Spending Valentine’s Day in Santiago, Chile

Events, Nightlife, Things to Do — By Bearshapedsphere (Eileen Smith) on February 7, 2011 at 4:11 pm

By not francois on Flickr

Valentine’s day, like many other Americanish holidays, does not make a giant splash in this city way south of the equator. The truth is, though you can see pink paper hearts and other trappings of the holiday popping up around Santiago, foil wrapped chocolates in pink and silver are not found at the grocery store, cardstores do not fill with sweet nothings, and there is not an abundance of little bears with their arms stretched out saying, “I love you this much!”

But that doesn’t mean people don’t celebrate the holiday here. In fact, last night I was out and the restaurant had a little display saying “Feliz Día del Amor” (happy day of love), but it was the first sign of sentimentality I’d seen here this year, and the big day is only a week away!

If you’re going to be in Santiago for the big day, remember that it’s not all chocolates and flowers (readily available, but not that practical when travelling, to be honest!). Try out some of these fun, romantic to-dos for Valentine’s day in Santiago.

To do:

Wine tour. Take a wine tour and overlook the plantings while you sip delicious Chilean wines, like the world-class Merlots and Carmenere or a refreshing white like Chardonnay or Sauvingon Blanc for the heat.

Cheaper version: follow the instructions here for how to get to a winery on little more than public transportation and your high school spanish.

To observe:

Watch as the sun goes down over the city from atop Cerro San Cristobal, pisco sour optional.

Take a walk up to the sculpture garden over at Pedro de Valdivia in Providencia

To eat:

Restaurants like Zully in Plaza Concha y Toro are bound to be buzzing with couples on Valentine’s day, as are SQ (formerly Squella), with its heavy doses of oysters on the menu. The indie see-and-be-seen crowd will choose Ky for the fusion food and trendy, tiny martinis. Lovers of nouveau Peruvian cuisine and those with fine taste will choose Astrid y Gastón, and make a reservation ahora ya (already) if they want to get in that night.

To walk:

You might want to try out Paris Londres, Lastarria’s Plaza Mulato Gil or Plaza Concha y Toro for some sweet European-feeling backdrops, or maybe a stroll through Parque Forestal this time of year sounds perfect. Don’t miss the Mapocho as a canvas for light after dark.

And have a Happy Valentine’s day!

Tags: Chile, heart, love, romance, romantic, Santiago, valentine's day