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Published: July 11th 2012
The Chilian Coast
The water was soooo cold, your feet turned blue after a couple of minutes!
So we set off aiming for Pichilemu, a coastal town a few hours south of Santiago, which is famed for holding the world surfing championships. The first trip to Villaricea and then to the next town was relatively esy. We then got off at the bus company's coach depot and found out that we neede to be on the other side of town for the buses going in the direction we wanted. After some garbled directions we eventually got a 'collectivo taxi' which reminded me of the ones in Ghana, more due to the concept as opposed to a reflection on how it was driven or the upholstery in the back. We arrived at the main coach station and made some enquiries. We boarded the late 1pm bus and were told that this would drop us on the highway outside of the town where we needed to get the next bus to Pucon. This journey would take 7 hours! It pretty miuch did and although Chilean buses are certainly not the high standard that Argentinian buses are it was fairly inexpensive and it was less than half full so we could spread out. As the sun had almost set we were
dropped off on the highway not really knowing how we were going to get to town. I started to freak out a bit but Sam took control of the situation by asking a guy who had stopped, it turned out to pick up his wife. He very kindly said that he would give us a lift into town and to the coach station. So we sat in the back of his pick up truck as we had a rather broken conversation in Sanish to where he said that we could wait for a bus to Pucon.Maybe all our stopping for locals on our road trip through Patagonia had paid off. We waited briefly at the bus stop with a bus arriving 15mins later and arriving in Pucon around 10:30 in the middle of town with no one around to ask for directions. I tried to make out the way on our very simple map i had copied off the internet but the road names didnt quite match up. We eventually came across a couple and asked them where to go which they then took it upon themsleves to walk us there and looked rather confused when we ended up knocking
on a gate with no sign of a hostel! We were in the correct place it was just very unassuming run by an Austrian surfer with only one other guest an Aussie who was leaving the next day.
After a very comfortable nights sleep in one of the most sturdy buks we had been in and duvets! We took a trip to the supermarket for breakfast material and then had a little wander around the very sleepy village, trying to imagine what it must be like when it was high season with lots of people around. We went down to the beach and got some fresh fish from one of the stalls for dinner later. Sam later hired a board from the a friend of the owner of the hostel. The day was overcast and the water looked cold, but that did not put Sam off. I on the otherhand gave the holes in the backs of my heels as my excuse for not going in the water. There was some good surf and Sam was out there with lots of Pelicans looking for their dinner, thankfully not Sam! We cooked the fish we had bought earlier for dinner
These beasties we swimming around Sam in the surf!
and then had an early night.
Another cloudy day but again this did not put Sam off and he was out at surf school at 10:30 whilst i watched in the shelter of the surf shop using their internet to look for jobs. We grabbed some delicious fish pasties for 1000 pesos (about 1:50). After lunch we took a collectivo taxi to the next beach along where the world surf championships take place. There were plenty of pelicans here too and there were actually more people at this fairly deserted cliff top than we had seen in the town all day. The cliffs looked down onto a swathe of rocks beneath there were sufers catching the waves looking like they did this rather dangerously with being in such close proximity to the rocks. The rocky cliff side was scattered with cactuses. We sat and watched the surfers and the birds coming and going for a while and then walked back to the main road to get a collectivo taxi back in to town.On our return we came across a very tempting ice cream shop, which we went in got icecream and then Sam's promptly fell off it's cone
One of the most renowned surf spots in the world. Loads of competitions hosted here. Just getting out to the surf is very dangerous!
the moment we stepped outside and the lady gave him a new one! We then went in the the different bus companies offices to arrange some transport for the next day and our hourney to Valparaiso via Santiago. Once that was sorted we went back to the hostel and spent the evening eating a Mulles Marinere, with mussels that we had bout for less than a pound a kilo earlier that day.
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