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Ella Bezzant, Danielle Kirelik, & Kim Skaskiewicz
A beautiful and exotic land stretches along the impressive Pacific Ocean on the southwest coast of South America, measuring up to be one of the world’s longest countries. Chile claims the depiction as an exquisite and scenic area with its diverse climate and unique geography. Chile has an exceedingly rare and strategic location, bordering the Andes Mountains and Pacific Ocean. It has an interesting geography extending almost 2,700 miles in length but only 110 miles in width. (Hudson, Rex A.) A small mountain range ascends on the coast while the grand Andes tower in the east, creating the border with Argentina and Bolivia. (Monteon, Michael)
Chile contains three regions including: the Northern Desert, the Central Valley, and the Archipelago. Along with the three distinct areas, Chile consists of a few minor islands in the Pacific Ocean including
. (Monteon, Michael) The Atacama Desert is located in the northern half of the Northern Desert and it is one of the world’s driest places with little plant life. (Monteon, Michael) The Central Valley is the agricultural central of Chile with fertile soil because of the nearby volcanic activity. (“Chilean Central Valley”)
reaches to the southernmost tip of South America with lakes, glaciers, forests, and rocky slopes. (Monteon, Michael) Most Chileans live in the Central Valley, which is also the location of most industrial and agricultural production. ("Chile - Geography")
Chile is located south of the equator, which means that the seasons are reversed. Summer lasts from December to March and winter lasts from June to September. The region of the Northern Desert isn’t hot, but it hasn’t recorded rain for years, (Monteon, Michael) while the Central Valley has a mild climate. The summers are dry and the winters are rainy. The Archipelago has a more severe climate with cold rains, winds, and common storms. (“Chilean Central Valley”)
The estimated population for July 2009 is 16,601,707. 95.4% of the people are white and white-Amerindian, 4% are Mapuche and 0.6% are indigenous groups. 70% of the population is Roman Catholic, 15.1% are Evangelical, 1.1% are Jehovah’s Witness, 1% are other Christian, 4.6% are other, and 8.3% are none. (“Chile”) The currency used is the Chilean Peso. ("Chile - Geography")
Chile’s economy has a large amount of foreign trade. Its success comes from service industries, manufacturing, agriculture, mining, fishing industry, energy sources, and international trade. (Monteon, Michael) Exports include copper, fish, fruits, paper and pulp, chemicals, and wine. Some imports are consumer goods, chemicals, motor vehicles, fuels, electrical machinery, heavy industrial machinery, and food. ("Chile - Geography")
Chile is a republic, and like the United States, the president is elected to a four-year term, but unlike the US, they cannot serve again after their term ends. The legislature has two houses: the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate. Chile's president is
Chile is separated into 15 regions. The Metropolitan Region contains the capital,
. The regions continue division into 53 provinces. The Supreme Court is Chile’s highest court and contains 21 judges. (Monteon, Michael)
Chile is a beautiful and unique country with an exciting culture and stunning sights. This nation been shaped into the place it is today because of its impressive history that has influenced traditions and people in Chile’s modern day society.
History of the Country
The gorgeous low and hidden valley of Chile had remained unknown to the world for years, until the middle of the fifteenth century. Before the Spanish conquests, southern and central Chile was inhabited by small groups of Araucarian Amerindians. The Incans began great conquests over the continent under Tupac Yupanqui. His armyfoun was very successful moving through various oases throughout the six hundred mile journey. This ground was largely dry and hadn’t been rained upon for years. While moving through the valley, explorers came upon the Mapuche, one of the three Araucanian peoples. (Geographia) At first, the army enjoyed the success and their experiences, but soon met their match. Crossing over the Rio Maule, Mapuche defeated his territory. He did just that to the Incans. Backing down to pursuing any further, the Incans had already established stable grounds. With news spreading of the vastly unknown land, a Spanish army attempted to gain land as well. (Geographia) In 1541, Pedro de Valdavia followed Incan roads from Peru, and founded Santiago in February. This angered locals and in 1553, Pedro was beheaded (Geographia). Being controlled by the Spanish, they d it useful to have a large defensive system. During this period of time, trade was with Peru.
Chilean entertainment and pop culture matches the rest of South America’s, but is unique and there are many people that are part of the industry that are known throughout the world. Some of the aspects of these aspects of culture are art, music, and sports.
