Our Southern Chile Islands & Lakes Expedition travels through the bustling city of Santiago. Head further south, delight in Chiloé Island, a magical world abundant with lush nature and a singular culture. Your expedition then takes you to Puerto Varas, renowned for its spectacular views of both the Osorno and Calbuco volcanoes. End in the beauty of Pucón, a must-see for culture, nature and photographic enthusiasts alike.
The capital of Chile, vibrant Santiago, is a bustling city tucked away in a valley surrounded by the Andean foothills. Founded in 1541, Santiago is now a thriving metropolis dotted with fine eateries and top-class hotels. It is the only city in the world that offers skiing high up in the majestic Andes, followed a mere 90 minutes later by walks on the beach and surfing in the Pacific Ocean. Guests visiting the Chilean capital are in for a heady mix of exclusive boutiques, sprawling shopping centres, magnificent architecture and discerning residential areas. Explore the wonders of this vibrant city and discover its museums, theatres, art galleries, fine dining options, nightlife, bustling markets, grand architecture and more.
Chiloé is one of the many islands that dot this picturesque landscape of the Lakes District. As the second largest island in South America, it is home to the Chiloé National Park, which Charles Darwin wrote extensively about, detailing the region’s exceptional wildlife, in his book “The Voyage of the Beagle”. Here, local Chilotes showcase their unique customs and palafitos (wooden structures built over the water on stilts) greet travellers upon arrival. Be sure to visit Castro, the third oldest town of Chile and the capital of Chiloé, to tuck into its speciality dish of curanto, a scrumptious combination of meats, seafood and vegetables.
The utterly spectacular landscape of the Lake District makes this destination a firm favourite of guests travelling to Chile. Breathtaking glacial lakes mirror the frosted tips of dormant volcanoes and the verdant flora of nearby national parks. Stretching over 300 kilometres (186 miles), this region was once the homeland of the courageous Mapuche people who fought off the advances of Inca and Spanish invaders. It has since grown from thriving farmlands into the tranquil tourist mecca it is today. Quaint villages, such as Pućon perch along the various lake shorelines and offer adventures such as horse riding, hiking, fishing, mountain climbing, nature walks and water sports. Pućon is situated along the shores of the Villarrica Lake, near the active Volcano Villarrica. Traveller’s visiting this destination will be treated to sensational views and landscapes as well as exceptional activities such as the opportunity to hike up the volcano and unwind in a natural hot spring.