We can offer an itinerary that includes transfers in and out and hotel accommodation here. This can be a standalone itinerary or form part of your wider Chile (Argentina or Peru) itinerary. We suggest a minimum of 2 nights here, ideally 3 or more in order to relax pre or post you main Chile itinerary.
The central Pacific Coast of Chile is the coastal line, west of Santiago, that runs roughly from between 100km north of Santiago to 200 km south of Santiago. This stretch of coast offers numerous sandy beaches, sea-food restaurants, hot, sunny summer days and great sun sets. However, in the summer months it is also common for there to be an early morning mist that usually burns off around midday. Although the glistening sea is extremely inviting the sea temperature is very cold! This is a consequence of the cold Humbolt current that runs up along the entire coast from the freezing waters of Antarctica.
Zapallar is 181km north-east of Santiago by road and 75km north of Viña del Mar. We tried to keep this place a secret for some time, but it has now, unfortunately, been “discovered”. It comprises a very small bay with sandy beach, a simple village and two beach side restaurants – one is known for its fish menu and the other for a more general menu. The fish one is called “Chiringuito’s” situated right next to the sea with views to the fishing boats and back to Zapallar beach. Unfortunately, due to commercial greed the owner has made the big mistake of modernizing it and this has resulted in a loss of much of the charm and magic it once had. It is, however, firmly ensconced on the “must go to” restaurants by the rich and famous, but is also now quite expensive. There are still the simple wooden tables, parasols, and old fishing boat forming the bar. The hills in Zapallar that back up from the beach are covered in large houses, owned by wealthy Chileans as weekend and summer houses.
This is a tiny, still rustic, village south of the neighbouring Zapallar. It comprises a conurbation of moderate-style holiday homes (although each year that passes more modern luxury-level houses are being constructed), and a very long, sandy beach. One end of the beach is bordered by a sandstone cliff face, into which are built some impressive “Hollywood”-style houses, and at the other, northern end of the beach, there is a restaurant and small island which is home to some Humboldt penguins and pelicans. Also from the northern end of the beach is a footpath that links up to Zapallar, passing by another small sandy beach and impressively-large “deluxe” houses, wooded areas and lovely wild flowers in the Spring (November time).
Vina del Mar
This is Chile’s principal sea-side city located 120km to the north-west of Santiago, offering beaches, night life and an all-night casino. In the summer months it is very popular and consequently packed with holiday makers including many Argentineans who come over from Mendoza. Unless you have a special desire to come to Viña in the summer our advice is avoid it.
All of the destinations mentioned on the Central Pacific Coast of Chile are accessible by car (or other vehicle) from Santiago. The drive time ranges from 1.5hrs to Viña del Mar to 2.5hrs to Colchagua and Zapallar.
San Fernando Weather
The places of interest are really the destinations themselves. So at Zapallar it is the beach, footpaths that border the coast and a couple that pass through the woods, the sea-food, fisherman’s restaurant called Chiringuitos. At Cachagua it is the beach itself, the footpath that links u to Zapallar and the restaurant at the northern end (which is actually the end people arrive to from the village).
Summer clothes such as short-sleeved shirts, shorts, but always bring warmer tops and longer pants for the cool evenings. Hat, sun glasses and always sun-screen cream.
Our selection of hotels includes many of the most popular accomodations in South America. You’ll find the perfect hotel in your budget.
PACIFIC COAST (CENTRAL)
The Central Pacific coast is similar to the Californian coast. Sun and sandy beaches, coastal cliffs and steep, brown-parched hills rising up into the coastal mountains. Key places of interest are: Zapallar, Colchagua and Viña del Mar.