Art in Chile is unique for its blend of urban and contemporary artwork that is just now being recognized by the rest of the World (Mapsofworld). Part of this recognized artwork is the poetry of Chile. Over the past few years, Chilean poets
Pablo Neruda and
have won Nobel prizes for their poetry (Mapsofworld). Nicanor Parra and Vicente Huidobro are also famous poets of Chile. Another literary art know in Chile is their work in fiction. Authors such as Manuel Rojas and Isabel Allende are noteworthy for their works (Mapsofworld). The contemporary style of Chile can be seen especially in its sculpture. Some famous sculptors are Sergio Castillo, Aura Castro, Alejandra Ruddoff (Mapsofworld) and they attract domestic as well as foreign buyers. Art work is also another flourishing industry and there are many new galleries opening up that are displaying the new contemporary styles of painters (Mapsofworld). There is also a new style of art that can be seen by everyone in Chile: street art (Palmer). Chile has become a Latin American center for racial street art which can be seen in murals in every city (Palmer).
There is diversity in the music of Chile and its ranges from folklore, popular and classical music (Wikipedia). The folklore music is very rich and there are three different regions of Chile that have their own unique styles and sounds: northern, southern and central (Wikipedia). There is also Easter Island and Mapuche styles of folklore music. Central style is the most popular in Chile (Wikipedia). Chilean rock music is a scene that has been developing since the 1960’s and was inspired by musicians such as
and bands such as
(Wikipedia). The production of rock music declined before the 80’s, but once it became involved with politics, it regained popularity because it expressed the decline in dictatorship and appealed to many people (Wikipedia). During the transitions to democracy, bands such as La Ley emerged and even won a Grammy Award
Like every other South American country, the most popular sport in Chile is soccer. Another popular sport in Chile is skiing (Wikipedia). Due to its geographical features such as the Andes Mountains, Chile hosts many skiing events and attracts many tourists who are willing to ski there was down the treacherously steep mountains (Chilean Ski). Also, because many of the large cities that are located at high elevations, ski town are very popular places to be such as Valle Nevado (Chilean Ski). Another geographical feature that is useful for sports is the Pacific Ocean, which attracts many of the skiers to surf during the off season (Wikipedia). While not as popular of a sport, Chile has produced many great tennis players, like
(Wikipedia). Other famous Chilean athletes include Marlene Ahrens and David Arellano (Wikipedia). Another sport worth mentioning that is played in Chile is basketball. While not as popular, there is a professional league known as NCBAOC, the National Chile Basketball Assossiation of Chile (Wikipedia).
Food and Cuisine Customs-
Throughout history, Chile has been known for popular foods, including the use of corn. This popular food is not only used a ton, but has a strong background. In 1541, when the Spanish came to the country, they brought different foods with them. (Wikepedia) Among these foods included olives, walnuts, grapes, chestnuts, rice, beef, cheeses, wheat, and corn. (Food by Country) Before the Spanish invaded Chile, the native Amerindians used corn in various dishes. Once the
had arrived, combinations formed corn-based dishes, which are popular to this day and a major diet in Chile. (Contact Chile) Some of these dishes include pastel de choclo (corn and meat pie), and humitas (pureed corn cooked in corn husks. (Food By Country). Adding to the melting pot of food in Chile, customs from Germany, Europe, Italy, and Arabia brought different foods varying from cakes and pastries to tea and
. Today these customs are major parts of life in Chile. (Geocities)
Typical Meals/Meal Times-
Meals in Chile normally consist of meat, rice, potatoes, corn and fresh fruit and vegetables. (Contact Chile) The fresh fruit and vegetables come from the country and normally aren’t imported. The fields of Central Chile produce rich tastes and ripe fruit. Although Chile has a 5,000 km long coast, seafood is not eaten much and isn’t common. Meals are the most important part of the day for Chileans. (Moon) This is time where families come and eat together. Breakfast is normally light, serving only toast and milk. Lunch time is the biggest meal of the day. (Contact Chile) Two main dishes are severed, with the fist dish being salad. The second dish ranges anywhere from the main foods such as chicken, potatoes, rice, corn, etc. (Mealtime) Lunch is such a big part of the culture, that in most small towns, businesses close so locals can enjoy lunch with the family then nap. This can last for up to 3 hours! (Moon)
Popular Foods and Drinks-
Chile has one of the vast ranges of food and drinks in the world. Stretching over much land, Chile has every kind of food imaginable. Ranging from seafood to tea, there isn’t anything bad about Chile’s food quality.
Some popular foods:
Emapanada de Pino
- turnover filled with onions, olives, rainsins, egg, meat, all baked in an oven. (South America)
Arrollado de Chancho- Pork wrapped in pork fat topped with chili. (South America)
-boiled corn rolls filled with seasoned ground corn (South America)
Congrito Frito-conger eel deep-fried (South America)
Aliado-cheese and ham sandwhich (South America)
Some popular drinks:
Te con leche-Tea with milk (South America)
Jote-Red wine with Cola (Suite101)
Leche con platano-Fresh milk blended with banana (South America)
Navegado-heated wine with sugar and slices of orange (South America)
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