|Today is our last full day in Santiago. Phil is feeling better so we have booked a market tour of Santiago. We drop off the washing and then meet our guide Mauricio at 10.30 outside of Mercardo Central. Mauricio is lovely and is very knowledgeable. We cross the river and go down quite a few streets to get to the largest of the 3 markets this side of the river. This market is enormous and sells all sorts of fruits and vegetables and their specialy is dried seaweed which the Chileans love, as it contains a lot of iron, like spinach. Mauricio explained about all of Chile's famous drinks, like terremotto and their sandwiches, bread and lunch meals like Charquican. We move to the next market and this is smaller and has the butchers and on one side are some small local eateries that sell traditional Chilean food. Then the third market which is built over the freeway to the airport is a more modern building with two floors. Upstairs are slightly fancier eating establishments and some clothing stalls and downstairs are more fruit and vegetable stalls and some that sell more supermarket items, like nuts and dried fruits, flour and tinned food. A hell of a lot sheaper than the supermarket here. Chile's supermarkets are quite expensive. Next door is the flower market and there are many wreaths as there is a large cemetery nearby and this market caters for funerals.
Before we go back across the road we buy a sopaipilla which is a fried bread from a little street stall. Not too bad, a good size for a snack. Finally we go through the fish market in the oldest building. There is a domed roof in the centre to vent the smell of fish which can be quite strong. Mauricio leaves us there and we wander back to the market that has small restaurants with local food. We order a Cha each with two fried eggs on top. $10 for the two and a coke to share. Very good hearty food. The man sitting near us agrees as he smiles at us and waves when we leave.
We go back to the apartment and pack our bags, hoping the extra things we have bought don't make our bags too heavy.
At 6.30 we go to eat in the Lastarria district. We have avoided this area as there a quite a few fancy and expensive restaurants but as it is our last night, we thought we should give it a try. Mauricio recommened Chipe Libre for good piscos but the reviews also say the food is good so we go there. We sit in the courtyard out the back. I have a G & T and Phil a beer and we follow that up with 2 wines. Phil has hake and a very nice quinoa done like a risotto and I have the seafood and vegetables on a sizzle plate. Good food and not outrageously priced too. A lovely final night meal but we will be sad to leave.