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Catching the Metro

Tami getting on the metro


Life in Santiago


You must arrive in Santiago on the arrival dates indicated in the program calendar. An onsite orientation meeting and academic instruction will be held at the Stanford Center in Santiago. During orientation, you will meet local faculty and staff and get a thorough introduction to the program.

NOTE: If you choose to arrive early or stay on after the end of the program, you are responsible for arranging your own temporary housing. You will be provided with suggestions for affordable temporary accommodations during orientation on the Stanford campus.

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Accommodations and Meals

The homestay program in Santiago gives you the rewarding opportunity to integrate into a Chilean home and gain firsthand insights into Chilean life. Hosts range from traditional large family units to couples with few or no children. Many of these families have previously hosted students from Stanford. Since one of the purposes of the homestay is to assist you in learning to speak and read Spanish, Spanish is spoken in the home. You will eat breakfast and dinner with your hosts every day. For lunches during the week, you will receive a meal allowance from the program staff.

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Meeting People

You are encouraged to organize your time carefully and explore the city in depth, from its streets and buildings to its shops and museums. Consider staying two quarters to have enough time to build friendships and familiarize yourself with all that Santiago has to offer.

Language Partners

If you are interested, language partnerships with local students can be arranged.

In addition, if you attend in BOTH Winter and Spring Quarters, you might consider taking classes at a local university, so as to meet more Chilean students. You may also want to inquire into the volunteer activities that can be arranged by program staff.

Returning students report that the more effort they devoted to exploring their local environment, the more enriching the experience overall. While opportunities to travel throughout other parts of Chile exist, if you make a conscious attempt to get to know Santiago and its people while studying at the center, you will be richly rewarded for your efforts.

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City Life

Situated 540 meters above sea level in central Chile, Santiago is flanked by two mountain ranges, the Cordillera de la Costa and the Cordillera de los Andes, and bisected by the Mapocho River. Spacious parks, plazas, gardens, and wide avenues contrast with both starkly modern glass high-rises and neoclassical buildings spread throughout the city.

In Santiago you will find the National Library, and various universities, museums, and theaters, in addition to premier research organizations like the United Nations' Comisión Económica para América Latina (CEPAL).

A variety of museums, including the Museo Chileno de Arte Precolombino, the Museo Histórico Nacional, and the Palacio de Bellas Artes, housing a collection of European and Chilean art, serve as a testament to the city's thriving and varied cultural community. We suggest you visit:

  • Mercado Central
  • Plaza de Armas
  • Palacio de La Moneda & Centro Cultural Palacio La Moneda (CCPLM)
  • National Library
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