Now back to Chile for a few weeks! You will find below all our stories while visiting this beautiful country.
- Day 68 – Friday 8th of March 2019 : Chile Chico
- Day 69 -Saturday 9th of March 2019 : Puerto Rio Tranquilo
Today is the return to Chile.
This morning I am going to buy croissants very sweet and fat (I took a little too …). We take a first bus to Los Antiguos. The road is very beautiful. We see snow-capped mountains and lakes.
Once there, take a second bus to Chile Chico. We will have made roughly 10min bus but 50min customs clearance … big waste of time. At the border we will sympathize with a French couple who make the same trip as us: Leah and Anthony. So we decided to go to the same campsite in front of the lake and eat together in the evening.
The afternoon we are having a walk with Quentin. There is nothing to do in Chile Chico … we drag. We booked the bus and the trip tomorrow in a shop that sells weapons and fishing tackle! Very funny place to book a ride. It is imperative to go to Puerto Cisnes on March 11th to catch the ferry on the 12th but there are not many buses. So thanks to the tour of tomorrow we combine the bus to go to Puerto Rio Tranquilo then take the boat ride to see the cellars of marble. And from PRT we will try to find a bus to bring us to Cohaique (we hope we will be lucky).
We’re bored too much in Chile Chico! We decide to go to a boho café that sells gluten-free stuff without it without mi because they are the only ones to have internet. Unfortunately we arrive too early so we wait for them to open. Skype guy in front of the shop suddenly I ask him wifi. The girl will arrive an hour and a half after its opening time … but we will still drink something and eat an empanada (very good from elsewhere).
A little later we find Léa and Anthony to go eat. We choose a cozy restaurant that serves great meat. We feasted. Unfortunately they had no dessert so we decided to go see the restaurant in front to have a dessert, we will be more lucky there!
On the way back an old man calls us. He shouts “Boca, Boca! Because Anthony is wearing a football shirt. They invite us all to his place. We laugh because he is drunk and at home it’s pretty creepy. He makes us smoke mategrass and shit … We get tired and we go back to bed at the campsite.
The road is beautiful! mountains of all colors, snow-capped peaks, lakes of unreal colors: blue and turquoise green; too handsome !
It’s beautiful but it’s super long! in addition the road is really rotten suddenly I start to feel nausea … Fortunately after two hours we stop to eat in a small village cute.
We arrive in Puerto Rio Tranquilo, it’s already warmer than Chile Chico. Just arrived we are dropped off at the office to go around the Capillas de Marmol. We are still lucky: blue sky and no wind.
We put on our boat jackets then we go to the boat. The water of the lake is superb. It’s nice. We see snowy mountains on the other side. We arrive in front of the capillas; it’s really interesting to see these marble formations in the middle of a lake. The colors are super pretty with the reflection of the water. We will do a tour of an hour and a half before returning to “city”.
We decided to go to Camping Bella Vista, the one we had talked about Léa and Anthony, hoping to find them there. We cross the whole city (it takes us 10min barely …). The campsite is noisy but we find a quiet place. We are super happy they are here! So we decided to spend the day together.
Tonight there is a party in the village; so we’ll be stalled in front of the lake (maybe to swim) and go to the party.
An Italian who speaks Spanish very well finds us there; he had sympathized with them. He is very kind and will stay with us all day. which will make us speak Spanish so it’s perfect!
We had beer to drink in front of the lake and of course, the police come to dispute! suddenly, as the sun goes down, we go back to the campsite. Only Quentin will have had the courage to go swimming in the lake!
After a big meal we will see the fiesta of the village … woop! a great singer excites the small crowd in the place. The young ladies know all her songs by heart. He sings very well but it’s very kitschy! With Lea we wanted to leave but the boys saw that there were beers and suddenly wanted to stay … We did well because at the end we saw folk dances.
Towards midnight we come back, and we say goodbye. We are a little sad, we hope to see them again later.
- Jour 70 – Dimanche 10 mars 2019 : Puerto Cisnes
- Day 71 – Monday 11th of March 2019 : Unexpected event
Today we get up early because we have to buy our bus tickets for the same morning. There are people already! but it’s good we’re leaving.
The bus is a bit dirty and old but it seems to work. The road is in a bad shape.
At the end of two hours we hear a loud noise of explosion: a wheel exploded. The driver comes back and asks us if it’s going to continue slower, after all, it’s only a wheel out of 12! We ride slowly with this horrible noise at each acceleration and turn, but we advance. An hour later, just twenty kilometers from Coyahique the driver decides to change the wheel … big adventure … it’s a little less than an hour but we will arrive at destination! We were lucky because we heard bus stories that never left …
We arrive at the bus terminal, we go to see if we can take a bus the same day for Puerto Cisnes. Luckily there is one in 1h! We take the tickets and then we go to eat while waiting (pizza!).
The road will be full of turns but very beautiful: mountains and forests. It looked like Switzerland or the Alps. We cannot fall asleep because the bus moves in all directions. We are super tired. On arrival we ask the driver if he knows a campsite. It does not leave us far. We fell well, it’s cute and people are super nice! In addition, their internet works great.
We plant the tent, then we watch an episode before going for a big sleep.
We take our time this morning, we have a day to do nothing. We try to find a breakfast but there is nothing … big disappointment for me because I want my sugar shoot!
We decide to go to the boat agency to see what time we arrive. We learn that in fact we leave tonight … thank you for telling us !!! So, we have done with bin! At the same time it is not worse, we will arrive earlier in Chiloe so we will be able to see more things.
The day will be calm. Quentin is the only one motivated to go for a walk to see a lake. I prefer to take a nap.
On his return we decide to go get a snack. There is a nice shop. Quentin discovers a new beer and eats my chocolate cake because there is dulce de leche in it and I really do not like it. A quick little muffin for me and fruit juice.
On the return to the campsite we buy some stuff to eat tomorrow on the boat. We prepare everything and we go there. A chance we could stay at the campsite all day!
Arrived at the ferry yesterday, a girl stole our seats and lay on at least four. We decided to do the same and wake her up the next day to get our window back.
They put a stupid film mega loud on their TVs; it shouts! We will be lucky, around midnight they will stop the screens and turn off the lights.
The night was short for Quentin; he did not manage to sleep (it is sure that sleeping curled up on 3 chairs is not great …). I slept though (strange …).
We wake up officially around 8:30 in the morning; the girl who took our seat sleeps again (she will sleep almost 12h, so we will give up and change places in the afternoon next to a window).
The weather is overcast and we cannot see anything … great idea to take the ferry to see the scenery! so we decide to watch Stranger Things on Netflix and play Scrabble. We will have nothing much to do so we will watch 5 or 6 episodes in a row.
At one point there is a little animation: whales! I only saw a back and Quentin a tail … woop woop! After this exciting moment, we return to watch our series!
At times we see the coast but it is not extraordinary.
20h later, we arrive! (We just had 2 hours late … after 18h we do not see the difference!).
We hurry out of the boat to take our bags and go for the bus. We will have 3 hours to go to Castro.
It’s quite funny because the bus stops, all the time! people go up and down anywhere!
Once at the terminal we try to find the airbnb. We cannot find it! we ask people, they do not know the house. The address given is the bus terminal two blocks away … there are nice people in an inn that let us use their wifi. We learn that the address of airbnb is wrong !! once again ! suddenly I get angry (again … housing is 8km from downtown …). We decide not to go because tomorrow we would like to rent a car in town and suddenly it does not suit us at all!
The people at the hostel have mercy on us and call their friends to find us a place to sleep. We’ll go right next door. Unfortunately for us, it is very cold, there is no hot water and it is 20 euros a night (too expensive, but we will learn that it is the minimum for a night in Chiloe). But we will not complain, we have a roof over our heads. On the other hand, airbnb only has to behave well, I send them a message illico to moan, I expect to be reimbursed and compensate!
We will sleep in our sleeping bags so we will be cold (even Quentin!). I’m too angry to look for what to do tomorrow (Quentin, more patient makes us the program). Tomorrow is another day…
This morning we get up; I am always angry. The airbnb girl does not who she is talking to and I will not let go!
We decide to book a room on booking.com. It’s early, but we’re still going to drop things. It is not very far.
We arrive and we are very well welcomed by a little lady. The hoste is super nice. She explains everything, we make her some jokes, she laughs and tells us we are really nice so she puts us in a bigger room! The bed looks too good! I cannot wait to sleep in !!
It is said that we would like to rent a car so she calls her son who gives us an address and tells us to say we are at home to have a discount (it will work!).
We take the opportunity to do a laundry, and to shower (she has a hair dryer and straightener! Paradise!), Then we leave to rent the car. On the way we stop to see the famous church of Castro (only interest of the city and what will be our day: see churches classified national heritage). She is yellow but pretty.
Renting the car will be too easy and super fast.
The road is super pretty. Chiloe is very green as an island.
We will stop in several “cities” whose only interest will be their church. We will spend the day mop exploring small towns.
We will eat some fish specialties (see food porn section of the blog).
After a nice day, we will go back to bed in the cozy bed!
