Day Trip to Valparaiso: What to Do Once the Ship Docks

Referred to as the “valley of paradise,” Valparaiso represents just that. This Chilean port city is a popular stop for cruises, especially those traveling the coast of the Pacific and into the Panama Canal. It was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2003 and since then, it’s become even trendier and more bohemian than before. Street art dominates the city, which is present in almost every street corner, including the famed funiculars. As your cruise ship docks for your day trip to Valparaiso, check out these must do activities.

Day Trip to Valparaiso: What to Do Once the Ship Docks

Check out the Street Art

Day Trip to Valparaiso, Museo a Cielo Abierto
Museo a Cielo Abierto

During your day trip to Valparaiso, or Valpo to locals, make sure to scout some of the best graffiti art anywhere in the world. This port town is well-known for striking murals featuring social and political themes. Check out Templeman Street on Cerro Alegre or view a more formal compilation at the Museo a Cielo Abierto, an open-air museum located in Cerro Bellavista where you can view rotating works of both local and international artists.

Ride a Funicular

Day Trip to Valparaiso, Valpo Funicular
Valpo Funicular

There’s no better way to view this colorful city built around hills than from neighborhood pinnacles. You can either walk, take a bus or ride one of Valparaiso’s many funiculars. It’s not exactly the most efficient way to get around the city, but the views from the ride up or down are unique in itself. Some of the cars are also colorfully painted, giving visitors a sampling of the graffiti art Valpo is known for. Experience Ascensor Concepción, the city’s oldest funicular or the Ascensor Artillería where you can get incredible views of the bustling port below.

Visit La Sebastiana

Day Trip to Valparaiso, , la sebastiana
La Sebastiana

On your day trip to Valparaiso, experience a bit of Chilean cultural heritage by paying a visit to La Sebastiana. This restored home and now museum sits atop Cerro Bellavista and was once home to the Nobel Prize-winning and beloved poet, Pablo Neruda. Get a closer glimpse at his literary works and discover some of the poet’s prized collections. Entrance is on a first-come, first-served basis and cost CLP 7,000 (roughly $11 or 10 Euros).

Eat Some of the Best Chilean Empanada

Day Trip to Valparaiso, empanadas with queso
Empanadas with queso

As you walk around on your day trip to Valparaiso, you’ll likely develop an appetite. The best way to curb that is to sample a Chilean empanada from one of the local eateries around town. Head over to “Le Pato” situated in Cerro Alegre. This artisanal empanaderia offers traditional beef and vegetarian options or check out “Delicia Express” on Calle Uriola.

About Iris A


Born in the Philippines, but grew up in Texas, Iris has been traveling and writing about her experiences for well over a decade. Her work has been published on well-known travel sites like Hipmunk (#hipmunkcitylove) and D Magazine Online Travel Club. She has been all over Europe, the US, and has recently started exploring Latin America. She loves trying local cuisine and visiting UNESCO deemed World Heritage sites. Her favourite city is New York, with London, following a close 2nd. You can follow her on Twitter @sundeeiris or through her travel blog, Traveling With Iris.

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One Response

  1. Avatar for Iris A


    I would love to travel in the Funicular. That must be an experience for the books. And of course I must have my empanadas with cheese Chilean style!


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