Towne Centre Travel
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  • December 11, 2019
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Immerse Yourself in Chile

Dive in to the country's culture and traditions, national parks, archeological sites and wine valleys, as well as sports like skiing, rafting and fly-fishing.

Airports

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Chile has seven international airports (located in Arica, Iquique, Antofagasta, Easter Island, Santiago, Puerto Montt and Punta Arenas). The largest is Santiago's airport, Aeropuerto Comodoro Arturo Merino Benítez (SCL), which offers international connections to North and South America, Europe and Oceania. Seventeen airlines offer regularly scheduled flights from Santiago's airport, which also boasts a complete infrastructure of shops and restaurants, a Duty Free store and VIP lounges. It is easy to find a hotel nearby. Three airlines also operate domestic flights to the country's main cities, which are serviced by seven international airports and 28 airfields.

Best Time to Travel

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Chile is always in season because due to its extensive length the Country has a variety of Climates; there is something for everyone year round.

Language

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Español (Spanish)

Medical

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Vaccines: Currently, no vaccines or medical examinations are required for entering Chile. Water: The water is generally safe for consumption. However, it's recommended that you drink bottled water for the first few days. Raw Foods: You should avoid eating uncooked vegetables, especially those that grow near the soil (e.g. lettuce, carrots) unless you buy them from an established supermarket, which must comply with sanitary norms in order to sell this kind of produce. It's also preferable to eat cooked meats, fish and seafood. Public Health System: Public hospitals and emergency services are required to attend to any person in need of emergency assistance. The country features high-quality medical centers, clinics and hospitals. Safety and Natural Dangers: As in all parts of the world, the primary safety precautions apply to big cities. Avoid going out with visible jewelry, cameras or electronic devices, as you could be the victim of a robbery (especially at night and in remote neighborhoods and streets). The same goes for carrying backpacks: do not carry cameras (video or otherwise) in the outer pockets, especially in crowded areas or when using public transportation. Do not exchange dollars or any other currency on the street. Always use authorized exchange houses. In the event of an earthquake or strong tremor, remain calm. If you're inside a building, remain inside. If you're outside, remain outside. Entering or leaving building can only lead to accidents. If you are inside of a building, seek out strong structures – under a table or bed, underneath a doorway, next to a pillar, master wall, or in a corner – and protect your head. Never flee hurriedly towards an exit or use an elevator. If you find yourself on the street, watch out for electrical wires, cornices, glass and falling tiles.

Tipping

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Tipping is optional for all services, although a 10 percent gratuity is recommended

Transportation

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Chile has an extensive network of well-maintained highways. Major roadways include the Panamericana, which is called Route 5 north between Arica and Santiago and Route 5 south between Santiago and Puerto Montt. This highway runs through most of mainland Chile. Three main highways run through central Chile to the coast, including the Autopista Del Sol, which connects Santiago with the port city of San Antonio and beach towns such as Cartagena, Algarrobo and Isla Negra; Route 68, the road from Santiago to Valparaíso, which will take you to coastal cities and beach resorts such as Viña del Mar, Reñaca, and Concón; and the Carretera del Vino (Route I-50), which runs from Rancagua through the Colchagua winegrowing valley. In the south, excellent highways connect Route 5 with coastal cities such as Valdivia and Concepción. South of Puerto Montt and into the broken landscape of Northern Patagonia, you must take a combination of ferries to reach the Carretera Austral (Southern Highway), the main roadway through this region, which offers some of the most stunning natural scenery in all of South America. To reach the islands of Chiloé, take a ferry from Pargua (65 km west of Puerto Montt), crossing the Chacao Channel (35 minutes) to Isla Grande de Chiloé. The other islands in this area can be reached via water taxis or ferries, or even by kayak. If you want to visit Easter Island, you will have to fly from Santiago. The same is true for Juan Fernández Island (also known as Robinson Crusoe island). If you want to get to Southern Patagonia, there are daily flights from Santiago and Puerto Montt to the gateway city of Punta Arenas. You can also get there by road from Argentina. Most major highways in Chile have emergency services, service stations, restaurants and, of course, toll booths. Dozens of bus lines offer passenger service to the country's main cities. Buses usually travel at around 80 km/h, which means that the trip from Santiago to Puerto Montt (1,024 km) would take approximately 13 hours.

Visa Info

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To enter Chile, all passangers have to show their identification documents (identity card or passport) and the stamped visa (depending on country of origin). Citizens of South America, the European Union, the United States, Canada and Australia do not require a visa. Although, some passangers have to pay a reciprocity tax (in cash) when they arrive to the airport in Chile.

• Canada US$ 132

• Australia US$ 61

• Mexico US$ 23

• Albania US$ 30

Citizens of the European Union and New Zealand are not required to pay a fee. Upon entering the country, visitors receive a 90-day tourist visa that can be extended for another 90 days.

Weather

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Due to its extensive length, Chile features a variety of climates. This is explained by Chile's geographic position with respect to high-pressure zones, the presence of the polar front and the influence of the sea. In other words, Chile's climate is shaped by factors of latitude, altitude and relief. In the country's central region, the peaks of the Cordillera de la Costa impede the flow of the marine climate, and the wall formed by the Andes seals off continental influences. The presence of the sea gives the country a predominantly Mediterranean-style climate, with moderate temperatures and a wide range between the highs of the day and the lows of the night, creating fog and cool winds, the latter even more a product of the cool Humboldt Current. The southern region has more humidity and precipitation and lower temperatures than the central region, while northern Chile features a dry desert climate, hot during the day and very cold at night. The climatic diversity can be observed through the frequency of rainfall, which becomes considerably more pronounced as you head south. The rainy season also varies by region. On the altiplano, it comes during summer and from the central region to the Patagonia, in the winter. The situation is the same when it comes to the highs and lows in temperature. It is warmer in the north and central regions, and gets colder as you head south. Chile has four well-defined seasons. All of Chile's cities experience their warmest weather between October and April and the coldest from May to September