- Day 74 – Thursday 14th of March 2019: Paradise in Cole Cole
- Day 75 – Frida 15th of March 2019 : Birds’ singing
- Day 76 – Saturday 16th of March : Last day in Chiloe
Wake up slowly this morning; there are Chileans with us so I take the opportunity to practice my Spanish; in addition the lady of the hostel seems to appreciate me so she keeps talking to me!
Quentin makes him discreet, and prepares his bag, and reminds me that we must leave! So I stop talking, I prepare everything then we go to the bus. We take the opportunity to take bus tickets to Valdivia.
The bus is small and stops every two minutes to get people up and down. It will take an hour and a quarter before arriving at Cucao. The road is pretty.
Arriving in Cucao we go to the entrance of the park, the girl tells us that the hike we want to do is not here and we have to walk along the road for a while and we will pay the entrance further … okay … well, let’s go!
The road is not great: we can see in the distance the ocean; we see some sheep and cows but we walk on asphalt. The hike starts well, I’m a little puzzled but I do not say anything, Quentin looks pretty happy.
After an hour and a half we arrive at the end of the asphalt (phew!) And there we begin to engage on the beach. It’s super pretty! The sand is clear and the beach seems endless. So we made our lunch break. A dog comes to stick to us (he jumps on me suddenly I balance him my fruit to release me). We see fishermen who go back and forth with their 4×4 to bring seafood we do not know where (they are well loaded!).
We will walk well two hours on the beach (without shoes, and with a dog full of hope for his future meals too …). It’s pretty tiring and it’s hot! We were told that it was raining all the time on Chiloe but for now we have a blue sky and sun …
After a while, we are supposed to see a bridge … but we do not see it. So we decided to continue behind the dunes in order not to miss it! After an hour we see the bridge! phew! There are some houses on the other side of the shore. The people made floating seats to cross the stream.
We continue our route away from the beach. We meet one person on the way. It’s starting to climb but it’s still going.
We will finally arrive where we have to pay entrance fees to the park. A man is doing lots of seaweed in front of his house, so he tells us that he is the guide and that it is to him that we must pay the entrance. He works for CONAF and tells us that for 2000 $ CH we can camp on CONAF camping. We pay him that too, it seems pretty good.
We have 1:15 before arriving at destination but the road is horrible: a climb with a drop as we rarely had; in addition, it is too hot! The dog, which we call Juan Miguel (Jean Michel in French …) still follows us. He’s waiting for me whenever Quentin passes me, it’s pretty funny.
There are some great views on the climb. We see the coast, it’s too beautiful! nothing to do with the other landscapes of the island; it is steeper; it looks like Brittany.
We continue then an hour later we arrive in front of the Grail: a beautiful bay, which seems so far from everything! We are all excited! We go down to access the beach, we see the camp of CONAF and a guy on horseback who asks us if we paid the other to sleep. It is too beautiful! We plant our tent in front of the ocean. We do not come back! We do not understand why nobody comes here! We will be 4 for two days!
We look at the ocean and we begin to prepare the meal after setting up the tent. We are tired after six hours of walking.
Juan Miguel is still there, and he is very very clever: he lies down in front of me while I eat and look at me … argh … we cannot leave him like that! suddenly he will be entitled to his pasta ration the bastard! He pains us with his damaged leg and more … we think that if we had been in France we would have adopted … too weak …
We are going to sleep ; the sky is magnificent: we see all the stars and the Milky Way. I have never seen this. I cannot sleep I’m too hesitant to go out and take pictures … my pee break of 4am will take me out of the tent with my camera for an hour. It is too beautiful !! So after that, bin dodo!
This morning it is hard to get up, the sky is overcast and there is mist. Nothing to do with the day before but just as beautiful!
We go get water at the river and on our way back, Juan Miguel jumps on us! How to resist ?! We prepare breakfast (he cill have some also; he on ly eats what I give to him, not what Quentin gives, it’s funny).
Today we go hiking in the forest to see the river (at first I thought we were going along the coast but in fact we will stay in the forest). We have about 5 hours of hiking today.
We cross the bridge over the river where we go to get water and then we start to sink into the forest. It’s super pretty! We see all kinds of trees and plants that we do not know and we hear all the sounds of birds. We love to listen and look for what bird makes such a noise, so our hikes last longer but we always end up finding them, even if we spend a moment!
We should have taken our gaiters today, the ground is muddy, so we have to focus a lot not to sink into the mud. We slalom between the sludge of mud, we walk on stumps, branches, herbs, we try to stay dry as much as possible (on the return it will not work too much for me …). The forest is super beautiful, we are super happy to have taken the time to come to the park.
After three hours, after avoiding the worst in the mud and seen, heard and photographed full of unknown birds, we finally arrive at the mouth of the river in the ocean. It’s super pretty! In addition, opposite we see rocks with strange shapes.
There are two very nice boys from the campsite, including one who has a haircut of the 80s.
We stay a little less than 45 minutes because it is already late and the sun begins to set (and walking in a forest at night is not the best).
We will be a little faster on the return because we will know all the sounds of birds. But after an hour you hear a woodpecker! So we are all excited. We put our sticks in a corner and we go in search of the bird. He is right next to us! Too lucky again, because not only it is 10m from us but in addition, to the opposite tree there is the female who has a different color! we had never seen one before! We will stay a moment to observe them and then we will start again, trying to avoid flooding our shoes too much in the mud and the water.
Once back we chat with Jordi, the guy of the 80s. He is very nice and it makes us practice our Spanish, then we go to “shower” in the river. Since there is nobody around and well, I go for it, I do not care about naked! It is frozen but I do not care, I need too much to wash! Quentin looks pretty happy, but still keeps his underpants. After this good frozen bath we go to eat. Juan Miguel, who had been too lazy to go hiking with us, left; we are sad but suddenly we will have more to eat! We are lucky because it did not rain during the day and the sky was clear. Tonight we will not see the stars unfortunately but at least we will sleep quiet, after a great day, again!
This morning we wake up super early because we must return to Cucao and then take a bus to Castro.
We agree that we will try to take a bus at the end of the beach not to walk an hour and a half on the asphalt.
The tent is soaked because of the condensation, it will have to be dried in Castro. We have breakfast and we pack everything and leave.
We have a great time again: clear sky and blue. At the top of the hill we’ll spend a few minutes looking at the bay (and Quentin will take new pictures of birds).
The return is too difficult! The climb is steep and is too bad! We galley but hey, no choice. We struggle for almost an hour then we continue quietly on the beach. We try to find alternatives to not walk on the sand because it’s too boring and it’s tiring. By cons, the view is a little less beautiful.
On the road we will see cows and horses walking on the dunes, it’s too funny! At one point I see a horse in front of the sea so I start running to take a picture. Quentin joins me and in fact, we say that it is still more beautiful to walk on the sand. As we have advanced we decide to continue on the beach, as it is low tide the sand is harder suddenly less tiring.
After two hours we wonder if we did not miss the end of the hike. We try to catch the road on the side to realize that we went much further than expected! We’re lucky, a bus going to Castro goes past us so we take it and we go back. Quentin will sleep all the way, me no, oddly I’m not tired.
We arrive at the accommodation, all happy with our three days of hiking. We tell all that to the lady (I tell …). She is too kind, she asks me if I want her to make homemade bread for me tomorrow (sure yes!).
We redo our bags for tomorrow and here I hear the voice of Joanna we met in Argentina. I told him to come sleep in our hostel too well. Unfortunately it is complete suddenly she, her boyfriend and their two friends will go to sleep at the neighbor’s house.
We decide to go to dinner together at night and tell each other our adventures. We end in a great restaurant in front of the harbor and we will spend a good evening together.
- Day 77 – Sunday 17th of March 2019 : Valdivia
- Day 78 – Monday 18th of March 2019 – Boat tour
- Day 79 – Tuesday 19th of March 2019 : France culture
Bus too early this morning !!! We have breakfast, it’s still too good! Our host woke up earlier to say goodbye, she is so kind.
We have 7h bus … it’s too long !!!! Arriving at the terminal we decide to buy a phone card in case of a glitch and tell our host that we arrive.
We take a taxi (not want to bother, plus it costs 3 euros …). He welcomes us with his wife and explains everything about the apartment and what to do. Tomorrow the museums and monuments are closed so he tells us to do things tonight, and that tonight is the last time we can eat in a market in a city where there is the fort that Quentin wants to see, in Niebla. I have no idea what there is to do here, it is Quentin who manages because it was his idea to come. They are super nice, they drop us in a place where we can take the bus that will take us to Niebla. We wait a little while. The road is very pretty.
We arrive at the fort, it’s nice. In addition there is a great view of the river. We take our time. When we leave it’s still early so we decide to buy some cokes and drink them in front of the ocean. It’s nice but the tide rises once we finish, we decide to go to the market to eat. It’s super nice! there are plenty of stalls with asados, empanadas and seafood specialties … so you can taste everything! We will leave well filled with the market.
On the return we decide to buy food for the next meals; once again we have eyes bigger than the belly …
We go back then sleep!
After a royal breakfast we go to town.
