Chile is one of the most amazing nature-endowed countries in the world. The South American country is well known for its Atacama desert, its gorgeous landscapes, its intriguing culture, and some of the world’s most active volcanoes. There are many fun facts about Chile that makes it an attractive destination.
Common Facts About Chile
Popularly known as “pais de los poetas” (Country of poets), Chile sits on the western seaboard of South America and has an approximate population of about 19.5 million people. It is up there with some of the most beautiful countries in the world.
It was colonized by Spain and thus a predominantly Spanish-speaking country. Chile is famous as one of the few countries with the longest coastline in the world. The driest place on earth and the place with the largest swimming pool in the world. With its amazing culture and history, there are several facts about Chile that can easily move one’s heart.
Historical Facts on Chile
Chile Is Over 1000 Years
Here’s a stunning fact about Chile, it is over 12,000 years. There’s a discovery that amazed archeologists as far back as the 1980s.
Somewhere close to Monte Verde, a footprint was discovered. This footprint was said to be over 12,500-year-old. It brought the “Clovis paradigm” under the microscope.
The Clovis paradigm claimed that man did not populate the Americas until about 11,500 years ago when they crossed the Bering land bridge in Alaska. This discovery paved way for fresh ideas about the Americas’ ancestry and their journey to the continent.
The World’s Oldest Mummies
One fun fact about Chile is that it houses some of the oldest mummies in the world. Popular opinion always refers to Egypt as the house of the mummies as it is synonymous with Egyptian culture. In reality, some of the oldest mummies are also in Chile.
Before colonization, different indigenous people lived in Chile. Chinchorro is one of the most famous of people to occupy Chile then. They were mainly sedentary fishermen and are notable as the culture that created the world’s oldest internationally preserved mummies.
In context, the oldest mummies in Egypt date from approximately 3000BC while the Chinchorro oldest mummies date from approximately 5050BC.
World Biggest Earthquake
Due to the situation of the land in certain areas and the weather, it is not a surprise that Chile experience earthquakes. However, the country was also a victim of the biggest earthquake ever recorded. That’s a true but unpleasant fact about Chile.
In 1960, Chile experienced an earthquake measuring 9.5 on the Richter scale. The natural disaster claimed the lives of over 1500 people and also left more than 2 million homeless.
Literature Noble Prize Winners
In 1945 Gabriela Mistral became the first South American Nobel Laureate. She was awarded the Nobel prize in literature for her lyric poetry, which was inspired by powerful emotions. It made her an icon and aspiration for the entire Latin American world.
Down the lane in 1971, Pablo Neruda dubbed “Chile’s national poet” also won the Nobel prize in literature. Due to the exploits of the Chilean poets, Chile is sometimes called the “Land of the Poets”.
Chile’s Wine Making
Chile is known for its wine-making history that stretches far back as the 16th century. It started when their Spanish colonizers arrived in the country with the first vines.
One interesting fact about Chile is that it is the 6th largest wine producer in the world. Though it took over 100 years before Chile was able to establish itself as one of the best wine producers in the world.
This was in no small part due to the help of technology in the 80s, which allowed Chile to boost its wine sales overseas. One of the most exciting facts about Chile for wine-loving tourists is that you can explore the country’s nature along with its incredible vineyards.
Facts About Chile For Tourists
World Largest Swimming Pool
A cool fact about Chile is that it has the largest swimming pool in the world. Chile’s San Alfonso del Mar resort in Algarrobo has been officially declared the world’s largest swimming pool.
The pool has a length of 900 meters, and an area of 20 acres with the deepest part being 35 meters. In fact, the pool holds a whooping 250 million liters of clear seawater. It took about 5 years and a whopping $1.5 billion USD to construct this pool.
Houses The Driest Desert On Earth
The Atacama desert is over 160,000 miles and it is the driest desert on earth. It has an average rainfall of 5mm per year. Interestingly, some parts of this desert have never registered any rainfall.
Some sources have claimed that the region has river beds that have been dry for thousands of years. Calama a certain region in Atacama recorded rain for the first time in 1971.
The Atacama is one of the most famous landmarks in Chile, and many visit Northern Chile to check out the arid landscape.
Chile Has a Diverse Climate
The northern part of Chile has an arid climate because the majority of the area is dominated by the Atacama desert. The Eastern and Southern regions have a more oceanic climate.
In the country’s center, the climate gets closer to Mediterranean standards; while the people in the Andes experience an Alpine Tundra. In the island region, they enjoy humid and subtropical climates.
