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Antofagasta

Being the major attraction of the second region Antafogasta is a city with much tradition. This area/region is also blessed with the clearest skies in the world, with no more then 20 cloudy days in a year, and therefore home to many observatories with some of the world's largest telescopes. Of the places interesting to see, the Barrio Historico stands out. There you can visit the Muelle Salitrero, a national monument built in 1872 by the Melbourne Clarc Co.. This pier was where they loaded the saltpeter for shipping to other parts of the world. It also served during the Pacific War as a place to embark and disembark Chilean soldiers. Another place that should be visited by visitors is the Centro Urbano (downtown center), with the Plaza Colon surrounded by big old trees. There is also the Torre del Reloj (clock tower), which is a small replica of Big Ben in London and also a national monument. Alongside this is the Quiosco de la Oquesta, where different choirs traditionally meet to play for the public. In the Plaza Colon there is also a gothic styled Cathedral with many stained glass windows. Along one side of the church is the Teatro Municipal (Municipal theater), recently constructed and that intends to become a stop for well known artists. Another interesting building of Antofagasta is the Ruina de Huanchaca, a silver foundry, constructed in 1873. As far as natural attractions are concerned, be sure to pay a visit to the coast to admire the fascinating rock formations there.
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