First step the post: I would like to know if I can return my drone which does not serve me anything here.
Then towards the port, we would like to take a boat trip to see fortifications and remains of the castle. We are accosted everywhere, so no worries to find.
We walk and there Quentin sees sea lions on a board, they are super big!
There is a seafood market right next door! everything looks too good! their molds are gigantic !!! we take a little ceviche and raspberries (a huge container for less than two euros … the dream!). We eat while talking, without paying attention to what is happening around and then I look up screaming! we are 2m from a huge sea lion !!!! we go backwards because the thing is driving us on and it is higher than us! It’s too funny, he goes behind the display of a lady who looks jaded. It moves oddly so it is gigantic! We laugh and then we continue to walk.
The weather is cloudy and it starts to rain but it will not last long. We think about what we will do tomorrow then we return to the port to take the boat. Finally there are more people than we thought.
We settle because they will serve us the meal (aperitif, salmon, dessert). The landscape is very pretty and the sun is back. We will make two stops on two islands to see fortifications. On the first we decide not to go because we do not want to pay (it looks like there is not much). So we walk and a young person comes to us to tell us about the history of the city. We feel the scam but we say yes. We do not pick up anything he says. At the end he tells us something that he is asked to repeat three times (saying that we understood in fact) and then he says “plata! “… so we get fed up and give him 500 pesos. We say we must stop being stingy! we did not want to pay the entrance to 2 euros which was guided to finally give an idiot in the street … So we visit the ruins of the next castle!
The landscape is really nice; when returning to the boat there is a snack! Finally, a snack at 18 is more like a snack but the Chileans eat something around 17-18h and do not eat almost at night. Well, it’s in front of us, we eat it!
Around 19h the tour ends; it was still a beautiful day. It will take an hour on foot to return to housing (it’s not worse … we ate sugar all day). We prepare the business to send tomorrow, we cook, do internet and then sleep.
Today is our last day in Valdivia and we would like to visit the museum and the submarine. But I would like above all to get rid of a few pounds of useless stuff in my bag (drone, clothes etc …). So the first step will be the post office. There are too many people !!!! but good, after one hour I have 7 pounds less in my backpack (and yes not in my hips unfortunately …). I hope everything will arrive in France !!!
So we go to the submarine. Lack of luck the next session is the afternoon so we have time but not enough to do the museum, we will see the botanical garden. Finally, we learn the names of trees that are everywhere and exist only in Chile. It’s a really nice walk.
We decide to eat on the go but in the end we will end up eating a big meal ….
The visit of the submarine is great. We see missiles! It’s really interesting to see all this. This is the O’Brien submarine, the only submarine museum in Chile that was once used by the Chilean army.
Once the visit is over we go to the museum where we will learn a lot about the natives and the first scientific discoveries.
After this big day, we go back to rest.
- Day 80 – Wednesday 20th of March 2019 : Pucon
- Day 81 – Thursday 21st of March 2019 : Too many clouds
- Day 82 – Friday 22nd of March 2019 : Volcano Villarica
- Day 83 – Saturday 23rd of March 2019 : National Park Huerquehue
- Day 84 – Dimanche 24th of March 2019 : San Sebastian
- Day 85th – Monday 25th of March 2019 : Rest
- Day 86 – Tuesday 26th of March 2019: Last day in Pucon
Too bad sleep last night! We have to take the bus to go to Pucon, our new destination of the week. We hope to climb above the volcano and do some trekking.
On the road not far from Pucon you can see the snowy volcano it’s super beautiful! in addition we see the smoke coming out of the crater! The sky is blue and there is no cloud!
The city is great tourist but cute anyway. We go to the tourist office to learn about the hikes; the lady is great and we have all the information we wanted for once! We find a campsite, we put our stuff and then we go for a ride to climb the volcano tomorrow.
Quentin had spotted an agency. They look serious suddenly we decided to go through them (we did not look elsewhere …). The girl makes us try all the equipment for the hike (they even supply the shoes!).
As it is super nice we decided to go to the lake. It’s nice, the sand is black. Quentin tries to tan but it does not work too much.
Once we have done all this we come back to plan a little our world tour then sleep.
That night we were woken up 2 times by fools of screaming dogs! suddenly the alarm clock at 5:30 is too hard! but we get ready, we have breakfast and then we go to the agency.
We prepare the equipment and we leave. We are tired. Impossible to sleep, the road is all dented. An hour later (I think) we arrive at the bottom of the volcano and the guide tells us that unfortunately the weather is too bad to climb and so we have two choices: either we try it now, or we do it tomorrow. So everyone agrees to do it tomorrow. So we go back to the city a bit disappointed (well I’m happy I was too lazy!).
It is super early so we look at what we can do. We decide to do what we planned for the last day: stunts and terms. We take a bus that does not leave us far from the waterfalls. In fact they are on private domains so you have to pay an entry (less than 1 euro so not too serious …). It’s nice, the colors of the lakes are superb. We see some and then we decide to go to the terms. There is not too far. We change buses. We will not be the only ones to go but in the end we will not feel too oppressed.
The site is pretty, it goes down near a beautiful river. There are some hot pools. We will always stay the same because there will be fewer people. The water is super beautiful is too hot !!!! We will stay an hour and a half then we will return to Pucon. It’s weird but we feel more tired after the terms than after 6 hours of hiking …
Since it is not too late we make the internet and make some calls. We must also watch for Tahiti then sleep because tomorrow we get up at 5:30!
Long hiking day today! we get up before the sun to try to climb the volcano we could not do yesterday.
It’s not raining, and it’s not cold; In addition we slept very well. We are in a good mood. We have our breakfast and then we go to the Pollitur agency. We get ready on the spot, we meet those we saw the day before and new ones, then we take their mini van.
There is a lot of fog. We do not even see the volcano, so we expect that the guides to tell us that it is postponed! but no, let’s go!
The first part is quite steep, we walk on volcanic rocks. I have a little trouble following others (they go too fast) but I’m not the slowest so it comforts me a little bit. We climb for a good hour. The sky is uncovered from time to time; we can see the summit which is very clear so it looks promising. In the distance we see a sea of clouds that covers the entire valley but the peaks of two Chilean volcanoes are discover and it’s really super pretty.
We continue the climb for another hour and then things become more serious. We have to put on the crampons and use an ice ax … so I start to panic when he tells us how to catch us in case of a fall. It must be a reflex to hold the ice ax one way and then with the other hand catch the handle … so basically, if I fall, I fall … I certainly would not think to do all that! So I leave with a big apprehension, I did not really want to ride so it’s worse! Quentin seems serene and rather enthusiastic. He is not afraid of anything anyway!
We start to walk on the ice, I do not feel good at all, I do not know if it’s dizziness or apprehension but I start to tense and to really be afraid. The guide sees that it is not going at once it puts people. I’m melting away because I’m really too scared to fall. In addition we see rocks falling at a crazy pace and gaining speed, it does not reassure me at all. He tells me to breathe and that everything will be fine, that I will not fall. Quentin also reassures me and stays behind me, and the guide in front. I have trouble walking, but I move on. In two hours we shall arrive at the top. I want to get there for Quentin; he wanted to do this hike so much. I stop several times to regain my breath. The guide offers me to hang on to him with a rope to reassure me. We advance all three quietly. We are not far from others finally. I never see the end of it it makes me so angry! Quentin is having fun; he can admire the landscape and take pictures.
Two hours later we finally arrive at the last portion of ice. We put the bags, we eat a little and after 20min of walking on the volcanic rock we finally reach the goal! We must put on our masks because we feel the toxic vapors escaping from the crater. It is superb ! we can see the crater too well. It’s impressive ! And around us the landscape is discovered, we see other volcanoes, mountains and lakes from where we come from; and in front we see the glacier. It’s really great. I am proud to have reached the end. Quentin is very happy so we take full advantage of this moment.
After 20min we go down to the bags. We have lunch and then we equip for the descent … sled !!! another thing I hate; the speed and the snow is not for me. Quentin is too excited he is waiting impatiently! We see the people who start to get excited and leave, we hear the cries of girls too …
It’s our turn. We put ourselves in position then go! It’s going too fast ! I scream ! in addition we must hold the ice ax in front of us to slow down and I am too afraid to put it in my head. Quentin is too happy he’s going too fast. There are several sections. After 30min of tobogganing we remove everything. I must admit that it was nice anyway …
The last portion of descent will be fast. We will go super fast because we will walk on a slope on volcanic sand. On the way we talk with two French people who were with us and who go down at the same time.
We arrive at the bottom, we are happy to have done this hike even if for me it was the worst of all!
We will return to camp early enough. The shower will be cold … but I will discover it once inside … a young will tell us that we have to pay for hot water so we shower in cold water (again we will make our creeps while the water hot costs less than 1.5euros …). After that we will look again for Tahiti. Housing prices have flamed !! thankfully we are saving here!
We will go to bed early again because tomorrow we would make a big hike in the national park.
At night I will not sleep too much; the stupid dogs scream all the time it’s unbearable!
