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What to do in the Lake Region

What to do in the Lake Region

Go hiking, camping, trekking, visit national parks and enjoy the beautiful scenery are just some of the activities you can do in Puerto Montt, capital of the Chilean Lake Region, and its surroundings.
If you are on vacation, southern Chile is a place you shouldn’t miss. Amazing scenery, friendly people, and delicious food are some of the features you will be able to find during your stay in this area. On this occasion, we will tell you about Puerto Montt.

Puerto Montt is the capital of the Los Lagos Region. It is located 1,044 km. south of Santiago opposite the calm waters of the Reloncaví sound with a direct view of the Osorno volcano.

Also known as "the entrance to Patagonia", getting to Puerto Montt is very easy, since the city receives all its visitors by land, on the revamped 4-lane Pan-American Highway (Ruta 5 Sur). For tourists coming from Argentina, the Cardenal Antonio Samoré International Pass, located on route 215 Puyehue, connects them directly with the city.

On the other hand, if you are coming in by air, El Tepual Airport will receive you with its modern facilities. Its proximity to Puerto Montt (16 kilometers from the city center) makes it the perfect place to land and start traveling from there.

Puerto Montt and the Lake Region have magical scenery with forests, lakes, estuaries, and islands. There are also volcanoes that provide a special attraction, combining very well with outdoor sports and recreational activities.

One of the main attractions of this region is the proximity of Puerto Montt to other cities that can be reached by car such as Puerto Varas (17 km away with beautiful architecture and exquisite pastries), Angelmó (two km. from Puerto Montt’s Plaza de Armas characterized by having the largest fish and seafood market in the country), and Frutillar (50 km away renowned for its German traditions and its incomparable beauty).
Other places that you cannot miss are: the Alerce Andino National Park, with 39,255 hectares visited daily by tourists who hike the various trails to see the ancient alerce forest and rivers; Chinquihue, a town characterized by its shipyards, seafood nurseries, and excellent restaurants; and the Monument to the German Settlers, a bronze sculpture located on Puerto Montt’s waterfront that honors the first 200 German settlers who came to this land in 1852.

As for the activities you can do with your family during your stay in the city, there are countless places located both in Puerto Montt and its surroundings, which stand out both for their beauty and for the various outdoor activities.

Along with Puerto Montt’s intense port activity, one of the most striking panoramas is to visit the salmon route, with beautiful scenery on the first 47 kilometers of the Austral Highway giving the visitor the opportunity to see how salmon farming is done. Other routes that you can access in the region are the Gaviota (Seagull), the Pescador (Fisherman), the Alerce (Ancient tree), the Colonos (Colonial Settlers), the Kuchen (German pastries), and the Trauco (mythological figure from the island of Chiloé), among others, that can be enjoyed through activities such as trekking, horseback riding, and sailing.

Visiting towns around the capital is another must-see. These include Pelluco, Coihuin, Quillaipe, Metri, Lenca, and Chaica, all of them with an undeniable contribution of colors, histories, and flavors. If you decide to visit these places, you will undoubtedly be surprised because in each kilometer traveled, we assure you that you will gain knowledge about the lives of fishermen and farmers, who live in nature with abundant flora and fauna.

And, finally, we cannot forget the islands of Chiloé, an archipelago located 80 kilometers southwest of Puerto Montt and separated from the mainland by the Chacao Channel. This place is known worldwide for its stilt houses and its old wooden churches, 16 of them recognized as World Heritage Sites by UNESCO since the year 2000.

To get there, you must travel to Calbuco - located 55 km southwest of Puerto Montt - where a ferry leaves daily to cross over to the island to reach Ancud. You will immediately be surprised by places such as the Chiloé National Park, which preserves the natural scenery almost entirely without human intervention.

This park has two main sectors: Chepu (located in the district of Ancud) and Abtao (which is part of the Castro, Chonchi, and Dalcahue districts) and the activities that can be carried out in this ecological reserve include excursions, camping, taking pictures of local flora (Arrayán, Guaitecas Cypress, Coihue, etc.) and fauna (birds, chilote fox, sea otter, pudú deer, etc.), boating and sport fishing, among others.