Rancagua (Spanish pronunciation: [raŋˈkaɣwa]) is a city and commune in central Chile and part of the Rancagua conurbation. It is the capital of the Cachapoal Province and of the O'Higgins Region, located 87 km (54 mi) south of the national capital of Santiago.

Its first name was Santa Cruz de Triana. In 2012, its population was 232,211.[1] The main economic activities range from mining, tourism, agriculture, timber, food production and services to minor industrial activities. The city also serves as the administrative and legal center of the region.

Next to Machalí and Gultro forms the Rancagua conurbation; and next to Curicó, Talca and Concepción, is one of the most important and populated cities of the south central zone of Chile.

Ciudad de Rancagua
Buildings surrounding Los Héroes Square, Rancagua. Top: Southern view of the plaza, Middle: Cachapoal Province Governorate, Bottom left. Sagrario Cathedral, Bottom right: Bernardo O'Higgins monument.
Buildings surrounding Los Héroes Square, Rancagua. Top: Southern view of the plaza, Middle: Cachapoal Province Governorate, Bottom left. Sagrario Cathedral, Bottom right: Bernardo O'Higgins monument.
Coat of arms of Rancagua
Coat of arms
Map of Rancagua commune in O'Higgins Region
Map of Rancagua commune in O'Higgins Region
Location in Chile
Location in Chile
Location in Chile
Coordinates (city): 34°10′S 70°45′W / 34.167°S 70.750°WCoordinates: 34°10′S 70°45′W / 34.167°S 70.750°W
Country Chile
Region O'Higgins Region
ProvinceCachapoal Province
FoundationOctober 5, 1743
 • TypeMunicipality
 • AlcaldeEduardo Soto
 • Total260.3 km2 (100.5 sq mi)
572 m (1,877 ft)
(2012 Census)[1]
 • Total232,211
 • Density890/km2 (2,300/sq mi)
 • Urban
 • Rural
 • Men104,879
 • Women109,465
Time zoneUTC−4 (CLT)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−3 (CLST)
Postal code
Area code(s)56 (country) + 72 (city)
PoliceCarabineros de Chile
International airportsRancagua de la Independencia
Websitewww.rancagua.cl (in Spanish)


Foundation period

Rancagua was founded by José Antonio Manso de Velasco, who founded several cities in the central area of Chile. The city's original name was Villa Santa Cruz de Triana. However, before the Spaniards arrived the area was inhabited by local Picunche tribes and had also fallen briefly under the control of the Inca Empire, whose traces can still be found near the city today.[2]

The city is famous in Chilean history as the scene of the Disaster of Rancagua of 1814, when Chilean forces fighting for independence from Spain were defeated, marking the beginning of the period known as the Reconquista (Reconquest, an attempt by Spain to regain control of Chile).


Estación Rancagua 2012
Rancagua train station.

In recent years the city has become one of the most attractive cultural and tourist centers in the O'Higgins Region, mainly due to the vineyards in the area. There are also some archeological sites such as Pukara de La Compañia and the nearby Rio Cipreses nature reserve, both of which can be visited by private vehicle or with local tour companies. Rancagua also offers sports centers and easy access to smaller villages and towns.

The city is connected to Santiago by the Panamerican Highway (Chile Route 5), and the Metrotren connects the metro service in Santiago to Rancagua by train.

Rancagua is home of the University of Rancagua, the first private university to be established in the O'Higgins Region.

Rancagua is also known for El Teniente, the "largest underground copper mine in the world",[3] located about 40 km (25 mi) to the east of the city in the Andes mountain range. El Teniente is a division of the state-owned mining enterprise, Codelco.

The city's Braden Copper Stadium was one of the four venues of the 1962 FIFA World Cup. More recently, it houses the O'Higgins professional soccer club, one of the leading teams in Chilean professional soccer. Every year, the National Championship of Chilean rodeo is held in the Medialuna Monumental de Rancagua. On 2015, the city will be host the 2015 Copa América, receiving two matches of the tournament.


Vía Crucis en Rancagua
People of Rancagua in the Stations of the Cross ceremony.

