Barrio Estación Central
Welcome to Santiago, strayed Amigo! Maybe you don’t have so much time here? It would be unfortunate if you spent most of your time in the WRONG Barrios. We give you a blog series of the lowdown of what to do in each Barrio (neighbourhood). Offering our local knowledge and giving our top recommendations so you know what to expect and where to go.
Introducing BARRIO BREAKDOWN #2 ESTACIÓN CENTRAL
If you want an immersion in the more “Popular Santiago”, this is the place! This neighborhood has grown around our city’s Central Station of trains, which was born before the beginning of the 20th century. In 1897, around the times of the Industrial Revolution, new metallic structures were inaugurated beneath which the trains headed to the south would whiz by, creating tons of noise. Since the middle of the 19th century, this zone was primarily inhabited by the migrant population that came from the south of Chile. Commercial activity was the capstone of their subsistence here in Santiago. This was how Barrio Meiggs was born (between la Alameda and the streets Exposición, Unión Americana, and Sazié), a place where Santiaguinos would go to buy clothes, toys, desktop materials, and basically ANYTHING from China that you could imagine!
It’s in this same place where Mercado Estación Central is located. This market is a trip to the past to where the trains would pass through the station since this is the only place in Santiago where they sell live animals for consumption such as hens, goats, ducks, or rabbits.
Restaurante El Hoyo, famous for its pipeños (a type of wine) and terremotos (traditional Chilean beverage that uses pipeño). You simply can’t miss this place because it truly highlights Chilean culture. One of its main dishes is cow’s tongue (even Anthony Bourdain tried it when he was in Chile!).
Planetario: on the other side of Alameda you will see a dark brown building that has a weird shape…. That is the Planetarium of Santiago. The building, inspired by the Mayan pyramid Chichén Itzá, contains a dome 20 meters in diameter in its interior. You will feel as if the universe is at your feet. In regards to its cultural relevance, the Planetarium intends to concentrate on the observation of the skies with conferences, projections, public showings of the observatory, and concerts.