Our South America trip is done. Over. I already miss it a lot, from the guy who belts out Nirvana songs outside my window to spending afternoons in cozy cafes (no, Starbucks just doesn’t cut it).
I’m no where near done sharing about South America, but for now I thought I’ll do something a little more fun, while re-living some of my best memories!
If you don’t already know, I’m a big fan of Instagram (see my pictures here)! Here is a random selection of the top pictures from my South America trip (a few from each country). Some have made previous appearances on this blog, but I tried to pick ones that have never been shared.
This is a view of the sprawling city of Santiago from the top of Cerro San Cristobal. Or rather, this is a view down the funicular with the city of Santiago in the background.
Cerro San Cristobal is the highest hill in the metropolitan area of Santiago (easily recognized by the giant white Virgin Mary statue sitting on top). One scorching hot afternoon, we thought it’d be fun to hike up there, but we accidentally took the really long way around. Apparently, I underestimated the distance and overestimated how good of a shape I’m in. But the beautiful (and errr… smoggy) 360 degree view was so worth it. It was when I realized what a HUGE city Santiago is.
And obviously when it was time to come down, we opted to ride the funicular down. It was also when I learned what the heck a funicular is.
This gorgeous Mediterranean style villa is in Piriapolis, Uruguay. Casa Pueblo was the house of a Uruguayan artist, and now has hotel and restaurant attached to it, in the same style. It’s one of the most unique buildings in all of Uruguay! We only got to visit for just enough time to enjoy some empanadas on the terrace facing this view and the ocean.
When in Chile, of course we had to make a visit to a winery to sample the famous Chilean wines. We took a wine tour at Concha y Toro vineyards, just on the edge of Santiago. As part of the tour, we had the chance to walk into the vineyard and taste the grapes fresh off the vine (bonus that we went during harvest season!). I wish I could remember which grapes these were. They were so sweet and delicious! We were told that we can taste a couple, but I’m pretty sure I had at least a handful.
This gorgeous pier can be found at Caleta Portales, a tiny little fisherman’s wharf in between Valparaiso, Chile and Viña del Mar. Maybe I wanted to keep the memory of Portales sacred, but I’m not sure why I never wrote about it. I wanted to so badly, and I even tried, because it was truly one of the highlights of our time in Chile. But somehow I never found the perfect words to capture this place.
It’s not even so much of a destination. Probably the only real draw here is the popular Caleta Portales Restaurant, which boasts super fresh seafood with a view of the ocean. But when we got there, we decided to eat a tiny little green shack, that called itself “the king of fried fish”, instead.
We enjoyed our meal on the patio, facing the ocean and listening to the crash of the waves and the coos of the seagulls, as the local fisherman went about their business around us. After our plates have emptied (delicious! by the way), the owner of the little shack stepped out to clear the table, but didn’t hurry us along. Instead she smiled at us and remarked “isn’t it nice and relaxing out here?”
What do you think? :)
How freaking cute is this building?! I took this picture as I was walking through Barrio Sur in Montevideo one day. Barrio Sur is a working class neighborhood and primarily dominated by the Afro-Uruguayan population. The buildings have plenty of charm and a lot of them are brightly painted. I just loved this one.
One thing that captivated me about Montevideo is all the intricate designs and architectural elements on the building exteriors. This building in Montevideo Centro is probably the fanciest one that I’ve seen. The level of detail is just amazing. This is my absolute favorite building in Montevideo! We learned that it was originally a mansion for a wealthy family, then housed the prestigious Jockey club, before being left abandoned. Now the upper floors is a free Gaucho Museum.
Ummmm… am I really in South America?! This is Pocitos beach during dusk in Montevideo. It’s really the Rio de la Plata river that’s so wide that it stretches endlessly like an ocean. The entire city of Montevideo sits on a peninsula with the river surrounding it on all sides. But Pocitos (the higher class neighborhood) is the only area with a beach like this. I mean… seriously, it’s like Miami!
This is one of the most gorgeous sunsets during our stay in Santiago. I absolutely loved our apartment there (despite the poor hot water situation), because it had a set of huge French doors opening onto a patio, that directly faced the sunset. You can’t really ask for anything better than that!
This is one of my personal favorite pictures, taken in Buenos Aires by Plaza de Mayo. That area is just blocks and blocks of old gorgeous buildings.
This beautiful, peaceful greenery was taken in the Japanese Gardens in Buenos Aires. It’s hard to believe that this peaceful little bit of heaven is right in the middle of a city! Too much of city life tires me out, so it’s nice to recharge and get away from it for a bit, even if the nature is man-made!
Ok, I’ve already shared and written about this at length, but everyone loves the Patagonian maras! How can you not?! Here’s one last look at its cute little nose and whiskers. I snapped this shot at the Buenos Aires Zoo as a mara got a little too curious and close.
This photo of the gorgeous Rio de la Plata (the huge river with Argentina on one side and Uruguay on the other) was taken in Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay. After enjoying the sunset, we decided to have some fun with silhouettes! And yes, that pose took months of practice!
I hope you enjoyed this round-up! I’m writing this from Southern Califormia, where we are resting for 11 days before heading to Europe. It’s been a little weird coming back, even though I’ve only been gone for 3 months. We’ve gone back to our favorite restaurants, and for the first couple of days, I keep on wanting to communicate in Spanish by default: mesa para dos, or la cuenta por favor. It’s also a bit unsettling that the buzzing of English around me now sounds strange, after hearing only Spanish for months.
But adjusting back is actually pretty easy and I’m really enjoying our famous sunny weather. I’m just hanging out and revisiting old favorite places, as well as some new ones. Free feel to check out my Instagram account to follow along with my adventures at home!
This post is linked up to Budget Travelers Sandbox with Nancie.