10 photos to make you fall in love with Chile

Chile is a land of wild landscapes, sublime scenery, centuries of history and culturally-rich cities; it’s undoubtedly a must for your travel to do list. Here, our local experts share their favourite shots of Chile and explain why you need to track down each on your trip.
Valle de la Luna in the Atacama Desert. Photo: Shutterstock
Valle de la Luna in the Atacama Desert. Photo: Shutterstock

Don't forget, when you're ready to book your own trip to Chile, our holidays are completely customisable: if you like the look of one itinerary but want to add a stop at any of the places listed below our local experts have it covered. Simply select the trip you'd like to take and modify the itinerary. Alternatively, get in touch with our local experts today to plan your holiday from scratch. 

1. The majesty of Torres del Paine National Park

The undisputed queen of Chile’s national parks lies at the southern tip of the Andes mountain chain. One of Chile's best-known and most popular destinations, Torres del Paine is unmissable. It can only be visited comfortably in the southern hemisphere summer (Dec-Mar), but it offers exhilarating walks amid scenery of unparalleled beauty. Escape the crowds with the help of our local experts on our Wild Patagonia holiday (sublime views included).

2. The surreal landscapes of the Atacama Desert

It may be the driest place on earth, but the Atacama Desert is rich in natural and geological treats as well as indigenous history. Don’t miss El Tatio geysers and their stunning display of geothermal energy as they thrust columns of steam into the cold morning air. Simply spectacular. Add a stop here to any of Insight Guides’ ready-made trips to Chile: simply pick the trip you'd like to take and modify the itinerary.

3. The dramatic coastlines of the Juan Fernández Islands

Famed as the temporary home of the real-life Robinson Crusoe, the inaccessibility of these Pacific Islands makes them natural biospheres, replete with abundant endemic wildlife. Due to its remoteness, the archipelago is one of the least visited places in Chile. The perfect way to explore the dramatic coastlines is by kayak. Talk to our Florencia, our local expert today to begin planning your wild adventure. 

4. The pretty streets of Santiago

Most of Santiago's main sights cluster in the downtown area but, beyond that, there are parks and markets to explore, smart sidewalk cafés and some of the country's best restaurants. Tour this cool capital city on Day 11 of Insight Guides' Wine Country Explored holiday to really experience Santiago's style and culture. 

Cerro Santa Lucía (pictured here) is one of the city's best-loved locations for a stroll. From the hilltop, the views of the sprawling cityscape are impressive. 

5. The rolling fields of the Colchagua Valley 

Although badly damaged by the 2010 earthquake, the prestigious wine-growing area of the Colchagua Valley retains its old rural traditions, alongside state-of-the-art wineries and boutique hotels. During the vendimia, or grape harvest, which takes place between early March and mid-April, there are numerous festivals. Time your trip to coincide with these with the help of Insight Guides’ local experts. Submit a trip request and we can plan, organise and book your entire trip for you. The only problem you'll be left with is deciding which wine to try first...

6. The cultural sights of Chiloé

The brightly-coloured churches of Chiloé are notable for their unusual wooden architecture. These churches often stand alone by the sea where they were built by Jesuit missionaries during the colonial period. A grand total of 16 chapels have been listed as World Heritage sites. It’s not hard to see why…

7. The awe-inspiring shapes and colours of Lauca National Park

A picture often paints a thousand words. Put simply, this shot leaves us speechless. Explore more of Chile's unmissable national parks here.

8. The delicacy of Valparaíso 

One of the first Chilean cities founded by the Spanish in 1541, Valparaíso was Santiago's thriving port for centuries. It is spread across some spectacularly steep hills, with stairways and streets winding up past splendid ageing buildings, many built by the British in the 19th Century. Tour the port and its neighbouring beach resort, Vina del Mar, on Insight Guides' Wine Country Explored holiday.  

9. The surrounding views of Puerto Varas

Lago Llanquihue is the grandaddy of all the Chilean lakes. It is South America's fourth-largest, covering some 877sq km (339 sq miles) and stretches nearly 50km (30 miles) from Puerto Octay to Puerto Varas on the south shore. The views from Puerto Varas across to Volcán Osorno (pictured) and Volcán Puntiagudo are breathtaking, and summer activities abound making it a fun place to include on your trip itinerary. One of the most visited sites in Chile, you'll need a local expert to help you steer clear of the crowds. Talk to one directly today to being planning your holiday.

10. The majesty of Torres del Paine... Again

How can you resist views like this? Experience them for yourself on Insight Guides' Wild Patagonia holiday. Be warned, the scenery is surreal. 

Taking a holiday to Chile: how to get started

Insight Guides can help you with planning, organising and booking your own trip to Chile. Get in touch and share your budget, interests and travel style. Our local experts will create an itinerary exclusive to you and your requirements, which you can amend until it's just right. Alternatively, browse and modify ready-made holidays to create your dream trip today.