I stopped by the Silversea desk to see if the welcome letters were available yet, and I was asked to come back in an hour.
We decided not to wait, and walked to the Hop On Hop Off Bus stop at the mall, and bought our tickets for the bus and the cable car (Teleferico). It was great actually seeing what Santiago looks like, we missed so much going through the tunnels.
The first stop is at the Bicentennial Park which is an amazing green space in the middle of the bustling city, with activities for everyone. You could actually spend the whole day there, but I was anxious to take the Teleferico which goes up to the summit of Cerro San Cristobal.
The views from the top really give you an idea of how spread-out Santiago is, and how close to the high peaks of the Andes mountains. It was quite hazy, so it was difficult to see some of the peaks, but Santiago certainly is a city surrounded by mountains.
At the top of Cerro San Cristobal is a tall statue of the Immaculate Conception which is 14 meters tall, and the pedestal on which it rests, is 8.3 meters. It weighs 36,610 kilograms. It is a large statue and can be seen from all over Santiago. The day was heating up, but it was remarkably cooler by the statue and we sat in the shade and enjoyed the view. Despite the crowds of people swarming all over the area around the statue, it was remarkably peaceful, and probably my favorite place in Santiago.
Time was fleeting, so we took the cable car back down to the bottom again, and walked to the bus stop to rejoin the Hop On Hop Off tour.
The temperature kept climbing, reaching a toasty 40.2. We were quite glad when we returned to the mall at the end of the route, and could go inside and enjoy the air conditioning. The Parque Arauco mall is one of Chile’s largest malls, it has both indoor and outdoor space. There were certainly a multitude of high-end stores and restaurants there.
We were in search of a pharmacy. When our bag full of our travel meds was confiscated during our summer Queen Victoria cruise we had had to replace all of the contents, but we had not replaced the meclizine as we had never used it. Brian suggested that we replace it before we sail through the Drake Passage, but I had poo pooed this stating that we NEVER get seasick. Well weather conditions for the Silver Cloud’s prior journey had not been the best, so I was now panicking in case we did in fact succumb to the forces of nature.
As it turned out, meclizine was not available anywhere in the mall, so we hoped we would be able to buy it on board if the need arose.
Time to return to the hotel and see if our welcome package had appeared. What had appeared was a large crowd of Silversea passengers who had flown into Santiago this morning, and were still waiting to get access to their rooms. I guess we were really lucky with our 10:00 AM check in yesterday.
Our welcome package was waiting for us at the Silversea desk. We completed the health forms, and received our boarding passes for the charter flight to Puerto Williams. Our plane wasn’t leaving until 4:00 PM, which with a 4 hour flight to Puerto Williams, was disappointing. So our bus to the airport wasn’t leaving until 2:30. I asked if we could get late checkout from the hotel, but that was not available.
There was also no mention of a reception/dinner, but there were 2 $50 vouchers for any of the hotel’s restaurants, which seemed like an OK substitute. I went over to the Italian restaurant, Senso, and made a reservation. Luckily they were able to accommodate us.
Next stop was the pool. After a morning traipsing around Santiago in the heat, sitting in the shade by the pool was a very welcome change. Brian soon fell into a deep sleep and I got to read my book. All was well with the world.
Dinner at Senso was good. Not as spectacular as dinner at Matsuri, but certainly very tasty.
We returned to our room to do the final packing of our suitcases. They had to be placed outside our door by midnight. With some rearrangement, and jettisoning of a couple of items we were able to whittle everything down to just under 50 lbs. for the suitcases, and 17 lbs. for our carry ons. We didn’t even need to wear our boots or fleece jackets, so I felt much happier about the flight.
I wished we would be flying to Puerto Williams first thing in the morning as I was really looking forward to embarking on the Silver Cloud. However, having half a day to spend reading by the pool wasn’t so shabby.
Thank you for all the details. We are on the Cloud on December 17 and are coming into Santiago a day early as you did. Your blog has been amazingly helpful.
Thanks for reading my blog! You will not be disappointed with your trip on the Cloud – we have just arrived at our first zodiac landing spot and it is so incredibly beautiful! The only issue is that I’m having internet problems, but that there is internet at all in this total wilderness is also incredible.
On every ship we’ve been on, they have had meclizine available for free at the reception desk if the forecast is for rough seas. Wishing you a Drake Lake crossing. Friends are on Hurtigruten making the crossing now … rough conditions.
Thanks for the heads up!