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Matanzas and Pichilemu: Surfers' Paradise

The steep cliffs and strong Pacific Ocean winds of the coast south of Santiago produce powerful waves and attract for those who enjoy these types of currents. It isn't uncommon to see professional and amateur surfers perform astonishing stunts on their surf, windsurf or kitesurf boards in these waters.

Both of these famous surfing destinations are close to Santiago. Matanzas is about 180 km from the capital just southwest of a town called Navidad. This peaceful cove has just a few houses and a small off-season population, but its new-found status as a surfing destination brought with it rental cabins and campgrounds. The main attractions are the beautiful beaches and Pupuya Islet, a water bird reservoir. The constant wind, which is ideal for windsurfing and kitesurfing, has attracted thousands of surfers, including a few world champions.

Just a few kilometers south, Pichilemu (135 km northwest of San Fernando and 207 km southwest of Santiago) is another great place to catch a wave. Nearby Punta de Lobos has the country's most famous waves and is part of the Global Big Waves circuit. You can also check out the town's interesting architecture, which dates back to 1885. Highlights include the Agustín Ross Cultural Center and the Ross Park, though you should also try some of the local hotels and restaurants, which offer many seafood dishes, and visit the town of Cáhuil, where you can learn the secrets of salt production.


Featured Destinations

aViña del Mar bValparaíso
cIsla Negra
eAlgarrobo fPichilemu


Tours you can do

Coastal Viña del Mar

Pablo Neruda's Beach House
Cerro Alegre and Cerro Concepción

La Sebastiana
La Campana National Park

Architectural Heritage in Viña del Mar
Plaza Sotomayor

The Architecture of Chile’s Main Port
Elevators and Viewpoints


Getting there

By Car
From Santiago to Matanzas: Take the Autopista del Sol (Route 78) to Leyda, then head towards Santo Domingo to the south. Next, follow the "Carretera de la Fruta" (Fruit Highway) towards Rapel and Navidad (2 hours). Buses to Natividad depart Terminal San Borja (Estación Central Metro). The trip takes about 3 hours.

From Santiago to Pichilemu: Take Route 5 from the northern entrance to San Fernando, continue on Av. O'Higgins and then take Route I-50 or the "Carretera del Vino" (Wine Highway) northwest towards Santa Cruz. Follow the roadway until you reach Marchihue and Pichilemu (about 3 and a half hours).


Jack Johnson and his video @ Pichilemu


News and Stories

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01 Feb. 2014
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31 Jan. 2014
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30 Jan. 2014


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