Santiago tours and excursions
The four-hour walking tour takes place twice daily and starts by exploring the sights of Santiago's main square, Cathedral and City Hall, before taking in the colourful neighbourhoods of Lastarria and Bellavista. Tips are welcome.Tel: +569 9236 8789.
La Bicicleta Verde proudly boast that Sir Paul McCartney and Aerosmith's Steven Tyler are former patrons, and their four routes around Santiago certainly cover some legendary sites from the past.Tel: +562 2570 9939.
Valparaíso is a ramshackle city of multi-coloured mansions and houses balanced precariously on steep hills overlooking a historic port, two hours from Santiago. The heritage of Valparaíso is so unique that UNESCO declared the city a World Heritage Site in 2003. Every corner turned, alleyway walked or staircase climbed reveals a vibrant street scene or sweeping view of the sea and city - it is easy to see why artists and intellectuals have traditionally been attracted to the place. Among the best-known former residents is the poet Pablo Neruda, whose delightfully disordered former home La Sebastiana, Ricardo Ferrari 692 (tel: +563 2225 6606; www.lasebastiana-neruda.cl) is open Tuesday to Sunday 1000-1800 as an intriguing museum.
Viña Concha y Toro
Chile's wines have soared in international reputation and some of the country's best-known tipples are produced in the village of Pirque, just southeast of Santiago. Chile's largest winery, Concha y Toro is surrounded by seemingly endless fields of vines and blessed with spectacular views of the Andes. There are guided tours of the grounds and the adobe storehouses, which are full of huge oak barrels. Tours in English take place daily at regular intervals throughout the day. It can take one to two hours to reach the vineyard and you need to make a reservation in advance. Take the Metro to Plaza de Puente Alto on Line 4, then take the MetroBus or taxi to the winery, which is slightly more than five minutes away from the Metro station.Tel: +562 2476 5000.