Friday, March 19, 2010

Ziplining, Exploring, Shopping, and a Free Fork

So I promise that there will be pictures to go along with this once I am back in Santiago and can upload them onto my laptop.  Today was just too awesome to not blog about it before I forget it all.

At breakfast I met a nice woman named Charlotte that is from New York.  She was doing a tour, and since I didn´t hear back from the tour company I contacted the day before I decided to hang around until her tour guide came.  It turns out that she was doing a tour with the same company I was planning on doing one with, so I quickly grabbed my things and went along. 

It was a pretty long ride picking people up and then driving out to the camp in Portilleros, but it was worth it. There was a German couple on the bus, so we had a good time talking. The camp was in a really nice area, right next to a lake and surrounded by mountains.  We had some time to kill, so I got some hot chocolate while we were waiting.

I did ziplining with 2 girls from Buenos Aires and 2 older women from Holland, and the guides were really funny and awesome about encouraging us and giving us good travel advice.  Some of the ziplines were so fast and long that the wind rushed past your face, making you start to tear.  The feeling of flying through the air and seeing the mountains all around you and the water below you is indescribable.  I got a CD with pictures from the whole tour as well as a slideshow set to music.

After the tour was over, we grabbed some lunch and hung out until the bus was ready to take us back.  Since I had such an awesome time I booked a full day tour with them tomorrow to do rock climbing.  I got to do indoor rock climbing when I was in high school as part of a field trip for gym, but this will be my first time doing it outside.  I´m really excited about it.

After I got back, I explored some of the main plazas.  Plaza Independencia is the main one, with 4 other plazas surrounding it.  I didn't make it to all of them this time, but here are a few shots:

Along the way I noticed a few interesting things about the traffic here:
1. Some streets do not have markers dividing the middle of the street.
2. These same streets do not indicate if they are one way or two way streets.
3. If there is not a traffic light, there is not a stop sign at 4 way intersections here.  Everyone just goes when they think it is safe.  Notice the words ¨when they think¨.
4. Pedestrians are not given the right of way.  So you really have to watch out and be careful.

After that, it was off to the mall to scope out some deals for clothing and books.  I found a store called Falabella, which seems like a pretty popular department store here.  I got 2 nice dress shirts, 2 short sleeved shirts, and a nice new tie for 40 bucks.  I also found a book of fables in Spanish and a Spanish English dictionary for 15 bucks altogether, so I was pretty happy about that.

To top off the day, I went to Las Tinajas, which is a Tenedor Libre restaurant (free fork, or buffet).  Yeah, I know what you are all thinking.  But this is NOT your typical buffet.  Here is a list of the areas I remember seeing: pasta bar, salad bar, sushi bar, custom made crepes, typical Argentinian dishes, bar full of Argentian wines, dessert bar, and a huge grill of about 12 different types of meats that they will carve to your liking.  I took pictures of each of my plates and will put them on here once I am back in Santiago.

Tomorrow I have a full day of rock climbing followed by some more sightseeing, so I am going to get ready to turn in.  Good night everyone!


  1. Yeah, when I was in 9th grade Mrs. Berardi took my gym class to an indoor rock climbing place. Chris Salerno was in my class, and we all got free passes to go back another time. Me and him went back during sophomore or junior year spring break.