On two different days we took the local metro to Viña Del Mar’s neighbor, the port city of Valparaiso. Imagine a place like San Francisco, but only if no one bothered to take care of it. Valparaiso is a stunning collection of old buildings, winding streets on hills, lots of views, and almost all of it is dirty, vandalized, dilapidated, or all of the above. It is a place on the cusp of gentrification.

Valparaiso also has a reputation for petty crime. We didn’t experience any problems ourselves, but some Chilean policemen driving by stopped to tell me to rotate my camera bag from back to front. I did as instructed and we continued on.

It is also a lively city with a lot of great street art and an immense amount of character. It was totally unlike anything we saw in Santiago or Viña del Mar, and we are glad to have spent time exploring its hills. I took more photos here than any place we’ve been since Macchu Picchu.

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