The objective of this study was to describe spatial and space-time patterns of type 1 diabetes in children less than 15 years old, diagnosed between 2000 and 2005 with residence in the Metropolitan Region of Chile. Knox and Mantel tests were used to detect space-time interaction between cases. An ecological Bayesian model adjusted by socioeconomic factor and year was proposed to estimate the incidence by communes. Initially, there was no space-time interaction between cases, but there is evidence of clustering effect in urban areas of the region. The incidence rate for the overall study period was estimated by 6.18/100,000 (95% CI: 5.69-6.70), with a significant annual trend of 8.2% (P < 0.01). The geographical incidence could be explained by the human development index, as a socioeconomic factor. These results suggest that children living in communes with higher socioeconomic levels may be at higher risk of developing type 1 diabetes. Our findings support the hypothesis of an aetiological role of environmental factors in the onset of type 1 diabetes.