Castro to Puyehue

Puyehue Travel Blog

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We left in the morning for a little adventure. The plan was to treat ourselves to a little thermal springs treatment in Puyehue (pronounced Peh-hoo-yah as far as I can gather), so we just had to get there. This took us north through the main city in Chiloe to Ancud. Not a pretty place by any stroke of the imagination. There are a couple of interesting statues in the city square (of El Trauco and his female equivalent, La Fiura). One tour that I think could be quite interesting in Chiloe would be to check out the massive amount of churches. Almost all, as far as I understand, are made of wood and each has a unique spire. Would certainly be scenic and I think there would be a lot of interesting things along the way too. There is quite a nice poster in the entrance to the Unicornio Azul which shows the various profiles of the churches in Chiloe and they also have some excellent photos of about 8 of them in the dining room. Then we arrived in perfect time for the ferry again to take us back to the mainland. As it was intermittently clear and then pissing down with rain we decided to give Puerto Montt a skip and head up to Osorno (about 100km north of Puerto Montt) for a late lunch before continuing. The drive is pretty good, but not scenic, along toll road highway. Osorno town (same name as the volcano mentioned previously) is, I think unfairly, described as a grey town where you would only stop if you were on a bus. Actually it was quite a nice little place to go through. The main square (a standard feature in towns here) is quite pretty and has an unusual church too. The shops look more organised than other places we have been too. Then a scenic little drive (about 75km) to Puyehue. Another unpronounceable town. This was another spot that John recommended as a stop. In Chile there are a few hundred natural hot springs (due to the volcanic nature of the landscape I suppose). This one is on one of the main routes through to Argentina and is actually not far from where we were in San Martin de los Andes. The hotel, called Termas Puyehue is one of the old grand style hotels and feels a bit like twilight zone as there are hardly any people here. After arriving late afternoon we had a quick dip in the indoor hot pools (cooled down to 40 and 35 degrees respectively) and I had a quick dip in the outdoor pool (in the rain) which is about 30 degrees. Quite a weird feeling swimming in the rain again in a warm Olympic size pool. The water naturally is about 70-80 degrees and is cooled down to be able to swim in. There are lots of big fireplaces and comfy chairs. Nice and relaxing. Dinner was a set menu affair, which we could not understand. Hoping for something light it seemed as though we would not have much choice in the matter. A little bit more worrying was that there was no price on it. Anyway, the meal was excellent and turned out to be very reasonable too. £25 for a 3 course meal for 2 including coffee (excluding wine). Turned into a very nice evening.
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photo by: bramwan