ultramarinus – beyond the sea

DAY 55 (1 OF 4) – WATER FINALLY, CHILOE ISLAND, CHILE

Two flights, 4 hours of bus ride, 15 minutes of ferry, some 2100km due south.  From the Atacama to Chiloe Island, it was as if we had gone to another planet, from Mars back to the Earth.  The airport at Castro, the biggest city on Chiloe Island, has recently opened.  A guide told us that some visitors from the Atacama would now fly to Chiloe for a weekend just to experience the rain, which is such a rarity in the desert.  And if one comes to Chiloe looking for rain, one should never be disappointed, as it rains almost everyday on this Pacific archipelago.
Once isolated from the rest of Chile, Chiloe has maintained unique characteristics distinct from the rest of the nation.  On this land, legends and mystic beliefs pass down from one generation to another and still exist as part of the daily life. After the Spanish conquered the island, Catholic priests spent 8 months in a year boating to all corners of Chiloe and other outlying islands, staying 3 days at each community to perform services.  Throughout the archipelago, more than 160 churches were built, 14 of which are now enlisted on UNESCO’s World Heritage List.  Earthquakes and tsunamis destroyed many communities on Chiloe multiple times, and over and over again houses and churches were rebuilt. What’s more? Master boat building techniques renowned throughout Chile; tons of seafood variety including king crabs, locos (abalone-like), oysters, clams, and many many mussels.  A unique island with culture and traditions deeply rooted to this isolated land and the open Pacific. That’s Chiloe.

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Atacama Desert

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Chiloe Island

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Previous Destination – San Pedro de Atacama, beginning from post Day 49

Read more on Chiloe and Puerto Varas  in 2013 South America
Day 55.1 – Water Finally, Chiloe
Day 55.2 – Chacao Channel, Chiloe
Day 55.3 – Tide, Castro, Chiloe
Day 55.4 – Iglesia San Francisco, Castro, Chiloe
Day 56.1 – Palfitos, Castro, Chiloe
Day 56.2 – Wooden Tequilas Houses, Chiloe
Day 56.3 – Achao, Isla Quinchao
Day 57.1 – Parque Nacional Chiloe
Day 57.2 – Chanquin and Playa Cucao, Chiloe
Day 58.1 – Isla Aucar, Colo, Tenaun San Juan, Chiloe
Day 58.2 – Boat Building, San Juan, Chiloe
Day 58.3 – Seafood, Chiloe
Day 59.1 – Palafito 1326, Castro, Chiloe
Day 59.2 – Chacao Channel Again, Chiloe
Day 59.3 – City, Lago Llanquihue & Volcan Osorno, Puerto Varas
Day 60 – Parque Nacional Vicente Perez Rosales, Petrohue
Day 61.1 – Latitude 51-41’28”, Puerto Natales
Day 61.2 – Afrigonia, Puerto Natales

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South America 2013 – Our Destinations
Buenos Aires (Argentina), Iguazu Falls (Argentina/Brazil), Pantanal (Brazil), Brasilia (Brazil), Belo Horizonte & Inhotim (Brazil), Ouro Preto (Brazil), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Paraty (Brazil), Sao Paulo (Brazil), Samaipata & Santa Cruz (Bolivia), Sucre (Bolivia), Potosi (Bolivia), Southwest Circuit (Bolivia), Tilcara, Purmamarca, Salta (Argentina), Cafayate (Argentina), San Pedro de Atacama (Chile), Antofagasta & Paranal Observatory (Chile), Chiloe (Chile), Puerto Varas (Chile), Torres del Paine (Chile), Ushuaia (Argentina), El Chalten (Argentina), El Calafate (Argentina), Isla Magdalena (Argentina), Santiago (Chile), Valparaiso (Chile), Afterthought

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