Retire In Valparaiso Chile: Little Known Facts

Valparaíso is one of the prettiest coastal areas of Chile and also has a main port of the country. A very picturesque area with multiple cities and beaches within easy reach.  

Valparaíso can be summed up in a perfect climate, full of culture, thriving economy, safe and above all with one of the best health systems in Latin America. All of this is only just over an hour drive from the capital of Chile, Santiago with all its amenities.

Get to know the attractions of this city in-depth and discover if Valparaíso is the perfect destination for you to retire in.

Is Valparaiso A Good Place To Retire?

Temperature – 7 to 23 deg C / 44.6 to 73.4 F

Population – 300K

Tourist Information –

Valparaíso is a city and also the name of a region or state in Chile.. This city is well known for its excellent higher education centers because there are some of the most important universities in Chile. Its port is the busiest in Chile and one of the most important in the South Pacific.

In 2003 the city of Valparaíso was recognized as a World Heritage Site by Unesco, due to its impressive architectural wealth developed at the end of the 19th century. The climate of this city is warm with dry summers and humid and cooler winters.

What Supermarkets Are In Valparaiso?

While the ability to eat out is cheap in Valparaiso you may want to make the occasional meal at home and that means going to a supermarket or grocery store. When searching on google maps look for the following phrases: mecardo, supermercado, hipermercado. The difference is the size of the store where the market (mercado) is the small local store or mini supermarket and goes up from there in size.  

So here is a list of the biggest chains in Valparaiso:

Here is an example table of prices for some staples:

Milk1 Liter$ 0.52 USD
BreadLoaf$ 1.93 USD
Eggs12$ 2.36 USD
Butter250 grams$ 2.36 USD
Beef Mince1 kg$ 7.64 USD
Chicken Breast1 kg$ 3.15 USD
Beer6 pack$ 4.75 USD
Scotch750ml$ 8.96 USD

NOTE: these were only valid at the making of this article and check the websites above for current pricing. 

What Is The Food Like In Valparaiso?

The gastronomy in Valparaíso and the rest of Chile is very similar to that of Argentina. The corn cake and empanadas predominate. Although Valparaíso is located on a coastline, seafood in this city is a bit expensive compared to other types of food.

Here are some popular restaurants and bars you may want to try:

What Types Of Transport Are In Valparaiso?

Valparaíso’s metropolitan transportation system is made up of a modest bus and trolleybus service that allow transportation around the city. Also, having some elevated areas it is normal to be able to find somewhat public elevators because the city was built over a hill, so you will be able to climb several hills in just a few minutes using the public elevator. A train runs along the coastline that also connects with nearby cities.

Here is the list of all the transport options available:

  • Buses / Trolleybuses – Map
  • Elevator
  • Taxis
  • Train

Here you can find a Map of Public Transport of Valparaíso and other cities.

What To Do In Valparaiso?

Most tourists are attracted to this city by the excellent view of the viewpoints and the large number of museums that Valparaíso offers. Being named a World Heritage City, there are places like the Bay of Valparaíso, La Sebastiana House Museum, and Cerro Concepción that should be on your list of destinations.

Here is a great list of the places you should not miss:

How To Rent Or Buy In Valparaiso

Whether you are buying or renting there are options for all budgets in Valparaiso .. If you are looking for something really cheap then you can go to facebook marketplace. Change your filter to Valparaiso and then click on Property Rentals or House Sales. Remember prices will be in local Peso.

While you will find places to buy there you will be dealing directly with the homeowner. As with buying any property in any country make sure you get the right legal advice prior to purchase to make sure the paperwork is in order.

It is always safer for buying or long term leases to go through a real estate agent instead and I have taken the liberty to list a few for you to look at below. They will tell you about local laws and fees and taxes that may be involved.

Some Real Estates To Look At In Valparaiso:

TIP: I generally use Airbnb for the first month with their large discounts on stays over 28 days to get me started and then look for local property. Just be careful for those long stays you have to cancel or change 1 month out or you are stuck with it.

NOTE: If you want to have a look at the general prices in Chile check this article Retire To Chile: Cost of Living after finishing this article.

What is the Language in Valparaiso?

Spanish is the language of Chile and all of central and south america apart from Brazil so a very handy language to learn. How can you learn Spanish? There are literally thousands of courses, software, youtube videos, podcasts, audio books and real books (old school television) that you have to choose from. 

You can download the DuoLingo App on your phone available in iTunes and Google Play or you can use it on your computer with the web browser. Use this for a few months and get a couple of levels up doing at least 2 to 3 lessons a day or more.


Safety in Valparaíso is good although this does not mean that you should not be vigilant as you would in any other city in the world. Minor robberies can happen outside the metropolitan area of ​​the city and tourist sites, so just obey standard travel safety as you would anywhere else.  Don’t go flashing heaps of cash in poor parts of town late at night..

Health Care

The public and private healthcare in Valparaiso and the rest of Chile is very similar to that of the United States with only a small gap between their rankings globally as per the World Health Organization rankings. Also, it is one of the best healthcare systems in Latin America. The major difference is it will cost you a lot less for the similar health care in Chile and you can check those prices out on the actual health care providers below.

LINK: World Health Care Rankings

Here are some of the biggest national Private Health Care Providers:

TIP: If the website does not have an English version open in Microsoft Edge or Chrome Browser and it will translate it for you.

NOTE: Do not miss the opportunity to know Retire In Chile: 11 Pros And Cons and see what other retirees have been finding here.

Recent Posts