Saturday, November 21, 2015

Vina del Mar - Flash back to the 70's

This is Mike...
Vina del Mar is a top travel destination for Chileans to escape the big city heat of Santiago. Being that Vina del Mar is only an hour and a half away for most city slickers, it can get quite busy during the weekends. It was busier on the weekend, however nothing compared Southern California beaches and their throngs of people. In fact, Elise kept saying over and over that Vina del Mar reminded her of California in the 70's. The weather and coastline happens to be a mirror image of So. Cal. and the beach lifestyle is very much a part of the culture here. Something we noticed right away was all of the work out equipment permanently set up on the boardwalk for anyone to use. The municipality went out of its way to provide a healthy and free venue for beach goers. As funny as it seems, we could not envision this workout equipment at a US beach as the liability issues would prevent such nice set up. Skateboarders were free to ride, roller-bladers free to roll, it was very nice to see a beach without billboards filled with rules. In fact, the only rule we saw posted was "No alcohol". The beach was family friendly, clean and really beautiful. The Chileans should be proud, not only of their countries natural beauty but also how they preserve it.  

A nice boardwalk at Vina del Mar.

Even on a weekend it was very mellow.

The girls enjoyed walking leisurely in the sand.

Springtime is in the air over here and the flowers were in full bloom.

The weather was awesome 78 F (25 C) sunny with a light breeze.

There was a nice volleyball section on the beach, the city even has referees officiate games for free.

The condos are built right up the side of the hills to capture the view.

A luxurious beachfront home.

Because they build up rather than out there is more free land for others to enjoy.

As this picture shows it was hardly crowded on the weekend.

The kids like the coastal flowers.
Sierra hopped on one of the community exercise machines at the beach.

Because this beach attracts healthy people with its free workout equipment, random cardio sessions form to loud music. Strangers spoke with each other, people helped each other work out, it was quite a site to see a community come together in such an open setting. We didn't see anybody on a cell phone, it was truly an excellent example of what a community park can be. 

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