture, and history.
We hope this article has given you some food for thought if you are considering your dream vacation to Chile. This awe-inspiring, sublimely beautiful country will win your heart in no time, and there are so many unique destinations to explore throughout Chile.
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How to plan your trip to Chile?
Best time to visit Chile
One of the country's many charms is that Chile has many climatic differences, which are beautiful and exciting all year.
The most popular time for traveling to Chile is during the summer, between January and March. If you visit at this time, it'll coincide with the warm weather, summer holidays, the most daylight, and the most outdoor activities available.
The least busy time to visit Chile is from April to November, and it is considered the low season, including autumn, winter, and spring.
So, if you want to avoid the crowds and the winter season, the best time to visit is March-May ( shoulder season) or September-October.
Read more here: Best time to visit Chile 5 things you need to consider
Planning your trip to Chile: 5 FAQs our travelers as
1- How many days do you need in Chile
One can spend many weeks traveling around Chile and still be amazed by how many stunning features the country offers. I Would say "enough days" to at least 7 to 10 days,
2- What is the best month to visit Chile?
There is no "BEST" month to visit Chile. You Can visit Chile all year round, but depending on where you are going, it is the perfect time to go.
November to February is the best time to explore Patagonia, the beaches, Eastern Island, and the Atacama desert.
From March to May and September to November is what we call the shoulder Season. This is a beautiful time to visit the lake region in Patagonia and Torres del Paine National Park.
It is also an excellent time to visit Santiago and the wine country, as harvests and wine festivals occur during March. If you plan to visit the Atacama Desert, this is also a good time, with fewer tourists than in summer but still good temperatures.
June to August is the best time for Winter sports in Chile – The perfect time to visit the Valle Nevado ski resort.
3- Which is Better, Chile or Argentina?
Again, there is no better country. If you are visiting South America for the first time, I strongly recommend visiting both countries.
4- What is the number 1 tourist destination in Chile
Chile has won the World Travel Award for Best Adventure Tourism Destination in the world for six consecutive years in 2022.
This makes Chilean Patagonia and the Lake District the most popular destinations in Chile for adventure travelers: Soft adventures, activity-based adventures, and custom adventures are the most popular activities offered in Chile.
But, as I mentioned before, Chile has much more than this. It is an amazing destination, even if you are not an adventurous traveler!
5- Is Chile tourist friendly
Yes, Chile is friendly to foreigners. It Ranks as one of the safest countries in South America. Many foreigners visit Chile, and some even live there permanently as ex-pats.
When visiting the capital, Santiago, just use basic precautions, and you should be fine.
Best Resorts in Chile for your trip in 2024
As part of our Luxury and Boutique hotel guides, I have written a Blog Post to bring you the best accommodations in Chile for you.
Our Selection is based on Maria's and myself’s personal preferences. We or someone from our team have personally visited them and love them.
Our trips always include top-quality hotels, Resorts, boutique hotels, estancias, or lodges.
One of the things we love most about our work is personally visiting the stunning hotels South America offers and sharing this moment with our family and friends❤️.
When it comes to choosing our lodgings for our travels, we consider various aspects that will make your stay extraordinary!
👉Small, unique properties with an eye on architectural and interior design using furniture and accessories handmade with local materials to be as authentic as possible.
👉Beautiful views of the landscape around the lodging.
👉 Taste the most delicious local food produced with local ingredients.
👉 A Span to unwind and relax after a long day of adventure
👉 Be pampered with a top-notch personalized and friendly service.
👉 Contribute to protecting the environment and collaborating with the local community.
We truly believe that the lodging experience is just as important as the rest of a trip. It's not just a place to sleep; it's an integral part of your journey.
In this blog post, we share the selection of hotels we suggest to our travelers when visiting Chile. READ HERE: 20 Best Resorts in Chile for Your Trip
My pick of Chile's Best Travel Experiences.
Now, let's look at my selective choice of experiences to discover the "real" Chile – without compromising on comfort. I have divided them according to the top destinations to Visit in Chile that I mentioned before....
Santiago de Chile and Surroundings
Chilean cuisine Cooking Class
Santiago de Chile for Art lovers
Casona Matetic Historic Stay & Wine Experience
Vik Premium Wine & stay Experience.
Winemaking Experience Chile Wine Region
E-Bike & Wine through the Santa Cruz Valleys
Luxury Eco Yurt Experience in Torres del Paine National Park
Andes Mountains Lakes Crossing.
Food Tour of Chiloe Island
Torres del Paine: Hiking Las Torres
Exploring Cape Horn expedition Cruise Experience
Atacama dessert Experiences
Astronomy Tour in Atacama
Trekking in the Atacama Desert Machuca to Rio Grande
Romantic Sunset in the Moon Valley, Atacama
Eastern Island Experiences
Another Romantic Sunset in Rapa Nui
Read more about these experiences HERE: Chile travel Experiences: best things to do.
Do you want to plan a trip to Chile but don't know where to begin?
Do you feel like looking at the internet for the "best destinations" is a never-ending job?
As a Boutique Travel Company, we can help you design your perfect Custom trip to Chile. As a team of Local experts, we have been planning trips to South America for more than 15 years, helping travelers like you experience South America more authentically, visiting the unique tourist spots and digging deeper into each place.
Book your call to start planning your REAL custom Trip to South America.
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Ps. As a Boutique travel company, our availability for new inquiries varies from month to month, and we only take a few clients at a time to ensure our full attention and results. We can assist you if you plan 3-6 months - or more for peak season. We are waiting for you, and so is Chile!
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