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The Lakes District

Brisbane
3 posts
The Lakes District

We will be travelling from Santiago with 2 children (6 and 4) at the end of June and was wondering if anyone could suggest an itiniery for us to do and the best way to get from Santiago - car,bus etc? We will have up to 10 days to explore.

Santiago, Chile
Destination Expert
for Chile, Santiago
Level Contributor
7,030 posts
15 reviews
1. Re: The Lakes District

You must be aware that June is winter in Chile. It could be quite wet in the Lakes District. It is easy to travel around in Chile either by car or by bus. The car is more expensive but more flexible. The bus service is cheap and good quality.

I would suggest a few days in Santiago, a visit to Valparaiso, perhaps a trip into the Andes and going either south or north.

Brisbane
3 posts
2. Re: The Lakes District

Thanks for that - we have our trip to Peru all planned but then have abut 2 weeks when we want to go down south from Santiago. Any suggestions for an itiniery around the Lakes District, Pucon etc.

Santiago, Chile
Destination Expert
for Chile
Level Contributor
11,485 posts
30 reviews
3. Re: The Lakes District

You may get lucky with the weather and have clear days, but it is more likely to rain or be overcast. This will take away the views of the volcanoes and limit what you can do. The hot springs are an option in any weather and Huife, half an hour outside Pucon, has children's pools and restaurant and café depending on what you want to eat. Your lodging can arrange transport and it doesn't add that much to the cost. You can hire bicycles if the weather is good. There really is not much to do in winter.

If you have a car (which you can rent down there) you can visit other towns in the lake district. The best value for a family are "cabañas", cabins, with a small kitchen which allows you to self-cater some or all your meals.

You can certainly bus down to Pucon (or anywhere else in Chile) on an overnight bus. Choose "Cama" service for comfort. Those will be three seats across, two and one. You might fit the small ones in one seat. Take snacks and drinks.

Have you considered going north? The weather is good and you have various places you can explore. You can do it in stages by bus if you want. Going to La Serena (about 6 hours north) will give you access to the Elqui Valley and its virtually constant sunshine. Further north is San Pedro de Atacama. There are tours to geysers, salt flats etc. all year. It is nice in the winter as not so hot in the day. Temperatures drop sharply at night.

Lunenburg, Canada
Destination Expert
for Saint John, Foz do Iguacu, Prince Edward Island
Level Contributor
3,947 posts
6 reviews
4. Re: The Lakes District

Hi Brisbane!

With children in tow, why would you do anything but rent a car!

The other writers who have commented on the weather are quite correct. Chile south of Concepcion is greener than Ireland, thanks to all the rain. I traveled in November, and even that late in the spring it rained every day. In June, it is doubtless going to be worse.

If you've never traveled into temperate-zone winter rains, I caution you that a week of rain can turn your vacation trip into misery. Especially with kids, I don't think I'd want it to happen.

There is lots to explore in central and north-central Chile, where the days will be slightly longer, a lot warmer and, with some luck, very much sunnier.

There are the old street elevators of Valparaiso, the sparkling, but icy-cold-in-winter beaches of Viña del Mar, Los Vilos and La Serena, and the little seafront villages that dot the coast north of Valparaiso.

Let me put in a plug for the Elqui valley, east of La Serena. The Elqui is where the great Southern Hemisphere observatories are located, because they're guaranteed 330 clear nights a year. From Vicuña, up in the valley, you could go to the top of the Mamalluca Observatory, which is open to tourist visitors in the evenings.

Happy travels, and let me know if I can help further!

David

capetien10@gmail.com

5. Re: The Lakes District

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