The modern and energetic capital of Chile, Santiago is full of beautiful vistas, historic buildings, and a vibrant art scene. As a photographer in Santiago, you’ll be able to capture pictures of unique culture and amazing natural surroundings. It all comes together in Santiago, and to help give you ideas for your photo shoot, here are some of the top sites in the city.
7 Top Photo Spots in Santiago
Cerro San Cristóbal
Considered one of Santiago’s crowning jewels, the Cerro San Cristóbal, or St. Christopher Hill, is almost 3,000 feet tall and stands in the middle of the Metropolitan Park. If you’re the adventurous type, you can reach the top by hiking, which takes about an hour, but brings you through some beautiful hillside landscape. There is also the option to take a funicular ride straight to the top, where you’ll be granted superb views of Santiago and the surrounding area. Definitely one of Santiago’s top photo sites, the panoramic views and amazing scenery of Cerro San Cristóbal will make your photographs truly meaningful.
A distinctly bright and artistic neighborhood of Santiago, Bellavista is known for its brightly colored houses and graffiti-covered walls. The vibrancy and energy of the area make it a great photo location, perfect for images characteristic of Santiago.
By wandering through the streets, you’ll get great shots of colonial era mansions, and pictures that convey the relaxed, laid-back atmosphere of the neighborhood. It’s an enjoyable way to spend the day, browsing through local shops or stopping at one of the numerous galleries and artsy cafés while getting some great images for your photo shoot.
Plaza de Armas
Arguably the most important square in Santiago, the Plaza de Armas was founded in 1541 by Pedro de Valdivia, the Spanish conquistador who began the city. Today a cultural hub of the city, Plaza de Armas has some of the best historic landmarks in Santiago, making it a must-visit destination for anyone planning a photo shoot. The beautiful Metropolitan Cathedral is located here in the square, which makes an excellent addition to your photographs both from the square itself to view the size and grandeur, and from the inside to better appreciate the ornate artwork and decorations. The combination of historic buildings, gently swaying palm trees lining the plaza, and the energy of street performers and other vendors always present in the square means that photographs of the Plaza de Armas will capture cultural significance and the special energy of Santiago.
Cerro Santa Lucía
There are two options to reach the top of St. Lucía Hill; one is on the convenient elevator ride, and the other is to brave the trek on foot. Attracting travelers from around the world, Cerro Santa Lucía is famous for its spectacular vistas, making it a top site for photographers in Santiago. If you’re only in search of the prize shot from the peak, the elevator might be a better option, but the hike allows you to take your time and collect photos from the rest of the beautiful park area.
Peaceful and serene, Cerro Santa Lucía is a great escape from the traffic of the busy downtown area of Santiago and will make a memorable addition to your photo shoot. In addition to the views from the top, there is also a lovely terrace and fountain area that can supplement your photographs and add to the tranquility of the surroundings.
Santiago Metropolitan Park
A beautiful green escape right in the heart of the city, the Santiago Metropolitan Park is a peaceful area with numerous attractions for tourists and fantastic photograph opportunities. The famous Cerro San Cristóbal is the primary attraction, but there are also walking paths and a long cable car and railway rides, originally opened in 1980, that takes people for an aerial view of the park.
At the Municipal Zoo you’ll have the chance to get pictures of animals from all over the world, including numerous rare species that are native to the Chilean and Andean mountain region of South America. The park is big enough that you’ll feel removed from the crowds and big city buildings, but it’s easy to access. Enjoy a long walk through the woods or rent a bike to take on one of the trails while you look for the best places to include in your photo shoot.
Palacio de La Moneda
This impressive and majestic building is where the President of the Republic of Chile resides, and is considered a top photo site in the city, especially if you are hoping to capture an image truly characteristic of Santiago.
The beautiful and ornately decorated exterior put a regal atmosphere around the palace, you’ll understand why UNESCO has listed it as an important cultural site of Chile and why it makes such a great addition to your photo shoot.
Once the residence of the famous Chilean writer Pablo Neruda, the La Chascona house has now been converted into a museum, so visitors can learn more about this important historic figure and the impact of his writing. It’s an amazing way to get culturally significant images of Santiago and the beautiful Bellavista neighborhood in your photo shoot.
The intricate decorated front of the house makes it stand out from the others on the street and provides a great setting for a few memorable photographs. Photographers in Santiago will love the unique architecture of the house, designed to look like a ship in honor of Neruda’s love and fascination for the sea.