2008 Roadtrip Santiago, Chile

We left La Serena at 10:45 am and arrived in Santiago 3:25 pm in 4.5 hours, having breezed through 477km. The drive was beautiful. The road side vistas were flowering and green. The ocean view was lovely. There were mountains and rolling hills. And, from La Serena to Santiago there was a 4-lane highway. The tolls were CLP$12.000, about US$24.

So, the total distance from Cuzco, Peru to Santiago, Chile was 3114 km and we did it in 6 days. The Chilean drivers are disciplined and orderly. The roads are generally good and, frankly, the drive back along the Chilean desert was not as bad as we remembered it to be.

Since we bought our car in April, 2006, we have driven 50,000 km in the southern part of South America. In Chile alone, we've driven from Arica to Puerto Natales, a total of 5453 km (and between Santiago and the Peruvian border we've driven it twice!)
We took the Panamericana Highway all the way to the Costanera al Oriente and went directly to our favorite apartment in Santiago: Boulevard Suites, Av. Kennedy 5749, Las Condes, Santiago, fono: (56-2)421-5000, e-mail: info@boulevardsuites.cl and web: http://www.boulevardsuites.cl/ Since 2006, when we first stayed in apartment 3403, the price has steadily risen. It was US$100 a day then, and it was US$140 in 2008. We were happy with the comfort, furniture, service and amenities. We had a one bedroom that had plenty of storage space, two desks, a well-equipped kitchen and a comfortable living room/dining room area. And the view east to the mountains was fabulous.

The mountain view from our apartment at Boulevard Suites

The people who work at Boulevard Suites are professional, warm and friendly. It's like coming home to a caring family.

Boulevard Suites are on top of the same building as the Marriott Hotel and we can use the gym and facilities of the hotel. The gym is good (although the people who work there are grumpy and not helpful). Unfortunately the Jacuzzi is never hot enough and the people at the gym are reluctant to do anything about it.
Santiago looks pretty in the spring. There are lovely fruit trees flowering. When the sky clears and the snow-covered mountains are visible, the views are awesome. It is a city with a spectacular setting.