Santiago (Valparaiso)
01/24/2020 12:00 AM
01/24/2020 12:00 AM
Embark your ship in Santiago's port this morning, Chile's modern capital blanketed with green parks and set at the foot of snow-capped Andean peaks. Settle into your veranda stateroom and take time to explore your ship or the port of Valparaíso. Blessed with a magnificent setting in a steep natural amphitheater turned toward the Pacific, Valparaíso charms visitors with its colorful labyrinthine streets that rise up from the water's edge and through the hills. Funiculars carry pedestrians up and down the slopes, where they ascend to marvel at the views over the port, and where artists, authors, and poets have come for generations seeking inspiration.

Optional Private Excursions available for purchase

Avoid the crowds and hustle and bustle associated with a group activity. For a memorable trip ashore, we invite you to consider a private shore excursion. Enjoy the undivided attention of your own driver/guide and the flexibility of experiencing the aspects of the local culture that most interest you. Below are just some samples of the private shore excursions we can arrange for you. Give us a call or email us. Let us personalize your experience!

Valparaiso - Santiago City Tour
 Chile’s capital, nestled in the central valley, right below the imposing Andes. This city mixes the “Mapuche” legacy, the natives that inhabited this land during the Pre-Columbian era, our Spanish colonial past and the modernity of any thriving city of the world.  Walk its streets, visit its museums, engage with its architecture and become a part of it.  Historical and contemporary features combined in the heart of Chile.
 
Departure from Valparaiso pier towards Santiago, the city downtown awaits you.  Proceed through the main avenue of the city, Alameda del Libertador General Bernardo O’Higgins, passing by the San Francisco Church, the oldest monument of the country erected in 1568 housing a convent, miraculously withstanding several earthquakes.
 
Start off by visiting the Santa Lucía Hill, where the Spanish conquistador Pedro de Valdivia founded the city on February 12th 1541.  After a quick visit to its top, descend to visit the Lastarria Neighborhood, located right below the hill.  This recently renovated neighborhood houses little cute cafés, exquisite restaurants and a couple of museums worth visiting (time permitting).         
 
From here, you will be taken to the La Moneda Palace, nowadays the neoclassical style government palace, but originally constructed to house the Mint of the Spanish Crown during the 18th century.
 
A few blocks away, walk along Paseo Ahumada until reaching Plaza de Armas (The Main Square).  This bustling spot houses the oldest buildings of the capital: the Cathedral Church of Santiago, rebuilt in 1748 on the very site where all four previous churches were destroyed by fires and earthquakes, the Central Post Office and the National Historical Museum, the former “Real Audiencia” or Spanish Royal Court.
 
A little further, cross the Mapocho River and head straight towards the Bellavista Neighbourhood, a lively place, core of the night and artistic life, where pubs, cultural centers and international gastronomy can be found. 
 
Ascend the San Cristóbal Hill, a spur of the Andes marching into Santiago, where the famous Virgin Mary statue overlooks the city.  Enjoy a panoramic view of the city with the majestic Andes in the background.
 
Today, you will be able to choose between visiting the House Museum of Pablo Neruda,  “La Chascona”, which name our poet gave this house, as reference to an unkempt hairdo, which is how he liked to call his lover and then third wife, doña Matilde Urrutia.  Or, if you prefer, you could visit the Archaeological Museum, which displays ancestral Chile in two halls covering 175 m2, with objects that were destined for everyday and ceremonial use, a Chinchorro culture mummy, and recreations of scenes in which groups of indigenous peoples from San Pedro de Atacama consume hallucinogenic substances.
 
Conclude this day with having lunch in a restaurant you choose.  After that, transfer to back to the pier.
Santiago: Valparaiso and Casablanca Valley - full day
Your journey begins right after being picked up at the Pier of Valparaiso, heading straight into the Casablanca Valley, one of the main wine valleys of the country, emerging amidst the Chilean Coastal Range.  Here the gentle sea breeze coming from the ocean creates the perfect climate to produce excellent white wines. 
 
