Travel to ESO La Serena


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Please note that visitors are received by appointment only.

The ESO Office in La Serena is an administrative point that supports the operation of La Silla Observatory and serves as connection between La Silla and the rest of the ESO sites in Chile. It serves as a contact point for postal mail to the Observatory, transportation to/from the site and deals with enquiries from the general public concerning tourist visits to La Silla.

How to reach ESO La Serena

The ESO Office in La Serena is an administrative facility that serves as liaison between La Silla and the rest of the sites in Chile. It is located in Avenida Panorámica, N° 4461.

La Serena is an attractive city located 471 km north of Santiago, next to Coquimbo harbour. Together the cities form a conurbation that is one of the most important metropolitan areas in Chile. The ESO office in La Serena is located in Avenida Panorámica, N° 4461 just a few minutes from La Florida Airport.

Arriving by plane

Please note that airfares to and from Chile can get quite pricey when booking shorter than 3 months in advance. La Florida Airport in La Serena is located 6 km from the city centre and just 2 km from the La Serena office. The easiest way to reach the ESO office from the airport is by taxi — it takes five minutes and costs about CLP 1500 (EUR 2.1). If you are an ESO guest, call the La Serena office to arrange a taxi from the airport.

Another option is to rent a car at Econorent, Budget or Hertz — the daily cost is about CLP 50 000 (EUR 70).

Arriving by car

For driving directions from the airport, please check this external map.

If you are driving to La Serena via the Pan-American Highway, please check this map.

Accommodation in ESO La Serena

The main hotels in La Serena are located in the city centre, a few kilometres from the ESO office. ESO guests normally stay at the Hotel Francisco de Aguirre. Further information on accommodation in La Serena is available on external pages.

Food at ESO La Serena

ESO guests normally use the restaurant of the Hotel Francisco de Aguirre called Don Cristóbal. Further information on restaurants in La Serena is available here.

Health & Safety

Weather and Clothing

There are not any special health and safety considerations in La Serena. For climate information, you can check here. You can also find a short-term weather forecast here.