Chile Cultural Information

Know before you go!
The following resources will help you prepare mentally for your study abroad experience! The more you learn about your host destination pre-departure, the richer your experience will be!

Chile Official Travel Guide

Culture Gram

Local News



Television and Films


Recommended Readings

  • The History of Chile by John L. Rector
  • A History of Chile 1808-2002 by Simon Collier and William F. Sater
  • Chronicles by Pedro Lemebel
  • Folk Tales from Chile by Dick De Wilde
  • Culture Shock! A Guide to Customs and Etiquette, Chile by Susan Roraff and Laura Camacho
  • Travels in a Thin Country by Sara Wheeler
  • The Essential Neruda: Selected Poems  










Cultural Activities

  • Tapati Rapa Nui festival
  • Bellavista in Santiago de Chile
  • Museo Cielo Abierto in Valparaíso
  • Cajon del Maipo in Santiago de Chile
  • Zoológico Nacional de Chile



Recommended Websites



Common Chilean Cuisine

  •   Mote con Huesillo
  •   Caldillo de Congrio
  •   Curanto en Hoyo
  •   Chancho en Piedra
  •   Pastel de Choclo
  •   Piure





Prominent Chilean Icons

Victor Jara, who was a member of the Chilean Communist Party, was one of the best-known victims of Gen Augusto Pinochet's coup. In the 1960s he wrote protest songs which led to a revolution against the ruling elite of his country. Shortly after the Chilean coup of 11 September 1973, he was arrested, tortured and ultimately shot dead with 44 machine-gun bullets. The contrast between the themes of his songs, on love, peace and social justice and the brutal way in which he was murdered transformed Jara into a symbol of struggle for human rights and justice worldwide.
Pablo Neruda was a poet who stirred controversy with his affiliation with the Communist Party and his outspoken support of Joseph Stalin, Fulgencio Batista and Fidel Castro, but his poetic mastery was never in doubt, and for it he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1971.
Alberto Guerrero was Chilean-Canadian composer, pianist, and teacher, whose tenure at the Toronto Conservatory of Music influenced hundreds of future musicians.
Augusto Pinochet- Leader of the military junta that overthrew Chile's government came to govern the nation with an iron fist until 1990.
Alexis Sánchez a Chilean footballer who plays for La Liga side FC Barcelona and the Chile national team as a forward. In 2006, Sánchez moved to one of Chile's most successful teams Colo-Colo and after an impressive FIFA U-20 World Cup, Sánchez signed up with River Plate in 2007, distinguishing himself as player, winning the league title one year later.







Sebastián Piñera- The current president of Chile. He is known for his faux pas during his first visit to the White House when he broke their protocol and sat in the president’s chair. 
Michelle Bachelet- Her father was arrested by Pinochet and died under torture. Michelle, a medical student, was also tortured but released into exile in 1975. Bachelet returned to Chile and entered politics after Pinochet was ousted. In 2006 she became Chile's first woman president and was popular for her deft handling of the 2008 financial crisis.
Pedro de Valdivia- Spanish conquistador who was Chile’s first national hero and the first royal governor who founded Santiago in 1541.




Page last modified August 19, 2013