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On Chiloé Island also in the south, a distinct chilote culture emerged over the centuries from a relatively harmonious blending of Indian and Spanish backgrounds; this culture is characterized by rich traditions of music, dance, and mythological tales.

Chile is a large and narrow strip situated in southwest South America, bounded on the north by Peru, on the east by Bolivia and Argentina, and on the west and south by the Pacific Ocean.

Formidable natural barriers mark present-day Chile's boundaries, isolating the country from the rest of South America.

In Eastern Island the two thousand native inhabitants speak their own language of Polynesian origin.

Chileans of foreign ancestry do sometime also speak their mother tongue but do so almost exclusively in the intimacy of their home.

The indigenous population represents some 7 percent of the population.

There are about 500,000 Mapuche Indians in Chile, constituting the country's largest Native American population.

Almost six million people live in the metropolitan region of Santiago, while the northern and southern regions are sparsely populated.