This morning we get up early and it’s too difficult. The night was short because of those idiots of dogs. It’s raining more! It should calm down this afternoon. There is a bus at 8:30 so we try to hurry up packing everything. We would like to change camping and sleep in the park.
We finally take our time, so much so that we decide to take the next bus.
Once we are ready we go to the stop and the girl tells us that the next bus is at 13h … it is 9h … so we decided to take the 13h because there is no other way to go there, and spend our time in a cafe eating and drinking.
It’s time for the bus, finally! The rain has stopped and the sun is rising. We’re lucky ! We arrive at the park an hour later. The driver warns people that if they miss the last bus they will laugh to return to Pucon on foot!
We walk half an hour to get to the campsite. It’s pretty ; we see a lake on the left and the forest. It smells good. The campsite is run by a pretty Chilean lady (she looks like an Asian, she is very beautiful). There is the possibility of having hot water by paying a supplement but this time we will not be stingy! We must choose a location. It’s super nice, the pitches are well spaced and we have a picnic table. We choose one beside the river; we set up the tent and we go hiking to the lakes. It is 5 hours hike but the girl tells us that we should do it in 4 hours by walking fast.
We walk into the forest. It’s super pretty! The trees are so huge and majestic! We do not see the top sometimes! Some trunks are huge; others are double or triple! We find the endemic trees of Chile, conifers too beautiful that grow only in this country. The hike is not easy. We only walk up for 2 hours and it’s super steep! On the road we will see a waterfall. There will also be a view of a lake and the volcano but not super clear.
Two hours later we arrive at the first lake. It’s super pretty, the sky and the trees are reflected in it. There are three lakes close to each other and all are super pretty. There is way to continue the hike further to see others so we continue because we did not walk enough. We go deeper into the forest; it’s always so beautiful! The trees are even bigger and some are different. We hear woodpeckers, track and find them. Full of females! We arrive at the lake; it’s the prettiest we’ve seen! There is not much water but it is surrounded by conifers that are too beautiful and they are reflected in the water is super nice. In addition there is mist on the water it gives a poetic atmosphere instead. We are super happy but the sun begins to fall suddenly we make the opposite way by walking super fast. On the way the volcano will be cleared and will have taken a rosy hue! We arrive at the campsite two hours later, completely KO but super happy.
We will take our hot shower which will be kind of cold … then we cook. It is already dark so it will be using the front lamp. The sky is very clear and we see the stars, it’s too beautiful!
After the meal we decided to go see the lake 5min from the campsite to observe the stars. It’s majestic. We have never seen a sky like this! Quentin uses his application to see the constellations and I try to take pictures of the sky but they will be terrible. The sky shines with a thousand lights! There is not a single space without stars and the Milky Way is bright! To top it off, the starry sky is reflected in the lake! It’s too beautiful.
After a long time to curdle we will return to the tent to bed. Tomorrow big day of hiking planned.
Today I wake up in a bad mood. I am very tired of getting up early and walking for hours on challenging trails. I feel like I never rest my body.
We decide to go see the lake after breakfast and put away all the things. We are too lucky, the weather is nice but so cold that the lake is warmer than the outside air, forming a thick mist on the surface of the water. It’s so pretty. We make some pictures and then we start with our big bags. We hope to be able to leave them at CONAF for the day.
The road seems endless. My bag weighs a ton I cannot move forward! So I groan inside and I tell myself that tomorrow I will not go hiking. I’m really tired.
Almost forty minutes later we arrive at CONAF where we can leave our bags. I tell Quentin that tomorrow I will stay at the hotel (because we are going to get a hotel – need to sleep on a bed!). He is sad but he understands. He will be hiking alone tomorrow.
We start the hike. I have no idea what to see, I just know it’s a point of view. This is the most horrible hike I’ve done so far! We go up for 3 hours non stop !!!! I’m sick of it! In addition we are in the forest and we see nothing! I’m angry and I just want to stop and go down!
After 2 hours we arrive at a first point of view. We finally see the sky, it’s flat and we also see the Villarica volcano on which we climbed. It’s super nice but I’m too bad mood to enjoy. Quentin is happy with him and will be in charge of making the pictures for the day.
We continue, it climbs again and again. After a while it’s really too difficult; it makes me dizzy. At the top of the slope I decide to stop and wait for Quentin. I have in front of me a 180-degree view of volcanoes, lakes and mountains. It’s enough for me. Two more hours ago if we believe CONAF and my body tells me stop. I’ll stop in a corner waiting for Quentin.
After an hour Quentin returns! I should have gone, but physically it was too difficult. I did not think it would be so fast. He is super happy. He was up to the end and told me that it was climbing even more and that we were walking along the ridge (I will not have arrived). At the end it had a 360 view of all volcanoes, lakes and mountains. I’m glad he went there and he could see everything.
It will take two good hours to get off. Finally CONAF will have said anything again! We will have done 5h (for me) and 6h (for Quentin) instead of 8h! It’s a big difference!
We are waiting for the bus. People are starting to arrive. Two buses will be there, thankfully because there are too many people and everyone rushes!
In the evening we decided to make two crazy: hotel with private bathroom! good it will be 25 euros per night … in itself it’s not mega expensive! then restau! We order a pizza each and the waiter tells us that one is enough. Quentin said okay but I wanted my whole pizza !!! Plus it’s a normal size pizza! We are not anorexics! The server does the same with the dessert! Quentin was going to take one and finally told him we will share! I am fed up! Since when we share a dessert! I know we’ve lost weight but I’m still greedy! I groan on Quentin who explodes with laughter. I tell him that next time I will not share my dessert!
We will do some shopping then we will go to enjoy our great room to make a big sleep and watch netflix.
This morning Quentinlet waking up super early. He decides to take the first bus in case there are not many buses to get back. Suddenly I get up halfway.
He will leave alone. I hope he will have a good day. I will spend mine almost all the time in the room. Perfect day!
Quentin returns in the middle of the afternoon. After a little rest we decide to go for a walk on the lake. By the way I take a huge ice cream! We stay a good hour in front of the lake to have a drink and then we go back.
We take our time this morning. We will go see a lagoon in a bled not far to spend time and two beaches at the lake.
We pack all our stuff and then we take the bus. It is early and there is a bakery nearby. We have fun, especially Quentin with his donut filled with dulce de leche!
The bus drops us off at the playa negra de Caburga. It is a very beautiful beach; there is not a cat … however there is already a dog who spotted us with our empanadas that we eat in front of the beach! He will follow us all day (again my fault, I gave him a little food …).
We try to find the path that leads to the laguna indicated by the girl from the hostel. She made us a drawing and telling us how great the laguna is. We find the starting point of the ride, it goes up! At one point we have to climb something but we do not know what. We see barbed wire … we pass underneath then we rush into the forest. We recover a second dog in the process. After 5min we say that this is not the right place so we turn back. A little further we see a small barrier … it was actually that we had to climb … We climb and the road continues to climb. We are a little fed up; especially Quentin who chained four days of big hikes. A good hour later we arrive in front of the laguna … well, it’s, uh … cute. We take a picture then we go back to the beach!
We decide to take the bus to playa blanca (Quentin is tired of walking). We’ll wait for the bus 20min in full sun (it’s too hot today, we went hiking without t-shirt …. fortunately we were alone: D). The bus arrives and drops us at the stop of the playa blaca, 5min further! We could have walked in fact … The beach is super pretty. There is nobody. We put our stuff, Quentin is going to swim! She is too cold for me, I am especially lazy. We’ll have two hours to rest and we’ll laugh at seeing a man play with his two dogs (including a completely stupid poodle) then three dogs, then four, then five! all the local dogs come to play the ball but there is only one who really understood the principle of the game … anyway.
We take the bus back. We go shopping for dinner, we do not really want to go to the restaurant. There are two Germans who listen to loud music, who smoke shit and who are quite dirty. They are annoying. So we are going to cook but they have Sali the kitchen utensils suddenly I ask them to clean. One moves it cleans a plate … self control … let it piss!
We eat and then we go to the bus. We have about 10h of night bus. We took camas. They are super comfortable. We leave at 21h20.
We arrive at 7am in the bus terminal of Santiago. Quentin slept very well. I’m a little tired.
We decide to take the subway to go to the hostel. It is well done and we will go fast enough. Maps gives me the wrong direction once but we still arrive at destination. No one rings, no one answers. Yet the girl knows that we arrive … we ring once, twice, three times … then we decide to go to a small cafe. There is no one in the streets, it is still dark. The cafe is run by a little lady who is very happy to see tourists. His coffee and chocolate are very bad, especially chocolate (he will end up in a tree an hour later …). We look a little bit at what we can do here. We have a full day and two days back from Easter Island.
After forty minutes I decide to return to the hostel. I ring, I call, I ring, I call. Always nothing. At the end of five minutes, a girl opens me, a customer who is fed up with it that I ring and that I call. She tells me that she had the same concern, that she does not like the place blabla..ça promises! She calls the girl on her cell phone and finally she arrives! I’m going to get Quentin. The hostel looks like a big squat but the room is good (good windows are rickety but we do not care it will be super hot today). The decor is fun, it’s really squat artists. It’s pretty nice even if it’s a little stoned. I take a nap for at least two hours and then go out.
