The Alameda del Libertador Bernardo O'Higgins (or "La Alameda" in short) is the most important street in the whole country. Here, Santiago was founded by the Spaniards in 1541, at Cerro Santa Lucía. One of the branches of the Mapocho River used to flow along this avenue. Amazing and important buildings can be seen on this street, too: the Presidential Palace, La Moneda; the Confitería Torres (the oldest restaurant in Chile); the Biblioteca Nacional; Estación Central; Centro Cultural Gabriela Mistral; The Coach Bus Terminals (from where buses depart for Patagonia, Argentina, Peru and Chile's north). Try not to be on Alameda when the students protest against the Government, for you might get soaking wet courtesy of Carabineros' water tank (el guanaco) or you might burst into tears as a consequence of tear gas bombs. A great place to eat is on Alameda's first block, near Plaza Italia: the Fuente Alemana... always full of hungry customers.
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