Due to the fuel strikes in Argentina we were delayed leaving Mendoza, but we were the lucky ones we met with a girl heading to Puerto Madryn and her bus had been cancelled. When we did get going it was a quick 6 hours to Valparaiso and after an unorganised border crossing we were back into Chilean territory. We had to swap buses and had told everyone that we were heading to Valparaiso. When we got to Vina del Mara and were told this was as far as it when I kicked up a bit of a fuss and managed to get the money for our bus fare to our actual destination of Valparaiso.
Our taxi driver was extremely friendly and pointed out anything of remote interest but couldn't find his way to our hostel, so dropped us off just up the road and told us to walk through an alleyway to find it! Our hostel was nice but very quiet, perfect for us after Mendoza! We ran a few errands in the evening and used the homemade sauce we had bought in Maipu, it was really good and had a nice kick to it.
The next morning we went to the 'Tours 4 Tips' and had an interesting and, at times amusing tour with a good group of people. Two Swiss people from Mendoza where also there so we caught up with some of the previous night's shenanigans! We went for a packed sandwich with a few of the guys from the tour and then a meal in the evening after wandering into the area that we had been told by numerous locals not to go to in the evening (stupid American guy was walking back and forth with his giant map out and Jesus sandals; we walked away!). The next morning we saw a few more of the highlights and took some pictures of the graffiti and brightly coloured buildings. Valparaiso is like Boca (in BA) but on speed! We got a taxi to the bus terminal because the fisherman were protesting so the trolley buses weren't running, oh how the South Americans love to protest. In just two short hours we were back in Santiago.