Quentin spotted a burgers’ restaurant, the best according to reviews. So we decide to go there and visit the neighborhood called Bellavista. It’s cool like neighborhood. There is plenty of grafitis everywhere and super nice and more. The cafes and the restaurants are nice and original. The burger was top, we ate really well! We decide to go and see the house of Pablo Neruda (he has three, this one, one in Valdivia that we will visit suddenly and one to the Isla Negra where he is buried). His house is very original, we love the visit and we learn a lot about him, it’s super interesting. We continue our tour of the neighborhood, we go in a large garden. Quentin does not want to walk so we take the funicular. Arrived at the top we have an impressive view of Santiago! It is huge and especially ultra polluted! We see buildings and we guess the mountains under the layer of pollution. At the top of the hill there is a rather cute little church. To access it there is a kind of way of the cross … uh..very special. We take our time. The park does not look very pretty finally suddenly we decided to go down but impossible to find the way! A guy tells us to go by the way of bikes because no one ever goes there. We take it, indeed no one goes through it! It is full of dust, suddenly we finished all crados … We begin to see the end and it is very badly indicated! After an hour we find the exit and luckily it brings us om we wanted.
One continues around the neighborhood, it’s really nice and even more animated. There are plenty of universities around, open bars and even more graffiti. We decide to have a drink in a nice place with lots of restaurants and small shops.
At the end of aprem we go shopping for Easter Island as everything is super expensive on site. We take lots of pasta vegetables etc. We managed to find a campsite that looks nice.
In the evening we go to a restaurant that Quentin spotted on the backpacker. We take a cab to go there. It is a typical restaurant, a little old with a decoration of pennants as if there had been an election recently. The server is super nice. We do not see what we thought was eating on the map so we asked him to explain each thing. We laugh because there is something we do not know and he is amazed. So he shows us a picture: it’s a rabbit! suddenly I told him no no! I’ll take some meat sauce with rice (very good) and Quentin goes for the pudding ” a lo pobre ”. But why ?! ” A lo pobre ” means with a ton of french fries, thousands of onions, two eggs and meat. His dish arrives we laugh, it’s huge there are three or four sausages plus everything else … it will happen to eat everything, I do not know how!
We go back, we prepare our bags then we go to sleep. Tomorrow we get up at 4:45!
- Day 88 – Thursday 28th of March 2019 : Isla de Pascua
- Day 89 – Friday 29th of March 2019 : Rano Kau
- Day 90 – Saturday 30th of March 2019 : Highest point on the island
- Day 91 – Sunday 31st of March 2019 : Moaïs
- Day 92 – Monday 1st of April 2019: The rain
- Day 93 – Tuesday 2nd of April 2019: Beach
- Day 94 – Wednesday 3rd of April 2019: On the road again
- Day 95 – Thursday 4th of April 2019 : Sunrise
- Day 96 – Friday 5th of April 2019 : Back to Santiago
4:45, the alarm clock rings. I slept too well, Quentin less; apparently people rang several times but I did not hear anything!
The internet does not work and we need it to order an uber and download a document for immigration … luckily the girl has a modem!
We take the bus to the bus terminal at 5h20 and then the bus to the airport direct when we arrive.
We are lucky our bags are less than 23 kilos with all the food we bring back. Well I have a lot of things in my hand luggage too …
The flight goes super fast; LATAM is not bad company, they have good movies to pass the time! We arrive on the island with a landing a bit brutal; the track being small we did not see much of the island in the distance when approaching. People applaud when they arrive; we will say that it’s a good sign.
It is super hot and humid outside, we feel that we will sweat well this week! There are a lot of people waiting for his luggage. Once we retrieve ours we will find our driver. It’s quite funny because we will wait twenty minutes all the people who go to the campsite and we will take five minutes to go … we could have walked there …
The owner of the campsite explains everything about the place and gives us information on the hikes. The campsite is nice, there are plenty of tents piled in the middle (but in fact it’s much less than in others that we will see later) but there is a good space.
We set up the tent, prepare our things and then decide to go for a walk “in town”. We stop in craft markets. Quentin seems to want to bring back a Moai wood sculpture but the most beautiful are big and heavy so it should be sent. We discuss with a sculptor whose work we appreciate to see if we can negotiate (they are overpriced and delivery is in 150 euros …). We will see at the end of the week if we want to do the fools or not.
We try to find the center but there is not really. There are two or three busy streets. We arrive to the port. I take this opportunity to eat a big ice cream (the hot, the humidity … the need for sugar what!). We go to the tourist office to learn about hiking, we are told that we need guides for some … hum … There is no beach but we see that we can swim at a place ; they put rocks to break the waves.
We try to find our way with the map but we get lost (thankfully it’s not very big!). We train, we go back to the shops, we walk along the coast and we go back to the campsite. It’s hot to die. We see our first Moai on the coast. We sweat at the slightest movement (it reminds a little Buenos Aires). We try to make a small program and then we will see a traditional dance show in the evening.
The show is really nice. We did not know what to expect, if it was going to be a tourist trap or not. In the end it was the show of a dance school with passionate musicians and dancers, it felt! They wore traditional costumes (so they were almost naked … it was not bad !: P).
After the show we decided to walk back (we took less than five minutes by car …) and go to bed because the day was more than long.
Do not want to get up this morning. I have the impression that I miss three days of sleep. It is 10am, we decide to get ready and go for breakfast.
We take our time. We decide to go see the crater of the volcano Rano Kau. There is approximately 4 hours of round trip.
We leave at the end of the morning. We take our time, we walk along the coast. There are huge waves crashing against the rocks. It is ultra hot we sweat. We pass in front of young people who learn to sail on the traditional boats (we suppose because they are in the water with the teacher to make movements and on the sides there are very long boats).
There are two Moais: one who turns his back on the ocean and in front of which horses graze the grass; and a lie on the grass.
We continue by the road and we see that there is a cave with rock paintings. We go down, it’s nice but the paintings fade well with time, it’s a shame for future generations. Then we arrive at the beginning of the hiking trail. The path is simple but the heat makes it difficult. We climb for an hour then we finally arrive at the crater. It’s super nice, in the distance we see the ocean and inside there is a particular ecosystem that has formed.
We drive along the crater to reach Orongo (it’s 5min after the arrival to the crater). There is a very interesting mini museum and then you have access to another path on which you can see a reconstruction of the old village and in the distance an island. It’s great fun.
The return will be by the same road. We try to find agencies for hikes requiring a guide. The agencies offer us to walk for 400 USD … uh … no thanks. So Quentin is jaded and wants to try without a guide or to leave the island sooner than expected. It is full of plans B, C … We decided to go for a swim before returning home. It’s true that staying idle here can be boring … it’s pretty Easter Island but it’s tiny and if you do not rent a car in the big city there is no real beach.
We go back to the campsite. The boss of the campsite is there so I ask him if he knows a person to do the guide. It’s quite strange this guide story. We do not know if it’s really necessary or if it’s a tourist trap. He calls someone to see, we wait for the answer.
In the evening when we go to eat there are young people we met yesterday. They tell us that they will go hiking without a guide. So we feel the catch tourists and we decide to do the same.
We eat, we talk with another couple around the world then we go to bed.
We wake up quietly this morning. We will go hiking on the highest peak of the island … it will not be very tiring normally!
We need to be taken to the starting point of the hike, otherwise we have to spend two hours on the road. The manager of the campsite is nice, he brings us (we think he will ask us under a day … to follow …).
The starting point is on a site with lots of Moai statues, so it’s nice. The hike to the top must last two hours but it will be shorter, we go too fast: P The trail is very well marked, it goes up slowly. We meet lots of wild horses. The higher you go, the more you can see the coast of the island and its pretty colors. We arrive at the top of a first mountain, it looks like a crater. From there we have a nice view of the western part of the island. The highest peak is twenty meters away, but the view is blah. We see a “mountain” in front of the shot we leave the path and we go there. From there it’s much nicer because we see Mount Poike (which we would like to do without paying!) And two craters. There are even more horses on this side and cows. As one is in shape after this difficult hike one decides to go to see an archaeological site indicated on the map. We have to walk in the fields then in the forest and then find a cave. In fact it is a small cave but it was still nice to go because we could see a beautiful forest (I exaggerate saying forest because it was not that big but there were plenty of ‘trees!) and a kind of lake covered with reeds.
We return to the trail. There is a lot of people coming up (especially locals). We arrive at the Moai and we see the couple of Belgians who had to try to pay the game without paying … obviously they were repressed! We are disgusted, out of the question of paying 200 euros for walking 2 hours. We decided to go back to the coast (hike that we thought we would do tomorrow but to make the return on the road is less fun).
On the road we will see all sorts of cellars, caves, lava flows, horses in freedom, Moai, and of course a dog will follow us! It’s super nice to see archaeological remains in the countryside. We die hot and cons sunburned but we walk for hours anyway.