The population of Rancagua is primarily either of Spanish descent or mestizo, with a particularly strong Basque influence. However, there are also Chileans of German, Croatian, Italian, Greek, Levantine Arab, Swiss, French, English or Irish ancestry living in the city,[4] as well as indigenous Mapuche migrant workers from the south[1] and some Roma gypsies. Furthermore, the city has seen increasing immigration from neighbouring South American countries such as Argentina, Bolivia, Colombia and Peru.[1] According to the 2002 census of the National Statistics Institute, Rancagua spans an area of 260.3 km2 (101 sq mi) and has 214,344 inhabitants (104,879 men and 109,465 women). Of these, 206,971 (96.6%) lived in urban areas and 7,373 (3.4%) in rural areas. The population grew by 14.4% (27,020 persons) between the 1992 and 2002 censuses.[1]

Notable people born in Rancagua


As a commune, Rancagua is a third-level administrative division of Chile, administered by a municipal council and headed by an alcalde who is directly elected every four years.

Within the electoral divisions of Chile, Rancagua is represented in the Chamber of Deputies by Mr. Alejandro García-Huidobro (UDI) and Mr. Juan Luis Castro (PS) as part of the 32nd electoral district, which consists entirely of the Rancagua commune. The commune is represented in the Senate by Andrés Chadwick Piñera (UDI) and Juan Pablo Letelier Morel (PS) as part of the 9th senatorial constituency (O'Higgins Region).


This area is known as the "huaso province" after the name of the Chilean cowboy, the huaso. The population is a mixture of both European (including Argentine immigrants) and indigenous races and cultures, thus the region has a homogeneous culture known as Chileanidad is present and a mestizo imprint is evident.

Rancagua and the Libertador General Bernardo O'Higgins Region was settled by Spaniards (notably Andalusians, Basques, Aragonese and Navarrese) and other Europeans. French and Italian families established agriculture including the important wine industry: the Wine Route is one of the main tourist attractions of the Colchagua valley. Breweries can be found as well, the legacy of German and Swiss immigration. Livestock herding was especially influenced by British, Greek and Yugoslavian settlers.

The relatively small distance from Santiago has led to a growing urban influence in the local culture. Rancagua, is fast becoming a suburb of Santiago's upper-class professional workforce.


Date English Name Spanish Name Notes
1–2 October Disaster of Rancagua Desastre de Rancagua In memory of the Battle
of Rancagua
which occurred in 1814


Public Transport is provided by Trans O'Higgins by six lines of busses.


Rancagua has a Mediterranean climate (Köppen Csb), with clearly marked seasons. Summers are generally extremely dry, with cool mornings and hot afternoons, while winters are mild with cold mornings and occasional periods of heavy rainfall that averages around 510 millimetres or 20.08 inches each year – almost all of which occurs during a handful of storms between May and August. In some years there can be a little snow.


The sport in the city is varied including football, basketball and hockey. The city's most famous football club is O'Higgins, who currently plays in the first category of Chilean soccer, the Primera División de Chile. O'Higgins had great past glories, with the help of El Teniente they became one of the leading teams of Chile during the 1970s, participating on several occasions in the Copa Libertadores, their best performance being a semifinal appearance. In 2013, they won the Primera División de Chile for the first time, followed by a win in the Supercopa de Chile in 2014. Amongst other football clubs in the city are Tomás Greig and Enfoque, both of which play in the Tercera División de Chile.

Since 2015 the Autódromo Internacional de Codegua in the neighboring commune of Codegua held the Chile Grand Prix in the Superbike World Championship, the circuit will also hosted races in the 2016 Grand Prix motorcycle racing season.

Stadiums and arenas

International relations

Twin towns–Sister cities

Rancagua is twinned with:

Photo gallery

Plaza de Los Héroes de Rancagua

Los Heroes Square

Monumento a Bernardo O"Higgins en Plaza Los Héroes Rancagua

Bernardo O'Higgins Monument.

WLMCL - Plaza de Los Héroes 02

Rancagua cathedral at night.

