Cerro Blanco is in Santiago, Chile, rising 89 meters above its terrain and covering an area of 28 hectares. “Blanco” means “white” in Spanish. The town got its name after the white habit used by Dominicans who used to own the land during its colonial period.
Fast forward to the present, Cerro Blanco has become a famous tourist destination because of its rich heritage and scenic locations. Situated near the Andes, Cerro Blanco is surrounded by mountains and hills, which means there are many opportunities for tourists to bask in its panoramic views.
Cerro Blanco is a haven for hiking enthusiasts, and one must-visit place is Cerro de Ramon. Cerro de Ramon towers over Santiago, with a starting point named Quebrada de Macul, or the “green lung” of Santiago. This hike requires three days: two days of base camp, and the last day on the road towards the summit.
The Cerro de Ramon hike can prove to be challenging for beginners. There are limited places to collect water from such a small trail and the wildlife is another issue. The Chilean Red Fox will most likely be territorial upon seeing hikers. Still, it adds to the charm of the hike, attracting tourists and adventure enthusiasts from all over the planet.
Another famous trail is Cerro La Campana, near the La Campana National Park, two hours from Santiago. The park is accessible by bus (via Santiago’s Alameda bus terminal) or with a 4×4 that can pass through the Pan-American Highway to Til-Til and Cordillera de la Costa. Cerro La Campana is perfect for beginners; it only takes four to five hours to reach the summit from the bottom. Throughout the trail, there is much to see and explore.
Travel website Outside Online named the Atacama as one of the best travel destinations in the world. Why? Because of its lush natural offering: its night sky. A huge number of scientists and tourists visit the Atacama Desert every year because of its crystal clear and lucid skies. Soon enough, Chile became the center of astronomical studies globally. Sky & Telescope magazine, a leading publisher of astronomy news, recently journeyed to the Atacama Desert for the stargazing trip of a lifetime. The tour kicked off in Santiago, where a stop at University of Chile’s astronomy department took place.
The itinerary of stargazing tours usually includes several flights within Chile. One goes to La Serena, a picturesque coastal city. Once in La Serena, tourists can go around Coquimbo, or spend a night at the Observatory Collowara. The astronomers of Collowara accompany guests as they view stars dotting the Southern Hemisphere, where also the large and small Magellanic Clouds and Tarantula Nebula can be seen.
The highlight of all stargazing trips to Chile, of course, is a trip to Calama, in the Atacama Desert. The tourist town of San Pedro de Atacama is home to travelers who seek to spend several days exploring the Valley of the Moon, Valley of Mas, and Rainbow Valley. There, tourists can spend hours of stargazing at night, even without the aid of a telescope.
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