Definitely a very cool city to check out. Located in the northern region of Chile, Iquique is roughly 3 hours south of Arica and the Chilean-Peruvian border. I came here from San Pedro de Atacama, taking an over night bus with a stop-over in Calama.
Iquique is a relatively small city (180,000) and it definitely has a more laid back vibe when compared to Santiago or even Valparaiso, Chile. It lies right along the Pacific coast and the beaches are pretty extraordinary!
Being one of my first stops in Chile after coming from Bolivia, it was evident that there was a bit more money in this region. Things in general cost a lot more and there was even a major supermarket containing an absurdity of choices, comparable to back home.
Iquique is a good location if you’re looking to relax by the beach and possibly try your hand at surfing. There is virtually no rainfall so you’re almost guaranteed good weather (as long as the tsunamis don’t roll in), and it also isn’t a super touristy destination as of yet.
Enjoy : )