Iquique: Wikis


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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Iquique is located in Chile
Coordinates: 20°13′S 70°9′W / 20.217°S 70.15°W / -20.217; -70.15
Country Chile
Region Tarapacá
Founded 16th Century
Population (2002)
 - Total 216,419
Time zone PET (UTC-5)
 - Summer (DST) PET (UTC-5)

Iquique (Spanish pronunciation: [iˈkike]) is a city in northern Chile, capital of Tarapacá Region, on the Pacific coast, west of the Atacama Desert and the Pampa del Tamarugal. It had a population of 216,419 as of the 2002 census[1]. It is also the main commune of the Greater Iquique.

Iquique has one of the largest duty-free commercial port centers (or Zona Franca) of South America and has been traditionally called Zofri. There are around 2.4 km² of warehouses, banking branches, and restaurants.

Copper mining, mainly in Quebrada Blanca, Cerro Colorado, and Doña Inés de Collahuasí, is also an important industry in Iquique.



Although the city was founded in the sixteenth century, there is evidence of habitation in the area by the Chango people as early as 7000 BC. During colonial times, Iquique was part of the Viceroyalty of Peru as much of South America was at the time, and remained part of Peruvian territory until the end of the 19th century. Iquique's early development was due in large part to the discovery of mineral riches, particularly the presence of large deposits of sodium nitrate in the Atacama Desert (then part of Peruvian territory).

Naval Battle of Iquique during the War of the Pacific (1879-1884).

Territorial disputes between Bolivia and Chile triggered the War of the Pacific in 1879. The outcome of the war gave Chile this portion of the Peruvian territory. Over the years there was substantial emigration from other parts of Chile to this area which was called the Norte Grande. In subsequent years the further exportation of Chilean saltpeter (mainly to European countries) significantly helped in the development of the city, attracting foreigners and rapidly expanding housing projects.

In December 1907, the city was marred by the Santa María de Iquique Massacre when the Chilean Army, under the command of Gen. Roberto Silva-Renard, opened fire on thousands of saltpeter miners, and their wives and children, who assembled inside the Santa María School. The workers had marched into town to protest their working conditions and wages. Somewhere between 500 and 2,000 people were killed. The folk group Quilapayún recorded an album in remembrance of the event (Cantata Santa María de Iquique) in 1970. In December 2007 a series of cultural and ceremonial activities have been planned, culminating in the week between 14 to 21 December, to commemorate the centenary year of the massacre. Prior to becoming Chilean territory, Iquique was home to some of the greatest Peruvian heroes, namely Alfonso Ugarte (who was elected Mayor in 1876), Ramon Zavala, a rich saltpeter entrepreneur; Guillermo Billinghurst, later President of Peru (who after being overthrown in 1914 came to Iquique - then already under Chilean rule - to live out his last years), and Ramon Castilla, three times president of Peru, who was born in San Lorenzo de Tarapaca and died in the Desert of Tiviliche, Tarapaca, who lived in Iquique during his mandate as Governor of Tarapaca in 1825.


In July 1835, Charles Darwin, during his voyage on the Beagle, traveled to Iquique and described it as a town "very much in want of everyday necessities, such as water and firewood". These necessities had to be brought in from considerable distances. Darwin also visited the saltpeter works.

In 1868 and again in 1877, the former Peruvian city was devastated by earthquakes. On 13 June 2005 there was yet another earthquake, with a magnitude of 7.9 on the Richter Scale.

The Battle of Iquique was fought in the harbor of Iquique on 21 May 1879, now commemorated as Navy Day, an annual public holiday in Chile.

The most recent accident involving a spacecraft RTG was the failure of the Russian Mars 96 probe launch on 16 November 1996. The two RTGs onboard carried in total 200 g of plutonium and are assumed to have survived reentry (as they were designed to do). They are thought to now lie somewhere in a northeast-southwest running oval 320 km long by 80 km wide which is centred 32 km east of Iquique, Chile.

