A sprinkle of Scotland in Santiago
Trip Start Apr 18, 2011
51Trip End Ongoing
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Finally, around 12pm, they arrived minus Mum's bag. This was not what they needed after a 14 hour flight, but they arrived in good spirits ready to experience the joys of South America. Our first day was spent catching up, doing some food shopping and basically just relaxing and enjoying each others fantastic company. Casey and I watched El Clasico (Real Madrid Vs Barcelona) and we all enjoyed some of the local wine before making some dinner and hitting the hay early
On our second day in Santiago we went to explore the city. First stop was a local park that had an excellent (free) outdoor gym, it was basically like a play-park for adults! Obviously it took ages for Casey, Eilidh and I to drag Mum and Dad off the machines, but it was a great example of how South America is light-years ahead of Britain and even the USA in some things. No doubt we would of had to pay at least $10 for the privilege of using equipment like that in so called more developed countries. After the playing was over we headed towards Cerro Santa Lucia, a park that was on a hill. It was formerly a hermitage, convent and military bastion before being sold to the city and made into an amazing park. After doing a bit of exploring we went to the artisan centre and folks did a wee bit of shopping before we headed for the Plaza de Armas to check out the centre of the city. Unfortunately Mum's bag had still not arrived (get used to seeing that sentence (this is only day 2)) so she hit a couple of shops and started spending Iberia/BA's money. While she and Eilidh had their first mini shopping spree, Casey Dad and I went to have a look inside the cathedral. It was a very impressive building with numerous alcoves for various religious figures, a grand ceiling and plenty of folks on the inside praying or wandering around. Once we had all reconvened we headed onwards towards the Mercado Central (Central Market) for a bit of lunch
We had a seafood platter in the restaurant, it was not the best seafood we have had, but the ambience of the market was nice as were the Pisco Sours. Afterwards we went out and bought some fruit from another market before Mum did a bit more shopping. That night we went back and watched the Top Gear special from Bolivia and M, D & C got to see what the Death Road was really like. We cooked in every night that we were here, between the 5 of us we rustled up some excellent meals, much cheaper than eating out and probably tastier as well (only draw back is the 2 hours spent food shopping every day!).
Our final day of our first few days in Santiago was spent cycling around the city. We rented out bikes, complete with huge pictures of oranges in the spokes, and set off to see what we could seeParque Bicentenario) and a park that had lots of sculptures in it. We took a packed lunch and had a beer while enjoying the sunshine (hot hot hot in Santiago!) We spent the best part of 7 hours on the bikes and ended up near the University where we had ice cream before heading back to another excellent home-cooked meal and a few glasses of Chilean vino. (Still no bag - Day 3) The next afternoon we had a bus to catch to Concon, the only beach stop of their trip and their first experience of buses in South America!
P.S Merry Christmas to everyone and hope you all have a great New Year!