On February 27, 2010 Talcahuano was devastated by the 8.8 magnitude 2010 Chile earthquake and its subsequent tsunami. The city government estimates that it will take 10 years to recover from the quake and 2.5 m tsunami.
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Talcahuano is located in the south of the central zone of Chile. Together with ten other municipalities, it forms part of the Province of Concepción, which in turn is one of four provinces that forms the VIII Region or Bío-Bío Region.
Talcahuano contains Chile's main naval base which is home of the historical relic, the Huascár, a Peruvian ironclad ship which was captured in 1879 during the War of the Pacific. It is also the base of the Chilean submarine fleet and the ASMAR shipyard.
When in Talcahuano you should visit the seaside promenade Ventana al Mar, the Remolcado de Alta Mar Poderoso, declared a National Monument, the Huáscar Monitor, the beaches of Ramuntcho and Rocoto, the Hualpén Museum and Park and the fish market.
Credit Card acceptance is considerably reduced in small towns and communities, for which reason when visiting these it is recommended you take with you cash in local currency: the Chilean peso. 1 USD = 712 CLP. This will prevent any unpleasant surprises.
Spanish is Chile's official language
Chile has so-called cyber-cafes, stores offering Internet access. The cost of accessing the world info network varies from town to town. In Santiago, an hour online costs 4 dollars, while in Calama it costs 6 dollars, approximately. On the other hand, the main hotels and lodging places frequently offer Internet access to their guests, in many instances at no extra charge.
Ambulance service: 131 Fire Brigade: 132 Carabineros (Chilean police): 133 Drug Enforcement: 135 Andean Mountain Rescue Squad: 136 Sea Rescue: 137
Business and trade establishments in Chile are generally open to the public from Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., with a 60 minute lunch break at 1 p.m. Saturday timetable is 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. In malls, the timetable is Monday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.
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