How to get from Santiago to Valparaiso by bus and metro

Valparaiso is perfect for a one day excursion from Santiago de Chile. In this post, we explain how to get from Santiago to Valparaiso by public transport.

If you ever travel to Chile, chances are very high that your journey starts in Santiago de Chile. In our opinion a very pleasant capital with lots of green parks, cozy cafes and bustling nightlife. However, don’t miss the cultural highlight of your trip: Valparaiso. If you like art and culture, you’ll LOVE Valparaiso.

roman statues graffiti valparaiso

Valparaiso is mostly known for its colorful houses and graffiti art. Many painters, artists and poets have found their way to Valparaiso and made it their sketchbook. This harbor city was built, just like Rome, on several hills. So be prepared, if you want to go on an art hunt, you’ll take many stairs. Thankfully there are also elevators and most stairs are a work of art in itself! They even have slides instead of stairs. How cool is that!

icon read on If you want to know more about the top things to do in Valparaiso, click here

colorful stairs valparasio chile
Colorful stairs to get from one hill to another in Valparaiso

But how do you get to Valparaiso from Santiago? Is it also via a slide? Unfortunately not. But it’s not really hard. The easiest and most budget friendly method is first take a metro and afterwards a 90 minute bus.

In the next paragraphs you will find all the info you need for transportation, finding your way in Valparaiso and some firsthand travel tips.

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Santiago metro lines

The first thing you need to do is go to the bus terminal in Santiago. The easiest way to transport yourself to the bus terminal is via the subway of Santiago. In fact the bus terminal is just outside the metro stop “Pajaritos” on the main metro line 1 (the red line, direction San Pablo). Santiago de Chile has a very straightforward and easy to use subway system. Once you get of the metro at Pajaritos, just walk to the exit and you will find different bus ticket boots with different busses netx to them.

Metro tips

  • Duration: about 10-15 minutes from “Los Heroes”
  • Frequency: every 2-5 minutes, metros in Santiago are very fast
  • Price: one-way ticket costs 650-810 pesos (0.75 – 0.9 USD/ 0.7 – 0.85 EUR) depending if it is rush hour or not
  • Take the “SAN PABLO” direction on line 1
  • Avoid rush hour (between 7-9 am and between 6-8 pm)
  • “Permisso” is the keyword to say if someone is in your way when you want to get out of the metro
  • You only need to buy one metro ticket, regardless of how many times you change lines

Buying your bus tickets from Santiago to Valparaiso

As said before, you can’t really miss the ticket boots. Just before you go out of the metro building you have all the different bus companies at your right side. You have a lot of companies to choose from. The biggest and most well-known are FlixbusTurbus and Pullman. They don’t differ much in price and comfort as they are all pretty good value and quality. So next step, buy your tickets and show it to the bus driver at the other side of the ticket boots.

icon book ticket Book your tickets upfront HERE

Of course it is also possible to buy your tickets upfront. Book your tickets for a Flixbus from Santiago to Valparaiso via our trusted partner.

Santiago to Valparaiso bus tips:

  • Frequency: buses run every 20 minutes, from 7 AM in the morning to 10 PM in the evening
  • Duration: about 70-90 minutes depending on the amount of traffic
  • Price: one-way ticket costs 5000 – 7000 pesos (5.75 – 8 USD/ 5.3 – 7.4 EUR)
  • You can buy your return ticket in advance, in this case ask for “un boleto de vuelta”
graffiti art doll valparaiso
Graffiti art is everywhere in Valparaiso!

Getting from the bus terminal to the center of Valparaiso

When arriving at the bus terminal in Valparaiso it is still a fair 25 minute walk to the city center. Luckily there are a lot of buses that take you straight to “Plaza Sotomayor”. Just walk through the buildings at the bus terminal until you see the park “Plaza O’Higgins” in front of you. Cross the street to the other side and you will see a lot of people waiting at bus stops. Most of the buses stop in the center, but the most convenient route is to take bus 505 as it goes straight to Plaza Sotomayor. This square is the heart of the city and is also the meeting point to join a free walking tour, which we totally recommend.

Bus terminal to Valparaiso city center tips:

  • Frequency: busses run very frequently (every 5 – 10 minutes)
  • Duration: about 10 minutes (1,5 km distance)
  • Get off at: Plaza Sotomayor
  • Price: one-way ticket costs 200 – 400 pesos
graffiti art wall valparaiso
Huge graffiti painting to clean up an ugly wall

Getting back from Valparaiso to Santiago

When you want to head back to Santiago you go to the same bus terminal in Valparaiso. The process is similar, just go to the ticket boots of the bus company of your choice. If you already bought a return ticket you still have to validate your seats at the ticket booth. Keep in mind that you will arrive in a different metro station in Santiago called “Estacion central”. This metro station is located more in the center of the city, also on line 1.

black people graffiti art valparaiso
Do you recognize all of them?

icon hello info We highly recommend taking a tour in Valparaiso to learn everything about this colorful city. This 4-hour city tour is the best way to get an understanding of the city and its history.

Where to stay in Valparaiso?

If you visit Valparaiso, we do recommend to spend at least one night in this city, so you really get the vibe. Below we give you our favorite places to stay in Valparaiso.

Casa California Guesthouse

The wonderful Casa California Guesthouse offers tasteful rooms, some have a terrace with views over Valparaiso. There is also a garden, shared lounge and bar. This guesthouse is very well located and the owners welcome you with open arms.

Check availability and prices on BOOKING

booking valparaiso where to stay casa california guesthouse room
booking valparaiso where to stay chile casa california guesthouse room bathroom

Hotel Boutique 17

The beautiful Hotel Boutique 17 offers elegant rooms with excellent views. All rooms have a private bathroom and some rooms have a private balcony that overlook the ocean or the hills of Valparaiso. The location of this hotel is excellent, as the bus terminal is only 4 kilometers away. Also the funicular that you can use to explore Valparaiso is close by.

Check availability and prices on BOOKING

valparaiso chile where to stay hotel boutique 17 view
where to stay valparaiso chile booking room hotel boutique 17

Hotel Boutique Acontraluz

The Hotel Boutique Acontraluz is located in one of the main tourist areas of Valparaiso! The rooms are nicely decorated and all have a modern private bathroom. There is a beautiful terrace on the top floor of the hotel where you can watch the sun set.

Check availability and prices on BOOKING

booking where to stay in Valparaiso chile hotel boutique Acontraluz room
booking where to stay in Valparaiso chile hotel boutique Acontraluz bathroom

Getting to Valparaiso is not difficult at all and very worth it. If you have any questions, let us know in the comments below!

Thanks for reading,


icon read on Are you looking for other things to do in Chile? Check out these blogposts:

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