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La Serena combines well-preserved Colonial charm with one of Chile's most popular and best-equipped beach resorts. En route to La Serena, you will see the highlights of Coquimbo, beginning with the Main Square and La Merced Church. Then you'll pass by La Herradura seaside resort where legends of swashbuckling and pirating thrive. Passing through a colorful fishing village, you will see the modern Coquimbo Casino and the old "El Faro" Lighthouse - an important symbol of the city of La Serena.
Contrasting the modern architecture of exclusive condos and beach resorts, are the many Colonial-style buildings located in the heart of La Serena, Chile's second oldest city. By law, the construction of new buildings must be of the same style, so you will see many neo-Colonial designs as well. Here you'll visit the Plaza de Armas (Main Square) and impressive Cathedral and see the bustling Francisco de Aguirre Avenue with its unique Open-air Sculptures Museum.
Travel along the scenic Avenue del Mar and make a stop at the Recova Handicraft Market where you'll find pottery, wood, stone, alpaca, and wool products. Finally, you'll travel to an observation point to enjoy a panoramic view of La Serena city and Coquimbo Bay.
Continue Travelling to visit the Elqui Valley. With some of the clearest skies found in the world, the Elqui Valley sits out of the way of the city and maintains a gentle, steady climate with little wind or precipitation year long. The valley has become a landmark in Chilean cultural geography: home to great poets, pisco production, and a beacon for esoteric groups and astronomers.
Enjoy the breathtaking scenery as you travel away from coast and closer towards the Andes mountains. On the way, you'll see the grapes that are cultivated to produce one of Chile's most famous spirits, "pisco". In the heart of the valley is the town of Vicuna. Here you will visit a local pisco distillery and sample the Chilean national aperitif. Made from grapes, pisco is similar to Italian Grappa and is most commonly made from the Muscatel Rose, Alexandria Muscatel and Austrian Muscatel grapes. Similar to wine production, the grapes are harvested, fermented, distilled, and stored in wooden barrels to taste.
Cost Per Person (Adult)
Tour Cost: $188.00
Tax/Other Fees: $21.00
Total Cost: $209.00
Wear comfortable walking shoes. Bring sunglasses and sunscreen and a hat.
At the cruise ship pier. The specific meeting location at the pier will be listed in your confirmation email and voucher for this shore excursion. See the 'Redemption and Voucher Details' section below.