What are the best sites to see in Santiago? What’s the best city in the South of Chile? Where would you recommend I go in the North? What do I have to see during my week long visit to Chile?
For those of us who love to travel, asking for and giving advice is one of the most meaningful ways to share with other travellers. Whether you have a business trip to London, a week long holiday in the United States, or you want to tell English speaking tourists about Chile’s hidden gems, it’s crucial that you know how to ask for and give travel recommendations.
Asking for Recommendations
What are the attractions that I definitely shouldn't miss?
How much should I budget per day? Is this an expensive/cheap place to visit?
What is the weather like? OR How is the weather?
What are the best museums/restaurants/tourist attractions?
Which neighborhood would you recommend I stay in?
What do you suggest?
Example: I can't decide what to do during our weekend in Valparaiso? What do you suggest?
What/Which do you recommend?
Example: I can't decide whether to go to Valdivia or Puerto Montt? Which city do you recommend?
What's your favorite...?
Example: What's your favorite bar in Santiago?
If you have time...
Example: If you have time, you should visit Cerro Santa Lucia.
I would suggest going to/visiting....
Example: I would suggest visiting San Pedro de Atacama. It's incredible.
I recommend...OR I highly recommend...
Example: I highly recommend trying seafood empanadas in Algarrobo.
You should consider visiting...
Example: You should consider visiting Barrio Italia. It has great bars and cute stores.
Don't miss... OR You can't miss....
Don't miss Thelonius! It's the best bar to watch jazz in all of Santiago.
You have to....
Example: You have to go to Ruca bar. It has amazing cocktails.
If I were you, I would/wouldn't
Example: If I were you, I wouldn't go to the Museum Of Contemporary Art. I prefer the Museum of Pre-Columbian Art.
Example: My Favorite place to get coffee is Wonderland coffee in Lastarria.
I would avoid.........
Example: I would avoid taking the bus to La Serena. Flying is much faster, and it's sometimes cheaper.
As you read this next example, underline or highlight all of the "advice giving" words and phrases. Afterwards, I challenge you to 1) write a short paragraph asking for travel recommendations for a place you've always wanted to visit and 2) write advice to somebody else about Santiago or another city you love.
Asking for Advice:
Hey Mariah! I’m visiting Santiago for the first time in July, and I have so many questions! Which neighborhood would you recommend I stay in? What are the best museums in the city? I love history, so I’d definitely love to go to a few museums.
Experiencing Chilean cuisine is really important to me, so I’d appreciate restaurant suggestions as well. What are the tourist attractions in the city that I definitely shouldn’t miss? Is Santiago an expensive city? What will the weather be like in July? Thank you so much for the advice! - Sarah
Hey Sarah! That’s so exciting that you’re visiting Santiago! I’d love to grab coffee or a drink when you’re here :) Santiago has so many great neighborhoods. If you want a lively, party experience, I would definitely recommend staying in Bella Vista. It’s not a peaceful neighborhood, but it’s a good place to meet other travellers and have a good time.
If you want a quieter experience, you should consider staying in Barrio Lastarria. It’s near the city center, and it’s an artsy neighborhood with a lot of bars and cafes. My favorite museum in Santiago is the Museum of Pre-Columbian Art. I would also highly recommend the Museum of Human Rights. It has so much important information about Chile’s history.
If I were you, I would eat at Bocanariz in Lastarria. It’s a restaurant with a fantastic wine selection and excellent food. Don’t miss climbing Cerro San Cristobal or exploring the market, La Vega.
Unfortunately, Santiago is a pretty expensive city. However, you can save money by going to free attractions and booking a hostel with a kitchen so you can cook! It’s going to be cold in July, so you definitely have to bring warm clothes.
Extra Tips for Mastering Travel Advice
Read reviews on TripAdvisor.com or Google Reviews. Not all of the reviews are grammatically correct (yes, even native English speakers make many mistakes). But, this is still an excellent way to familiarize yourself with the most common words
WRITE reviews! Do you know the best sushi spot in Santiago? Is there a national park in the South of Chile that you love? Challenge yourself, and practice writing a Google or Trip Advisor review about your favorite restaurants, attractions, or places. It’s okay if you make mistakes - this is a casual, low-pressure space to practice your skills.
Read guidebooks. You’ve probably seen tourists walking around Santiago with big guidebooks in hand. I know, they look ridiculous, BUT those good guide books are filled with fantastic reading practice. Check out Lonely Planet’s website. Their travel articles are a great way to start practicing. After that, order a guide book online or borrow one from a gringo ;)
Written by Mariah Wika