Where to stay in Santiago


Welcome to Santiago, Chile's vibrant capital nestled in the heart of the Andean mountain range. This sprawling metropolis offers a tapestry of neighborhoods with distinct flavor and charm. From trendy barrios brimming with art galleries and hip eateries to upscale enclaves with polished parks and modern amenities, Santiago caters to various tastes and budgets. While each neighborhood boasts unique attractions, they also come with their own set of drawbacks that travelers should bear in mind. Our candid guide will delve into various areas to stay in Santiago, providing an honest snapshot of what to expect so you can choose the backdrop to your Chilean adventure that feels right for you.

  • Barrio Bellavista

    • 🎨 bohemian
    • 🍷 nightlife
    • 🎭 culture
    • 🎨 artistic

    Barrio Bellavista is the bohemian quarter of Santiago, a hub for nightlife and avant-garde culture. The streets here come alive with bars, clubs, and various restaurants. It's a fantastic spot for those looking to socialize and enjoy the bohemian spirit. However, the noise and party scene can be overwhelming for some, and it's important to be cautious at night. This might not be your place if you’re after a quiet retreat.

  • Providencia

    • 🥂 upscale
    • convenient
    • 🛍️ shopping
    • 🍽️ dining

    Providencia is a delightful neighborhood with a balanced residential tranquility and commercial buzz mix. This area attracts many visitors thanks to its shopping malls, lovely parks, and excellent restaurants. It's generally safer and cleaner than other central areas, though it can be pricier. The well-connected public transport makes it a convenient choice for tourists. However, it may lack the distinctive character of Santiago's more unique neighborhoods.

    Barrio Italia is located within Providencia.
  • Barrio Italia

    • 🕶️ hipster
    • 🖼️ art
    • 🛍️ shopping
    • 🍝 food

    Barrio Italia beckons with its dynamic blend of antique shops, boutique stores, and various cafes and restaurants. This hipster haven attracts a bohemian crowd and is perfect for those interested in the arts and unique finds. Yet, with its popularity comes the usual downside: the streets can be busy, and nights could be noisy. Consider staying here if you appreciate creativity and want to be in a trendy yet occasionally crowded environment.

    Barrio Italia is a part of Providencia.
  • Santiago Centro

    • 🏙️ central
    • 📸 touristy
    • 👫 busy
    • 🎭 cultural

    Santiago Centro is the heartbeat of the city, home to many historical landmarks, museums, and the presidential palace. It's an ideal location for those wanting to dive into the history and culture of Santiago. However, as with many city centers, it can be crowded, and the hustle and bustle aren't for everyone. While the area is well-served by public transport and boasts an array of shopping and dining options, it can be noisy, and vigilance is advisable after dark.

    Historical Center and Barrio Brasil are located within Santiago Centro.
  • Historical Center

    • 🎭 cultural
    • 🏛️ historical
    • 🏛️ architecture
    • 🏙️ central
    • bustling
    • traditional

    The Historical Center of Santiago, also known as Centro Histórico, is the city's bustling heart, where colonial charm coexists with the commercial hustle. Here, travelers can immerse themselves in Chile's history by visiting iconic landmarks such as the Plaza de Armas, the Cathedral of Santiago, and the beautiful Palacio de La Moneda. The area is also known for its affordable shopping and various restaurants. However, like many downtown areas, it can get crowded, and noise levels may be higher. At night, while parts of the neighborhood remain lively, others can feel less secure, so it's advisable to stay vigilant. This area is ideal for those who appreciate the convenience of public transport and the proximity to several museums and historical sites.

    Historical Center is a part of Santiago Centro.
  • Las Condes

    • affluent
    • safe
    • green-spaces
    • 🏙️ modern

    Las Condes is a refined and upscale district of Santiago, characterized by its safe streets, luxury hotels, and a skyline filled with modern high-rises. It's a business hub with abundant shopping opportunities, verdant parks, and various restaurants. The area is especially attractive to business travelers seeking a comfortable and secure base. However, for some visitors, Las Condes may lack the city center's historic charm and hustle.

    Barrio Nueva Las Condes is located within Las Condes.
  • Barrio Nueva Las Condes

    • 🥂 upscale
    • 🏙️ modern
    • 🛍️ shopping
    • safe

    Barrio Nueva Las Condes is a modern and upscale neighborhood known for its sleek offices and chic apartments. It's very popular among business travelers, offering good transport links and a variety of upscale dining and shopping options. However, this contemporary environment can come across as soulless and might not offer the traditional charm some cultural travelers seek. The high-end lifestyle also translates into higher costs for accommodations and services.

