There are two famous hills (cerros) in Santiago. Cerro San Cristobal and Cerro Santa Lucia. This past weekend our tourist activity was to climb Cerro Santa Lucia next to the artsy Lastarria Neighbourhood. The hill has a height of 69m above the surrounding area and is the remnant of a 15 million years old volcano!
The hill’s name comes from the day (December 13, 1541) on which Pedro de Valdivia from Spain conquered the hill. That day celebrates ‘Santa Lucia’.
On one side of the hill, Fort Hidalgo was built in 1820 in a different style than Terazza Neptuno and it was used as a defensive point. It does not take long to climb the hill and many people sit on benches or on the grass to relax in the lazy afternoon sun.
Santiago is known for the smog in the air, and Saturday was no exception – you could hardly see the Andes mountains through the smog. The panoramic view of the buildings and the city is amazing though.
In the above picture the high building on the left is the Costanera Centre, currently the tallest building in Latin America. The tall building on the right is right next to Plaza Italia and was built to look like a telephone!