November 1, 2012

South America - Chile Valparaiso, the charisma one

The day after, I was off to Valparaiso. Arriving Valparaiso in the late morning, I was impressed by this coastal town a lot more than Santiago. Buenos Aires has La Boca, Santiago has Valparaiso. To my surprise, Valparaiso is a lovely city and I will recommend everyone to come and visit. It is a colourful enclave along the coast with a lot of unique artistic wall paintings.
Colourful street painting, Valparaiso, Chile - May 2010.

I walked most of the recommended places. The Ascensor Concepcion was one of the most interesting ride you can ever take with a scary sound.
Ascensor Concepcion, Valparaiso, Chile - May 2010.
Another beautiful place to explore is the Paseo de Atkinson, with some fine restaurant around.
Paseo de Atkinson, Valparaiso, Chile - May 2010.
I packed and went back to Santiago the evening, as there was an early flight to Easter Island the day after.

October 16, 2012

South America - Chile Santiago, extra!

As much as the dark side of Santiago, the city is old, with experience.
We can't deny Santiago for some of the famous stuff - the Ballet, the Fish Market with excellent food, the Craft Market where you can get the beautiful Lapis Lazuli, etc.

But, most interesting of all, Santiago has some the following which I have not expected.
Fast food street, Santiago, Chile - May 2010.

I did not remember when did I last had a hot dog. As there are so many hot dog stalls here, I got so excited so I ordered one. But, with my "porqueto espanyol", and...I got a hot dog with avocado, lot of mayo, tomato, all smashed together. Never ever ate a hot dog like this, but it was interesting to eat this so called Italiano Hotdog.
Forex street, Santiago, Chile - May 2010.
I was heading to Bolivia next, so I need some Boliviano. So, I found this Forex street. The whole 2 blocks are all foreign currency changers, with each specializes in different currencies. The only thing I would wish for is the consistency of the exchange rate. However, I was with no luck, it is not like Malaysia. It seems the exchange rate is not regulated.

The last has to be the most famous building in the whole Santiago.
Palacio de la Moneda, Santiago, Chile - May 2010.
The Palacio de la Moneda, this is one colonial building in Santiago you must take a picture. This Presidencial Palace is where the bloody coup of Pinochet happened in 1973, putting Chile into the darkest history for 17 years. Even Chile was back to a democratic system since 1980, but there are many social issues left over from colonialism and the period of military ruling. These social issues can practically be felt when I walked on the street - the gap of rich to poor, the ignored basic need of the people, the anger of the students with the expensive but least quality education system. It seems to me there is no middle class in this country, the rich rules and controls everything.