Blogs from Araucanía, Chile, South America

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South America » Chile » Araucanía » Pucón March 26th 2020

On the rare occasion you must visit the grocery store, I have a great idea to break the boredom at home. Venture over to the well stocked wine section of your store. Nobody is there, six feet social distancing is not a problem! Instead of buying your usual red or white wine, try this: step over to a section of a country you have not tried before. Some choices I would recommend: Chile, Argentina, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Italy, New Zealand and France. But you might ask why? I say give it a try and do a little research. Be your own sommelier. How many times have I discovered a new wine by chatting with the wine steward, or another diner? Maybe try something sweeter or drier than your normal choice. Or my favorite, a sparkling wine! ... read more
Lots of choices
Wine and duct tape

South America » Chile » Araucanía » Pucón January 20th 2020

I think there is probably a general feeling, because I misunderstood this before I came down here, that the working culture in South America is let’s say, a bit more casual…more days off, less hours, etc. This is a misconception as I quickly discovered by a quick search of Chilean work culture before I came down here (uh-oh, spaghetti-o!). Workweeks are actually a standard 45 hours, and the standard hours in the office 8 to 6 every day. Time-off is generally pretty limited, with standard contracts having three weeks, with very little flexibility to negotiate further (although I did, heh-heh)…I should mention that Steph is on an expat contract, while little ol’ me, well I’m on a Chilean contract, so I am part of the system – Pension (AFP), Health (Isapre), time-off, etc, and also a ... read more
Hiding from the Hail
Salto La China
Zoe Falls?

South America » Chile » Araucanía » Pucón August 1st 2018

Pucón (01/08/2018-07/08/2018) Pucón: a cosy, charming town set on the gorgeous Lake Villarrica, with some serious alpine vibes going on. Sitting under the shadow of Volcan Villarrica (one of South America's most active volcanoes, and one I would later climb), Pucón packs a massive punch despite it's small size. Here you can find all year round adventure; it offers the perfect combination of adrenaline and nature. I absolutely fell in love. I arrived at 7am - the air was crisp and fresh, the ground was sparkling with frost, the sunrise was a beauitul purple pink, and snow-capped Volcán Villarrica was smoking in the distance. Ahhh, beautiful, beautiful Pucón. Chili Kiwi Hostel This is the hostel of dreams. I walked in at 7.30am and the fireplace was lit and somebody was cooking pancakes. Oh, hello! Soft beds, ... read more
Sunrise
On The Way Up

South America » Chile » Araucanía » Pucón May 2nd 2018

Bariloche is een van de belangrijkste toeristische bestemmingen van Argentinië, en dat merk je aan het aantal accommodaties en restaurants. Wij zitten 10 kilometer buiten de stad, waar het een stuk rustiger is. Ons uitzicht is vandaag nog wat weidser geworden doordat de wolken zijn opgetrokken. We zien nu veel meer bergen vanuit ons huis dan eerder. We besluiten vandaag het Circuito Chico te rijden, waar we ook aan verblijven. Deze weg voert langs de verschillende meren waar deze regio rijk aan is. We doen eerst een wandeling naar een bos van Arrayanes bomen, welke een paar duizend jaar oud kunnen worden en heel langzaam groeien. Met hun bruin-goude bast en kronkelende takken een bijzondere boom. Vervolgens rijden we iets veder en gaan over een klein weggetje naar de oever van het grootste meer. Hier komt ... read more
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South America » Chile » Araucanía » Pucón March 12th 2017

Valparaiso is known as the seaside resort for Santiago with Vina del mar just up the road from there known as the garden city of Chile and host to a big annual festival! We arrived around midday checked into our hostel which was perched up on the hillside in the graffiti neighbourhood. It was pretty cool to look at and there was loads of it to see. We decided to go on the free walking tour to orientate ourselves so headed out down the long stair case to the bottom of the hill. Unfortunately we didn't do the walking tour. No sooner had we got there, I projectile vomited and more millimetres from a dog! A flustered Jo managed to hail a cab and we swiftly returned to the safety of the hostel and headed to ... read more
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South America » Chile » Araucanía » Villarrica Volcano April 7th 2016