The 2009 South American Under 17 Football Championship was held at the Estadio Tierra de Campeones in Iquique with Brazil emerging victorious.



  1. ^ Instituto Nacional de Estadísticas, Censos 2002, accessed 10 July 2007

External links

Coordinates: 20°13′S 70°9′W / 20.217°S 70.15°W / -20.217; -70.15

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

South America : Chile : North : Iquique

Iquique [1] is in the North of Chile. City home to the duty free zone called "Zofri" and a growing number of high rise resort hotels along its beaches. Slightly more expensive and polluted than neighboring population centers, such as Arica, but a convenient place to stock up on duty free perfumes and laptop computers.

Get in

Buses pull in on different locations. The 'main terminal' north of the centre serves most destinations, but quite a few buses from Arica pull in close to the central mercado in the cross between Calle Barros Arana and Thomson. 'Tur-bus' have their own terminal on Calle Esmeralda. Several daily arrivals from Arica, Antofagasta and Santiago. Also buses from La Paz, Oruro and Cochabamba in Bolivia.

Many flights from Iquique's Diego Aracena Intrnational Airport (IATA: IQQ) connect daily with Santiago and other main cities in the country. International flights are offered to Peru, Bolivia and Argentina.

Get around

Micros run along the major streets in the center and takes you from the center to the Zofri in no time. Walking is the most convenient mode of transport for getting to and from the beaches.

  • Baquedano Street is a cobbled, old-Western style street with plentiful tourist and artisan activities. Buildings around constructed during the 19th century offer interesting architecture mainly in Georgian and Victorian Styles adapted to the coastal desertic climate.
  • Historic sites can be found along the city and nearby the coast and desert, most of them related to the Pacific War against the coalition of Perú and Bolivia during the 19th century and with the the massacre by the government against miner workforce demanding social and economical rights, known as "the Santa Maria School massacre".
  • Iquique's 19th century architecture can be visited mainly downtown. Its origins are linked with the mining activities during that century, when European entrepreneurs became rich with the extraction of saltpetre and established their homes in the city. Many of them constructed big houses in different styles that predominated during the period and grouped in colonies with their respective buildings, with special stylistic, material and constructive adaptations to the climate of Iquique. The most emblematic house is The Astoreca Palace, that actually belongs to Arturo Prat University as an extension centre. Other important examples are The Spanish Casino, The Croatian Casino, The Chinese Club and The Municipal Theatre, one of the most important nationwide.


Visiting beaches is a must. Iquique is known for it's good weather and privileged beaches (playas) with "Playa Cavancha" being the largest. Be careful not all them are apt for swimming, submarine tides are dangerous in some places. There is also good surfing in town.

  • The duty-free zone, Zofri, is located in the north of town. The shopping experience is somewhat set back by the fog of aerosol perfumes being sniffed and tested by snazzy dressed Chileans, but electronics are slightly cheaper than outside its fences. Memory cards are good deals. There is a maximum per person purchase limit of US$ 1000, although you better check this before making any larger purchases.


Iquique's Chinese inmigrants that arrived during the 19th century as slaves to work in saltpetre extraction, have had a distinct influence on the local food. The area around the mercado is Iquique's Chinatown. You'll find a large number of Peruvian influenced "Chifa" restaurants here, all pretty expensive. The smaller restaurants between them are cheaper, and serve sandwiches and burgers for Ch$800 and up. McDonald's, Domino's, KFC, and other fast food chains can be found in malls.

For dessert you can try the chumbeque invented by chinese descendants. It's prepared with layers of fried thin dough filled with different fruity caramels. Nearby towns in Iquique specially Pica and Matilla offer a variety of fruits and desserts made with them, the best known are the alfajores.

  • El Wagon, Thompson 85, +56 57 411647. Outstanding and generous seafood. A bit more expensive than other places but it's worth it.
  • Pizzeria Al filo D'Oro, O'Higgins 964, +56 57 42 04 18. Thick crust pizzas for Ch$ 5000 and up. Pleasant spot with outdoor seating.


