Santiago, Chile

Tours and Field Studies for Santiago, Chile

Students in Chile have the opportunity to study Latin America and its cultures in more depth in an 5-day tour/field study to Northern Chile (fall semester and at the conclusion of Summer Session II) and Southern Chile (spring semester). Yearlong students may enroll in this course both semesters for a diverse journey through Chile. USAC encourages each student to participate either for pleasure or as a 1-credit field study course; however, the segment is optional and has an additional fee. You will sign up for the tour or register for the field study on your Course and Tour selection form. The itinerary is subject to change in case of unforeseen circumstances.

Each field study takes place in three phases: (1) Orientation on the research topic to be studied and visited. (2) Participation in cultural activities, historic excursions, trips in mountain and ocean ecosystems, visits to Native communities, visits to pottery and tapestry centers, tours of Andean architecture and the culture of the European immigrants, introduction to Astronomic observations, and visits to traditional and modern Chilean industries. (3) Observation, writing in a journal , and photos while on the trip. Delivery of the project to the instructor will take place within three weeks after the completion of the trip.

Fall Semester and at the conclusion of Summer Session II

Northern Chile

Research topics: history, art, architecture, geology, ecology, astronomy of the San Pedro de Atacama, Andean Altiplain, and Atacama Desert regions.

The tour itinerary includes excursions to the village of San Pedro, near the Atacama salt flats and the Andes mountains, as well as the oasis towns of Toconao, Camar, and Socaire; visits to the archaeological museum and sites of the native Atacama culture, with its Inca and Spanish influences; guided excursions to the magnificent national parks of Moon Valley, Flamingo Lagoons in the Atacama salt flats, and the Andean Antiplain Lakes; a night astronomical session in the Atacama Desert; an exploration of the protected ecological area of the Cactus Valley; and a refreshing visit to the Puritama thermal baths.

Spring Semester

Southern Chile

Research topics: history, art, architecture and geography of Southern Chile, Mapuche Native culture, biodiversity, German colonization, Chiloe Island and its anthropology and mythology.

The tour itinerary includes visits to Puerto Montt and the fishing port of Angelmó with its traditional markets; the famous ferry crossing to Chiloe Island, the second biggest island in South America with traditional mixed European and native culture; tours of the famed wooden churches of Chiloe, a UNESCO World Heritage Site; the magical little island of Aucar and the attractive Puñihuil Natural Penguin Reserve; Puerto Varas and the lakes, rapids, and rain forests of the Llanquihue Region with its stunning volcanic panorama. The trip also introduces you to the typical small towns of the German colonization and a refreshing visit to the Aguas Calientes thermal baths.