Visit Matetic Vineyards, located 100 km from Santiago and 40 km from Valparaíso or Viña del Mar, in the surroundings of the San Antonio Valley.  This completely enclosed valley, which is 9,000 hectares in length and perpendicular to the ocean, features extraordinary light and possesses the ideal climatic and topographic conditions for both red and white organic wines.
 
East of the Casablanca Valley, Santiago´s downtown awaits you.  Proceed through the main avenue of the city, Alameda del Libertador General Bernardo O’Higgins, passing by the San Francisco Church, the oldest monument of the country erected in 1568 housing a convent, miraculously withstanding several earthquakes.
 
Start off by visiting the Santa Lucía Hill, where the Spanish conquistador Pedro de Valdivia founded the city on February 12th 1541.  After a quick visit to its top, descend to visit the Lastarria Neighborhood, located right below the hill.  This recently renovated neighborhood houses little cute cafés, exquisite restaurants and a couple of museums worth visiting (time permitting).          
 
From here, you will be taken to the La Moneda Palace, nowadays the neoclassical style government palace, but originally constructed to house the Mint of the Spanish Crown during the 18th century.
 
A few blocks away, walk along Paseo Ahumada until reaching Plaza de Armas (The Main Square).  When Pedro de Valdivia founded Santiago in 1541, he laid out this square as the heart of the newly-formed city.  This bustling spot houses the oldest buildings of the capital: the Cathedral Church of Santiago, rebuilt in 1748 on the very site where all four previous churches were destroyed by fires and earthquakes, the Central Post Office and the National Historical Museum, the former “Real Audiencia” or Spanish Royal Court.
 
A little further, cross the Mapocho River and head straight towards the Bellavista Neighbourhood, a lively place, core of the night and artistic life, where pubs, cultural centres and international gastronomy can be found.  From there, ascend the San Cristóbal Hill, a spur of the Andes marching into Santiago, where the famous Virgin Mary statue overlooks the city.  Enjoy a panoramic view of the city with the majestic Andes in the background.
 
Return to the pier.
Santiago: Valparaiso - 2.5 hours
Travelers will depart the pier to the metro station... From the Cruise Passenger Terminal begin discovering the port city via its metro system until reaching to the final station called “Puerto” to enjoy a brief walk at the city´s wharf (Muelle Prat).

Next continue by taking a private bus to the “Artillería” lift, up to 21 de Mayo lookout point. See the imposing view of the city, the port activity and further more learn how the city has developed over recent years.  Descend and board again private bus towards Plaza Sotomayor. Have a glimpse en route to one of the oldest and most historical squares of Valparaiso “Plaza Echaurren. Once at the Plaza Sotomayor, see the monument in honour of the Pacific War heroes and then ascend via El Peral cable-car to Cerro Alegre, visit Yugoslavo promenade, pass by the Baburizza Palace and have another amazing view of the bay.

Continue walking from one hill to the other up to San Luis Square on Concepcion Hill, with its 19th Century architecture such as St. Paul’s and Lutheran churches, as well as Gervasoni and Atkinson alleyways. Once descending by walking to downtown, return by metro to the Cruise Terminal.

Return to pier by Metro.   

Tour Duration: 2.5 hours
Tour can operate: Morning/Afternoon
Wheelchair accessible: No
Physical Activity Level : Moderate

Inclusions:
  • Public Transport tickets
  • ½ bottled mineral water
Exclusions:
  • Gratuities for guide and driver
  • Any item not mentioned in the itinerary
Valparaiso: Encounter with the Art - 4 hours
HIGHLIGHTS OF THIS EXCURSION
  • La Sebastiana –  Pablo Neruda Museum
  • A local artist’s studio
 
DESCRIPTION
 
Picturesque Valparaiso was one of the first Chilean cities founded by the Spanish in 1536.
 
