View of Copiapo city

View of Copiapo city

(Green Valley)

Copiapó has 125.983 inhabitants and is the capital city of the Region of Atacama, officially founded on December 8th, 1744. Occupied by spaniard and previously for indians, has a long tradition linked to mining resources.

City attractive sites:

San Francisco Church was built in 1872. In the inside, the marquetry made by the priests is remarkable, as well as 18 valuable paintings from the XVIII and XIX century. It is attended by Franciscan convent priests and there masses are performed from Monday to Saturday at 19:00 and Sundays at 11:30 and 19:00.

Next to it you will find San Francisco del Valle’s convent. Founded in 1662 by 2 priests: Mauricio Ferreira and Antonio Diaz.

Prat Square: the city culture boulevard, where handcrafted items is sold and there are cultural local activities;

Copiapo’s square of arms, which originally had no trees and was closed with a metallic fence, today has 64 pimientos were planted which surrounds it and make a nice shadow.

Palacete de la Viña de Cristo (Christ’s vineyard palace) declared national monument. It was the most elegant mansion in the province with a Georgian style from the South of the United States. Its front with columns in Corintian Style and the balconies made in forged iron inspired in New Orleans are two remarkable elements. In the inside, a spiral staicase made of fine woods. Today lodges the Maray Museum where the wheels of the trapiches used for grind the mineral during the colony, are exhibited. To visit it, you can do it from Monday to Friday from 8 to 19, entrance is free.

Candelaria festival in Copiapo.

Candelaria festival in Copiapo.

Candelaria’s Sanctuary, a great esplanade with an old church built in 1800 and another one built in 1922. It began as a place for worshiping a tiny image (14 cms) made of stone which was found at Maricunga’s salt flat by Mariano Caro (arriero) in 1780.

Now a days the Party of Candelaria congregates during 9 days -at the beginning of February – more than 50.000 people, 3000 of them are dancers members from different brotherhoods. It is one of the most important popular religious celebrations in Chile. To attend to the masses in Summer you can do it from Thursday to Saturday at 20 and Sundays at 10 and 20 hours. During winter at 19:30.

Historical museum from the 20th Infantry Regiment, Copiapó where the military story from Copiapó -from the Incas to the War of the Pacific – is exhibited, based in scale models, dioramas and mannequins, along with old items such as weapon, clothes, photographs and documents. You can visit it from Monday to Friday from 9 to 18.

Belen Church – declared National Monument -built by the Jesuits during the colony, it was restored in 1856. By Fraga family as a private oratory in their house and decorated with furniture and images brought from France. Now it belongs to Liceo Politécnico Belen (Belen Technical School) and it is used to worship Santa Teresa de los Andes. You can visit it from Monday to Friday from 16:30 to 18:30. And every 13th every month when masses are performed at 19:30.

Juan Godoy’s statue: A plate stands “the one who discovered Chañarcillo mineral in May 19th 1932, whose richness lead Copiapó to the highness and importance for which it is known now”. It was manufacturated in England for public erogation in 1851. It was placed in the Square of Arms and about 19 years after it was moved into this small square.

Matta House (Casa Matta) declared national monument – in the corner of Atacama and Rancagua Street. It was Matta Goyenechea family’s noble house and covered a hole street. With a neoclassical style, impressively high and an entrance with columns, it was restored in 1982. Today lodges the Atacama Regional Museum. With a significant collection of archeology, history and regional mining and an old interesting book collection. In summer you can visit it from Monday to Friday from 9 to 19, Saturdays from 11 to 14 and 16 to 19. Fom March to November, Mondaays from 14 to 18, Tuesday to Friday from 9 to 18, Saturday from 10 to 12 and 15 to 17:45, Sundays and holidays from 10 to 12:45. Entrance fee costs $6oo up to 14 years old, $300 and children of 9 years old or less for free.

Maldini House (Casa Maldini), which belonged to the railway. It was built on caldera and placed in there in 1930. The original front has diagonals that can be seen and a great lantern in the middle.

Copiapo Cathedral.

Copiapo Cathedral.

Copiapó Cathedral –Declared National Monument- was built between 1840 and 1851 with a neoclassical style by William Rogers, to replace the church built in 1748. It has a wide entrance crowned by a great squared tower of three levels surrounded by small columns; it is an unique case in Chile. The schedule for masses goes from Monday to Friday at 19:30, Saturdays at 20 and Sundays at 12 and 20 h; in winter from Monday to Saturday at 19, Sundays at 3:30, 12 and 19:30.

Mineralogical Museum which has a collection of 14.000 minerals from the whole world, the most complete in Chile and recognized internationally. It exhibits 2.065 different minerals to the public, including copper from the great minery, silver from Chañarcillo and meteors founded in the desert. It belongs to the University of Atacama. For visits, it is opened from Monday to Friday from 10 to 13 and from 15:30 to 19 and Saturdays from 10 to 13. Entrance fee costs $500, children from 6 to 12 years old pay $200.

** Information related to Hours, Rates and Dates might change without any previous notice **