Destinations > South America > Chile

Chile Facts & Figures

Flag of Chile
Total area: 756,950 sq km (292,260 sq mi)
Population (2009 est.): 16,601,707
Capital and largest city (2003 est.): Santiago - 5,333,100 (metro. area)
Other large cities: Viña del Mar - 303,100; Valparaíso - 274,100; Talcahuano - 252,800; Temuco - 247,200; Concepción - 217,600
Currency: Chilean Peso
Language: Spanish
Religions: Roman Catholic 89%, Protestant 11%, small Jewish population
Time zone: GMT-4; DST is not observed
Electricity: AC 230V/50Hz with European type plugs; AC 115V/50Hz with American type plugs are used in La Paz area

Chile is a country in the western part of South America, on the Pacific Ocean, bordering Argentina and Bolivia to the east and Peru to the North. Chile, stretching from north to south, has a very unique shape - the country area is 4,329 km (2,690 mi) long and only 180 km (112 mi) wide in the widest point. Chile has the driest place on Earth, the Atacama desert on the north and it has the southernmost city in the world, Punta Arenas. The Easter Island, situated about 3,220 km (2,000 mi) west off the coast on the Pacific Ocean, also belongs to Chile.

Chilean landscapes are dominated by the Andes on the eastern border and the coastal highlands. Two thirds of the population live in the central Chile, which is the main agriculture area of the country. The south is covered by forests and grazing lands and it's also home to several volcanoes and lakes. Fjords, inlets, canals and islands dominate the southern coast.

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