5 days/ 4 nights: The Magical Island of Chiloe, its Churches, Culture and Nature from Puerto Varas
Day 1 – Welcome to Chiloé.
This excursion begins from Puerto Montt or Puerto Varas where we will depart towards the ferry that will cross us to the island of Chiloe. We will drive through the quaint village of Chacao towards Caulin Bay, famous for its oysters. Then we will continue to Ancud, the second largest city on the island. We will visit the Fundacion Amigos de las Iglesias de Chiloe, foundation which is in charge of the restoration of the wooden churches, 16 of which have been declared World Heritage by Unesco. Then we will continue to the Natural Monument of Puñihuil, only place in the world where Humboldt and Magellanic penguins nest side by side. Afterwards we sail to the islets where penguins nest sharing their habitat with cormorants, wild geese and other fauna. We disembark for lunch at a local restaurant (included) where you can sample the freshest products from the country side and the sea. Later on, we will leave you at your hotel boutique in palafito.
* NOTE: Between March and September, when there is no presence of penguins, we will visit the Lacuy peninsula, Spanish forts, and beaches and do some bird watching.
Day 2 – Trekking: Chiloé National Park & “Bridge of the Souls”.
We travel to Cucao in the South-West area of the Island. Our first stop will be at the small village of Huillinco where we will visit its pier and a peculiar Chilote cemetery. We will continue our journey bordering the Huillinco and Cucao lake arriving to Rahue where we will leave our vehicle and start our hour hike through cliffs with an outstanding view until we reach the mythical area of the “Bridge of the Souls”. We will have time to contemplate and feel the mystic of the meaningful place. After hiking back to the vehicle, we will have lunch in a local restorant. Our journey continues to the Chiloe National Park where we will have a light walk on the Tepual trail (evergreen forest). After visiting the park we will return to the hotel.
Day 3 – Lemuy Island-Chonchi.
We travel toward the southeast to Puerto Huicha where we cross by ferry to the island of Lemuy. Our journey begins from there through breathtaking landscapes to meet the three Unesco World Heritage Churches on this island: Ichuac , Aldachildo and Detif. After lunch at a local restaurant (included), we head to visit Yayanes Park and its suspension wooden bridge. On our way back to your hotel, we will visit Chonchi whith its world heritage church.
Day 4 – Dalcahue & Quinchao Island.
We travel to the city of Dalcahue from where we take the ferry to the second largest island of the archipelago, Quinchao. We will visit the Unesco world heritage churches of Achao (oldest) and Quinchao (largest). After lunch at a local restaurant we will stop in Curaco de Velez with its beautiful old houses and interesting Visitor Center. Back in Dalcahue, we will visit its World Heritage church, its important local craft market and traditional cookeries before returning to the hotel.
Day 5 – Good bye Chiloe.
On our last day in the island, We travel to the East coast of Chiloé. We start the day visiting the world heritage church in the village of San Juan and its shipyard which allow us to learn more about the labour of the “Maestros de Ribera”. Nearby we visit the world heritage church of Colo (smallest) and have lunch at a local restaurant. As we continue to the North, we stop at the village of Quemchi which the prominent Chilean writer Francisco Coloane described as “the town of the thousand landscapes.” We continue to the very peculiar botanic island of Aucar . Finally, we head to end Puerto Montt or Puerto Varas where the journey ends.