Paseo Independencia

Paseo Independencia, Rancagua


O'Higgins Region District Council

Gobernación de Provincia de Cachapoal 06

Cachapoal province government's building.

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "National Statistics Institute" (in Spanish). Retrieved November 29, 2010.
  2. ^ Miranda Salas, Felix. Historia de Rancagua (PDF).
  3. ^ "Copper Mining in Chile". Copper Investment News. Retrieved 30 October 2012.
  4. ^ "About Chile & Its People". O'Higgins Tours.
  5. ^ http://es.climate-data.org/location/2053/"Monthly averages for Rancagua". MSN. 2007. Retrieved 10 January 2008.
  6. ^ El Rancaguino, «Rancagua recibió a sus hermanos de la ciudad coreana de Paju»
  7. ^ Noticiario Local de Extremadura, 1/08/03, «El Ayuntamiento de Miajadas firma un Convenio de colaboración con la localidad chilena de Rancagua.» Archived 2012-01-18 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ "Bielsko-Biała – Partner Cities". © 2008 Urzędu Miejskiego w Bielsku-Białej. Retrieved 2008-12-10.

External links

1962 FIFA World Cup

The 1962 FIFA World Cup was the seventh FIFA World Cup, the quadrennial international football championship for men's national teams. It was held from 30 May to 17 June 1962 in Chile. The qualification rounds took place between August 1960 and December 1961, with 56 teams entering from six confederations, and fourteen qualifying for the finals tournament alongside Chile, the hosts, and Brazil, the defending champions.

Brazil successfully defended their World Cup title, defeating Czechoslovakia 3–1 in the final in the Chilean capital of Santiago. They became the second team, after Italy in 1934 and 1938, to win the World Cup twice in succession; no team has achieved the feat since. Host nation Chile finished third, defeating Yugoslavia 1–0 in the third-place play-off.

The tournament was marred by a toxic atmosphere and violence between players on the pitch; it included the first-round match between Chile and Italy (2–0), which became known as the Battle of Santiago, one of a number of violent matches played throughout the tournament. It was the first World Cup that used goal average as a means of separating teams with the same number of points. It was also the first World Cup in which the average number of goals per match was less than three (2.78); this has been repeated at every World Cup since, despite expansion of the tournament.

2017 South American U-17 Championship

The 2017 South American Under-17 Football Championship (Spanish: Campeonato Sudamericano Sub-17 Chile 2017, Brazilian Portuguese: Campeonato Sul-Americano Sub-17 Chile 2017) was the 17th edition of the South American Under-17 Football Championship, a football competition for the under-17 national teams in South America organized by CONMEBOL. It was held in Chile from 23 February to 19 March 2017.Brazil were crowned champions, and together with Chile, Paraguay and Colombia, which were the top four teams of this tournament, qualified for the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup in India.

2019 South American U-20 Championship

The 2019 South American U-20 Championship was the 29th edition of the South American U-20 Championship (Spanish: CONMEBOL Sudamericano Sub-20), the biennial international youth football championship organised by CONMEBOL for the men's under-20 national teams of South America. It was held in Chile between 17 January and 10 February 2019.The top four teams qualified for the 2019 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Poland as the CONMEBOL representatives. The top three teams qualified for the 2019 Pan American Games men's football tournament, in addition to Peru who had automatically qualified as hosts. However, due to the re-introduction of the CONMEBOL Pre-Olympic Tournament in 2020, the tournament was not used for qualifying for the 2020 Summer Olympics men's football tournament.Ecuador won their first title. Argentina finished second, defending champions Uruguay finished third, while Colombia finished fourth.

Battle of Rancagua

The Battle of Rancagua also known as the Disaster of Rancagua occurred on October 1, 1814, to October 2, 1814, when the Spanish Army under the command of Mariano Osorio defeated the rebel Chilean forces led by Bernardo O’Higgins. This put an end to the Chilean Patria Vieja and it was the beginning of the Spanish Reconquista of South America.

C.D. América de Rancagua

América de Rancagua was a Chilean football club based in the city of Rancagua. The club was founded on 1916 and dissolved on 1955, when it fuses with O'Higgins Braden forming the current club O'Higgins.

