As home to Patagonia, a world-famous and iconic tourist attraction, Chile may seem like a well- established travel destination. In fact, that's far from the case, according to Jenny Mikkelson, a Chile specialist at Travel Beyond, a luxury tour operator in Wayzata, Minn.

"Traditionally, travelers have to come to Chile to see Patagonia, but they miss the rest of the country," she said.

In the past, they had good reason to: the tourism infrastructure in many parts of Chile, especially one that met the standards of luxury travelers, was weak at best. That's fast-changing today with notable high-end properties opening from north to south that give tourists plenty of incentive to plan a visit.

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