Atacama Desert Chile2 min

Best time to visit Chile

Month-by-month guide of when to visit

Atacama Desert, Chile

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Best time to visit Chile

A month by month guide of when to visit Chile

Chile's weather varies significantly due to its diverse geography and the influence of various climate zones. From the arid Atacama Desert in the north to the snow-capped mountains of Patagonia in the south, the country offers a wide range of weather conditions throughout the year.

In northern Chile, including destinations like San Pedro de Atacama and La Serena, the weather is generally dry and desert-like. The region experiences a desert climate with hot summers and mild winters. The peak tourist season in the north occurs during the summer months of December, January, and February when temperatures can soar above 30°C (86°F). It's the ideal time to explore the Atacama Desert and enjoy outdoor activities like stargazing and visiting salt flats. The region can be visited year-round due to its consistently dry weather.

Central Chile, including Santiago, Valparaiso, and the wine regions, has a Mediterranean climate with warm, dry summers and mild, wet winters. Central Chile is busiest between December and March when temperatures range between 25°C and 35°C (77°F to 95°F). This is a great time to enjoy the beaches, explore the vibrant cities, and indulge in wine-tasting tours. However, September to November and March to May offer pleasant weather and fewer crowds making them excellent times to visit as well.

Southern Chile, including the Lake District and Torres del Paine National Park, has a temperate oceanic climate characterised by cool summers and mild, wet winters. Summer temperatures in the south range from 15°C to 25°C (59°F to 77°F). Between late November and early March its a good time to hike, explore the stunning lakes and forests, and witness the splendour of Patagonia. It's worth noting that the weather in the south can be unpredictable, and it's advisable to be prepared for sudden changes and bring appropriate clothing and gear.

The best time to visit Chile for skiing is during the winter months of June to September. This period coincides with the Southern Hemisphere's winter season, offering ideal conditions for snow sports enthusiasts. Chile boasts a diverse range of world-class ski resorts scattered throughout the Andes Mountains, making it a fantastic destination for skiers and snowboarders alike. Whether you're seeking the adrenaline rush of steep slopes or the tranquillity of cross-country skiing, the crisp, powdery snow and stunning mountain landscapes of Chile make for an unforgettable skiing experience during these months.

Patagonia, located in the southernmost part of Chile, experiences a subpolar climate with cool summers and cold, snowy winters. The best time to visit if you want to explore the famous Torres del Paine National Park, hike the W trek, and witness stunning landscapes is during Patagonian summer, which is between December and February. Expect temperatures of around 10°C to 20°C (50°F to 68°F). It's good to remember that even in the summer, the weather can be unpredictable, and strong winds are common.

Chile also hosts several specific events throughout the year including the Festival de las Condes in Santiago which features live music, dance performances, and fireworks in January. In Valparaiso, Carnival of Valparaiso takes place in February, showcasing parades and vibrant street art. The National Grape Harvest Festival in March celebrates Chile's wine culture with traditional rituals and wine tastings in the wine regions.

Chile Valparaiso

January

The peak of summer in Chile, making it an excellent time to visit the country's coastal areas, including the vibrant cities of Valparaiso and Viña del Mar. The temperatures during this month are generally pleasant, ranging from 20°C to 30°C (68°F to 86°F), perfect for enjoying the beaches and outdoor activities. Although it’s worth noting that January is also the busiest tourist season in Chile, so expect larger crowds. In Santiago, the capital city, you can witness the vibrant Festival de las Condes, a popular event featuring live music, dance performances, and stunning fireworks.

Chile Patagonia Hiking

February

Another fantastic month to explore Chile, especially if you're interested in the landscapes of Patagonia. The weather remains warm and inviting, making it an ideal time for hiking and outdoor adventures. Head to Central Chile, where you can experience the colourful Carnival of Valparaiso, a lively celebration filled with parades, music, dancing, and stunning street art. It's advisable to book accommodation well in advance due to the popularity of this season.

Chile Hammock

March

March marks the beginning of autumn in Chile, and the weather starts to cool down. It's still an enjoyable time to visit, with fewer crowds and lower prices compared to the peak summer season. The wine regions of Chile, such as the picturesque Colchagua Valley and Maipo Valley, are particularly beautiful during this time, as the vineyards display vibrant hues of red and orange. In Curicó, you can catch the National Grape Harvest Festival, a significant event where you can witness traditional rituals, enjoy wine tastings, and indulge in local cuisine.

