Torres del Paine National Park

Museum of Archaeology and History Francisco Fonck, Viña del Mar

Genuine Moai at Francisco Fonck Museum
Founded on November 25, 1937, its name commemorates the eminent physician, naturalist, geologist, anthropologist and philanthropist of German origin, Francisco Adolfo Fonck (1830-1912), who also made great contributions in the field of archaeology. It can be said that this is a small-great museum. Small for its facilities compared to other great institutions around the world, but very comprehensive for the valuable collections it holds, besides the display cases, infrastructure and exterior are always kept in excellent condition. 

According to its own definition, the mission of the Francisco Fonck Museum of Vina del Mar is to provide a summary of Chilean prehistory, ethnography and natural history. Installed since 1996 in which was a large mansion, known as the Delano family residence.

Notable is the collection on the culture of Rapa Nui (inhabitants of Easter Island), starting with an authentic Moai, located in the garden, brought to the continent in 1951, which, together with those in the British Museum in London, are the only ones outside the island. The Moai was installed in La Marina Avenue until 1988, when it was moved to its current location. The majority of the exhibit are archaeological and ethnographic objects collected throughout much of his life by Mr. Fritz Felbermayer, Austrian citizen residing in the neighboring city of Valparaiso, Felbermayer was a faithful lover and collaborator of the Rapa Nui people. It is said that the Francisco Fonck Museum has one of the most complete exhibitions on Rapa Nui outside of Easter Island.

Francisco Fonck Museum in Viña del Mar, Chile.
The exhibition halls also include the pre-European cultures of continental Chile, such as Patagonia, populated by the Tehuelches, Patagones or "Aonikenk" as they called themselves; the Onas or Selknam, original inhabitants of Tierra del Fuego; the Alacalufes, canoeists of the southern channels; and the Yaganes, who settled the southernmost tip of the Americas. The collection also includes items such as tools and pottery from the pre-Columbian cultures of central Chile. 

In the Norte Chico section of the museum, the "Litos Geometricos de Huentelauquen" are of particular interest, objects carved in stone with great geometric precision, whose exact function is still unknown, but could be related to rituals and funeral matters.  There is also a section dedicated to the Norte Grande (Great North or Far North), of a great archaeological wealth recognized worldwide. 

The gallery also houses a collection of Mapuche silverware and a large collection of Peruvian pre-Columbian ceramics. In the area of natural sciences, you can see a complete display of entomology, very interesting and with many Chilean species. Here you can also see the fauna of Central Chile and other parts of the country, from the Andes to the deep sea.

While in Viña del Mar, don't miss the opportunity to visit this unique museum and learn about Chile's rich history and culture.

784, 4 Norte St., Viña del Mar, Chile

Monday 10:00 to 14:00 and 15:00 to 18:00 hrs.              
Tuesday to Saturday 10:00 to 18:00 hrs.
Sunday 10:00 to 14:00 hrs.

Location of Fonck Museum