8 hours later we arrive “in town”. We call Catherine and Patrick because today is Patrick’s surprise birthday. We are sad not to be there because we know that everyone is going to party, eat well and drink well! But to cheer us up, when we arrive the boss of the campsite tells us that he will do a bbq of fish for all the people of the campsite! So we’re happy J
This morning it’s sunny so we decide to rent a car. It’s super easy here, you just have to get your license and pay, in less than ten minutes you have a car.
We will do the north of the east coast today and another day we will rent the car to do the southern part (we have too many days to kill anyway!). It’s still hot today.
The road is very beautiful, we walk along the coast, we see the waves crashing against the cliffs. There are even more free horses grazing everywhere. There are several archaeological sites to visit, but what interests us most are the three main sites with all Moais.
The first was Rano Raraku, it is a career at the foot of a volcano where the Moais were cut. There are hundreds, sitting, standing, lying (on the sell), bodyless, twisted … It’s super nice to see and there was a beautiful view of the valley and in the distance we could see the site of Tongariki in front of the sea with Moais lined up. This is where we went after, stopping on the road whenever there was an archaeological site to see.
We continued to two beautiful beaches. The sea was too beautiful! turquoise and transparent. We were not allowed to bathe in the first (but people were still bathing); So we went down to the second, Anakena, which is also a site well known for Moaïs times lined up in front of the sea. The beach of Anakena is beautiful! The lady at the entrance told us we could not swim because of jellyfish so we were disappointed but as we saw lots of people in the water we still went there. We were stung but it was bearable. The sea was too beautiful, transparent! She made big waves, it was very nice.
After this great day we went back to the campsite. The manager was preparing a ceviche of tuna. He offered to eat with him and other Chilean tourists. So too happy, we offered our help. We all participated. It was super good and really nice. We were able to discuss with others. After the meal he came to tell me that he invited us (in fact the Chileans had shared the expenses) by giving me a kiss. I think he appreciates us well so it’s even more fun! After this good meal we continued to talk with a couple of Chilean camping that we cross all the time, and French.
There are idiots of dogs who have barked all night non stop! So at 4am, as we still had the car and we wanted to see the sunrise, we decided to go see the stars at the site of Tongariki where we also wanted to see the sunrise.
We leave, it is dark and we see the stars in places. It’s pretty creepy at night to ride because of the animals that can come from anywhere.
We arrive in front of the Moaïs site. It’s too dark to see them but you can see the stars. So I’m trying to take pictures of the sky and Quentin ended up falling asleep and snoring … I try to stay awake not to miss the sunrise but it’s too difficult so I wake up. People start to arrive and enter the site. Some do not respect anything and climb on the stones. No wonder they are starting to charge people to walk!
Unfortunately for us the sky was covered super fast and it began to rain. We saw the sunrise but it was not really great.
Three hours later we return to Hanga Roa. We decide to go back to bed. We will wake up around noon because of the stifling heat in the tent. As she is dirty because of the sand and feathers of our downs I decide to go out and clean it. After that we are motivated to go see another career of headdress factory Moaïs.
We leave, we walk along the road but in fact it’s super far! So we decided to change our plan and go and see the Vinapu archaeological site. This site is interesting because it holds the southernmost Moai of the island and is also an important site for the religious ceremonies of yesteryear.
On the road we cross a large herd of cows not very nice. Luckily, a car arrives, I ask them to slow down and if it does not bother them we walk next to it so that the cows do not jump on us. They say yes but there are so many cows that they hug and get us into the car! As we go to the same place they bring us; too kind! They were tourists from Santiago. We thank them then we visit the site.
On the way back an old man stops with his big truck proposing to bring us back, then another with his van but Quentin wants to walk (it’s true that for days we do not make too much effort … So we politely refuse. We will meet again the gentleman of the truck and the family who drove us a little later, they will make us great signs super happy.
We decide to go for a drink (and eat an ice cream … only me …) in front of the sea then to go to bathe (even if it rains from time to time). Finally we will have drunk and ate but we will not be bathed … We go back to the bakery that makes super quarter and bread, and we take the opportunity to share a brownie … (we have to do sports tomorrow!) .
Returning to the campsite the manager asks me if I like wine, it’s funny, he likes to talk with us and with the group of young people in Santiago.
We are tired of doing nothing (yes it’s weird said like that …) suddenly we gander a little then we will make a big dish of pasta with parmesan and tomato sauce (light meal …).
This morning we get up with the noise of the neighbors who go away and people from the campsite who speak quite loudly … not super nice as alarm clock but at least we did not have the sounds of dogs all night!
We take our time and we decide to visit the museum. We’re lucky, it’s nice. The museum is extremely interesting! We learn a lot about Rapa Nui, the people, the Moaïs but also the other Pacific islands that we will discover later. We spend a lot of time reading everything and then we walk along the coast to see the Moaïs that we had quickly seen the first day.
Returning to the campsite we cook and the boss comes to propose to us to go to Anakena because he brings two other girls. We are very happy because we were going to swim in the fake beach of the city which is sad. We prepare our things in less than two minutes then we leave together. We will stay three good hours to jump in the big waves to try to surf on it. We will meet almost everyone at the campsite.
At 18h the boss comes to recover us with his big van in fact he gets all the Chileans in passing. We will be the first to wait for the blow as it is super nice he will get us candy and he puts us French music of the 80s. We laugh well then the others arrive. He cuts a big watermelon for everyone, it’s really nice, everyone treats and discusses then we leave. We will be fifteen in the van, stacked on top of each other … as well as we will put more time than expected! but it will be funny. He listens to old hits and some are in French and others are covers of French hits in Spanish so everyone sings!
Another good day! We decide to go see the sunset but we will arrive five minutes too late … we took too much time to prepare our picnic.
After a long sleep and a long discussion with the French couple, Clément and Marie, whom we met at the campsite, we decided to rent a car. Our two acolytes in Santiago ask us if they can join us, having understood that we will finish the day in Anakena … we understand why they asked to come with us, and we accept with pleasure! It will allow us to know their names! (the day before their departure …).
We decided to go to the southern part of the east coast that we did not take the time to do the last time (to leave us something to do on a day). We will take a few showers but nothing really bad. We see a lot of Moais lying this time but they are pretty, with the sea in the background. We try to do all the places indicated on maps.me and we finish in Anakena. We are lucky it is super nice and there are big waves! Quentin enjoys surfing on it. We will stay a little over two hours. On the way back, dozens of horses will invade the beach in front of the Moaïs.
Arriving at the campsite we do not see anyone so we take the opportunity to start cooking our curry; we must do more because we wanted to eat for the boss of the campsite. After an hour, at least fifteen people arrive in the kitchen! we do not know where they come from, but it’s pretty awful for everyone at once and it’s too hot. We will finish our curry in two hours (luckily we started early!); he was not bad. Clément and Marie arrived so we took the opportunity to discuss. There was another boy, only him, Matthew. We offered them all three to come sunrise with us tomorrow morning if they wanted; everyone was very enthusiastic.
As we ate too much and the sky was clear we took the opportunity to have the car to go to observe the stars at the top of the volcano. We were really lucky, we were alone and we could see the starry sky too well.
We return to the campsite a little tired; tomorrow we get up early to try the sunrise again.
Wake up very early but we slept well. We leave for Tongariki with Marie, Clément and Matthieu to get up at sunrise. We hope to be luckier this time, in any case the sky is clear.
We take the road along the coast and smell of smoke. There is a fire in a field not far! we see the flames, it’s impressive. Since we do not know if people have called for help I decide to do 911 to warn the firefighters. They seemed to know and have sent people already, so that reassures us and we continue our journey.
We arrive, we are not the only ones but we decide to go back to where we were two days before: in front of Moaïs outside the site. It seems to suit everyone so it’s perfect. It’s good outside, we settle down and have breakfast with our front lamps. A rat comes to sting Quentin’s banana skin … charming … There are clouds but the sky still has pretty hues. It’s not exceptional at first; we are still dubious with Quentin but you never know this sunrise could be the most beautiful of our life! When the sun begins to show we decide to enter the site. There things become more interesting! The sun illuminates the solitary Moai on his profile and hits the quarry, it’s very beautiful. The shadow of the fifteen Moaïs begins to stand in front of them and to take place on the site, it is impressive. The colors are very beautiful, we take full eyes. Finally, we should have stayed longer last time too!
After this great sunrise we set out for Anakena. We will stop at a site that we thought we had missed but in fact no, nothing serious, it will allow Matthew to visit too.
We arrive at the beach, it’s a little cool but we do not care, in the water it will be much better! Let’s go ! There are beautiful waves. Quentin impresses everyone with his way of doing body surfing on big waves. We are having a good time.
After an hour in the water we have to leave because we have to return the car. The morning was busy and really nice. We leave all super happy.
Once at the campsite we have lunch and then we decide not to eat anything. To thank us for the car, Clément and Marie offer us a drink before the sunrise. We gladly accept. Everyone returns to his program; for Quentin and me it will be nap, gland and internet.
The head of the campsite organizes the birthday of one of the girls and invites us. As he is out to refuse a meal and still me in such good company and with the menu a specialty that we have not yet tasted, we accept with enthusiasm.
