Pitstop in Punta

Punta Arenas Travel Blog

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I had booked myself on the 1.30pm bus to Punta Arenas, 250km further south from Puerto Natales, which left the morning to try and sort out getting some money back from the refugio.  I had seen Carla briefly the evening before when I came back and she promised to help speak to them.  However, surprise, surprise, when I went to try and find her at 10.30am, she was still in bed and had left a message with her helper that I should go to the refugio owner's office myself....cheers Carla, very helpful of you.  I went and spoke to them and sat there for about half an hour as unbelievably, again they couldn't even find my booking or any money in respect of it - what the hell?!?  After a few more phone calls, they eventually tracked it down, all the while insisting that they don't give refunds if the cancellation is within 15 days.

The view from the mirador over town and towards the Straight of Magallan
  I thought this was totally unreasonable given I only booked a day before I went to stay there and that CLP20,000 of my booking was for meals - which they served up in what amassed to a school canteen, so they can hardly pretend that they had 'reserved' my meals.  I think the lady in charge eventually felt embarrassed that were trying to keep £70/$100 of my money for absolutely nothing and gave in to my offer of having a refund for the meals part - huurah for some common sense.  I still had to go back to Carla to actually get the money and she was still nowheere to be seen when I returned to Erratic Rock.  Thankfully Bill was an absolute star and agreed to give me the money back and sort it out with Carla later - he really is a genuinely nice guy.  Whilst I felt happier, I was still out of pocket by about CLP35,000/£45/$70, which is about a weeks worth of hostel accomodation elsewhere in Chile.  But I boarded my bus in a better mood and decided to forget about it and move on.

The 3 hour journey to Punta Arenas flew by (as I watched Harry Potter, in English for once, on the bus!) and when I arrived, Pato from the Erratic Rock was there to pick me up.  He took me back to the hostel (aka his house, with converted rooms for backpackers!!), checked me (again showing the Erratic Rock friendliness and warmth), which left me a few hours to go out an explore.   I was pretty tired, so didn't do a lot, just looked around the town and wandered up the mirador which has views back over the town and the Straights of Magellan into Tierra del Fuego.  It was a bit cloudy, but I think I could make it out in the distance!!  Tomorrow I'm off up towards the Lake District and begin my final couple of weeks on the continent.

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The view from the mirador over tow…
The view from the mirador over to…
Punta Arenas Hostels review
Pato, what a lovely guy!
This Erratic Rock is an offshoot of the two owned by Bill and his brother in Puerto Natales. This one's run by their friend, Pato, who is a lovely fr… read entire review
Punta Arenas
photo by: Kramerdude