Chile is a wonderfully unique place for gay vacations that allow visitors to ski the Andes, explore volcanoes, relax on pristine beaches, and hit the clubs in Santiago’s gay district all in one day. The vast and varied landscape and landmarks of Chile include arid deserts, the Torres del Paine National Park in Patagonia, the statues of Easter Island, the Elqui Valley of La Serena (long rumored to be associated with extraterrestrial activity), the Mirador de Chepu Penguin Colony, and old-world churches and architecture throughout the country.
With many cultural, historic and natural attractions to choose from, Chile offers a variety of options for gay trips, which include snowboarding or ski strips to world-renowned Andes resorts, touring Chile’s wine country, pilgrimages intent on experiencing the country’s deep tradition of Catholicism and exploring churches, family vacations on the beaches of Vina del Mar, sightseeing adventures to take in the breathtaking landscapes of Patagonia and learn of ancient island civilizations, or urban excursions centered on experiencing the cosmopolitan culture and nightlife in Santiago.
As a country that has been deeply influenced by both the Catholic Church and the military, Chile would certainly not be described as a bastion of gay rights; however, as a whole, the country is slowly becoming more progressive and is beginning to become more accepting of the LGBT community. Gay life in Chile centers largely around Santiago, which is where singles, couples and families on a gay vacation will find the most welcoming atmosphere and the highest concentration of gay-friendly and gay-owned establishments. Santiago’s gay community is primarily found in the Barrio Bellavista, which is a trendy neighborhood with charming shops, cafes and eateries and is also home to most of Santiago’s bathhouses, gay bars and gay clubs. Although it is not likely that you will see rainbow flags hanging for rooftops or same-sex couples walking through the streets hand in hand, it is quite common to find gay magazines openly displayed in newsstands and couples sipping coffee at cosmopolitan sidewalk cafes.
The gay-owned Spanish restaurant, Capricho, is a popular first stop for a night out in Bellavista, often followed by drinks a one of the local gay bars and dancing into the early hours of the morning at one of Santiago’s gay clubs. Options for clubbing range from discos much like those found in most large cities to risqu clubs with live sex shows. It is common to begin a night out with dinner around 9 or 10pm, followed by a lively night of escapades that may not end until the sun is coming up. There are also several bathhouses ” often called saunas ” in Santiago, including a more upscale option catering to professionals. As in the U.S., HIV is a concern and precautions should be taken to ensure a safe, enjoyable gay vacation in Chile.
Santiago’s central location in this long, narrow country makes it an ideal choice as a home base for exploring all that Chile has to offer. Because it is also the most welcoming location as a gay travel destination, Santiago is a popular choice for gay vacations. When planning a gay vacation to Chile, working with a travel agency well-versed in gay tours in this region will assist you in designing a memorable vacation that is safe, fun-filled and meets your travel needs whether you are traveling as a group of single friends, a couple or a family.
The creator of this post about Chile is Howie Holben. Howie operates Spirit Journeys, a Uk marriage visa gay retreats business. Spirit Journeys advances spiritual Uk marriage visa gay travel deals all over the world.