A thriving port for centuries, modern Valparaiso remains Chile’s primary outlet to the sea. In 1906, a vicious earthquake struck the city, toppling hundreds of the city's priceless monuments. This earthquake, however, would be a portent of things to come: The truly fatal blow to Valparaiso would come 8 years later. In 1914, the first international ship crossed the Panama Canal. The golden age of Valparaiso had come to an end. After years of gloom and decay, the historic port and university town is now living something of a revival. The Chilean government has pledged both economic and structural support to the city, and private entities are implementing projects that seek to trigger an urban renaissance in Valparaiso as a world heritage city and Chile's cultural capital. Among the priorities are culture, heritage preservation, and economic development via tourism. This effort culminated in UNESCO naming Valparaiso’s Historic Quarter a World Heritage Site in 2003.
 
Immigrants from all over the world have chosen to stay and leave their mark on this peculiar city.
Since over 450 years, this strategic port in the western coast of the South American continent has been the subject of interest for many renamed visitor. First visited by Drake and later on by Dutch pirates, left in ruins by Spanish cannons’ fire and reconstructed many times after numerous earthquakes, Valparaíso is a handmade city, a result of human intervention and an example of urban resilience.
 
During your 4-hour tour you will have the chance to see Valparaíso distinctively spontaneous hill neighbourhoods and their vernacular architecture, including more than a dozen ascensores (funicular cable cars) that connect the port with its surrounding heights.  This is a great city to explore on foot so that you can grasp its beauty.
 
One of the highlights of the tour will surely be Chilean Nobel Prize-winning poet Pablo Neruda’s Valparaiso residence, “La Sebastiana”. The house is full to the brim with the eccentric genius’ keepsakes from his many trips abroad, as well as an extensive library.
 
Also during your visit you will get the opportunity to visit the studio/gallery of a local artist who will be pleased to meet you and sharing with you his passion for art and his life experience in this bohemian city in front of the Pacific Ocean, a constant source of inspiration for many other artists

OBSERVATIONS
  1. Includes the services of an English-speaking guide.
  2. Bottled mineral water included.
  3. Entrance fee to the museums are included. 
  4. Museums are closed on Mondays.

*Travellers will be transferred from the pier to the excursion sites by car
 
Valparaiso - Wines of the Casablanca Valley
HIGHLIGHTS OF THIS EXCURSION
 
  • Tour and Tasting at two emblematic vineyards of the Casablanca valley
  
DESCRIPTION
 
This morning you will be welcomed at the Valparaíso pier by your guide who will escort you on your private tour to the Casablanca valley.
 
The Casablanca Valley is a sub-region of the Aconcagua Valley, but its vineyards – first planted in the early 1980s – have earned worldwide recognition in a relatively short space of time. The warm, temperate climate of the area is greatly influenced by the coastal sea breezes, which in combination with a perfect terroir in a valley situated on the coastal plane, with distant hills and slopes rising no more than 400 meters above sea level provide ideal conditions for certain varieties of grape. It is not unlike Santa Barbara and portions of Sonoma, and fittingly, the grapes that have done best over the past half-decade or so have been Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. While the area is best known for its crisp white wines, in particular Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay, varieties such as Gewürtztraminer and certain lighter reds such as Pinot Noir are fast becoming the varieties du jour.
 
The first visit will be made at the Casas del Bosque vineyard where the visit will commence with a tour of the winery and cellars. Continue with a tasting focussing on their superb, award-winning red and white wines including their award-winning Sauvignon Blanc Reserve 2004. A selection of dried fruits and cheeses will be served to accompany the wines during the tastings.
 
Then continue to the Matetic winery.
 
The new Matetic vineyard, designed by the Viña Matetic team in cooperation with architect Lawrence Odfjell, is a state-of-the-art winemaking facility, constructed so as to complement its glorious setting. In other words, harmony has been reached between the winery´s organic agricultural practices and the natural landscape of the valley.
 
Upon arrival to the vineyard you will be greeted and invited to listen to a brief introductory speech about the vineyard history and the different phases of wine production while appreciating stunning views of the vineyards and the beautiful Rosario Valley. Then you will proceed to the tasting room where you will sample the high quality Matetic wines.
 
Lunch today will be served at excellent Matetic Winery’s restaurant.


Notes:
  1. Includes the services of an English-speaking guide.
  2. Bottled mineral water available in the vehicle

*Travelers will be transferred from the pier to the excursion sites by car

Destination Guide