At the end of the day we decided to buy postcards, and some tricks for the evening meal with the others, just to participate a minimum, then to find everyone in front of the Moaïs for the sunset. It is raining suddenly we will stall in the bakery to get a snack … We head to the beach and we find Marie and Clément. We settle down and pile up when we drink it starts raining so hard that we pack everything and we decide to go back to the campsite. The rain stops after 5 minutes of the coup we are looking for a place to try to catch the drink, even if we are all soaked. There is a bench in front of the sea, with a battery in front of the sun, the boat of the Chilean armada …
After this nice drink we return to the campsite; we were waiting to prepare. Marie and Clément are invited and we find Mathieu who managed to be invited and who was to find us. We cook together with the Chileans. It’s nice. I take this opportunity to talk with the Chileans to practice my spanish. The meal will consist of homemade fries, eggs, sausages, fried meat and a tomato salad. A very light meal!
The evening is super nice. We will go to bed rather late.
Last hours on Rapa Nui. We who thought we were bored are finally sad to leave! We enjoyed and felt like having a vacation during the holidays.
It rains outside and it rained all night so the tent is soaked. We pack everything and have breakfast fast.
We must go to the airport super early while the flight is quite late (we were fired roughly for other tourists). We say goodbye to everyone, I even wake up the Chileans I like to kiss them and then we go on the shuttle with Marie and Clément.
Arrived at the airport we are bored.
We are disgusted we have an old plane so no movie. Fortunately, I have something to do on my computer!
We arrive in Santiago, it’s super long to get out of the plane and get our stuff. We talk with Marie so it’s good to pass the time. After exchanging our contacts we separate. We take the bus with Quentin, there is a crazy world on the road! We will take a taxi once to the terminal because it is super late and we do not want to wait for our host Ricardo too long.
We arrive at his place it’s nice, he is very enthusiastic and talkative. He will hold the bunch for two hours. He will be nice and let us make a machine at home! We spread all our wet stuff in the room; it looks like “caravan Mouloud” as Marion said so often seeing us display our stuff everywhere!
We are disgusted because in discussing with Ricardo we realize that in fact we will spend a day in Santiago and not two! So we must try to make a max tomorrow.
- Day 97 – Saturday 6th of April 2019 : Marathon in Santiago
- Day 98 – Sunday 7th of April 2019 : Valparaiso
- Day 99 – Monday 8th of April 2019: Street Art
- Day 100 – Tuesday 9th of April 2019 : Pablo Neruda
- Day 101 – Wednesday 10th of April 2019 : Last day in Valparaiso
We try to get up early this morning because we would like to do a lot of things. We will spend the whole day walking in Santiago. We will see most of the things we wanted to see. It was very nice it was really nice.
In the evening we come back completely exhausted but we are happy because it was cool.
We did not know but today we changed the time of the blow the clock was a little chaotic with skype calls.
After two hours on skype and a quiet breakfast, we leave for the bus to Valparaiso. It is great on the road but once there there is a thick fog and it is almost cold! We are disgusted but at least it does not rain.
We decide to go to Pablo Neruda’s second house. She is ten minutes from Airbnb. She’s really beautiful. It was a great visit.
Then we decide to do what they call the open-air museum: graffiti in a targeted area, which is also close to housing. Honestly the graffiti was ugly and it really was not worth it to make a flan … In addition it stinks of piss and piss in the streets and it’s crado. We talk about Paris but I think it’s worse here!
We decide to walk to another neighborhood and go shopping for the next meals and then we go back.
This morning we decided to discover the city with a guided tour (Tour4tips). With a little luck we will have another impression of the city!
It is still not very nice and a bit chilly, but at least it does not rain.
We find guides dressed in Willy (Charlie). They are super nice and must be our age. We learn a lot about the city and the history of the country. We go through places that we had to visit with Quentin. I like the ballad enough. By cons Quentin is really not in the thing, he is quite jaded; it does not cling to the atmosphere of the city at all. I understand it, it is not very pretty, without the street arts this city would have no interest (it is one of the poorest cities of Chile, and it is really sad and dirty). After the tour we decided to visit the Conception district. We take a small funicular (there are several here and it is part of the heritage of the city). We try to find the “known” paintings; some are pretty disappointing but we see others really pretty. We will walk for hours, we will try to do all the streets. Sometimes we will find nice and original little shops, charming colorful streets, original graffiti. We change a little opinion about the city but without really being more convinced than that.
After this long walk we decide to return to housing. We are tired enough. I look by chance how many sous he remains on the account and woe to us! we were really too expensive !!! The account is almost empty! We take all the expenses from the beginning, Quentin makes columns to see where we abused. We realize that in fact we have not really made the fools, but Chile is just super expensive. We are in the red financially, and we are only a little less than three months of travel on the continent … As a result impossible for me to sleep that night, I will overthink on the next expenditure for hours!
As expected the night was short, I thought about why we were so spendthrift without really finding any reason. So I spent about three hours trying to re-budget all around the world (and oddly the final amount almost made me have a heart attack). It is not easy to plan a budget because we will spend in so many different countries and with the camping expenses will decrease etc. etc. In short, I say the final amount to Quentin then decide to go take a coffee shoot to bring down the explanations more easily in his brain. After exposing to him our future pre-marriage poverty (because there will be that also in the next expenses! Arghhh !!) we decide to suppress the snacks (… my heart beats faster …), the ice creams (… tears run with my eyes …) and better choose activities, see even cycling sometimes (… fainting …).
In the end, even though we spent a lot of money we do not feel that we were crazy about the expenses of the coup we will catch the damage in Peru (fingers crossed).
It is quite late already, so we prepare homemade burgers then we decide to go to see the third home of Pablo Neruda which is located in Isla Negra, a small seaside town at 1:30 bus from Valparaiso. We fell in love with his houses, they are so original and we felt the passion of the poet for the art objects and the sea. So after visiting his house in Santiago (the Chascona), the one in Valparaiso (La Sebastiana), we will now take the bus to Isla Negra.
We are lucky we will have to wait for the bus only 20 minutes. On the road we see vineyards and after one hour a beautiful beach. So I’m a little disgusted to be gone so late; we will have to take the bus immediately after the visit because we gave appointment to Mathieu, that of Rapa Nui, for a drink (and also for him to give us the camel bag that Quentin forgot on the island …) .
We arrive at Isla Negra, we do not immediately find the road to the house. It is very badly indicated.
We arrive on the site, we are not very sure that evening because we expected another entry; but in fact it is there and once the entrance is past, we understand that it is his house: it is simply beautiful, wood and stone, facing the ocean. The visit is really great, it’s the house I prefer of the three: it is so bright, the windows overlook the big waves of the ocean, and it looks like a museum with all the memories he brought back from all the countries where he went. We enjoy the visit. We are really happy to have come, even if it was far. The tour ends at the tomb of Pablo Neruda and Mathilde, who faces the sea.
We are lucky we have a bus right away (otherwise we should have waited 40 minutes …). Once back we go to go to the meeting point, even if we are not sure that Mathieu has received the message. Finally he will be there. We are very happy to see each other and we decide to have a drink next to the meeting place. We talk for almost three hours, then we leave each other and think that maybe we would meet in Peru if not at home in Dijon, for us to taste the creamant of his region 🙂
Tonight we take a bus pandant more than 20h suddenly we take the time to go out in the morning.
In the afternoon we will go for a walk in the city. The sky is blue today so we hope it will make the city a little more cheerful!
San Pedro de Atacama
- Day 102 – Thursday 11th of April 2019 : After 24h in the bus
- Day 103 – Friday 12th of April 2019 : San Pedro de Atacama
- Day 104 – Saturday 13th April 2019 : Salar de Atacama & Lagunas
- Day 105 – Sunday 14th of April 2019 : Two idiots in the desert
- Day 106 – Monday 15th of April 2019 : Quebrada del Diablo
- Jour 107 – Tuesday 16th of April 2019 : Valle de la Luna & Valle de la Muerte
After 24 hours of bus we finally arrive at San Pedro de Atacama. On the way we could see the volcanoes at sunset, it was beautiful! The sky was turning purple and orange, it was incredible.
We arrive we do not know where are and we were lazy to walk so we pay a guy to drive us for 2 euros at the campsite.
The campsite is rather well done. There is everything and it’s clean.
We decide to go for a walk in the city. There was a blackout so we were in the dark for ten minutes.
The city seems very nice. It is animated until late and all agencies are open.
So we decide to go see. We come across an outfit by a Frenchman. He explains his way of proceeding (tours in small committee, at times which avoid the crowd, sometimes in places where the others do not go … in short we are convinced even if it is expensive). We will see two or three to compare. Well his is super expensive but the service is different. We decide to go through it (in addition we can have bikes when we want and for free) and only two outings. In the end it will be cheaper than expected so it makes us feel less guilty.
We continue to walk and then we go back. On the road we see a small market that sells half roasted chickens … well, we make one because I have fangs, then sleep.
