Trip Start Feb 10, 2008
28Trip End Aug 14, 2008
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Our flight in from New Zealand was the first time we had flown with LAN airlines and, despite warnings of delays with South American airlines everything went smoothly and we arrived 25 minutes early in Santiago. The service and food were excellent and we had our first 'Pisco Sours', the national dink of Chile.They are a blend of grape spirit with lemon juice, sugar and egg yolk and are delicious drunk as an aperitif.
No problems getting from the airport to our hotel which is very comfortable. Centrally located close to a metro stop (easy and safe metro to use) and in a quiet district with walks through parks into the city.
The main Plaza De Armas, with its statues and artists, is an interesting place and the Mercado Central with its fish market and restaurants is full of life.
Today we took a funicular up to the statue of the Virgin at the top of the Cerro San Cristobal(over 800m above the city) then a cable car down. The views of the city surrounded by snow-capped Andes is amazing. It is around 30 degrees in Santiago. The photos are not very clear because of the usual city smog here(if you click on the photos they will appear in a larger size).Our overall impression is of a city full of life and excitement and a friendly, helpful people.
We were a little concerned about language problems but are doing OK with the help of our phrase book which is well-worn already. The staff at the hotel are great at helping us with any language problems.
The food is delicious. Fresh seafood and local dishes such as Empanadas( a sort of Cornish Pasty and a bit stodgy) and Ceviche(a delicious raw fish dish 'cooked' by adding lemon juice, herbs and onions). Love the fresh bread. David reckons he had the best Creme Brulee ever last night. I love the quince paste served with cheese and also for breakfast with the jams etc.
We will be sad to leave here tomorrow but are heading south by car. That will be a real adventure trying to negotiate the roads and drivers here.
Where I stayed