Bridge Lake District Chile

April

April signals the start of the shoulder season in Chile. The weather is mild, and the autumn paints the landscape in impressive array of colours. It's an ideal time to visit the captivating Lake District, which encompasses stunning destinations like Pucon and Puerto Varas. The iconic Torres del Paine National Park in Patagonia is also worth exploring during this time, with agreeable temperatures and fewer tourists. Additionally, Easter Island experiences comfortable weather in April, making it an opportune moment to visit this remote and enigmatic destination.

Chile Andes mountain Snow

May

May marks the beginning of the low season in Chile, as the temperatures continue to drop, and the tourist numbers decrease. It's a quieter time with ample opportunities to explore Santiago's cultural attractions and museums without the usual crowds. If you're a ski enthusiast, you can head to the majestic Andes Mountains, where the ski resorts begin to open for the winter season, offering thrilling snow sports activities.

Hiking Chile

June

June brings winter to Chile, making it an excellent time to hit the ski slopes. The ski resorts in the Andes Mountains, such as Portillo and Valle Nevado, offer excellent conditions for skiing and snowboarding enthusiasts. However, it's important to note that June is the coldest month in Chile, especially in regions like Patagonia and the southern parts of the country. Make sure to pack warm clothing and gear accordingly.

Atacama Desert Chile

July

July is another popular month for skiing and winter activities in Chile. The ski resorts are in full swing, providing ample opportunities to enjoy the powdery slopes and engage in thrilling winter sports. In the northern regions of Chile, such as the extraordinary Atacama Desert, temperatures remain mild during the day but drop significantly at night, creating a unique and captivating atmosphere for stargazing.

Chile wine grapes

August

August signifies the end of winter in Chile, and the ski season starts to wind down. It's a great time to visit the renowned wine regions, such as the Maipo Valley and the Casablanca Valley, as the vineyards prepare for the upcoming grape harvest. The cities and attractions are generally less crowded during this time, allowing for a more relaxed and peaceful experience.

Valparaiso beach Chile

September

September marks the beginning of spring in Chile, as the weather starts to warm up, and the landscapes come alive with blooming flowers and lush greenery. It's an excellent time to explore the coastal regions and enjoy outdoor activities such as hiking, surfing, and whale watching. On September 18th, Chile celebrates its Independence Day with lively festivities, including colourful parades, traditional dances, mouth-watering food, and vibrant fireworks.

Torres del paine chile

October

October is a beautiful month to visit Chile, with relaxing temperatures and fewer tourists compared to the peak summer season. It's an ideal time to explore the stunning fjords, glaciers, and snow-capped mountains of Patagonia. In the Casablanca Valley wine region, you can participate in the grape harvest festivals, known as vendimias, and indulge in wine tastings, surrounded by the famous Chilean vineyards.

Chile Beach3

November

November offers delightful spring weather, making it an ideal time to visit various regions of Chile. The temperatures are comfortable, and the landscapes are vibrant and picturesque. In Santiago, you can explore the bustling markets, savour delectable local cuisine, and immerse yourself in the city's cultural offerings. Outdoor enthusiasts can go hiking in the scenic Aysén region or visit the picturesque Chiloé Island, known for its distinctive architecture and rich folklore. The coastal areas, including La Serena and Valparaiso, are also popular during this time, offering scenic beauty and charming seaside towns.

Chile Beach2

December

December marks the beginning of summer in Chile, and it's a great time to visit the country's beaches and coastal cities. The temperatures rise, providing ample opportunities for water sports, sunbathing, and swimming. Whether you choose to relax on the sandy shores of Arica or explore the vibrant beach towns like La Serena, you can bask in the summer vibes. Additionally, as December is the holiday season, you can immerse yourself in the festive atmosphere with lively markets, holiday decorations, and seasonal celebrations throughout the country.

Remember that weather patterns can vary across Chile's diverse regions, and it's always a good idea to check specific destinations and regions for accurate and up-to-date information before planning your trip.

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  • Amanda

    Amanda

    Latin America Specialist

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