If Santiago is the Lygon St or St Kilda of Chile, than Valparaiso is the Brunswick or Collingwood (sorry about the Melbourne references). The dirtier, more exciting student city only an hour and a half from Santiago.
But we did a free walking tour and discovered the nice corners of the seaside city built into the hills.
The streets were ridiculously steep but luckily the funiculars made a comeback! (Actually called ascensors and more like diagonal elevators).
So hilly you couldn’t escape the good views.
The streets are so convoluted and winding the locals need a way to distinguish all the areas so that people don’t just wander around in circles. Everybody paints their houses all different and interesting colours. Local street artists also have permission to paint murals everywhere to liven up the city and they get tips from the owners of the buildings. Apparently people graffiti over them all the time with ugly tags but the artists just come back and paint something else for free.
We also visited Pablo Neruda’s other other home (he has at least 3). Filled with lots more interesting objects that were top secret apparently because you weren’t allowed to photograph them. He would read from his favourite leather armchair (“La Nube”) at the window overlooking the hills and write at his desk in the tiny top floor study that has views all the way down the hill and over the ocean.
The area under the hills is less colourful but is still lively and has markets on every street corner.
Not sure if this horse was a stray like all the dogs in the city, but it kept turning up at various points around the city, always tied to something but never with an owner in sight…He also snuffled at being patted on the nose.
There was also a local brewery which sadly only had 2 beers in stock. The waiter said that he has an Australian roommate that goes around saying “sup sick c**t”. Not sure if he knew what it meant. No doubt his roommate was Australian though.
We found a cafe that reminded us how much we miss you guys. Still didn’t go, no matter what Vogue said.
We have so many more photos of Valparaiso but we would be here all night so we will just have to show everyone when we get back. Adios!