Du 18 au 21 mars 2016 Simon Pucon est une ville touristique en plein coeur de la région des Fleuves, à 4h au nord de Puerto Montt. Chaque été, elle accueille des flots de touristes chiliens (c'est un peu le Touquet du Chili !) et internationaux venus profiter des lacs, rivières, forêts et volcans de la région. N'appréciant pas vraiment les lieux envahis par la foule, on a un peu hésité avant de prendre la direction de Pucon. Une fois sur place, on découvre une charmante petite ville aux maisons en bois, fleuries et étonnamment harmonieuses comparées à ce qu'on avait vu jusqu'alors au Chili... Cerise sur le gâteau, la foule a déjà fait ses valises pour cause de fin de saison. Le premier jour, nous nous rendons en bus aux "Ojos de Caburga", des piscines ... read more
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South America » Chile » Araucanía » Pucón February 29th 2016

R: We arrived in Pucon in the northern Chilean lakes at about lunchtime. The bus trip was uneventful except for talking to a man at the bus station who was doing almost the reverse of our trip after retiring. Our hostel here is a bit far out of town but has incredible views of Volcan Villarica right from the window. But first we had to read the 2-sided rule card for the hostel, said the lady who checked us in. We found the England v. Ireland match on the TV so I nipped to the supermarket during half time to grab some empanadas. It's kind of like eating a pie. After the resounding win, we headed into town. Pucon is quite touristy, and overpriced, but very sweet. The buildings are all pretty wooden affairs and there ... read more
Pucon harbour
Rapids
Laguna Azul

South America » Chile » Araucanía January 11th 2016

With a heavy heart and a few extra pounds around our waists from all the empanadas, we said goodbye to Pichilemu and started our journey southward. We had 8 days before our next job in San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina and we needed to navigate through a circuit of small towns and numerous buses to get there. We started out by stopping in Santa Cruz, a little town situated in the colchagua valley, known for producing some of the best Chilean wines. After rummaging around town for most of the day for a hostel, we finally found one and settled in for the night. Thanks for sticking around Sam! Our plan was to take a tour of a vineyard the next day, test some wine and catch the next bus out of town but after seeing ... read more
Colchagua valley
Mountain bikes and wine equals a happy Kristine
Montes Vineyards

South America » Chile » Araucanía November 16th 2015

First of all apologies for being so late with this instalment...anyway on with the blog. We left Argentina by minibus which took us a welcome 550m higher to the border. We crossed the Argentine and Chilean borders by bike and then had an enjoyable descent of 800m in 20km. Thereafter it was rolling ups and downs which would have been nicer without the strong headwind! We arrived in Pucón under grey skies which threatened rain and we couldn't see the Villarica volcano that we were hoping to climb the following day. Sadly the weather forecast for the following day was poor and no trips to the volcano were running (we wouldn't have been able to see much anyway). So the plan for our free day here morphed into a cycle ride to some nearby thermal springs. ... read more
Border crossing
Muddy!
Cycling next to a lava field

South America » Chile » Araucanía » Pucón November 14th 2015

Pucon is a small town located on the edge of lake Villarica. It is a also a good base for a spot of adventure sports, trekking & volcano climbing! How I got there: A Pullman bus from Santiago (Terminal Sur) to Pucon 10hrs - 12,000 Pesos semi-cama. You get given a blanket & pillow & a small snack in the morning. Where I stayed: El Refugio hostel, it is located on Palquin street practically opposite the Pullman bus terminal. An 8-bed dorm was 8000 Pesos a night. It has washing facilities, wifi (ok for surfing the web), beds comfy but pillow was a bit thin. Good kitchen & showers with hot water (more common in Chile I think) & good pressure. They also organise tours through the hostel for reasonable prices so it's easy to start ... read more
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