Bucket List / Lista de Deseos

Hi Everyone! Hola Todos!

Desplácese hacia abajo para la traduccion al español.


I’ve decided to make a bucket list of things I want to aspire to achieve this year. It’s a mix of places I want to visit, experiences I want to have and personal goals as well. I’m not sure if I can get everything done, but the hope is that I at least get the bulk of it done.

Without further ado, the list:

Places to visit:

  • Templo Bahá’í de Sudamérica (The Baha’i Temple of South America)
    While I’m not of Baha’i faith, the architecture of this temple is amazing and the view is supposed to be quite amazing as well. The temple is also very close to where I am right now, so hopefully, I can make it there pretty easily.
  • Cerro Santa Lucia
    A really nice park in Santiago that is supposed to be surrounded by some cool buildings as well.
  • Cerro San Cristóbal
    This is a really big hill in Santiago that has a cable car and amazing views.
  • Sky Costanera
    Mall Costanera Center is a shopping centre in Providencia, Santiago, and is right next to the Gran Torre Santiago, the tallest building in South America at 300m tall. At the top of the Gran Torre Santiago is the tourist attraction Sky Costanera, a room with all-around windows so you can look over all of Santiago, pretty much. This experience is a more pricey, but its a once in a lifetime thing.
  • Fantasilandia
    An amusement park in Santiago.
  • Zooligico Metropolitana/Nacional (Metropolitan/National Zoo)
    Animals are pretty cool.
  • San Antonio
    San Antonio is a port town on the coast of Chile, about 1 1/2 hours east of Santiago. I want to see the coast, and as well I have exchange friends in San Antonio.
  • Talca
    Talca is about 3 hours south of Santiago, and I’m not sure what’s around there, but I want to visit my exchange friends.
  • San Fernando
    1 1/2 hours south of Santiago, I want to visit my exchange friends.
  • Valparaíso / Viña Del Mar
    Valparaíso and Viña Del Mar are both coastal towns with beaches, about 2 hours north-east of Santiago. I like the beach, and they are definitely very touristy must-see places.
  • Rapa Nui / Isla de Pascua / Easter Island
    Easter Island is an island off the coast of Chile, most famous for its massive head statues, called Moai, and its indigenous history. I was supposed to go on a trip with Rotary to Easter Island, however it was cancelled due to Covid-19. I don’t think I’ll be able to visit Easter Island, but it’s still on the list.
  • Parque Quinta Normal
    A park in Santiago that’s supposed to be really nice.
  • Observatorio Astronómico Nacional de Chile (Chilean National Astronomy Observatory)
    I love stars and star gazing, so a visit to the national observatory seems like a good idea.
  • La Chascona
    La Chascona is the house in which well-known Chilean poet Pablo Neruda wrote a lot of his work. It’s now a museum.
  • Concepción
    Concepción is a coastal town quite a bit further south in Chile. It sounds like a cool place to visit, but I’m not sure about how I’m going to get there.
  • Museo de Bella Artes (Museum of Fine Arts)
    I love art, and I’d love to see Chilean art and culture.
  • El Museo de la Memoria y los Derechos Humanos (Memorial and Human Rights museum)
    This museum holds artefacts related to the exploitation of human rights during the Pinochet dictatorship in Chile, and acts as a memorial for those who lost their lives under his government. If you aren’t aware of this crucial part of Chilean history, Google is free and quarantine is as good as any time to brush up on some global history and culture.

To Experience:

  • A sports event (either in El Estadio Nacional / National Stadium, or just one at school)
    Chileans like their sport and they have a few sports here that I’ve never really seen in Australia, like the school synchronised swimming team, and so I want to go to a sports game/event
  • A concert
    If you’ve known me for a little bit, you’ll know that I love live music and going to music concerts, and I would love to go to a music event in Chile. I was planning to go to Lollapalooza Chile, a large music festival in Santiago, however that was cancelled/postponed due to Covid-19.
  • Bailar Cueca (Dance Cueca)
    La Cueca is a Chilean dance (I think even the national dance but don’t quote me on that) and an important part of Chilean culture. I’d love to experience it.
  • Train Hopping in Santiago
    The public transport and metro in Santiago is pretty alright, and so I want to bring a bit of the ‘Train of Death’ tradition I have with my friends in Sydney to Santiago. The idea is that you close your eyes and put your finger on any place on the Metro train map, and go and spend your day there exploring.
  • Nieve (Snow)
    Chile gets pretty cold during the winter, and sometimes it snows. It hasn’t snowed since about 2017/2018, but I really hope it snows this year, it would be very cool to experience.
  • Terremotos (Earthquakes)
    Chile is geographically situated on the edge of a tectonic plate, most commonly known as ‘The Ring of Fire’, and so it experiences many earthquakes quite frequently. Of course, I don’t want a massive earthquake to happen while I’m here, because that’s bad for everyone, but it would still be cool to experience one.
  • Celebrate the 18th of September
    The 18th of September is Chile’s national day and is celebrated by partying, dancing, music, singing, traditional Chilean food and drinking. Of course, I can’t drink, its part of exchange rules, however, I’ve still got to include it as an act of celebration in Chilean culture. I’ve heard amazing stories of the celebrations of the 18th of September from other exchange students, so I’d love to experience it myself.
  • Go to a second-hand store
    A very odd addition to this list, but I love second-hand shopping and the ethics around it, and I’d love to do that here in Chile.

