Day 1: Santiago. Arrive this morning in Santiago de Chile, gateway to the Andes, situated between mountain peaks and the Pacific Ocean. Your tour guide will accompany you to your international 4 hotel in the green heart of the city, the Radisson or Torremayor. This afternoon, your guide introduces you to this city nestled between mountains: Enjoy a city tour visiting both the historic and modern centers of Santiago, as well as a trip to neighboring San Cristobal for a good look at the surrounding area. Dinner tonight is on us.
Day 2: Santiago: Full-day private excursion to Concha y Toro Winery. After a hearty breakfast, enjoy a visit to Concha y Toro, one of the most famous Chilean vineyards around the world. Located in the Maipo River canyon, planted with grapevines of the noblest French stock such as cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, Pinot Noir and others.
Founded in 1883 showing today a most modern technology in cooling equipment, stainless steel tanks, filters and oak casks which has lead as making of exceptional wines such as Don Melchor, Cabernet Sauvignon, Casillero del Diablo, third in sales surpassed only by France and Italy. Take the afternoon at leisure for shopping around.
Day 3: Valaparaiso and Viña del Mar: Full-day excursion to Valparaíso and Viña del Mar. Valparaíso, the oldest port in Chile. Though no longer its largest port, it retains tremendous historical significance and beauty, as well as being home. to the Chilean House of Assembly and Senate.
The upper and lower parts of the city are connected through 16 funicular railways constructed around the turn of the century, a time when the city experienced tremendous growth. Parts of Valparaiso are considered to become a UNESCO heritage site. From Valparaíso, continue along the coast to the beautiful beaches of Viña del Mar, the Garden city, named for its many parks and green spaces.
Day 4: Santiago - Puerto Montt - Puerto Varas. City tour of Puerto Montt. Fly from Santiago de Chile straight south to Puerto Montt. The gateway to Chile's Lake District: your guide will accompany you on your private city tour of Puerto Montt, the capital of the Lake District. German colonists on the site of an indigenous Mapuche community founded Puerto Montt in 1853.
Downtown we shall take time to walk about the main squares and historical monuments. Afterwards we shall visit the port itself including the fish market of Angelmó where there is a large handicraft market full of artisans and lots of fresh shellfish. After visiting Angelmó we transfer to Puerto Varas, to the lake side Hotel Gran Hotel Colonos del Sur. Dinner tonight is included.
Day 5: Puerto Varas: Full-day excursion to Frutillar and Puerto Octay. Driving around the lake shore from Puerto Varas to visit Frutillar is like taking a step back in time. In Frutillar itself there is a wonderful open-air museum with restored colonial Chile Tours and Travels and furnishings from the early German settlement period, as well as an operating blacksmith shop. Throughout the summer there are various festivals of classic music organized in Frutillar. Later we will continue to Puerto Octay. Drive back in the afternoon to Puerto Varas.
Day 6: Chiloe: Full-day excursion to Ancud on the Pacific Island of Chiloe. Today you will set out driving south to the coast of the Pacific Ocean in the morning. We cross the straight of Pargua by ferry to reach the island of Chiloe. From here we continue southwards to Ancud. Founded in 1767 as a Spanish Fort, Ancud was chosen because of its strategically important location overlooking the Pacific Ocean. It was the first port for the ships sailing around the Cape Horn, through Magellan's straight continuing northwards along the West Coast of South America.
Ancud is situated on the North of the Island of Chiloé. Enjoy the atmosphere around the harbor and the market place for which the town is famous for. We will visit the Museo Regional, which has a very good presentation of the culture and history of the region. It shows the typical churches of Chiloé as well as many Indian mythological characters.
In the courtyard you can find an imitation of the very first steamship of the Chilean Navy, which was called Ancud, and was used for exploring the channels of South Patagonia and claiming the territory for Chile in the middle of the 19th century. After spending an enjoyable day we drive back and return to Puerto Varas in the late afternoon.
Day 7: Todos Los Santos Lake. Full-day excursion to the Todos Los Santos Lake. In the morning we set out for a full day in the foothills of the Andes. We shall drive along the shore of Lago Llanquihue and enjoy breathtaking views of the volcanoes Osorno and Calbuco. Our first real stop however will be at the Saltos de Petrohue. This series of rapids and waterfalls were formed long ago by the cooling lava from the Volcano still towering behind them. They form an impressive sculpture of extruded volcanic rock shaped by thousands of years of thundering water flow.
Upon arriving at the landing at Petrohue we shall board the catamaran and prepare for our crossing of Lago Todos los Santos. Lago Todos los Santos (All Saints Lake) is surrounded by high mountains whose lower slopes are thickly forested. As we pull away from the landing and the source of the river Petrohue, the view is quickly stolen away by the tremendous size and proximity of snowcapped Volcano Osorno behind us.
The rest of the morning will pass on the water. To the south high above the forested shore you will see the peculiar shape of Volcano Puntiagudo and a series of waterfalls. We shall arrive in Peulla (pronounced p-way-a), at the eastern end of the lake around lunchtime. This is the heart of National Park Vicente Pérez Rosales. Here we shall enjoy a lovely hike to the Cascada de la Novia or the Bride's Waterfall amidst native growth "Valdivian Rainforest". In the late afternoon we shall return by boat to Petrohue and back to Puerto Varas.
Day 8: Puerto Varas - Puerto Montt - Santiago: Journey home or continue on. After breakfast transfer back to Puerto Montt and flight to Santiago in order to connect with your flight home or continue on an other deluxe tour.
Basic Packages 3* Accommodations:
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South America Chile Local Culture Cultural Journey