Tag Archives: Camping

Volcanos, lakes and waterfalls – Puerto Varas

7 Jun

Puerto Varas was our first stop in an area called the Lakes District which spans the very North of Patagonian Chile and Argentina. The defining feature, as the name suggests, is an abundance of lakes which were created millions of years ago by melting glacial waters. A concentration of towering volcanos run along the border and form a striking sight amongst lush, green hills and valleys. Puerto Varas lies on the shore of Llanquihue lake and offers breathtaking views of snow-capped Volcan Osorno, one of the Southern Chilean Andes most active volcanos. Continue reading

Chiloe – exploring Chile´s largest island

5 Jun

Chiloe is an archipelago of 40 islands off the coast of central Chile, the biggest of which is Isla Grande de Chiloe. The island is very green and fertile with rolling hills and views down to the sea – for us the island bore a strong resemblance to Wales, especially the rain we encountered! The East and West coasts are very different – the East is sparsely populated and filled with wild sandy beaches backed by dunes and temperate rainforests, while the West is home to the majority of the island´s population with several major settlements, countryside cultivated for farming and many islands and inlets sheltered from Pacific storms. Island life has strengthened cultures and traditions on Chiloe with many local superstitions and elaborate stories of ghosts, fairies and witchcraft being lapped up by the tourists.

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Chaiten – experience the lows to appreciate the highs

28 May

Sometimes when you travel you have to experience lows to appreciate the highs. When you’re on the so called ‘trip of a lifetime’ you unconsciously put yourself under huge pressure to have a fantastic time all of the time but when you travel over a longer period it’s just not possible to be on cloud nine all of the time and sometimes you can hit rock bottom.

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The adventure is the road – Carretera Austral

23 May

The Carretera Austral is a Chilean region of snow bound mountains, creeping glaciers, stunning fjords and emerald cut rivers. The area was only linked by road to the rest of Chile in the 1980’s which has meant old traditions have remained untouched for years and fiercely independent locals continue to rely on farming for self-sufficiency. The pace is unhurried with locals keen to stop and talk and offer their hospitality. The Carretera Austral, which is also known as the ‘Southern Highway’, stretches 1,200km from Villa O’Higgins in the South to Chaiten in the North, and can be completed with a combination of boat and road travel. There are plenty of activities lining the road for the adventurous traveller but many will find as we did that the real adventure actually lies in the road itself and the experiences it offers. Frequently described as one of the most beautiful drives in the world, it wasn’t difficult for us to understand why this route is swiftly becoming the Holy Grail for so many independent travellers

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Torres del Paine – the ‘W’ trek

10 May

Visitors from all walks of life converge on the small hamlet of Puerto Natales to visit Chile’s and perhaps the Continent’s number one national park – Torres del Paine. Located in the Southern Patagonian ice fields at the end of the Andes, the park offers diverse wildlife and incredible mountain scenery, glaciers, lakes, rivers and magellanic forest. The park which, has been declared a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, is over 180,000 hectares in size and is considered to be one of the best trekking Mecca’s in the world.

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Dientes de Navarino

19 Apr

We crossed the Beagle Channel on a zodiac boat from Ushuaia, at the very Southern tip of Argentina, to Puerto Navarino, in Chile. After clearing immigration in a waterside hut, which also sold coffee and cake (if only all government interactions could be so smooth), we travelled on by bus down a gravel track to Puerto Williams, a small settlement, naval base and point of entry for sailing ships bound for the fearsome Cape Horn and onto Antarctica.

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