Chile tops VirtualTourist’s “Top Ten Places Off the Beaten Path”

Travel site’s members and editors cited Chile’s biodiversity and variety of natural settings as reasons to choose the country for an adventurous vacation this year., a travel site with over one million registered users, had its members and editors pick ten destinations they would choose for an “off the beaten path” holiday this year.

The results are in, and Chile features top on the list, followed by Norway, Myanmar, Sibiu in Romania, Ecuador’s Galapagos Islands, Shanghai in China, Sri Lanka, Iceland, Zambia’s Victoria Falls, and Antarctica.

“Stretching 2,653 miles (4,270 km) along the Pacific Ocean, Chile’s length and range of latitudes (from subtropical to sub-Antarctic) create incredible biodiversity and a variety of natural settings to see and enjoy,” the site says of Chile.

The site singles out the iconic Torres del Paine as a highlight during the Southern Hemisphere summer, though goes on to list some of Chile’s attractions available throughout the year.

“There is no shortage of incredible spots to see in Chile year round, like the Atacama Desert, Santiago, and Valparaíso,” the site says.

“One of the most arid places in the world, the Atacama is an especially great site for avid star watchers since the sky is completely clear about 340 days a year,” the site continues. “Santiago, Chile’s capital city, is a growing metropolis and located adjacent to fantastic vineyards. Valparaíso, only 74 miles (120 km) from Santiago on the coast, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its sloping hills filled with colourful homes and Chile’s most vital port.”

Ski season

Chile is also a haven for residents of the Northern Hemisphere searching for the endless winter. With recent snowfall delivering fresh powder to the Andes, another exciting Chilean ski season is upon us.

Heli-skiing and cat-skiing are ideal for the experienced skier looking for the ultimate in back country powder. Portillo ski resort’s stunning views of Laguna del Inca never disappoint, and Valle Nevado unveils Chile’s first cable car this season. Check out what’s on offer at these locations and more in our recent rundown of Chile’s world class ski resorts.