    Barrio Nueva Las Condes is a part of Las Condes.
  • Vitacura

    • 🥂 upscale
    • 💎 luxury
    • 🎭 cultural
    • 🏘️ residential

    Vitacura is one of Santiago's most affluent neighborhoods, boasting lush parks, chic boutiques, and gourmet restaurants. Known for its luxury and safety, it is home to many expats and the well-heeled elite of the city. The picturesque area provides a tranquil retreat from the hustle and bustle of city life. However, its upscale nature means higher prices and may be less accessible to those on a budget. Visitors should also be prepared for a more residential atmosphere than a lively urban experience.

  • Barrio Brasil

    • 🍷 nightlife
    • 🏛️ historic
    • affordable
    • youthful

    Barrio-Brasil is Santiago's cultural heartbeat, with a vibrant mix of students, artists, and locals. Known for its colorful murals and lively atmosphere, it has a rich history and a variety of nightlife spots. Despite its appeal, it might not be everyone's cup of tea, as it can get noisy and crowded, especially on weekends. Safety at night might concern some, so stay aware of your surroundings if choosing this bustling locale.

    Barrio Brasil is a part of Santiago Centro.
  • Barrio Plaza Ñuñoa

    • 🎭 cultural
    • 🍝 food
    • 🍷 nightlife
    • 👨‍👩‍👧‍👦 family-friendly

    Barrio Plaza Ñuñoa is a welcoming neighborhood known for its tranquil plazas and family-friendly atmosphere. It offers a mix of cultural activities, including theaters and cinemas. Generally safer and quieter at night than busier hub spots, it's a favorite among those who favor a slower pace. Dining options are diverse, though nightlife is more subdued. Accessibility to the rest of Santiago might be a drawback as it's slightly removed from the main tourist circuits.

  • Recoleta

    • budget-friendly
    • 🎨 bohemian
    • 🌏 multicultural
    • market

    Recoleta is a lively area with a varied cultural scene, best known for the famed Cementerio General and the hip district of Bellavista with its nightlife and artistic vibe. It's a great place for travelers who want to experience Santiago's young and bohemian atmosphere. However, visitors should be mindful of their surroundings, as Recoleta's diverse socioeconomic levels mean that some parts can be less safe than others, especially at night.

  • Estación Central

    • transit
    • budget
    • local
    • chaotic
    • commuter-heavy

    Estación Central is a key transport hub in Santiago, making it convenient for travelers on the go. It features one of the city's main bus terminals and railway stations. The area is more industrial and lacks the charm of other neighborhoods, with a higher prevalence of noise and traffic. It's not typically considered a tourist destination, and accommodations here can be more basic and less secure, appealing to budget or transit travelers.

  • Quinta Normal

    • 🧘 quiet
    • 🏺 museums
    • park
    • local
    • 🌳 green space

    Quinta Normal is predominantly a residential area known for its namesake park, Parque Quinta Normal, which is a large green space home to several museums. It's a quieter option that provides a slice of local life but lacks the infrastructure and tourist services found in more central neighborhoods. Visitors should be aware that while quieter, it doesn't offer much nightlife or dining variety, and might not feel as safe at night as more bustling areas.

  • Independencia

    • affordable
    • transitional
    • mixed-use

    Independencia is a dynamic neighborhood that has risen recently due to an influx of university students and young professionals. It offers a mix of historic charm and an increasingly trendy atmosphere, with new cafes and bars popping up. While it is transforming and becoming more appealing, some areas within Independencia still reflect its working-class origins and may have safety concerns at night or lack the polish of more developed neighborhoods.

  • Conchalí

    • 🏡 suburban
    • 🏘️ residential
    • authentic
    • working-class

    Conchalí is a diverse residential area with a mix of commercial activity. It's a less touristy sector of Santiago and offers lower prices in comparison to the more affluent neighborhoods. While it gives a glimpse into the everyday lives of many Santiaguinos, travelers should be cautious as some parts of Conchalí could pose safety issues, especially at night. This area might cater to those seeking budget accommodations, but it's advisable to research and select accommodations carefully.