Urban architecture in Valparaíso is not only an explosion of colours, magic and mystery, but also of innovation and effort determined by its crazy topography. There are 44 hills transformed in a natural amphitheater with a majestic panorama over the Pacific Ocean. Here are some of the most relevant hills in Valparaíso and places you can visit in them:
This hill and "Alegre" Hill were both part of the same residential area mostly occupied by Europeans that settled here in 1822 It was the place chosen by the British Colony, and then by French and Germans to recreate environments resembling their own nations. The Anglican Church of Saint Paul was a testimony of the English colony built in 1858 it was the second Protestant Church in the country.
The "Concepción" or "Turri" Elevator was inaugurated in 1883. At the top of it is the beautiful and crowded "Paseo Gervasoni", named after the Italian Consul in Chile. This Promenade and Belvedere have a magnificent view. During the Colony it was used as defence point against the pirates. From here you can visit the "Turri Café" and the Belvedere of Lukas´s house ("Casa Mirador de Lukas"), a famous draftsman, where more than a hundred drawings and caricatures by Renzo Pecchenino ("Lukas") can be seen.
"Paseo Atkinson" where the famous painter Alfredo Helsby drew a girl playing with the ring can be visited.
The hill was a land granted to Pedro de Valdivia, as a price for the conquest of Chile. Later it was given to the Augustinian monks. The "Alegre" Hill had an English influence. The hill´s name was given, because people who lived here built beautiful colourful houses.
It changes in the XX century, because earthquakes destroyed many buildings and many of them needed to be rebuilt.
The "Baburizza" Palace was built by the architect "Renato Schiavon and Arnaldo Barison" in 1916 for the "Zanelli" family. Later it was property of Pascual Baburizza, and finally it became property of Valparaíso City Council. The Municipal Museum of Arts is there now.
This palace is located in the Yugoslav Promenade, and you can go there by "El Peral" Elevator or by "Urriola" Street.
From his place with a gorgeous view you can see the Port, "Viña del Mar" City, "Reñaca", "Concón" and "Cochoa" Beaches.
The name of this hill is related to Santo Domingo Church and the Convent, and it is near the old Church "La Matriz".
The splendid view that you have from it gives the name to the hill.
There are two valleys that limit the hill, the "Circo" and "Yerbas Buenas" Valley. Nowadays, the "Circo" Valley is "Ferrari" Street.
"La Sebastiana "house of the Chilean Poet Pablo Neruda" is in this hill, located in "Ferrari" Street next to "Alemania" Avenue. Now it is a Museum-House, with many exhibits. Near this house you can see the old "Mauri" Theater that was built by Sebastian Collado Mauri. The paintings in the walls of the theatre, about Pablo Neruda and Valparaíso are interesting to see.
The Museum "Organológico" is at Hector Calvo Street, where instruments from America and other countries can be appreciated.
Other important place in this hill is the "Cielo Abierto" Museum (Open Sky). There are twenty wall paintings, which transform the landscape in a permanent exhibition. These were painted by famous artist like Roberto Matta, Roser Bru and Matilde Perez.
This is one of the first hills where people came to live. It starts in Serrano Street. One way is going up by the stairs, after one hundred steps or by "Cordillera" Elevator, the oldest one in the city (1888).
If you take the elevator, you get at "Eleuterio Ramirez" Square, from there you can go to Lord Cochrane Sea Museum and appreciate the majestic view. Between 1840 and 1843 the English Astronomer John Mouat built the house that today is an Observatory. There is a beautiful balcony with cannons in direction to the bay. Going up the hill we find a wood and brick building called the Labour District "Población Obrera", here workers had a dwelling. This place was built by President Federico Errázuriz in 1898.
Address: María Luisa Santander #537. Santiago, Chile - Phone: (56-2) 894 72 98 - Mail: [email protected]