Having traveled very little in Chile, we did not know that parts of the central coast are extremely populated... and not with dense marine fauna, but with humans.
But, hey, if you can't avoid the crowds, you might as well join in the fun! That means you get your little umbrella (which you can rent!) and find your spot, even if its in the third, fourth, or fifth row back. Bring your ceviche and tons of sugary soda, and voila, a regular chilean day at the beach. Basically its Margaritaville and the metro at rush hour all wrapped into one sandy package.
Really, we tried to avoid the crazy beach towns, but with sample sites every 20km stretching north and south from Valparaiso, remoteness was not always an option. As some have said, we did some nice transects for sampling piure and for sampling chilean social life. I would say that from the mansions in Zapallar to the crowded beaches of Quisco to the tiny town of Tauco, we saw it all.
got some time to kill while the rest of your team is sampling? pop up some shade and drink a soda!
fish market near Vina
only a true star can rock the wetsuit overalls