Valdivia – Chile (Lake District)
Valdivia, the site of the largest earthquake in recorded history – a 9.5 on the Richter scale in 1960, is located about 15 km from the Pacific coast, where the Calle Calle, Valdivia and Cau Cau Rivers converge.
Doing a boat or kayak tour in the “City of Rivers” and the Carlos Anwandtner Nature Sanctuary is a must with its nice views and rich birdlife.
Really nice is Valdivia’s coastal boulevard with its old submarine and the Feria Fluvial, a market with local food, fish & handicrafts. Watching the sea lions, cormorants and pelicans beg for a meal here is so entertaining.
Just across the river is Teja Island, home to the botanical garden (free), the Museo Histórico y Antropológico and the Laguna Los Lotos, a haven for bird spotting.
Valdivia is also an artisan beer paradise with a long list of breweries, tasting shouldn’t be missing on your list to do.
In the 17th century, the Spanish heavily fortified the point where the Río Valdivia and the Río Tornagaleones joins the Pacific. Today, the remains of these fortifications at Corral, Niebla and Isla Mancera are a strong reminder of its colonial past. Visiting Niebla’s 17th century fort, its Feria Costumbrista, and its beaches is a nice day trip to undertake (accessible by local bus).
Trekking & nature fanatics are gonna love the region’s reserves & parks, have a blast at Reserva Punta Curiñanco, Parque Oncol & the Alerce Costero National Park.
HOSTEL BOSQUE NATIVO – Budget Category
This is a classic and a top choice hostel in Valdivia. Decorated almost entirely in wood, the accommodation offers warm, rustic and cozy surroundings with spacious communal areas such as the living room and fully equipped kitchen.
This hostel is excellent value for money offering a varied breakfast with soft towels included and a top-notch service from the dedicated crew.
The hostel’s international public can choose between single, double and triple ensuite rooms with TV (two triples with shared bathroom) or book a bed in one of the two six-bed dorms with lockers. Hostel Bosque Nativo is superbly located in a quiet little street in downtown Valdivia at just one block from the river and three blocks from the main plaza.
Bosque Nativo is a member of the AIFBN, a non-profit organization whose goal it is to protect the native forests or “bosques nativos”! Ask the owners for more info!