I considered writing a lengthy post about how much I absolutely adored Valparaiso, but I think in this case pictures really can paint a thousand words! Colourful, lively, and vibrant, Valparaiso was an unexpected gem for me and turned out to be my favourite city I have visited so far on this trip. Even nicer, I once again linked up with my friend Pauline, who I met in Bolivia, and we had a lot of fun just exploring together and walking around.
Valparaiso is perhaps now most well-known for its street art, especially in the areas of Cerro Alegre and Concepcion, right at the top of a huge hill which slopes down to the city’s port. I highly recommend staying in one of those zones. If you are backpacking, I think both Pauline and I would endorse our amazing hostel Planeta Lindo, which actually straddles them both. The guys running it are lovely and there is a very welcoming atmosphere with nice little extras like a great rooftop terrace and free laundry! True to form for the area, it also has some great street art both inside and out, including art done by the same artists behind the iconic WE ARE NOT HIPPIES, WE ARE HAPPIES. A message I think a lot of the city’s people would agree with!
Valparaiso reminded me of my university city Bristol – hilly, lots of street art, a big historical port – maybe that’s why I loved it so much.