Cachapoal Province

Cachapoal Province (Spanish: Provincia de Cachapoal) is one of three provinces of the central Chilean region of O'Higgins (VI). Its capital is the city of Rancagua (pop. 214,344).

Clarence Acuña

Clárence Williams Acuña Donoso (born February 8, 1975 in Rancagua) is a Chilean former professional football player. He played as a midfielder.

Estadio El Teniente

Estadio El Teniente, also known as Estadio El Teniente-Codelco for sponsorship reasons, is a multi-purpose stadium in Rancagua, Chile. It is currently used mostly for football matches. The stadium actually holds approximately 13,000 people and was built in 1945 with the name Braden Copper Company Stadium (Estadio Braden Copper Co.). The stadium is the home stadium for O'Higgins, the team of the city of Rancagua.The stadium hosted seven matches of 1962 FIFA World Cup, where played matches of the group stage and quarter-finals.

In 2013, the stadium was renovated for hosting the 2015 Copa América, to be played in Chile. Two matches of the group stage will be played in this stadium.

Hellen Toncio

Hellen Toncio (born April 17, 1994) is a Chilean volleyball player and beauty pageant titleholder who was crowned Miss Universo Chile 2014 and represented Chile at the Miss Universe 2014.

Humberto Gatica

Humberto Gatica is a Chilean-born American record producer, music mixer, audio engineer and a long-time collaborator with producer David Foster. He is a 16-time Grammy Award Winner.

Instituto O'Higgins de Rancagua

Instituto O'Higgins is a private Catholic school located in the center of Rancagua, Chile. It is administered by the Marist Brothers.

It was founded in 1915 by four Marist Brothers, Andrés, Donato, Cristobal and Salvador María. Originally the institute was exclusively for boys, but since year 2000, girls have been allowed as well.In 1925 the school created his own soccer team, the Club de Deportes Instituto O'Higgins, that was merged in 1954 with the Braden Copper Company team, creating the O'Higgins Braden club. One year later, in 1955, O'Higgins Braden merged with América de Rancagua football club, forming the current Club Deportivo O'Higgins.This school has a sports park called Estadio Marista (Marist Stadium), located in the town of Machalí, near Rancagua.

Lucho Gatica

Luis Enrique Gatica Silva (11 August 1928 – 13 November 2018), better known as Lucho Gatica was a Chilean bolero singer, film actor, and television host known as "the King of Bolero." It is estimated that Gatica released more than 90 recordings. He toured a vast portion of the world, having performed in concerts in Europe, the Middle East and Asia. He was the uncle of the record producer Humberto Gatica.

Mario Núñez

Mario Antonio Núñez Villarreal (born March 2, 1976 in Rancagua, Chile) is a Chilean footballer currently playing for Magallanes of the Primera B in Chile. He played as a striker.


A medialuna (literally half moon) is crescent-shaped corral used for rodeos, the official sport in Chile. They are generally 64–66 metres in diameter. Chilean rodeos are not quite the same sport famous in the American West; they involve two riders on horseback trying to herd a calf around a circular arena, attempting to pin him against several large cushions.

The main medialuna in Chile is the Medialuna Monumental de Rancagua. Located in the city of Rancagua, it currently seats 12,000 spectators. It is the home of the annual National Championship of Chilean Rodeo. It hosted the 2006 Davis Cup matches of Chile against Slovakia and the 2009 Davis Cup against Austria.

In Osorno, Chile, the medialuna is known as La Medialuna de Osorno. The Medialuna de Osorno was the first covered medialuna in Chile, and is considered one of the highest quality. Rodeos are organized by the Club Osorno René Soriano Bórquez. It boasts a 64-metre diameter arena, seating capacity of approximately 4,800, and an in-house cafeteria. In 2006, the medialuna was the qualifying arena for the Southern Region of the Campeonato Nacional de Rodeo, the nationwide Rodeo competition.

