Lonely Planet names Santiago as a top 10 destination for 2012

The international travel guide publisher praised the Chilean capital for its optimistic outlook and its dynamic culture.

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Santiago has once again been recognized as a world class tourism destination, with Lonely Planet including the Chilean capital in its list of the top 10 cities to visit in 2010.

The online article from the world’s largest publisher of travel guides highlights the city’s confidence and “renewed lease of life” in the wake of last year’s 8.8-magnitude earthquake and the heroic rescue of the 33 miners who were trapped underground for more than two months.

“With the world watching, Chile displayed its defiant optimism, and these experiences have seemed to ignite a seismic shift in the capital,” it says.

This latest accolade for Santiago comes less than 12 months after the New York Times named Santiago the world’s number one tourist destination for 2011.

In its description of the Chilean capital, Lonely Planet highlights the city’s recent cultural renaissance with new museums and tourist attractions opening to international acclaim.

Dining is now top-notch, nightlife exhilarating and this year also marks the inauguration of the tallest building on the continent, the 70-storey Torre Gran Costanera.”

And if that weren’t enough, the city’s proximity to the towering Andean peaks and the idyllic vineyards of the Casablanca, Maipo and Colchagua valleys provide further impetus.

The Lonely Planet article places Santiago alongside some of the world’s most famous and cosmopolitan cities such as London and Hong Kong, which appeared in first and eighth places, respectively.

Other cities to make the list were Muscat in Omar, Bengaluru (formerly known as Bangalore) in India, Cádiz in Spain, Stockholm in Sweden, Guimarães in Portugal, Orlando in the U.S. and Darwin in Australia.