1. Villarica Volcano – Pucon, Chile
Travel South from Santiago and you’ll find Pućon. From there you can climb an active volcano and it’s one hell of a view. After smelling the sulphur at the summit you slide back down on your backside. If you’re questioning how active the volcano really is – Google ‘Villarrica eruption’.
2. Patagonia’s secret trek – Cerro Castillo, Carretera Austral.
There’s off the beaten track and then there’s this. Somewhere in Patagonia is Chile’s route 7. It’s 1240km of rugged road only travelled via complimentary rides from the locals. The reward is the Cerro Castillo trek, and it’s not for the faint of heart. Take the most adventurous crew you can and prepare for chaos. Extraordinary journey.
If you’re short on time give Santiago a short visit and take the 45 minute trip straight to Valpo. Street art, beaches and nightlife makes this little city a great coastal stop off. If walking up hills isn’t your thing there are heritage funicular railways to get you around. Red Bull does a great downhill BMX event annually so try and catch that if you can.
4. Penguin Island – Magdalena Island, Straits of Magellan (near Punta Arenas)
Head far enough past the highlights of Patagonia and you’ll start to wonder what you’re doing so far South. Punta Arenas sits on the Strait of Magellan, and it’s claim to fame is being the dock to Magdalena Island. Brave the rough seas on the ferry and you’ll see a whole island of them, including this little curious pingüino.
5. Torres del Paine National Park (Near Puerto Natales)
I haven’t stopped raving about this place since my visit. The other worldly spectacular nature makes this top of the list when visiting Chile. One bit of advice, don’t rush it and do the full trail circuit. As they say – ‘those who rush through Patagonia, waste time’.
Any adventures I’ve missed? Leave a comment below and we can chat about other cool adventures to try.