Travel

South America’s “Sky Garden”, the city’s origin, has a nice name “Lover Mountain”

 There are many cities called “Santiago” in European and American countries. Most of the reasons are because they were former Spanish colonies or places that were greatly influenced by Spain. They named it the Spanish patron saint—Santiago. The most famous is the Chilean capital “Santiago”.

  Chile is located in the coastal area west of the Andes in South America. It is the narrowest country in the world. The capital is located in the middle. It is the fifth largest city in South America, with a population of about 7.3 million, accounting for about 40% of the national population. On February 12, 1541, the Spanish Pedro de Valdivia (Pedro de Valdivia) led 150 cavalrymen to build Spain’s first on the South American continent on a hill in the city center today A fort, and a number of original residential areas built with mud bricks and grass under the mountain, is the earliest urban prototype. He was the first royal governor in the history of Chilean colonialism and named the city ” Santiago de Chile (Santiago de Chile) ” with his own name .

  Western colonists built cities mostly for military needs, and San Diego was no exception. Here is backed by the Andes Mountains, across the Mapocho River, the climate is humid, and there are plenty of water, easy to defend and difficult to attack. After Chile’s independence in 1818, Santiago in the middle was also the best choice for the capital. Since then Santiago has become Chile’s “No. 1”, contributing 45% of the country’s GDP. Chileans call it “one Santiago, half Chile”.

  Chilean poet Neruda once praised his motherland like this: “After God created the world, there are still many beautiful things left, and he put them together into Chile. There are plateaus, fields, mountains, lakes, seashores, deserts… … ” Indeed, Chile, which spans 38 latitudes, has diverse climates and rich resources from north to south, and Santiago is like the epitome of this country.

  Santiago is a city that has both European romance and original African wildness, as well as the unique charm of South America . It borders the Pacific Ocean to the west and the Andes Mountains to the east. It has magnificent waves on one side and snow all year round. In terms of travel, there are different scenery all year round.

  Although my stay in San Diego is only two days, it is difficult to really understand the city, but this cosmopolitan city provides a unique feeling for travelers. Here you can see people with different skin tones around the world, or hurriedly, or stop to gaze at buildings with a distinctive Spanish style. Only by understanding her past can she feel the city more deeply.

  I once read a book, ” Latin Vessels Cut in Latin America “, about the plunder of European colonists in Latin America. In fact, it is hard to say what the colonists brought to Latin America. Although some Indian indigenous peoples have developed civilizations, they were destroyed by the colonists, and no trace of them can be found; the gold and silver of South America also feed the entire Europe; but the colonists also brought advanced productivity to this continent , Accelerated into the modern society.

  In January 1817, South American liberators Bernardo O’Higgins Riquelme and José de San Martín led 5,000 troops from Mendoza, Argentina (Mendoza) Starting to cross the Andes, it is conceivable how difficult this battle was, and more than 2,000 people were lost during the process. They led the rest to defeat the Spanish Colonial Army. On February 12, 1818, O’Higgins formally declared Chile’s independence. On September 18, the same year, the Chilean Declaration of Independence was published before Chile entered the republican period.

  The picture below shows the Chilean National History Museum ( Museo Histórico Nacional )

  I returned to San Diego from Easter Island, and for a while I could not accept the noisy metropolis from the deserted islands. Standing on the streets of the city of San Diego, the passers-by who walked hurriedly made me feel a little nervous. After all, safety in South American cities is the first issue to be considered. I stayed at the Ibis hotel. The front desk also reminded me to keep my personal belongings safe at all times. The mobile phone should not be held in my hand. The bag should be placed in front of me.

Cerro Santa Lucía ,   located in the center of Santiago , is the place where the aforementioned colonists built the city. It is not far from the Plaza de Armas in the city center. Take the red line and get off at Santa Lucia station. Said “mountain” is actually a small earth bag only 69 meters high. It was once the wreckage left after the eruption of the volcano 15 million years ago. It was called “Huelito” or “Heutrecan” during the Native American period. If viewed from the sky, it is like a green leaf embedded in the center of the city. Today, there are still hilltop castle built Spaniards, along with the surrounding green space together opened for free, has become the local favorite city park, affectionately called ” Valentine’s Mountain .”

  Both the north and south ends of the leaf-shaped hill have access to the park. There is also an old man standing near the entrance at the south end, asking visitors to register their name, nationality, and date of birth. I don’t know the language. I don’t know what they do for this kind of statistics. Maybe they just keep the traditional customs.

