Santiago is the capital of Chile with a historic and well preserved downtown. Cathedrals and Art Deco mansions punctuate an otherwise modern skyline. The country is one of the fastest growing and most developed in South America. Start with a private city tour of the top sights. Cross the main avenues of the city center and visit La Moneda Palace, the home of Chilean presidents until 1958. Continue to the downtown Main Square, the Cathedral Metropolitana of the XVIII century, Forestal Park, museums, and towards Bellavista, the Bohemian Quarter of Santiago. Enjoy a great panoramic city tour at San Cristóbal Hill - a beautiful public park dominated by the monumental sculpture of Virgin Mary (36 meter high). Visit a local vineyard and sample some of Chile's excellent wines before heading home. You'll want to tell your friends about Santiago, but you may want to keep it to yourself!
Upon your arrival you will be met by a local representative who will help you locate your vehicle.
Private airport transfer in Santiago with a guide and driver.
Lastarria Boutique Hotel is situated in an area brimming with history and surrounded by the best museums, galleries, trendy shops, antique stores, cinemas, theatres and innovative restaurants, this boutique Hotel offers guests the chance to discover the tremendous diversity of the city on their doorstep. Lastarria Boutique Hotel is the newest offering for guests seeking premium accommodation in Santiago de Chile. Its principal characteristics are the refined architecture with which this historic house was originally built, its garden with an outdoor swimming pool, spacious bedrooms and the private areas that help make you feel so at home. Lastarria Boutique Hotel is committed to offering a personalized and friendly service that ensures their guests experience an unforgettable stay within the utmost comfort.
Today, experience life as a local, otherwise known as a “Santiaguino”. Meet your guide at the hotel, and walk to the nearest Metro station to board one of the most efficient and clean subways in the world, (Metro ticket is included). Travel to the most important subway station in the city, Universidad de Chile, where gigantic murals by local artists are displayed, showing a piece of Chile’s rich urban culture. Exit the station in the middle of Santiago’s busy downtown. Walk around the the Stock Exchange and the classic streets, having a Santiago traditional coffee experience, in one of the many cafés called “Café con piernas” translated as coffee with legs…you will see firsthand where the name originates from. After enjoying coffee (not included) we will walk through the Paseo Ahumada, viewing the different shops and shoe shine stands and all sorts of local characters. We will arrive to the main square or Plaza de Armas which is a meeting point for several immigrants from neighboring countries. We will visit the Cathedral. We will continue walking through Puente Street which is characterized by the large amount of shoe stores where locals shop. We will reach the Mercado Central (local fish Market) where we will see the different types of fish and shellfish that the Pacific Ocean has to offer. In this market we will have lunch at one of the many restaurants enjoyed by locals and generally unknown to tourists. Your guide will be with you at all times explaining local culture and helping you to translate and interact with shop vendors, waiters and anyone you want to meet.
After lunch at Restaurant El Galeon, walk across the Mapocho river to visit the Vega Central (local food market) here you will see the different fruits and vegetables that the fertile lands of Chile offer. After the visit walk through the Bellavista district, also known as the bohemian district where you will enter a local bar to try out a refreshing local drink called “The Terremoto” which translates to the Earthquake (drink is not included). After this stop we continue to San Cristobal Hill. On the way we try out some of Chile’s classic and refreshing snacks such as Mote de Huesillos or any snack that you feel like.
At San Cristobal Hill we will reach the top in the traditional funicular. From the top enjoy a panoramic view of Santiago from which, with your guide, you can track the places visited during the day. Here, your vehicle will be waiting for you to take you back to your hotel after a day of exploring Santiago and being a true “Santiaguino”.
Pablo Neruda, who won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1971, is known for his poems, his collections of bric a brac from his journeys and his eclectic houses. The tour begins heading towards Isla Negra, where his house has been turned into a museum and library, stuffed with his manuscripts, collections of bottles, ships prows, shells and other items he collected during his life. Following lunch, return to Viña del Mar and stop at the other house in the port of Valparaíso for a visit to La Sebastiana, on Cerro Bellavista with an amazing view across the bay.
Casablanca is a transversal valley approximately 24 kilometres long that extends from the Zapata Tunnel to the Shrine of Lo Vásquez and covers a total of 22.000 hectares. Flanked by mountains, Route 68 runs through the middle of the valley like a backbone and connects Santiago with the port of Valparaiso. The Casablanca Valley forms part of the Coastel Range, a mountainous chain formed 180 million years ago. Today the valley hosts more than 5.000 hectares (11.120 acres) of plantations, which count with the highest technology used today including Frost control towers, Certified drop watering and keen managing of the vineyard that guaranty first quality grapes. This way, the valley of Casablanca has positioned itself as the best valley in Chile as well as abroad , for white wines, in particular Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay, and within the red wines with the Pinot Noir. On this day you will visit 2 premium vineyards with wine tasting included. Vina Emiliana and Casa Del Bosque.
Laura Iyer ,
January 10, 2014
We just returned last night from our Patagonia adventure and wanted to tell you we had the time of our lives! Everything turned out perfectly. Guides were fun, on time and informative. The excursions were great for an active family and, of course, amazing.
I can't tell you what was our favorite. The boys enjoyed exploring the mountains in El Chalten (they called it Mountain running) while Mohan and I relaxed in the beautiful hotel. I thought after the glacier trek it can't get any better - but it kept surprising me and amazing me. My personal favorite was the horseback riding. I thought afterwards after everything we have seen the bike tour would have to be a let down - NOPE - it also was so exciting and our guide was a hoot! We had great weather for each activity (I know there is a bit of luck involved with that one).
Meals were amazing and after so many active excursions no guilt in pigging out.
I am so happy we took a little risk and went out of the way with our vacation this year. We will have this with us for a life time.
