Santiago, Chile' capital is an energetic city packed with culture, stunning landscapes, soaring mountains, world-famous vineyards like Concha y Toro, has a buzzing nightlife and imaginative cuisine. There are a diverse range of outdoor activities on offer from hiking El Morado National Park, visit Patagonia, relax in hot springs, and even ride the rapids on a rafting trip down the Maipo River. With Latin American character and European flair shaping its art-centric barrios (neighbourhoods), along the streets you'll find centuries-old mansions and grand cathedrals situated next to cutting-edge shops and trendy galleries. Be sure to soak in the scenery from Santa Lucía Hill or sit down for a meal in the Barrio Italia with Chilean wine and wander through the Plaza de Armas to see the Metropolitan Cathedral. It’s a diverse city with plenty on offer in Santiago.
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Santiago travel information
When to visit
The best time to visit Santiago is from September to November or from March to May; these months mark the spring and fall shoulder seasons in Chile. Temperatures in spring and fall range from 10°C to 18°C. These are the best times to visit The Lakes District with its lush foliage and the wine country has it's harvest. The wild landscapes of Patagonia are most accessible to adventurers from November to February. Summer (December to February) can reach over 38°C in the day, though it’s a good time to visit the beaches.
What is the main airport called?
Arturo Merino Benítez International Airport (SCL).Opens external site in a new window Also known as Santiago International Airport and Nuevo Pudahuel Airport, located in Pudahuel, 15 km north-west of downtown Santiago, Chile.
Arriving in Santiago
The helpful staff at Santiago Airport will greet you when you land and assist you with your travel needs. Once you collect your bags from the arrivals area, there are various transport options available to get you on your way.
Getting into Santiago from Santiago Airport
Getting into Santiago is easy, with a range of transport options available, depending on your travel needs. Choose from bus, taxi, ride share, hotel transfers or rental cars. A couple of different bus companies operate from Santiago Airport, TurBus Aeropuerto and Centropuerto. Buses depart every 30 minutes and it takes around 45 minutes to get to downtown. Taxi is the most convenient option with a journey time between 20 and 45 minutes depending on the traffic. Santiago Airport has a controlled route system known as “Vía Controlada” that provides a taxi service. It lets you know the fare before taking the taxi and ensure the driver has a licence to operate at the airport. Black and yellow are the regular metered taxis and blue are the tourist ones that charged a fixed price according to the destination, so it’s best to take a yellow taxi. The taxi rank is outside the main terminal building. Uber is a reliable way to travel, if your Spanish is not up to speed and can be booked through the app. You may wish to organise a hotel transfer to get to your destination.
Getting around Santiago
With a public transport system consisting of a metro, train, buses and taxis, getting around in Santiago is relatively easy. When using public transport, its best to buy a bip card, a contactless smart card to use on the bus and metro. Santiago’s metro system is the easiest and fastest way to get around the city. The trains are clean and reliable and serve all the main attractions. The bus network is extensive with easy to navigate routes and modern green and white buses operate on all the main lines. Taxis are abundant in Santiago and its best to take the black and yellow taxis, as they are metered. You can hail them on the street or call ahead. Ride share services such as Uber operate the city, and a good option if you don’t speak Spanish. It is possible to hire a car, though with reliable transport options it may not be necessary. As a relatively flat city, it’s easy to walk short distances, or you may wish to hire a bike and cycle along the paths to take in the sights.
Can I cancel my flight booking due to COVID-19?
If your flights were booked through a travel agency or third-party website, please contact them directly to discuss your options.
If we’ve cancelled your Qantas flight, including your Classic Flight Reward booking, wait to hear from us before changing your booking. We’ll contact anyone whose flight has been impacted as soon as possible.