Vina Del Mar and Valparaiso

The Tale:

So I am not sure if you have heard this story before but it starts off with a Thai, a Dutch, a French and an Aussie go to Chile. Arriving at customs the Thai makes it through, the Dutch makes it through, the French makes it through but the Aussie is not so lucky. Please pay a $95 visa. Why because the lovely Australian government charge every man and his dog to come to Australia so other countries feel they should get their desserts too.

So the first sign in customs said $60, the sign at the counter said $90 and the man at the counter said $95. Why the different prices? I am yet to figure that out. Note to self research whether or not Visa’s are required when going to another country. Brazil, check, appointment booked at the embassy.

The first thing you notice about Chile is the people are very friendly.  If you look at all slightly lost someone will ask you if you need help and then they ask 3-5 other people to find out where you need to go, then we all stand around and chat for a bit and then someone will walk you to where you need to go. No need to pay for tours here, the people on the street are much better.

For the record men are absolutely useless..one of the guys who I was travelling with booked a hostel but didn’t think to write down the name or address for the place. So when we arrived in Vina Del Mar at 1am it was very challenging to find our hostel. The Lonely Planet book and some French/Spanish saved the day and we managed to find our bed. Then the next day we find out the area is very safe at night luckily I did not know this information when we were wandering the streets with all our bags looking like lost tourists.

After a great night of sleep it was time to jump up and hit the beach. Hold up where is the sun? Unlike other places Vina Del Mar often doesn’t let the sun out until the late afternoon. Which works in this beach town as it means you can party at night, sleep all morning and still not miss out on any of the sun. Note I say beachside town but don’t think Torquay or Byron Bay it is more like the size of Adelaide. Don’t quote me on that but you get the picture Vina Del Mar is big.

After some time enjoying the sun at the beach it was time to get some lunch. And more importantly it was time to taste my first Pisco Sour. The verdict DELICIOUS (but don’t think about the ingredients. Not a massive fan of drinking raw egg whites). It is also highly advised to have atleast one Pisco Sour a day whilst visiting Chile.

After we filled our tummies with empanadas and polished of the Pisco Sour it was time to head back to the beach and enjoy a frolick in the waves prior to an afternoon nap. Our afternoon naps where suddenly cut short as the waves decided to come out of nowhere and eat up half the beach. With the shout of my name I sprung into action but couldn’t find my bag and was in a hurry trying to get away from the water. Luckily I soon realised my bag was in my hand all along. 😛

On day two of our adventures we decided to flap our wings and jumped on a bus to Valpariso. Valparaíso is a seaside city and is one of the country’s most important seaports and an increasing cultural center in the Southwest Pacific hemisphere. Here we snapped up a storm like the paparazzi outside of a celebrity rehab centre. The buildings where colourful, the streets were steep and the food was great. Lunch today turned bigger than expected whilst enjoying a local seafood dish we also sipped on Pisco Sour, wine followed by shots of Limoncello. Well it was a shot for the Aussie after saying Salut (cheers) and going 1,2,3 I thought we were having shots then I looked to the left and saw the classy French and Thai sipping their after dinner drink. Feeling a little giddy after our alcoholic lunch we hopped on a bus and entertained the driver with our shenanigans.

With the sun still in the sky we headed back to the beach and enjoyed some volleyball with Argentineans who were also on vakay.

The night was then followed by Italian pasta, Chilean wine and Spanish sing along with drums and guitars.

The next day was the final day of our stay in Vina Del Mar for Frenchie and I. We quickly raced around the city to take the touristy shots we didn’t get around to because we were too busy enjoying the beach and drinks. We also had one final important thing to do before we left Vina Del Mar and that was to go to Entremasas where there is over 20 types of Empanadas on the menu! My oh my so many to choose from. Again stomaches were full and it was time to jump on another bus. Santiago here we come!

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