Chile’s Costanera Gran Torre
One surprisingly cool fact about Chile is that it houses the tallest building in South America. Situated in the capital city of Santiago, Costanera Gran Torre has 64 floors. It also has an observation deck on the top two floors. From there you can get an amazing view of the entire city surrounding Andres Cordillera.
A Centralized Country
One of Chile’s fun facts is that it can be considered a centralized country. Of the total 19.5 million population of Chile, about 6 million live in Santiago which is the capital city.
Most of the populated regions in Chile are along the coast of Santiago. And all of them are part of the Central Chile Region established by CORFAO. Greater Valparaiso along the west coast of Santiago, Greater Concepción along the south coast.
Cultural Fun Facts on Chile
Chile’s National Drink Pisco
Despite having superb wine production capabilities, one fun fact about Chile is the national drink Pisco hardly has wine in it.
Pisco Sour cocktail is the national drink in Chile. It is a homegrown drink made with quite the ingredients. Pisco, Lemon juice, beaten egg white just to make it sour, sugar, and ice are used to make pisco. Another popular local drink that uses Pisco and Coca-cola as the foundation is, aptyl named, the Piscola.
Chile’s Ethnicity And Language
One cultural fact about Chile is that it is one of the least multicultural countries in the world. The Chilean population consists of 95.4% white and white-Amerindian, 4% Mapuche, and 0.6% of other indigenous groups.
Though they have Spanish as their official language, they teach English in schools. Also, A minority group in southern Chile speaks Indian, Italian, Mapuche, and German language.
Independence Day In Chile
How often does a country celebrate her independence twice? More so on two consecutive days.
Chile celebrates independence on the 18th and 19th of September yearly. Beyond all the official activities, independence day in Chile is a party fest. It’s no surprise that most Chileans use the whole week to enjoy the celebration.
An interesting fact about Chile is, during the independence celebration, citizens are required to display the national flag. If you don’t display the flag correctly as a citizen, you can receive a fine of up to $300 USD.
Here’s a tasty fact about Chilean culture. Traditional Chilean food includes tasty dishes such as curanto, asado, cazuela, and empanadas among others. What’s interesting is the diversity in the ingredients derived from the Quechua Andean cuisine.
There’s also a bit of evidence of European influence on Chilean cuisine. It’s evident in their integration of onions, garlic, and condiments like mayonnaise and yogurt, and drinks beer.
The people in Chile are very polite and that is one cultural fact about Chile. Their culture generally allows them to respectful. When greeting men and women the style is different. Women pat each other on the right forearm or shoulder while the men shake hands.
With friends and family, it’s a bit relaxed as men get to embrace each other and pat themselves on the back while women kiss on the right cheek.
Other Interesting Facts About Chile
Chile’s Ufo Exploit
Yes! Like the alien kind UFO. Not everyone believes in UFOs, but it’s different in Chile. One interesting fact about Chile you probably didn’t know is that Chile’s government is the only one in the world with an official department strictly dedicated to conducting research into UFOs.
Preparing For Earthquake
Chile is a country prone to earthquakes. In the past, they’ve lost a lot of people. The biggest one happened in 1960 when they lost at least 1500 people and over 2 million became homeless.
Over the years the country learned how to mitigate earthquake damages. They’ve developed a building code which they updated after every large earthquake.
One Chile fun fact is, they train their citizens on how to navigate earthquakes or tsunamis when they occur. Can you imagine training on how to navigate earthquakes? Teachers also undergo special training so that they can know the best way to protect children in case of any emergency.
An interesting geographical fact about Chile is that it is one of the longest countries in the world while also being the narrowest. Chile’s length is estimated at 4,300 kilometers from north to south. But on the width side, it measures about 350 kilometers from east to west.
A cool fact about Chile is that it is the grandfather of potatoes worldwide. There is a belief that 90% of the origin of potatoes is from the Island of Chiloe, located off the coast of the lake district. To date, Chile is the home to 286 unique varieties of the Chiloe potato
Chile Love Football (Soccer)
Chile has participated in at least 9 world cups over the years. In the 1962 edition of the tournament, the Chilean team finished third. They are also no strangers to Copa America and the Pan American and Olympic Games. Like most of South America, the people are passionate about the sport.
Discovering More Fun Facts About Chile
These are just a few of the interesting facts about Chile, there’s so much more to learn about Chilean culture. If you’re looking for an amazing travel destination with exciting landmarks and a ton of activities to enjoy, Chile should be on your map.
There’s plenty to explore in this incredible country, from its awe-inspiring landscapes and delicious food to its passionate love of football and fascinating history. Be sure to visit yourself and discover more fun facts about Chile for yourself!