This morning we payed the tours for the week and then we walked around in the city. It’s really nice and nice. We are happy to stay several days. The houses hide pretty patios. The restaurants are original. There are a few trendy spots and pretty artisan shops between the hundreds of tourist shops and travel agencies.
At noon we will eat in a typical place where meals are not expensive. There are few people and it’s good.
After the meal we will continue the walk and then go to the campsite. There are many Americans and as usual, they lack a little savoir vivre …
We take the opportunity to plan our next days in Peru and then 20h we must leave for our star observation tour.
We go to the rendezvous point, to see people waiting in the middle of the street, we are not the only ones. The bus arrives and brings us to Alain, the passionate astronomer responsible for the tour. His wife gets everyone on the bus (only French).
She has a beautiful accent, she must be from the corner. She explains the stars, the constellations, how to find the north here. It’s super interesting. She has a laser that points directly to the stars of the shot is super easy to imagine some constellations (some are a little twisted …). After twenty minutes her husband Alain takes over. He is super funny. He explains a lot of things while making fun of himself; it looks like a one man show. Quentin is too much, it’s funny. An hour later we go to his telescopes, fifteen, each oriented to a specific place (star, planet, constellation …). He explains to us each and then we can look. That’s great. I’m trying to take pictures but I’m having trouble; Alain’s wife notices him and comes to help me, she seems to know each other well. So we get tired and we try to take pictures of the sky. After this great moment outside, we are invited to take a hot chocolate and others in a small house where Alain tells other things. We really had a great time, we leave very happy.
This morning we go on an excursion. We are super excited, it looks great. The guide picks us up around 9:30; we are seven people in total in the 4×4: the guide Alexandre, us, a couple of super nice Belgians, and two Swiss enough reserved (which will speak only at the end of the day).
The road is superb. Alexandre is really aware of everything (local and Chilean culture, Chilean economy etc) so we learn a lot of things and we have answers to all our questions.
We will stop in two small typical villages, Toconao and Socaira, with pretty churches (the bell is still separated from the church in the area, it represents the woman and the man if I understood correctly). We will return to a lady where we can see her garden, her little shop and her two little lamas!
The rest will be grandiose landscapes: volcanoes with snow-capped peaks, lagunas with exceptional colors (due to the metals present in the water and coming from volcanoes), and rocks just as beautiful and colorful. We take a lot of eyes, it’s wonderful! We enjoy, we learn a lot of things, and we laugh. The day is just perfect. We will have a small snack in front of a turquoise lagoon and a lunch later. At the end of the day we will go to the Atacama desert to see the sunset in the laguna Chaxa. It is pretty (but less beautiful than the Salar of Uyuni); the volcanoes will hang in pink and purplish hues until the sun disappears in a yellow and blue landscape. Flamingos were to be seen. Honestly I thought of seeing a lot more and much closer, as in Bolivia, so it was a little disappointing from this point of view; lais it will still be magic because the laguna will be the mirror of volcanoes. After this great moment Alexandre will wait for us near the entrance to have a drink. Once the sun goes down we will leave and we will go and get the bikes at the agency for tomorrow. We will be really happy with the day especially since we have made very nice meetings.
Too tired to get started this morning, I got up in the middle of the night full of energy (so I caught it very well and I could put a lot of pics on instagram). We try to get ready to leave early to avoid the hot weather … we will leave late anyway around 9:30.
The road is not super nice, there are plenty of bumps! There are no shadows, we roll in full body. The ground is cracked, we see the volcanoes in the distance, it’s very pretty even if we galley. We try to get to Laguna Ceja to swim, following the routes on maps.me. We end up arriving a little less than two hours later and we have the impression of having two anuses now …
The site is super expensive! It’s really a big business nature here is crazy. We pay, we go to see two lagoons then we go to where we can swim. It is so salty that we float in it. The site is super nice, the water has beautiful colors and it is clear, and in the distance we have volcanoes so it’s perfect.
We prepare to enter the water … we set foot … and then we understand that we will galley to enter! she is too cold !!! it takes a good ten minutes to get wet, I’m a little breathless because of the cold and because I swim like a little dog. Quentin is already on the back laughing while floating. We laugh well despite the cold. We will stay more than we thought when we arrived, because it’s funny to float and it’s cool to see the volcanoes while bathing in a desert (yeah I know, this trip is great :D). We go out to dry and there our skin becomes all white because of the salt. It makes us laugh (we are simple people in the end).
After an hour on the site we leave. We are in such a pain, I do not know if I have two anus or three vaginas so the shocks are unbearable. At a crossing we turn, thinking that maps.me gives us good indications. And no ! we finish in the desert for two hours! I drank almost all my water (fortunately I had been foresight in taking three liters), I became crazy, I hurt myself with the bike, I curse (Quentin will keep his self control when I start crying like a moron while swinging the bike). On the road we will be harassed by puppies. At first I found them cute and then after thirty minutes to lose my breath by shouting them to leave and pushing them (they seemed to prefer me to Quentin and suddenly jump on me and put under my wheels) I began to tell me that I will never have a dog! We ended up sowing them, they were tough little ones, not certain that they spend the week … it was a heat to burst out.
We finally manage to find the path but we do not have much energy, especially me. Everything will be in the head for the next hour. Three hours later we will finally arrive in town and we will decide to eat somewhere (with ice stop!). We must return the bikes but the girl is never there so we go back to shower (we are black with grime) then we will come back later. We will do the rest of the evening. We had to take a bike tomorrow but Quentin understood that it would not be possible … so we’ll walk!
This morning I hear the zip of the tent. Quentin leaves to get some bread I think. Half an hour later, he comes back with a crusty baguette, pains au chocolat and a croissant !!! he is great this man! So after a great great breakfast we set out for the Quebrada del Diablo: a canyon in the desert (and this time I took 4L of water and I forced Quentin to take more ).
As we decided not to take bikes, we walk quietly to the site. It will take an hour and on the way we will have to cross the river … without shoes because there is no bridge (the water was cold)! Once at the site, the guy tells us everything we can visit, and we realize that there is a lot and it should take us about 6 hours. We are super happy, we did not think to walk as much today.
We will walk in full smoke all day, in the dust. The landscape is wonderful. A green canyon with rugged mountains and carved strangely because of wind and rain. On the reliefs we see salt. We will see a breathtaking viewpoint that will allow us to see the two sides of the valley, with the river in the middle. Too handsome ! We’ll see remnants of the fortress too, we’ll get inside another canyon and we’ll see a pretty church in the middle of nowhere. On the way back, as we are really tired, and we would like to see another archaeological site (Pukara de Quitor) we stop a local who is driving on the site. It will take us to Pukara del Quitor and we will avoid the last thirty minutes of walking in full sun (we already have six or seven in the legs).
We laugh because we are on the other side of the river and in the meantime they put boards to cross and go to the site. The site is very beautiful, we see the remains of the village thinks; the way zigzags up to a very pretty point of view on the canyon which we explored (and one realizes that one walked enormously!) and on the other side on the old one with in bottom the volcanoes.
We go home quietly, completely exhausted, and on the road we see a young man and his girlfriend we met in Pucon! So we chat a little while then we go back to the campsite.
We had another great day. It was tiring but it was worth it.
The manager of the campsite comes to us by telling us about Notre-Dame … so it makes me cry and it plumbs the atmosphere …
Today is Quentin’s birthday. He does not know that I warned the agency to prepare a little trick.
We prepare ourselves quietly then the guide picks us up. With us there are 6 other very nice people: a mother and her daughter, and a girl (Adèle) and her parents (Isabelle and Gilles) with whom we have sympathized. The guide Olivier unfortunately does not have the southern accent that Alex had the other day and that reminded us of France but it is super nice and tells a lot of very interesting things, especially on the geology of sites.
We visit the Moon Valley first. It is really nice. We can see the salt on the rock, the dunes, and the rock formations. We will make a magic walk along and then on the ridge of a “mountain”. We will see the valley as a whole with its beautiful colors. It was really amazing.
Then we take the road to explore the valley of the Muerte but before we will stop in front of an impressive viewpoint overlooking the valley. Again we can see the rock formations. Olivier prepares a small aperitif and surprise for Quentin, champagne! everyone is super happy. We wish him all in heart and Quentin seems to appreciate (who would not be at the same time?!). From the mirador, after finishing the aperitif, we start a walk in the valley and Olivier, thanks to its magnifying glass allows us to see in more detail the rock formations. He goes back to bring the car to the other side of the path and we walk with Adèle and her parents (the other two people went much faster than us). We laugh well together, it’s really nice. As we take too much time, they will pick us up almost at the end of the ride with the car.
After the tour we go to the restaurant with Adele and her parents story to finish the exit. We will all have a great time and we will leave with a smile!
We return to the campsite, I finally had a hot shower! Quentin passes all his birthday calls. The girl camping asks us to pay and we pay an extra night because we did not undo tent before 11am (slut!). So we will spend a moment pumping their wifi, electricity, water and gas! revenge !!! We will have a drink with Quentin to celebrate his birthday but also the end of this Chilean adventure, because tonight we take a night bus to start the climb to Peru (it should take us two days by bus).