Our second day in Santiago. We slept in - even though the time difference is only 3 hours off of Central time, the overnight flight takes a lot out of you.
We started our day by taking a taxi to the cable car leading to the top of the Cerro San Cristobol, on a high hill overlooking Santiago. The muncicipal park occupies this hill overlooking Santiago. We rode a cable car up and visited the statue of the Virgin Mary which is the symbol of Santiago. Pope John Paul II visited here in the late 1980s and said mass from near the top of this hill. The view of Santiago and the Andes is spectacular. After riding a cable car up to the summit, we rode a funicular down to the Barrio Bellavista, an artsy neighborhood. We had a lovely lunch and returned to the hotel.
Despite Matt's anti-hot-weather preferences, we spent a couple of hours at the Hyatt's pool, and then we joined the group for a bus tour of Santiago. We made stops at La Moneda (the president's palace) and the Pre-Columbian Museum, which has an excellent collection of artwork and artifacts from native people throughout Latin America.
The evening was occupied by a 'welcome dinner' with the other guests from our our group. By and large, they are signifcantly older than Emmy and myself- most are in their late 50s or 60s. Tomorrow is a very early morning departure for Argentina and then the ship.