Don't miss these Chile attractions
Juan Fernandez Archipelago
Juan Fernandez Archipelago, is made famous by its connection to Robinson Crusoe, and one of the three islands is named for the fantastic character based on Alexander Selkirk, the Scottish castaway who spent four years there. The archipelago is 670 km (418 miles) off the central coast of Chile. Getting there is somewhat tricky, but always at the pleasure of the weather. Boats from Valparaiso have their schedules rearranged by erratic weather, and flights from Santiago may be cancelled if the dirt runway is rained out. Once on the islands, though, the trip is worth the trouble for their historical significance and unique flora and fauna.
Plaza de Armas
This central plaza features famous monuments, the Governor's palace, is the point from which all distances to other parts of Chile are measured.
Museo Interactivo Mirador
Calling itself a 'park of the imagination', this museum offers children and adults the chance to play and learn at the same time. There are guided tours led by staff members, whose mission is to engage visitors in learning by doing. Each visitor is encouraged to take part in the interactive exhibits instead of just looking at them from a removed distance. The museum originated with an idea by former First Lady Marta Larraechea de Frei, and it was one of her last achievements while involved with the government.
Museo Corporación Fonck
The Museo Corporacion Fonck was built at the beginning of the 20th century to house the prosperous Delano family, this impressive-looking building was eventually obtained by the local Municipal Authorities in 1985, and they then transformed it into a museum. There are two main sections to visit: a natural history department dedicated to Chile's native fauna and flora; and an archaeological department offering a permanent display related to the native people of Northern Chile, the Aconcagua region and the Mapuche in the south of the country.
Parque Nacional Lauca
Parque Nacional Lauca is northern Chile's natural treasure. This huge park is home to herds of (related to the chinchilla) and over 100 bird species, including flamingos and Andean gulls, plus archaeological landmarks. One fantastic feature is Lago Chungará, one of the world's highest lakes, at the foot of the dormant twin Payachata volcanos.