trip report by site editor Rick McCharles
Santiago > Pucón
The goal was The Traverse, one of Chile’s best hikes. In fact I now rate it second best after Paine in the far south.
A classic longer trek along the rugged volcanic spine of Parque National Villarrica.
I took a night bus semi-cama. That’s almost a bed, but not quite. About 9 hours. I’ll take FULL cama next time. 🙂
Arrived Pucón early morning. Groggy and disoriented.
My hostel – ¡École! – restaurant was not even open as yet for coffee. But I dropped my bags.
I recommend this excellent low cost accommodation. Folks from the Banff Mountain Film festival were there at the same time.
Pucón is one of the great mountain tourist traps of the world. Picture Banff, Canada with volcanos rather than Rocky Mountains.
If you hate tourists, you might hate Pucón. Young people come mostly for the party.
Personally I loved Pucón. The infrastructure for foreign tourists is superb. And as a jumping off point for wilderness, it’s ideal.
We shopped for groceries. Packed for the trail.