The Historic Quarter of the Seaport City of Valparaiso testifies to Valparaiso's leading position as a merchant port in the late 19th century.
Valparaiso was founded in 1542 by the Spaniards. It served mostly as a small port for trade with Peru. After the independence, Valparaiso became one of the most important ports on the Pacific coast of South America.
Valparaiso actually exists of two completely different cities. The lower part has narrow streets along the bay, while the upper part boasts great colourful mansions and houses. The nominated property is located between the sea and the first terrace, in the area where the city first developed.
Included areas are:
- La Matríz Church and Santo Domingo Square
- Echaurren Square and Serrano Street
- Prat Pier, Sotomayor and Justicia Squares, Sea Museum Quarter
- Prat Street and Turri Square
- Cerro Alegre and Cerro Concepción:
Visit March 2002
I had heard raving reviews about this city, but it disappointed me at first sight. There is a lot of traffic and smog, and a real town centre is hard to find.
The special thing about this city is the division between its lower and upper parts. Via early 20th century elevators you can travel between these two worlds. Only about 7 people fit in, and it's quite scary because of the steepness of the hills.
When you arrive in the upper town, a completely different world awaits you: bright colours, artistic buildings, narrow backroads.
|Jorge Sanchez (Spain):|
In the year 1986 I travelled to Valparaiso, hitchhiking from Santiago, and would stay there for two days, until I discovered in its port that there were no regular ships going to the Isla de Pascua (Easter Island).
Once I was in Valparaiso I took the opportunity to visit all the tourists’ attractions of the town, although with no much interest. I entered in the main churches, climbed to Cerro Concepción, I saw the bohemian part of the city with the painted houses, the Plaza de Sotomayor, and even made a small excursion to Viña del Mar.
In fact, had I known that there were no regular vessels to Isla de Pascua I would not have gone Valparaiso, but to Tierra de Fuego Island instead, what I did the third day, when I hitchhiked to the Pan-American road and headed to the south in order to try to get to the Antarctica continent by boat. I was very romantic in those years and thought that you could get everywhere by boat, free of charge, just by working in the kitchen, washing, or painting the deck.
By the way, I would visit Isla de Pascua several years later, in 1997, but on board of an airplane from Santiago, and to Antarctica Peninsula in a cruise in 2001, from Ushuaia.
| Date posted: April 2014|
|Maria Mercedes A. (Canada):|
Amazing!Great souvenirs, the stairs, 15 lifts, the old port, the hills, the coloured houses, the restaurants behind the ocean and yum,yum seafood including jumbo Hommards from Robinson Crusoe island and, famous wine.
Very exciting City, full of places to discover as the old downtown, the commercial heart of Valparaiso, the Turry Tower Clock, the museum in Cerro Alegre(Happy Hill)with an imprenable Bay view, Victoria Square with lions and fountain, take a bus to sourround the upper City by Alemania avenue; if you like to walk, expend some time in Cordillera, Alegre, Mariposas Hills(+-44). Other interesting place is Playa Ancha and his Quinta de recreo.
At dark, night clubs welcome those with energy to prolong the pleasure with live shows. Next morning dont forget to enjoy a soup at one its public Markets as Cardonal Mercado!
A Magic City
| Date posted: April 2008|
|John Booth (New Zealand):|
The only disappointing thing we found in Valparaiso was the large amount of restoration work being undertaken. The whole of Serrano Street, the heart of the WHC site, had been dug up, and workers were painstakingly laying new cobble stones along its full length.
The 15 ascensores(lifts) are an intrinsic part of the scene, groaning their way up and down the hillsides, as they have done for over a century, a tribute to the German engineers that built them.
The maze of narrow streets that make up the Upper Town were a delight; a new vista of the harbour opened up around every corner, as well as brightly coloured houses and small eateries.
|claudia setien benvenuto (chile):|
i live in Valparaiso an d i born in the historic quarter of this seaport city. It's a beatiful and wonderful city.
i recommended to visit, and to live too.
There is a lot of undiscovered and beatiful places ...
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