Patagonia and Altiplano Expedition | #5 – Pucón and Villarica

Our first stop on the way south to Patagonia was in Pucón. It’s a nice small village at the Lago Villarica and a popular vacation destination in Chile.

Very close to Pucón you can find the perfectly shaped and extremely beautiful volcano Villarica. You can even see it from most of the streets in Pucón.

Since we recently moved back to Berlin it was funny to find a Berlin Café in Pucón.

The city is small but has a very good infrastructure for tourists with many nice restaurants and stores, especially for outdoor and sports equipment. Our favorite restaurant in Pucón was the Trawen, located on the main road in the city center and offering an interesting mix of traditional Mapuche and modern cuisine.

Only a few km away from Pucón is a ski center at the Villarica volcano (located in the Sector Rucapillan of the Parque Nacional Villarica).

But the last km to the ski lifts was still snow-packed and the remaining track was too tight to be driven with a normal 4×4. Only small quads were able to reach the lift area. When we discovered this it was already too late to turn around and we had to drive more than one km in reverse on this extremely tight track which was a bit nerve-wracking. Sorry, no images of this situation.

Altogether we stayed 5 days in this area and rented a nice cabin at Cabañas Aylen. They are perfectly located halfway between Pucón and Villarica.

Villarica is a bit larger than Pucón and offers a very nice view of the volcano.

On the first two days, we explored the different waterfalls in the vicinity like the Ojos del Caburga, Salto Los Copihues, and Salto Bellavista.

While I (Boris) love waterfalls and could spend days taking images of them, Linnéa vastly prefers wildlife photography and in the meantime explored the local birdlife with her Sony RX10.

Common ground is, that we both like cats and dogs.

Next, we explored Parque Nacional Huerquehue which is located 35km northeast of Pucón. Since the Sendero Quinchol trail was still closed due to too much snow we hiked up to Mirador 2 on the Los Lagos trail.

On our last day in Pucón we did a trip to the Paso Tromen Ó Mamuil Malal. This road leads through the Parc National Villarica to a border crossing with Argentina. The landscape in the national park is very beautiful.

Shortly before you reach the border you enter a magnificent araucaria forest with the volcano Villarica in the background.

Linnéa was again more focused on wildlife photography in this location. In addition to some interesting birds, she also found a fox that posed for some images.

Here is a short overview of the tracks we have explored in the Pucón area:

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