When Chris initially suggested Chile my head filled with thoughts of military dictators and chickens.

The likes of Pinochet and Galtieri have historically blessed these parts with a different take on leadership.  My most immediate thoughts concerned chickens and run down cars in poor neighbourhoods.

I think it’s fair to say Chile has moved on from my stereotyped thoughts.  The drive by taxi from airport to hotel revealed a modern city, with new developments and numerous bars and restaurants.  Not to mention the stunning Andes beyond.

The people are friendly and hotel staff couldn’t do enough for us.  Out taxi driver called out numerous sites and attractions on the long journey from the airport.  He revealed a pride in his country and a pride in its status as a modern nation, out gunning the likes of Argentina and Brazil in international league tables.

Walking outside feels safe.  I don’t think I could say the same for Milan.  The supermarket we visited was well stocked and busy.  Indeed, the shopping area we saw was also busy.

While my views may change as we travel further afield, for now, Santiago is ace!

Flight Three: Madrid to Santiago