Personal Goals:

  • Become fluent in Spanish
    This is the goal for all exchange students; to become fluent in their host languages. Learning a new language was a big reason of why I did exchange, and so I’m studying hard and to be fluent in Spanish by the end (or even before) of the year.
  • Not get sent home early
    This seems like a really stupid goal, but trying to stay in Chile (or any host country) currently within the Covid-19 pandemic is proving to be fairly difficult, and so I want to do whatever I can to stay here
  • Get involved in something for/in the community
    In Aus, I was almost always doing work for charity, either through Rotary or other means, and getting involved in the community, and I want to do that here in Chile as well. It might look like just joining a community sport or helping out somewhere at a Rotary event, but I’d like to get involved.

Aaaaand that’s about it. It’s a lot, and a lot of it is quite wishful thinking, but I’m going to try and complete as much as I can while I’m here. I’m planning to write blog posts about most if not all of my experiences on this list, just as a log for myself and for those who want to read them as well. As well, if you know of any other Chilean experiences or places to visit, please let me know! Thank you and have a good day!!! xxx


Yo hice una lista de deseos para mi año de intercambio en Chile. La lista tiene lugares que quiero visitar, cosas que quiero experimentar y mis aspiraciones para este año.

Luegares que quiero visitar:

  • Templo Bahá’í de Sudamérica
  • Cerro Santa Lucia
  • Cerro San Cristóbal
  • Sky Costanera
  • Fantasilandia
  • Zooligico Metropolitana/Nacional
  • San Antonio
  • Talca
  • San Fernando
  • Valparaíso / Viña Del Mar
  • Rapa Nui / Isla de Pascua
  • Parque Quinta Normal
  • Observatorio Astronómico Nacional de Chile
  • La Chascona
  • Concepción
  • Museo de Bella Artes
  • El Museo de la Memoria y los Derechos Humanos

Cosas que quiero experimentar:

  • Un evento de deportes
  • Un concierto / festival de música
  • Bailar la Cueca
  • Explorar una estación de metro al azar
  • Nieve
  • Terremotos
  • Celebrar el 18 de Septiembre
  • Ir a una tienda de segunda mano

Mis aspiraciones:

  • Ser fluida en español
  • No volver a Australia temprano
  • Me involucro en la comunidad o la caridad

Y eso es todos! Gracias por leer, y si está en Chile y quiere ir conmigo a algo en mi lista, contáctame! Tenga una buena día xxx



Great goals Zoe, be patient and it will happen! If anyone can do it you can!


It has been so far a challenging exchange experience. In Australia you dealt with bushfires, now you are dealing with COVID-19 in Chile.
On your bucket list is an earth quake listed…yeah that would top off the list of natural disasters.

Hopefully very soon you’ll be able to do the fun things on the list: live music, train of death, visiting friends, Chilean dance & cultural activities,… before the end of your exchange.

Take care and be healthy.

Sue Spencer

Hi Zoe, so great to read about all your plans! Sounds like you are taking every opportunity and drumming up more! Have fun 🙂
Sue S

Michael Barnett

We have been to Chile, Easter Island and Machu Pitchu, up in the mountains. A fascinating place, and a lot of history. Enjoy it while you can.


Zoe I am not at all surprised to read about your very proactive approach to making the most of a very difficult global situation, which at the moment is impacting on everyone including the achievement of your goals. I sincerely hope that before long there will be a breakthrough to eradicating the virus or at least to reducing its spread. I sincerely trust dear one that the goals you have set will be achieved.
It is to your credit that you are exploring options to be of service… So very proud of you Zoe!
P.S. Already writing in Spanish! I am very impressed!!!


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