Chile's landscape is incredibly diversified, extending from 17 degrees South to 56 degrees South, and from the coast on the west to the Andes on the east. Chile is located in southern South America, bordering the Pacific Ocean and a tiny portion of the Atlantic Ocean. It is separated from Argentina by the Rio de la Plata Basin.
Chile is one of the world's most isolated countries. It is geographically smaller than England and has a population of 17 million people. About one-third live in urban areas, the rest live in rural communities.
Almost all of Chile is made up of two main geographic regions: the central plateau and the coastal desert. The central plateau includes an elevated tableland about 1500 feet high and covers most of the center and north of the country. The area is mostly dry grasslands with scattered trees and shrubs. The south of Chile is part of the Puna de Atacama, a large arid zone filled with mountains and volcanoes. This region is home to many lakes and valleys covered in perpetual snow.
The capital city of Santiago lies on the coast, near the end of a narrow bay called La Laguna. It is surrounded by beautiful parks and gardens, wide streets with trees, and hundreds of red-tile-roofed houses dating back to Chile's colonial era.
South America's southeast Chile is located in the eastern part of South America. Chile is bounded on the west by the Pacific Ocean, on the east by Argentina, and on the north by Bolivia and Peru. Chile is located in the eastern part of South America.
Chile is a country that stretches from the Andes to the ocean. It has some of the world's most active volcanoes, including Volcán Osorno, which last erupted in 1998. The central valley forms the heart of the country and is home to about half of Chile's 33 million people. A third of this population lives in Santiago, the country's capital city.
Chile is known for its quality wine and beer. It is also a leading producer of copper. Mining accounts for about one-fifth of the country's exports.
The name "Chile" comes from the indigenous American term "Ciauil", meaning "red". This refers to the color of the soil found in large areas of the country when exposed during periods of erosion.
Geographically, Chile is divided into four regions: North Chile, Central Chile, South Chile and Patagonia. These terms are used only geologically speaking; no administrative divisions correspond to them.
2,653 miles Chile stretches 4,270 km (2,653 mi) north to south yet is just 350 km (217 km) broad at its widest point and averages only 177 km (110 mi) east to west. Take a look at Chile's length when rotated slightly compared to Europe above, or its length when turned on its side compared to the US.
Chile is one of only two countries in South America that is not part of either the European or American continental configurations (the other being Ecuador). It is bordered by Argentina to the south, Bolivia to the west, Peru to the northeast, and the Pacific Ocean to the east.
It is separated from Argentina by the Strait of Magellan, which forms most of Chile's border with South America. To the east lies the Pacific Ocean, and to the west is an arm of the Southern Ocean called the Drake Passage.
The Chilean territory extends over 14 million acres (5.6 million hectares), almost half of which are covered by water. It has a population of 17 million people - about 16 percent of Argentina's population but only 7 percent of Brazil's.
Chile is one of the wealthiest countries in Latin America, but remains one of the most unequal: income disparity is high, especially between urban and rural areas. About 16 percent of the population lives in poverty.