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Top Santiago Attractions

The first time you visit Santiago, or any new destination, the question asked isn’t usually what attractions should be scene but what attraction to see first, what to expect, how to get there, and how much time is needed. We’ve provided tips, advice, and other information about the top tourist attractions in Santiago to help with your itinerary planning.

Contemporary Art Museum Contemporary Art Museum
Cousiño Palace Cousiño Palace
Santiago City Tour Santiago City Tour

Museum of Contemporary Art

 Address Parque Forestal s/n
 Hours Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. through 7 p.m.; Sundays and holidays from 11 a.m. through 5 p.m.

The Museum of Contemporary Art houses one of the most important collections of foreign artworks in South America. The museum’s objectives are “to maintain and strengthen its role as preserver of the national contemporary artistic memory, and to develop an annual agenda intended to maintain its positioning as the country's most important art center.” You will find an organized exhibition of paintings, sculptures and engravings by various Chilean artists throughout history. These include, among others, the work of internationally renowned artists such as Roberto Matta, Alfredo Jaar, Emilio Pettoruti, Isamu Noguchi and Hundertwasser. Because of the country’s commitment to its cultural development, it also houses works from new artists to breathe fresh life into Chile’s artistic scene. The building is located in a beautiful area of Santiago, so be sure to take time to enjoy the outdoors, as well as inside the museum.


Cousiño Palace

 Address Calle Dieciocho 438
 Phone 56 2 6985063

For a historical look at Santiago, visit this Versailles-style mansion, which is quite elegant and beautiful, and represents the way of life of the Chilean elite at the end of the 19th century. It was built by the aristocrat Mr. Luis Cousino with architect Paul Lathoud. Cousino built the residence to honor his wife, Isidora Govenechea, and show the extent of his fortune (one of the largest in the country).

The house has a two-story living room with a marble staircase as well as many bedrooms, a dining room and maintains all the original furniture. The house has various features including iron railings, wood, velvet, brocade and silk wall coverings. In 1941, the mansion and pieces of furniture were acquired by Santiago’s City Town Hall and later it became a museum and lodging place for visitors. In 1968, the second and third stories were destroyed in a fire, but were later restored.

The palace has been declared a national monument.


Half Day Santiago City Tours


If you want to see a lot in a little amount of time, why not buy a half-day city tour? With buses to take you along every stop, transportation will be a breeze, you cannot get lost and you will see an abundance of the city in no time at all. Discovery Tours will pick you up your hotel and bring you back in just a few hours and it will save your feet, time finding cabs and whipping out all the maps looking like an obvious tourist. The tour will start at the San Francisco Church, built between 1572 and 1618. It will then continue west to the “Club Hipico” horseracing course, considered one of the most beautiful in South America. You will then pass many important buildings, including the Palacio de la Moneda and Plaza de Armas (where you will see many important national monuments such as the Iglesia Catedral, Correo Central and the Municipalidad de Santiago). The tour will continue to the Santa Lucia Hill where the city was founded in 1541. You will cross the Mapocho River and pass through many residential districts, giving you a sight on life in Santiago. Discovery Tours will then bring you right back to your hotel. Please visit their website for further information.


Santiago Travel Guides
 Frommer's Santiago
 Lonely Planet Santiago
 Let's Go Santiago
 Fodors Santiago