Thank you again,
Laura, Mohan, Ryan, and Nathan
Catherine Dudley ,
January 10, 2014
Happy New Year!
GREAT trip! The brochure you sent to us the week before we set off was marvelous -- the pages are marked and worn with us referring to it so often! We were very pleased with every aspect that you set up for us including the airport pick-up and drop off and the tour of Quito and environs on Friday. Our guide spoke excellent English, the driver was courteous and we felt safe and well-informed throughout the day. The transfer to the Eclipse team was super easy and the flight to Guayaquil and trip to the boat went off without a hitch.
We're still going through the 500+ photos that I took and the 1700+ photos that my son took, but I promise to send a few to you in the next week or so. Galapagos was a fabulous trip and the Eclipse was a terrific way to navigate the islands. Gave them a 10 on their feedback form and would recommend Eclipse very highly.
Mark Dornfeld ,
November 11, 2013
"My wife and I had a wonderful trip, we really enjoyed ourselves. All the accommodations that you booked for us were exceptional and our drivers and guides were lovely. We had great weather the whole trip and only lost one activity due to high winds. As you know this is a beautiful part of the world so my camera was snapping all the time. We would definitely use your services in the future for this type of travel. Thanks for all you help and expertise........be well.....m.d."
Jack Gregory ,
November 11, 2013
I wanted to give you a little feedback on our recent trip to Peru.
In a word – EXCELLENT – especially the high quality people you work with in Peru. We have taken tours all over the world, S. Africa, France, England, Vietnam, China to name just a few, and the service we received in Peru was far beyond and of the other experiences we have had. The attention to detail was very much appreciated, picking us up at the airport, taking us back to the airport and complete, hassle free, handling of all our details truly made this a stress free experience.
Special thanks to:
-The entire reservation system and the people I came in contact with that process...every detail accounted for
-The people that looked after us in Lima
-Andre, the young man in Cusco who faithfully phoned every night just to make sure the day went well, my wife was well and that we knew what we had to do the next day.
-The Sumaq hotel in Aquas Calientes...you can tell the level of service by the details...I watched a waitress hold a high stool for a lady to prevent her from tipping backwards as she got on the stool, the lady didn’t even know the waitress did it....that’s client care.
-Especially Mariela, the tour guide in Cusco...highly knowledgeable, passionate, personable and shows great care for the people she guides.
Hainsworth Sherry ,
November 05, 2013
Clients were very impressed. Guides were amazing and accommodation was beyond expectations. They will definitely travel with you again and they have highly recommended Kensington Tours.
Hope I can work with you again the in the near future.
Scott Parks ,
November 05, 2013
Sandy and I are back from Peru and had a wonderful time. Kensington seems to have the best contacts in each country and Peru was no exception. I wanted to take the time to give you some specific feedback on each segment of out trip.
The “Hotel B” in Lima is fantastic. It’s an old house that has been turned into a small Hotel. The people are great and the location in Barranco is just what we like.
The Inkaterra Amazonica is probably the best place place to stay in the Amazon region. The rooms give a real feel of the sounds of the rain forest.
The hotels in both Cusco and Aquas Calientes were perfect with great locations. We added an additional day in Aquas Calientes which gave us three days in Machu Picchu. For us, this was well worth it and gave us the time we wanted to see all aspects of Machu Picchu. Pictures did not do justice to the site, although we got some great pictures.
The trip to see the Nasca Lines was, also, worth the time. Our guide added some side trips including lunch at a local winery which we really enjoyed. The Hotel Paracas was an unexpectedly high quality resort and a great way to end our trip.
Thanks for your help we look forward to next year
June Murray ,
August 20, 2013
"Buenas Noches Brandi-
I filled out the survey but I wanted to send you a note to say thank you. Our trip was the stuff lifelong memories are made of and I mean every part of it. From our time spent in Quito, to the Safari Camp and Isla Isabela. I cannot say enough about the professionalism of the staff at our accommodations and the expertise of all our guides (most especially Tanya Helmig at the Safari Camp). We hope to go back for an extended stay.
I have attached 2 photos for you of Bart and I. I think the joy is clearly evident- thank you for making it possible.
Barbara Mackey ,
July 22, 2013
"We just completed a family trip to Costa Rica, with three families traveling from different locations. All the coordination efforts were made easily and efficiently by our Kensington representative, Brandi Merchant, who was wonderful; an absolute delight to work with. All the accommodations were first class and the guides knowledgeable and very punctual. We will be using Kensington again!
Cindy Thoene ,
July 22, 2013
What an AMAZING trip!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Seriously…the trip of a lifetime!
We returned late on Thursday and had out of town visitors through the weekend and we are just now unpacking and getting back to non-vacation reality.
I will share my feedback and get pictures sent to you soon.
Thanks for everything….truly a perfect trip!
July 24, 2013
Our trip was wonderful, we had a great time, wish we could have spent more time. In fact, I now know I would have spent more time in Cuzco and the Machu Picchu area.
Machu Picchu was fabulous.
Margot, our guide, and the driver, were absolutely wonderful, low key, very personable, very accommodating, really good. We didn't end up with enough time on the last morning in Cusco to finish the tour, but got a feel- of Sacsayhuman, Qengo, Koricancha. We saw Ollayantatambo, and went to Moray and Maras, and Wayra ranch which was also outstanding, on the next day, but did not do Pisac and the market. We got tired and ran out of time so cut a couple things. Louis the coordinator was good as well.
Would love to go back and learn more some time.
The coordinator in Lima was extremely nice too, and very helpful.
In fact, we loved the food, the people and everything. The Libertador Palacio , the Tambo del Inka and the Sanctuary were indeed outstanding hotels. LAN was all on time, great service.
Thank you again for all your help.
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