Rodeo is the second most popular sport in Chile after football it began in roughly the 16th century during the rule of Governor García Hurtado de Mendoza. At the time, the cattle in Chile were not well identified and it was not uncommon for the animals to get lost. To help prevent the loss, Governor Hurtado proclaimed that, in Santiago, every 24th and 25 July, the commemoration of Saint Jacob - patron saint of the city -, the cattle would be gathered in the Plaza de Armas de Santiago to be branded and selected. This is basically how Chilean rodeo began.

O'Higgins Braden

O'Higgins Braden was a Chilean football club based in the city of Rancagua. The club was founded on 1954 and merged between Instituto O'Higgins and Braden F.C..

Later, after won the Segunda División, the club merged in 1955 with América de Rancagua forming the current club O'Higgins.

O'Higgins F.C.

O'Higgins Fútbol Club (Spanish: [oˈxiɣins ˈfutβol ˈkluβ]) also known as O'Higgins de Rancagua, is a Chilean football club based in Rancagua, that is a current member of the Campeonato Nacional. The club's home stadium is the Estadio El Teniente, opened in 1945 and renovated for the 2015 Copa América, which was hosted by Chile.

Founded in 1955, the club was named in honour of the country's founding father and supreme director Bernardo O'Higgins, after the merger of the clubs O'Higgins Braden and América de Rancagua. O'Higgins has won two Primera B titles, and in 2013 they won their first top-flight championship against Universidad Católica, coached by Eduardo Berizzo; they later won the 2014 Supercopa de Chile on penalty kicks against Deportes Iquique. The team has competed four times in the Copa Libertadores, once in the Copa Sudamericana in 2012, and once in the Copa Conmebol in 1992.

The club emblem is a phoenix standing upon the club's colours. The club has a long-standing rivalry with regional neighbours Rangers de Talca and Curicó Unido, as well as with clubs from Santiago.

O'Higgins Region

The Libertador General Bernardo O'Higgins Region (Spanish: Región del Libertador General Bernardo O'Higgins pronounced [liβeɾtaˈðoɾ xeneˈɾal βeɾˈnaɾðo oˈçiɣins]), often shortened to O'Higgins Region, is one of Chile's 16 first order administrative divisions. It is subdivided into three provinces. It is named in honour of Bernardo O'Higgins Riquelme, one of Chile's founding fathers.

The Libertador General Bernardo O'Higgins Region is bordered to the west by the Pacific Ocean, to the east by the Republic of Argentina, to the north by the Valparaíso and Santiago Metropolitan Regions, and to the south by the Maule Region. It extends approximately between the parallels of 33° 51′ and 35° 01′ south latitude, and between the meridian of 70° 02′ west longitude and the Pacific Ocean.

The capital and largest city of the region is Rancagua. The second major town is San Fernando.

René Maturana

René Gabriel Maturana Maldonado (10 February 1955 – 12 August 2009) was a Chilean journalist and the 36th Mayor of Pichilemu, holding the position from his appointment by President Augusto Pinochet Ugarte on 31 August 1984 until his resignation in April 1992.

Maturana also was an academic at Andrés Bello National University, and was the President of the Rancagua chapter of the College of Teachers of Chile (Spanish: Colegio de Profesores de Chile).

Roman Catholic Diocese of Rancagua

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Rancagua (in Latin: Dioecesis Rancaguensis) is a suffragan diocese of the Archdiocese of Santiago de Chile. The diocese was established on 18 October 1925 as Diócesis de Santa Cruz de Rancagua, by Pope Pius XII by means of the papal bull Apostolici muneris ratio.

The diocese is headed by Luis Fernando Ramos Pérez, who was named Apostolic Administrator by Pope Francis on 28 June 2018.

Climate data for Rancagua
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 39
Average high °C (°F) 30
Daily mean °C (°F) 21
Average low °C (°F) 12
Record low °C (°F) 5.4
Average rainfall mm (inches) 0
Average rainy days 0 1 1 2 4 6 6 5 3 2 1 0 31
Source: MSN[5]
Chilean cities with a population of over 150,000 (2002 census)
< Communes and municipalities in O'Higgins Region >
Cardenal Caro

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