Chilean Guanacos or Patagonian Llamas in the Grass Close to Torres del Paine National Park, Chile

Experience All the Highlights of Chile in 10 Days!

Are you craving a South American adventure? Chile, the long, thin country on the continent’s west coast, doesn’t often get attention it deserves as a vacation destination. If you’re fortunately headed for a Chile vacation for the first time but don’t have as long as you would like, don’t worry. Even if you have only 10 days, you can experience all the highlights of this country.

First, decide on a focus for your trip. Seeking to explore Chile’s cultural sites? Do you want to treat your inner adrenaline fiend to some heart-pumping thrills? Are you interested in touring the country from top to bottom? Once you decide on the goal, you can start planning with our Goway South American expert.

Here is a glimpse of what you can do in Chile in 10 days:

All About Chile
Look at Chile on a map and you’ll notice the country’s distinct shape. In fact, at 2,600 miles down the coast from north to south, Chile is the longest country in the world and one of the narrowest, averaging 109 miles wide from west to east.

The northern region holds the Atacama Desert, which some experts believe is the driest desert in the world. In some desert parts, close to 400 years have passed since the last drop of rain fell. The desert has rocky landscapes and mesmerizing lake oases. You’ll see the abandoned houses of some of Chile’s indigenous people. Stick around after nightfall. The desert’s high elevation, coupled with a lack of clouds, offer a prime spot for stargazing.

Atacama Desert, Chile
Atacama Desert

In central Chile, you’ll find the Lake District, where lush green landscapes will make it seem impossible that the Atacama Desert exists in the same country. Snow-capped mountains reflect themselves in shimmering blue lakes that sparkle like fields of diamonds in the sun.

Southern Chile features a part of Patagonia, where mountains, fjords, and a vast ice field will mesmerize the eyes. Some travellers call Patagonia “the end of the world” for its awe-inspiring wilderness. In Patagonia, you can hike, bike, cycle, ride a horse, go kayaking, or sit down with your sketchbook to record the scenery.

To the west is the famed Easter Island, where the magnificent ancient statues that dot the island wait to greet you, plus a museum and volcanic crater. You can also go snorkeling or surfing off the coast.

Like products of the vine? Chile has some of the best wineries in the world. The Viu Manent and Santa Cruz wineries are both worth the visit and the sips.

Easter Island, Chile
Easter Island

10-Day Travel Itinerary Options
Below are some of your itinerary options if you want to see the best of Chile in 10 days.

Option 1: Go on an Adventure
Spend the first half of your trip in the Atacama. You’ll spend three nights at Hotel de Larache in San Pedro de Atacama, and the hotel will serve as your base for exploring the desert. Take in the area’s distinct flora, check out geysers, visit salt lakes, or stroll through the town. Horseback riding and walking tours are available.

While you’re in San Pedro, don’t miss the Valley of the Moon, which gets its name from its resemblance to the moon’s surface.

From San Pedro, head to the Lake District. Visit Puerto Varas, a lakeside town with 19th-century charm. Discover tranquil lake settings, visit Chiloe Island, and shop at eclectic local markets.

In total, this trip option is about nine days long.

Suggested Itineraries:
4-Day Atacama Experience
4-Day Best of the Lakes

San Pedro de Atacama beach, Chile
San Pedro de Atacama beach

Option 2: Focus on Culture
Chile is one of the best wine regions in the world, and you can spend a week sipping the country’s goodness from the vines. The tour will start and end in Santiago, but the time in between belongs to you. Some of the stops during the trip include Viu Manent Winery, Matetic Winery, and William Cole Winery.

After your week of wine, spend three days taking an Easter Island tour. Learn about the island’s fascinating history and take a dip into the waters off the beach.

Suggested Itineraries:
Santiago Like a Native Stopover
7-Day Chilean Wines
3-Day Easter Island Rapa Nui Hotel Taha Tai

Santiago sunset, Chile
Santiago sunset

Option 3: Get in Touch With Nature
Chile features some of the most alluring landscapes in the world. Experience both the Atacama and Patagonia regions, including the distinctive, contrasting landscape of the Torres del Paine National Park. Goway’s 8-Day Tierra Chile Top to Bottom tour leaves several days open so you can choose your own activities. Go for a relaxing walk, unwind at a spa, and delight your palate with Chilean cuisine.

Enter Argentina and enjoy three days at the magnificent Eolo Lodge in Patagonia. The lodge has a cozy, country feeling with all the modern amenities you’ll need. During your stay, you’ll visit Argentina’s Los Glaciares (Glacier) National Park.

Suggested Itineraries:
8-Day Tierra Chile Top to Bottom
3-Day Argentina Estancia (Eolo Lodge)

Horses grazing in Torres del Paine, Patagonia Chile
Horses grazing in Torres del Paine in Patagonia

Option 4: Take a Top-to-Bottom Tour
You can choose to see a bit of every part of Chile. Start off in Santiago, and spend a day exploring the city. Visit local markets, sample the cuisine, and take a cable car ride for the views. You may even decide to stay in Santiago for three days, where you can tour the attractions in the city centre and the craft village of Los Granerops del Alba.

From Santiago, head to the Atacama and spend four days discovering the richness of the desert landscape, plus an experience in Patagonia.

Suggested Itineraries:
3-Day Santiago Stopover
4-Day Atacama Experience
3-Day Explora Patagonia – Stay of Distinction

explora Lodge, Patagonia, Chile
explora Lodge, Patagonia

Planning Your Trip to Chile
Chile has geographic and historic wonders to merit an extended vacation, but if you have only 10 days, you can enjoy the country’s offerings to the fullest. A seasoned Goway South America travel expert can offer the tips you need to choose the perfect places to visit in Chile, whether you want adventure, wine, or some time with nature.

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Don Forster
Don Forster

Trade Training Manager — Born in Australia and raised in Canada and Papua New Guinea, Don took his first solo trip to Bali – aged just 13. Since then, Don’s travels have taken him to every continent. He’s been a backpacker in Asia, Europe and Egypt, an overland adventurer in East and Southern Africa, and an overland driver in South and Central America. He is especially fond of Peru, Patagonia and Namibia, though his longest adventure to date has been a London to Kathmandu run via the Middle East.

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