“Mom! Dad! Can you get inside those?” asks a little girl staring upward with wide eyes and an open mouth, while she walks along the street Pedro de Valdivia Norte in Santiago holding hands with her parents. From this spot one can glimpse part of the Chilean capital’s latest tourist attraction: the aerial tramway in Santiago Metropolitan Park, also known as San Cristóbal Hill.
The tramway’s so-called “little eggs” are a classic image in Santiago’s history. These unique, colorful trams, which first appeared in 1980 and enabled visitors to experience the city in movement from the heights of San Cristóbal Hill, are a part of the collective memory of all city residents. Today, version 2.0 is operating following the reinauguration of this Santiago icon.
Forty-six blue, red and green trams that hold six people each, in addition to eight bicycle cars with room for up to four bikes each, circulate along the tramway, which covers more than two kilometers in around 15 minutes. Its three stations meet universal design standards with ramps and access elevators: the Cumbre Station is close to the summit of San Cristóbal Hill; next comes Tupahue Station, located near a pool of the same name; and then comes Oasis Station, close to the entrance along the street Pedro de Valdivia Norte in Providencia.
Once visitors have boarded the tram, it leaves the station with a small rocking motion, marking the start of the journey up San Cristóbal Hill. During the trip, one can see and enjoy a lot of Santiago and the vastness of the Andes Mountains. One detail. If you begin your journey at Cumbre Station, you get to experience even more of the panoramic view that the city has to offer, since the trams feature a large window on the right side that is ideal for taking pictures from heights.
The new trams incorporate state-of-the-art technology, manufactured with user comfort and safety in mind. They have solar panels and a ventilation system that keeps riders comfortable and shielded from the summer heat. They also feature an intercom system to communicate with ride operators and folding seats to accommodate people in wheelchairs, strollers with small children and people with limited mobility or special requirements. Other elements of the aerial tram system were also refurbished such as the cabling, towers, etc.
Two cafés will soon open at the Oasis and Tupahue stations, along with a restaurant at the Cumbre Station. There will also be eight buses providing assistance at the entrance.
The aerial tramway is open from Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 7:45 p.m.
Tuesday – Friday:
1 section: Ch$ 1,310.
2 sections: Ch$ 1,910.
Round trip: Ch$ 2,510.
Weekends and Holidays:
1 section: Ch$ 1,570.
2 sections: Ch$ 2,290.
Round trip: Ch$ 3,010.