From the lush forests of the Lake District to the icy shores of Tierra del Fuego, Chile is a nation of dramatic landscapes. And that’s not to mention the expansive aridity of the Atacama, the jagged peaks of the Andes, or the rugged splendor of nature at its finest in Patagonia. From glaciers to mountains, lakes to waterfalls, visiting Chile with kids represents a feast of nature for the senses.
Areas like Patagonia are so impressive that they leave a person feeling downright insignificant, a tiny dot on the global map. And, as strange as it sounds, there’s something comforting and grounding about being immersed in nature at its most awesome and pristine.
Even though it feels almost impossible not to get caught up in the sheer expansiveness of Chile’s geography, it’s also important to stay on the lookout for some of this nation’s most unique birds. From penguins to condors, flamingos to rheas, here’s our list of some of the most interesting birds who make Chile their home.
No trip to Chile would be complete without checking out these dapper little fellows. What’s more, you and your kids will be amazed by the wide variety of penguins you can view in Chilean Patagonia and its nearby islands. From the Magellanic penguins of Isla Magdalena to the gentoo penguins of Tierra del Fuego, black-and-white colonies abound. Want to learn more about the penguins of Patagonia? Get the full story.
But penguins aren’t the only feathered friends that you might see traveling Chile with kids. It also provides a home for Andean condors, the largest flying bird in the world. With a wingspan of up to 11 feet (3.3 meters), these breathtaking creatures soar above the peaks and precipices of the Andes Mountains. Once you’ve seen a condor, you’ll never forget this unparalleled experience. This bird of prey has had such an impact on Chilean culture that it’s a major part of local folklore and even features prominently in the country’s coat of arms.
You’ll want to pinch yourself when you catch your first glimpse of vibrant pink flamingos on a Chile family adventure. Preferring to live in large flocks, they’re a regular sight in small bodies of water and along the coast. What’s more, they’ll make you think you’re in a desert mirage at the Salar de Atacama. There, flocks of the salmon-colored creatures abound in the saline lagoons of this otherworldly landscape. Their bright plumage, along with the sparkling lagoon waters, provides unexpected punctuation to the mesmerizing plains of jagged salt stretching off into eternity.
Did you know that Chile even boasts its own version of an ostrich? Known as rheas, these speedy birds stand between three and five feet tall. Like ostriches and emus, they are flightless. Designed for running, rheas have muscular legs and three toes. They can reach speeds of up to 40 miles per hour, using their wings to provide stability during all-out sprints. When it comes to chick-rearing, rhea dads take the cake. They build the nests, incubate the eggs, and care for the chicks once they hatch. These amazing dads even adopt other chicks who’ve lost their way.
Visiting Chile with Kids
From penguins to condors, flamingos to rheas, it’s safe to say visiting Chile with kids boasts some of the most incredible birds in the world. And the four feathered friends listed above are just the beginning when it comes to exploring the country’s incredible, varied animal life.
Ready for an expedition into the heart of Chilean Patagonia to check out these gorgeous species for yourself? Or, maybe you’re longing for a trip to the exotic Atacama where surreal landscapes and unparalleled starry night skies await? Then, why not come along on our 11-day Patagonia Family Adventure or our 11-Day Atacama Family Adventure? Each trip provides an authentic immersion into Chilean culture and plenty of opportunities to enjoy nature in the raw.
At Our Whole Village, we craft tours carefully designed for families who want to create lasting memories while making a difference. We’re here to help you and your family experience the world, its peoples, and cultures. Contact us today to learn more about the unforgettable experiences that we handcraft for families just like yours.