28 October 2011

Cavorting in Chile: Cerro Santa Lucía

A visit to Santiago will never be complete without paying a visit to the Cerro Santa Lucía, which is a small hill right in the middle of the city. It borders the main avenue of the city, Avenida Libertador General Bernardo O'Higgins. A metro station is nearby, and so was the hostel that we were staying while we were there.

There are many things that can be seen inside this hill. Entry is free, but the guards ask you where you are from, with respect to citizenship.

This is a balcony made of bricks that is located near the back entrance: we entered the hill from the north, which is the smaller and less grand entrance. The grand entrance with the fountain of Neptune is on the south, something that I will see later on exit.

Another feature inside is the Castillo Hidalgo: I think it is an old mansion that is now used as a private office. I remember seeing signs saying something about the Chilean observatory, but I am not sure.

One can see good views of the Chilean skyline here. You can see that the mountains are right there, as Santiago rests on a valley in between the Andes. I believe that once you cross these mountains, then you'll end up in Argentina.

The hill is peppered with various statues: this is one I stumbled upon.

There is also a fort-like structure in the middle of the hill: people can climb that and see awesome views of the city as well.

There's also pieces of artwork that are inspired by the local indigenous culture.

I found this little statue underneath a tree, reading. I found it quite interesting and intriguing.

Finally, the gate of Neptune. This is actually the main entrance, facing the main avenue. I loved the yellow color of this structure, and I saw plenty of people taking photos of them in front of it.

So that was my visit to Cerro Santa Lucía. For my next update in this series, watch out for another Santiago landmark!


  1. You got good skyline pictures!

    I don't remember being asked anything. Citizenship doesn't really say much, does it!

  2. Zhu,

    Thanks! I was amazed at the Santiago skyline: there's the buildings, and just beyond them the mountains!

  3. So beautiful! I love that statue reading. The fountain of neptune looks just like the Fontana Neptuno (don't know if I got the spelling right) at the Piazza Novana.

  4. Toe,

    Now that you mention it, I think the Fountain of Neptune reminds me of another fountain, the Fontana di Trevi, due to the way the water flows down.

  5. This was the little hill I missed - I knew it was there, saw it even from Cerro San Cristobal, but was running out of time. When I saw a picture of Che posing right there mismo, I smacked myself (read: go next time).

  6. Dennis,

    Haha, funny you missed this hill, but we missed Cerro San Cristobal! We were at its doorstep: we spent quite a bit of time at the neighborhood near the entrance (Barrio Bellavista), which had plenty of nice restaurants, but never really had the time to climb up the hill next to it!