Exploring the Colours of Valparaíso

Designated as a UNESCO world heritage site in 2003, Valparaíso is seamlessly attached to Viñ Del Mar, about a 1-hour drive from Chile’s busy capital, Santiago.

My partner and I hit the city’s hills in January, where we were constantly gob smacked by its array of bubble-gum painted buildings and giant murals.

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While street art is most often associated with gangs and teenage rebellion, Valpo, as the locals call it, is the perfect place to defy the rigid stereotypes.

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From portraits to cartoon-like animals, vibrant color is stretched from corner to corner on the sides of shops and homes.

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Little caricatures are spray painted on the pavement to show you a way through the ups and down of the city to your hostel. Follow the booty, ant or footprints.

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Surprisingly enough, street art is actually illegal in Valpo. If the police catch you with a paintbrush in hand, and going to town on a non-designated area, jail time could be in the books for you.

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While the art is freeing, the sleepy, full dogs roam the streets.

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While we didn’t try putting our artistic hands to the test, we did manage to fall in love Valpo’s bohemian feel and tiny hole-in-wall coffee shops. (Literal holes in the wall). It was a trip to remember and would highly recommend the Cerro Alegre hostel; it had an impeccable view with an impeccable host to match.

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Text and Photos by Jordan Kroschinsky, @jordannkro 

 

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