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Published: December 22nd 2009
After a last night of partying and drinking in Bariloche (which we haven’t done for our entire trip!) we got onto the bus to cross over to Chile. All feeling a little groggy from the night before we just wanted to get it all over and done with! At the crossing our bags were checked to make sure we were not taking any food across (they arte very strict in Chile!) the bus was then delayed because some locals had tried to get some sausages and stuff over the boarder!!! From there we went to Puerto Varas our first stop in Chile we took a bus from Puerto Varas to Puerto Mont which has grown a lot due to their salmon industry. Puerto Varas has a very European feel to it due to it being a former German colony. From Puerto Varas it was another bus ride to Pucon.
Pucon has a beautiful lake and of course Volcan Villarrica which brings thousands over to climb. We had three days in Pucon the first day was raining and so we couldn’t do much on the next day Steve and I hired some mountains bikes and went riding into the countryside, it
was very beautiful! We rode up to some impressive waterfalls where we stopped for lunch and then set off to get to our last stop, the lake. The last strip of the journey was a killer though because it was practically all up hill! We finally arrived at the lake where we had a fanta to get some sugar in the system before starting to make our way back to Pucon. A very tiring day but definitely worth it as the countryside was gorgeous! The last day we relaxed, we walked around Pucon stopped to have a beer in the sun and then went along the lake bank to take some pictures and enjoy the perfect weather. That night we took a very long night bus to Santiago.
Our first morning in Santiago wasn’t too great as we couldn’t get into our rooms to shower and then we couldn’t find a decent coffee shop! We ended up drinking crappy coffee and then going for a walk around Barrio Bellavista which is a very cool part of town, on the way back we found a little café with amazing coffee and very cool deco it soon became our shrine! Cafes are
great places to people watch, sit by the window and watch the daily life go by, locals coming in and out it’s a great way to get the feel of a city. As a South American city Santiago didn’t do too much for me, it feels too stressed and also it’s very expensive! We went to watch another football match Colo-Colo vs La Serena, we sat on the Colo-Colo side and they won! We took the subway back which was an experience in itself!
On one of the days we took a bus top Valpariso a little coastal town; a photographers dream it has everything from colorful buildings, exciting graffiti’s and old rusty cars! Valpariso is all hilly and there are some crazy old lifts that take you from one section to another. We stopped at a little café there and had a great coffee (strangely very hard to find!) We then had to take the bus back, pick up our laundry and change some money!
From there it was off to La Serena, which is a cute little town. The highlight of La Serena was going to see the playoff semi-final, second leg between La Serena and
Colo-Colo. We queued the day before to get our tickets; we started in a very long line which was moving very slowly before finding out we were in the wrong line! Oups! Turned out the line we were supposed to go in moved very quickly and the tickets were being sold through a window! Brilliant ey? The game was the next day we walked to the grounds saw the team as they got off the bus and walked into their area! We then went to our seating section and realized that we were sitting on the Colo-Colo side again! It turned out to be great because we remembered some of the chants! The game opened up with colored smoke and flares all very cool and exciting! The ground was divided in two with equal amounts of fans for each team, each one beating their drums louder than the others to support their team it was great! Colo-Colo won 3-0 and 4-0 overall after winning in Santiago.
After La Serena it was off to San Pedro de Atacama, which was our last stop in Chile. San Pedro is a very touristy little town in the desert. On our first night
View from Santa Lucia
we went to meet the French astrologer which we had heard great things about. Turned out he was great and extremely funny! We went to his place in the middle of nowhere and he took us out and showed us all the different things in the sky we looked through his crazy telescopes and also got to see the moon rising from behind a mountain, to top the night off we were given hot chocolate while we sat in a circle and listened to him tell us more about the world above.
We didn’t want to do a tour so we looked into renting a car with two other people and ended up getting this 4wd pick up truck for a day! It turned out to be a great day we drove out to salt flats different lagoons that suddenly appear in the middle of nowhere ( remember we are in the Atacama desert, one of the driest places in the world!) We also stopped on the big lonesome roads to take cool pictures which could never be done on a tour bus! We finished the day by going to the moon valley and climbing up a dune to watch
the sunset. A great day, but the best part has got to be the music that accompanied us along the way…two different mega mixes one of 80s music and the other of the 90s; by mega mix I mean 40 mins of mix with about 30 seconds of each cheesy song! It was brilliant!
Next morning we started our three day desert crossing into Bolivia!
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