From Huilo Huilo we made a side trip to Valdivia. We weren’t sure if this city would be worth the detour but the river market sounded interesting.
From Neltume it’s a 2,5 hours drive, first along the east coast of the beautiful Lago Panguipulli and then later following the Rio Calle-Calle.
Valdivia is one of the larger cities in southern Chile with about 150,000 inhabitants. One of the city’s top attractions is the Mercado Fluvial at the Rio Calle-Calle. They mostly sell fish, seafood, and vegetables there.
Since it was the week before the Fiestas Patrias (Chiles’s independence day and one of the most important holidays) there were lots of parades through the city center. Every school had its own group with distinctive costumes. It was very interesting to watch and we were pretty much the only tourists there.
Sadly we had our first day with terrible weather. It rained the whole day and was quite cold.
Since the forecast for the next day was very similar we decided to leave Valdivia after one day and continue our trip to the south.