Iquique, Chile

Iquique, Chile

The jewel of the northern Chilean coast, Iquique offers fabulous beaches, a warm climate, and a fascinating history that make it an ideal destination for the Royal Holiday traveler looking to enjoy a fun oceanside holiday. Set between the Pacific and the Atacama Desert, this sandy paradise has everything from an exciting duty-free shopping zone to day trips to beautiful oases in the desert. Royal Holiday members have two hotels to choose from in Iquique, making it one of the club’s most accessible ways to experience the unique pleasures of Chile.

The Terrado Suites Hotel & Marina, situated near the tip of the Peninsula de Cavancha, has smart Junior Suites that are perfect for the Royal Holiday member hoping to engineer the perfect romantic getaway. Featuring pools, whirlpools, and saunas for those looking to enjoy a dip, the Terrado Suites also provides access to excellent bars and restaurants, as well as conveniences like babysitting and room service. The other option, the Hotel Terrado Club, can be found right on the Playa Brava, one of Iquique’s best beaches. With an excellent spa, on-site gym with professional trainers, and its own pool, restaurant, and bar, this is another ideal spot for a proper Royal Holiday. The Terrado Suites also offers both Studio and Ambassador-style lodgings, perfect for families.

Before the European settlement of South America began, the area currently known as Iquique was the home of the Chango people. Later, it became the southernmost city of Peru, its country until the War of the Pacific in 1879. The Chilean forces prevailed in the Battle of Iquique, and the city has been part of the country ever since. The capital of the Tarapacá Region and its eponymous Province, Iquique’s prominent port and special tax status has made it an important commercial center, but its unique beaches and excellent desert climate make it ideal for vacationing Royal Holiday members.

Most visitors will want to start with the beaches, with the Playas Brava and Cavancha receiving the most attention. A relaxing day at the beach should be accompanied by plenty of mango sours and other delicious tropical fruit dishes and drinks, aided by the peninsula region’s excellent restaurants and nightlife. Those looking to explore the city should start in Arturo Pratt Plaza, which is dominated by a picturesque clock tower; it makes an ideal starting point for Royal Holiday travelers who want to tour the city, as it provides easy access to sites like the Anker Nielsen Regional Museum, the historic district, the Naval Museum, and Baquedano Street. Of course, shoppers will need to visit Zofri Mall, which features numerous duty-free delights.

Others will want to take advantage of the numerous nearby attractions in the Iquique region. Royal Holiday members looking for some historical flavor should venture out to Humberstone, an old saltpeter mining town, which has been partially restored to its former glory. Those who want to experience the gorgeous oases of the Atacama Desert will enjoy visiting Matilla and Pica, while those looking for more adventure may visit the Mamiña Circuit to enjoy the Andes’ foothills and the natural hot springs.