  In the small garden opposite the entrance stood a statue, as if guarding the former castle. The statue is Benjamín Vicuña Mackenna (1831.8.25-1886.1.25) . He has Irish and Spanish Basque ancestry. He was born in Santiago and is the hero of the Chilean War of Independence. Juan Ma The grandson of General Kenner, a famous historian, writer, journalist and politician in Chile. In his life, he lived in exile and exile. He also served as mayor of Santiago, and was buried on the mountain of Saint Lucia after his death.

  Since 1872, the city of Santiago has begun to rebuild the Santa Lucia Mountain. Not only have planted palm trees and drought-tolerant flowers and plants, but also bought beautiful and unique figures from Europe as decoration, becoming a collection of ancient castles, Fountains, strange stones, palace churches are equal to one garden.

  Walking up the stone steps into the garden, the first thing you see is a yellow ancient Greek-style gate building built on a mountain, surrounded by flowing springs. This Neptune fountain was built between 1897 and 1903, and is very different from the colonial style of the city. Because it was originally designed by French architect Victor Henri Villeneuve and completed by Chilean architect Benjamin Marambio. The two left and right semi-circular steps lead from the porch platform to the first floor of the courtyard, and the slim palm trees sway in the breeze, as if bringing me back to the small town of Mijas, Spain.

  From the second-floor courtyard to the north, a trail extends in a winding way, winding and winding straight to the top of the mountain. Towering ancient trees, wandering tree shadows. In the grass beside the road, wild flowers of various colors compete openly. Although I can’t identify all the varieties, I can see the vitality.

  You can see antique cannons and wooden carvings of Indians halfway up the mountain.

Statue of Manuel Vicuña Larrain, the  first archbishop of Santiago . He was born here on April 20, 1778, and was appointed bishop in 1840.

  The red brick gate on the side of the small square reveals a strong sense of vicissitudes, and the eaves in the shape of the fort of the city wall remain intact. It was an important channel between the castle on the top of the mountain and the mountain.

  In 1834, Darwin once passed San Diego and climbed the mountain on a global trip to study the theory of evolution. A bronze medal on the top recorded his words and autograph.

  There is a small Indian sculpture on the top of the huge stone next to it, brandishing an iron pickaxe, symbolizing the spirit of perseverance and aggressiveness.

  A seven-corner ancient castle, Hidalgo Castle, is hidden in cactus and colorful flowers and plants of various shapes. It was the first fortress built by the colonists for defense. Now at noon, the cannons copied in the old castle will also make a rumble, echoing over the urban area.

  Climbing to the top of the hill is the best place in downtown San Diego to enjoy the panoramic view of the city. Looking around, it is full of greenery. This hill is completely a modern version of the “Sky Garden” . The modern building nearby and the colonial-style buildings complement each other. The Andes in the distance are covered with snow all the year round. The Mapocho River crosses the city. A typical South American-style metropolis image, without losing its charm.

  Looking down from the top of the mountain, the huge billboard across the road is the Feria Artesanal Santa Lucía . Chile is the third largest copper producer in the world. There are many copper utensils or copper handicrafts in the market. The patterns are novel and unique, the craftsmanship is fine, and it is full of South American characteristics.

  At the top of the mountain, you can overlook the San Cristobal Hill , commonly known as “Mount Notre Dame”, named after a 14-meter-high white Virgin Mary on the top of the hill. In the eyes of Chileans, this mountain is like a lighthouse in the sea, the patron saint of pedestrians, guiding people to reach Santiago smoothly. This small hill with an altitude of more than 900 meters is the seat of the Metropolitan Park (Parque Metropolitano). The hills are full of flowers, trees and vegetation, and there are observatory, children’s playground, botanical garden and zoo.

  Next to Santa Lucia Hill is Santiago’s most important street, O’Higgins Avenue, named after the liberator mentioned earlier. It is equivalent to the Champs Elysées in Paris, with a total length of about 7 kilometers, like a link, wearing a colonial style or modern building, leading to all directions. The streets are lined with trees and there are fountains or bronze statues not far away. There are fragrant restaurants and colorful shops on the street. At night, the neon lights are on again.

  The San Francisco Church on the street is the oldest church in San Diego, and it has survived several earthquakes. There is a colonial museum in the monastery next to the church, which contains some relics from the colonial era of Chile and South America.

  Chile is the first independent country in South America, and Santiago is also the relatively best economic city in South America. Walking on the main street, it seems to feel the sea breeze blowing from the South Pacific.

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