In the Argentinian capital, the weather is cold – at least relatively speaking. July is the middle of winter in the southern hemisphere, the perfect time to seek out a cozy cup of tea and a little indoor entertainment.
Photo: Carlos Varela
Winter is upon us in Chile, and that means cooler temperatures, with more humidity, and the ever-present snow capped Andes on clear, sunshiny days. And with those cool temperatures come all the ways in which humans like to keep warm. We’ve got layers, and scarves, woolen gloves, hats and scarves. But perhaps the most warming thing of all is a nice bowl of hot soup.
Chile has many soups to call its own, and though they are popular year-round, this is a particularly good time of year to order some cazuela, a caldillo, paila marina or mariscal.
Photo: Eileen Smith
You can count on winter weather in Chile starting in about May. By June, the Andes are covered in a blanket of white, waiting for eager skiers and snowboarders to take to the slopes, and on clear days, after a rain, everyone keeps one eye on the snowy Andes at almost all times. There are lots of places to get a good view of the Andes in Santiago, from a bridge over the Mapocho River, from up on Cerro San Cristobal, or even just peeking between the buildings downtown or on a trip to the mall.
And that winter chill will have you wrapping a cozy scarf around your neck, or planning your run between the occasional raindrops down in the city that mean snow in the mountains. Now you’ve got keeping yourself warm, or warming yourself up from the outside down pat. But what about warming yourself up from the inside? That’s where these two sweet treats come in. They are traditionally consumed in the winter months in Chile. There’s one to drink, and one to eat, never together. That would be too much sweet goodness all at once.
Photo: Leandro Neumann Ciuffo
Though little known outside of Brazil, the small but adorable Swiss-inspired mountain village of Gramado, 124 miles northeast of Porto Alegre in the deep Brazilian south, is a little island of giddy European charm surrounded by an ocean of Tropicália. During winter break, Brazilians flock here, all too happy to don hats, gloves and galoshes while they pretend that cold is kitsch between bites of fondue in fireplace-toasted restaurants. Sounds like hell frozen over? Not so fast.
Photo: Andy Price
When visiting Chile in the winter, why not plan on taking a relaxing bath in one of the many hot springs (termas) around the country?
There are different types of hot springs, such as a natural hot springs, mud baths, swimming pools, and therapeutic massage, among others.
Hot springs are known to have a therapeutic effect on the nervous system, skin illnesses, stress, rheumatism, lumbago and other types of back pain.
Photo: Alex Grechman
Valle Nevado, la Parva and el Colorado are three ski centers located near Santiago, the capital. Each has a special charm and allows winter sports lovers to enjoy a great day trip from Santiago. It’s also possible to stay in a resort up the hill to enjoy the wonderful natural snowy landscapes of the Andes mountain range.
El Colorado offers a 25-mile (40-kilometer) terrain and 70 ski slopes; la Parva has an area of 24 miles (38 kilometers) and Valle Nevado is known for having the biggest skiable surface in South America with 23,000 acres.
Photo: Fer Quintana
From the Andean peaks near Mendoza to the snow-capped ranges around Ushuaia, at South America’s very southern tip, Argentina is packed with enough mountains to satisfy even the most enthusiastic skiers. And right now is the best time to go: Late July is the very heart of Argentina’s snow-skiing season, which typically begins in June and runs through August.
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