Pisco Sour prepared with lemons from "Pica" is the local speciality.

  • Hostal Li-Ming, Barros Arana 705, +56 (0)57 421912. Convenient for buses arriving in the city center, just across the road from the terminal. Free use of kitchen, try to get breakfast included in the price before deciding. Twins without bath for Ch$ 8000.
  • Backpacker's Hostel, Amunategui 2075, +56 57 320 223. Very gringo- and Euro-friendly hostel, with lounge, TV, kitchen, breakfast, bar, ping-pong, hammocks, guitar, computer with internet, etc. Bikes, surf and bodyboards (plus equipment), and sandboards for rent. Close to the beach, not too far from historic district. Friday evening barbecue (~US$7) gets good reviews, wasn't there though. Multilingual staff is friendly, helps organize other activities. Matrimonial suite and separate cabin available. Ch$ 5500 per night.
  • Hotel Oregon, San Martin 294 (Near Turbus and centre.), 057 410 959. 20 minute walk to the beach. High ceilings. Single with bath $6000.  edit
  • Teacher`s house. Ramirez 839. Phone 56-57314475. A beutiful garden, small gym, paragliding, tours and information, breakfast, bar, wi-fi, laundry, rent a bike, help organize other activities. Located in the historic center of Iquique, at 6 blocks from Cavancha beach. Doubles, Matrimonial suites, dorms. Private bathrooms. Prices: with bathrooms, 7000 pesos. Without bathroom, 5500.
  • Radisson Hotels, [2].
  • Terrado Hotels, [3].
  • Gavina Hotel, [4].
  • Sunfish Hotel, [5].

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1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

IQUIQUE, a city and port of Chile, capital of the province of Tarapaca, 820 m. N. of Valparaiso, in 20° 12' 15" S., 70° i i' 15" W. Pop. (1895), 33, 0 3 1; (1900, est.), 42,440. The coast here runs due N. and S. and the city is built on a narrow level plain between the sea and bluffs, the latter rising steeply 2000 ft. to the level of the great desert plain of Tarapaca, celebrated for its rich deposits of nitrate of soda. Facing the city is the low barren island of Serrano, or Iquique, which is connected with the mainland by a stone causeway 1500 ft. long, and shelters the anchorage from southerly storms. A mole extending from the N.E. end of the island affords some further protection. The city is laid out in the rectangular plan, with broad streets and large squares. Water is brought by pipes from Pica, 50 m. distant. Iquique is a city of much commercial importance and is provided with banks, substantial business houses, newspapers, clubs, schools, railways, tramways, electric lights, telephone lines, and steamship and cable communication with the outside world. It exports iodine and immense quantities of nitrate of soda obtained from the desert region of the province. A large number of vessels are engaged in the nitrate trade, and Iquique ranks as one of the two leading ports of Chile in the aggregate value of its foreign commerce. It is connected by rail with the inland town of Tarapaca and various mining centres, and through them with the ports of Pisagua on the N., and Patillos on the S. Iquique was an insignificant Peruvian fishing settlement until 1830 when the export of nitrate began. In 1868 the town was nearly destroyed by an earthquake, in 1875 by fire, and again in 1877 by earthquakes, a fire and a tidal wave. It was occupied by the Chileans in 1879 in the war between Chile and Peru, and was ceded to Chile by the treaty of the 10th of October 1883.

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Simple English

[[File:|thumb|250px|Torre Del Reloj in the Arturo Prat Square of Iquique.]] Iquique (Aymara: place to sleep) is a city, capital of the province of Iquique and the region of Tarapaca, in northern Chile. It has an area of 2.853,3 km² as of 2002, because Alto Hospicio was included there at that time. The current area is of 2.262,4 km². It is believed that the city has a population of 350,000, including Alto Hospicio.

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