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Valdivia
Panoramic view of Valdivia from Pedro de Valdivia Bridge
Panoramic view of Valdivia from Pedro de Valdivia Bridge
Flag of Valdivia
Flag
Coat of arms of Valdivia
Coat of arms
Nickname(s): 
The City of Rivers
Motto(s): 
Muy Noble y Muy Leal (Spanish: "Very Noble and Very Loyal")
Location of the Valdivia commune in Los Ríos Region
Location of the Valdivia commune in Los Ríos Region
Country Chile
Region Los Ríos
Province Valdivia
Founded as Santa María la Blanca de Valdivia
Founded 9 February 1552
Government
 • Type Municipality
Area
 • Total 1,015.6 km2 (392.1 sq mi)
Elevation
5 m (16 ft)
Population
 (2002 Census)
 • Total 140,559
 • Density 138.400/km2 (358.454/sq mi)
 • Urban
129,952
 • Rural
10,607
Sex
 • Men 68,510
 • Women 72,049
Time zone UTC−4 (CLT)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−3 (CLST)
Area code(s) country 56 + city 63
Website Municipality of Valdivia
Valdivia after earthquake, 1960
A street in Valdivia after the earthquake of 22 May 1960

Valdivia is a city, comune and municipality in southern Chile. Valdivia is the capital of Los Ríos Region (Spanish for Region of the Rivers), one of Chile's 16 regions.

It is located in a beautiful region of Chile which is known for its volcanoes, rivers, lakes, and landscapes.

On May 22, 1960, the most powerful earthquake on Earth occurred. With the magnitude of 9.5, it struck southern Chile. The earthquake stretched from about 311 miles-621 miles along its coast. The earthquake was named after the city that was most affected by the quake, Valdivia.

The Valdivia earthquake left two million people homeless, injured at least 3,000, and killed approximately 1,655. The seismic shaking in the earth caused big landslides across Chile. It also caused more than just an earthquake; the area also caused disastrous tsunamis and landslides.

The earthquake was caused by the Nazca plate releasing tension and descending 50 feet underneath South America. The quake lasted for about 10 minutes.

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