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Moving to Chile?

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Mathias Döringer

Living in Chile, from Austria

"Before moving to Santiago de Chile I joined the InterNations community and got useful hints regarding housing and business."

Emma Willems

Living in Chile, from Belgium

"When I first came to Santiago de Chile I didn´t know one anyone. On InterNations I found many expat friends in the same situation."

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Chile at a Glance

Moving to Chile

Chile, that long and narrow country on South America’s west coast, evokes images of rural life in Patagonia and the Andes. However, there is more to moving to Chile than its breathtaking countryside. Learn all about moving to Chile, including location and climate, visas, and transportation here.

Chile: Four Seasons, Three Continents

Chile is an incredibly diverse country, with deserts, islands, the Andes, and Antarctica to discover. Expats moving to Chile get to explore a country which stretches across three continents. While Chile's main territory is located on the South American west coast, the Easter Islands, its westernmost border, belongs to Oceania. In the south, it reaches all the way to Antarctica.

Much like its geography, Chile’s climate, which changes depending on whether you are in the north, south, east, or west, also boasts a wide range of diversity. In the north, you are likely to experience desert weather, while the Patagonian south, on the other hand, is often icy and cold, and known for its strong winds. The central zone is known for its mild and warm climate, but rainfall is more frequent.

The Different Facets of Chile

As mentioned above, Chile has a lot to offer expats. Not only the capital Santiago is well worth a visit, but other areas in this long and narrow country also impress with their unique characteristics. Should you ever travel from north to south upon your move to Chile, you will become aware of the extreme contrasts of the country.

Santiago de Chile

One of the first things you may notice when you visit Chile’s capital, if the smog, pollution, and noise allow you to enjoy the scenery at all, that is, are the Andean mountains rising to the east and a smaller coastal range located to the west. Santiago may be loud and dirty at first sight, however, there is a lot to discover for expats moving to Chile’s capital: Spanish-style arcades, beautiful palacios, and neo-classical cathedrals — Santiago has it all.

In summer, the temperature is always around 30°C but may fall down to 15°C at night. In winter, the close proximity to the Andes is ideal for winter sports enthusiasts. Regardless of the weather, you can always explore the city’s charming cafés, fine museums, and an up-and-coming art scene.

The Andes and Norte Grande

The Cordillera de Los Andes forms the backbone of Chile. The mountain range has an average height of 5,000 m but begins to descend just past Santiago and vanishes once you get to the continent’s south. Outdoor enthusiasts moving to Chile will love exploring its outstanding peaks. For instance, the volcanoes Llullaillaco, Tres Cruces, and Ojos del Salado.

Norte Grande, or Grand North, borders Peru and is home to the Atacama Desert, which is considered one of the driest areas in the world. Some areas of Norte Grande do not see any rainfall throughout the entire year, which is why most people settle on the coast.


We do our best to keep this article up to date. However, we cannot guarantee that the information provided is always current or complete. 

InterNations Expat Magazine