Located on the north face of Cerro San Cristóbal in Santiago and with more than two acres (0.8 hectares) of green space, a playground of 60 toboggan slides, and a fence that is doubled as a 3D game, it’s no wonder that more than 142,000 people visited Parque de la Infancia in its first year of operation.
The idea for the park was first launched in 2006, when Parque Metropolitano and Chile’s National Kindergarten Board decided to commission the design of a creative playground made especially for young children. The free park, designed by Elemental Studio aimed to serve the entire city of Santiago, and its location was selected because of its convenient proximity to Metro Cemeterios.
Parque de la Infancia aims to inspire kids to play, imagine, and discover. Below, there are a few more of the funky elements that make this creative space in Santiago one-of-a-kind:
The 3D Fence
Over 1,000 feet (310 metres) of the park’s perimeter fence have been transformed into an innovative maze in three dimensions. It’s perfect for climbing and exploring.
Cement sphere sculptures of different sizes spout water and bubbles from water jets. No swimsuit necessary – you can choose how wet you want to get!
Hiking and Tree Houses
Parque de la Infancia is full of walking trails lined with beautiful flowers and trees. These pathways connect wooden tree houses that are perfect for exploring. The trails have been designed to be accessible for children and people with physical disabilities.
The free funicular cable car transports visitors 320 ft (98 m) up Cerro San Cristóbal, providing a fantastic view of the park and northern Santiago along the way. The funicular can accommodate 12 to 15 people per car and completes its journey next to a small path that leads to the Chilean National Zoo.
Arguably the park’s star attraction is the hillside of 60 concrete slides. You can reach the top of the hill by climbing the stairs for a good leg workout, or take the funicular up and ride down.
With puppet shows and children’s theatre performances every weekend, the Amphitheatre is a great place to watch a show and relax in the shade after a long day of exploring the park.
If you want to know more, have a look at this amazing video of the park, with explanations of Alejandro Aravena, from Elemental: