Plaza Victoria is a lively square that has been a focal point of Valparaíso city for almost two centuries. Discover impressive bronze statues and an ornamental fountain set around pristine tree-lined lawns. Marvel at colonial landmarks, which frame the square and serve as a reminder of the Europeans who settled in the city.
Learn about the plaza’s interesting history that dates back to Spanish rule. At that time the square was part of a beach and a stop for the horse-drawn wagons traveling to Quillota and Santiago. It later became a bullring and hosted bullfights until 1823, when the government passed a law to ban the sport. The plaza was then turned into a public square and named Plaza Victoria in 1839, following Chile’s triumph at the Battle of Yungay.
Take a moment to stroll between the plaza’s well-kept lawns and gaze up at tall palm trees. Check out the black and white paved paths, which resemble rolling waves. In the plaza’s center is an attractive fountain adorned with bronze lion sculptures. Look for the four statues that symbolize the four seasons and represent Valparaíso’s seafaring and fishing heritage.
Sit on one of the benches here and watch as children chase pigeons and ride bikes. See workers relaxing in the shade on their lunch breaks and artisans hawking their wares.
Walk around the plaza’s perimeter to spot notable city landmarks. Lining the west side are grand colonial mansions, including the 19th-century Club Naval building. Go to the east side and visit the neo-gothic Iglesia Catedral de Valparaíso.
Located in the heart of Valparaíso’s El Almendral district, Plaza Victoria is easy to reach via public buses, taxis and shared taxis. Bellavista metro station is about a 10-minute walk away.
Combine your visit to Plaza Victoria with other major city attractions. Find a popular children’s playground at the adjacent Plaza Simon Bolivar and take a guided tour of nearby Biblioteca Santiago Severín.