Hiking Araucarias Biosphere Reserve 5D Tour

Araucarias Biosphere Reserve is located in the Andes Mountain range, in south-central Chile. The main feature of this UNESCO Biosphere Reserve is the massive presence of Araucaria trees. Likewise, there are other amazing highlights such as: active volcanoes, indigenous communities, 7 wilderness protected areas and dozens of thermal hot springs. We invite you to Hike this beautiful area along our local guides.

Highlights:
– Conguillio, Huerquehue and Villarrica National Parks
– Amazing vies of Lakes, Volcanoes and pristine nature
– Visit to Geometricas Hot Springs
– 4 nights lodging at comfortable Hotel in Conguillio and Pucon
– Local English speaking guide
– Combine this trip with Torres Del Paine, Wine country, Atacama Desert or Easter Island Add on tour

Day 01

TEMUCO AIRPORT – CONGULLIO NATIONAL PARK

“Welcome to the First Geopark in Chile”

Departing from Temuco’s Airport, we’ll drive about 2 hours passing through old-fashioned little towns like Cunco and Melipeuco until we’ll get to the Conguillío National Park, one of the most attractive and outstanding parks of the Lakes & Volcanoes District and the first Geopark in Chile.
While we visit the park you will witness how the Llaima volcano has permanently shaped the landscape of the area with its eruptions and you’ll have the fantastic opportunity to walk on the lava flows that once came from the heart of the Earth.

We’ll also visit the Truful-Truful Falls and its incredible Canyon. After spending some time taking pictures and enjoying the amazing view, we’ll continue driving to our eco-friendly lodge called La Baita, where we’ll enjoy dinner and rest.

/ Dinner /

Day 02

CONGULLIO NATIONAL PARK – PUCON

Departing from our lodge, we’ll drive about 30 minutes to the head of the Sierra Nevada trail, passing by the pristine Arco Iris (Rainbow) Lagoon with its clear waters that reflect stunning colors. Then we’ll visit an area covered by volcanic piroclastic bombs at Playa Linda (cute beach) located at the shores of Conguillío Lake; followed by hiking along the Sierra Nevada trail (5 hours round trip) surrounded by native trees, including ancient monkey-puzzle trees or araucarias and Nothofagus. We’ll also be able to spot endemic birds such as the magellan woodpecker (Campephilus magellanicus), which we will see searching the tree trunks for insects. We will also hear and possibly catch a glimpse of the chucao tapaculo (Selorchilis rubecula) and the noisy slender-billed parakeet (Enicognatus leptorhynchus). After spending some time taking pictures and enjoying the amazing view, we’ll hike back to the bottom of the trail and then get in the van to drive to commence our return to the urban areas, driving to Pucón.

Lodging at selected Hotel in Pucon
/ Breakfast / Box Lunch /

Day 03

HUERQUEHUE NATIONAL PARK

We head southeast in the direction of Huerquehue National Park, located at the foothills of the Andes, 35 km (22 miles) from Pucón.

The hike starts easy but after a short distance the trail becomes more demanding and sometimes steeper, but is still considered a relatively easy hiking level.
We have arrived at the first lookout point where the views of Villarrica Volcano and Tinquilco Lake are absolutely stunning; here you’ll find great photo opportunities as well as chance to reenergize with a snack. As we continue hiking, our guide will point out some wild flora of the area (i.e. mutisias, orchids and alstroemerias), and if luck is on our side, we can spot some birds that live in the forests of Nothofagus, such as chucao tapaculo, black-throated huet-huet and the magellan woodpecker among others.

Once we reach 1000 meters above sea level we begin to see the first araucarias trees. Soon we will walk through a mixed forest with many of these trees, considered to be a living fossil and a national monument for their exceptional characteristics.

We have hiked around 2½ hours when we arrive at the first lake called Chico (small), with its clear waters reflecting the image of hundred of araucarias and snow-capped peaks. 15 minutes later, we arrive at Lago Toro (Bull Lake). Here we eat our well deserved picnic lunch and spend some more time taking pictures or simply resting. We can watch the breathtaking landscape and spot some of the birdlife that inhabits the shores of this lake, such as the Andean duck.

Following the break, we keep going through an easy terrain and visit the third lake called Verde (green) which is the last attraction of our hike. Now we can commence a two-hour decent by the same trail to the parking area. After the hike, we’ll return to Pucón. Upon arriving to Pucón, we’ll check the mountain gear for ascending Villarrica Volcano next morning.

Lodging at selected Hotel in Pucon
/ Breakfast / Box Lunch /

Day 04

PUCON – VILLARRICA NATIONAL PARK – PICHILLANCAHUE GLACIER

Departing from Pucón, we head southeast driving 35 km / 22 miles to Palguín valley through the National Park Villarrica, enjoying views of scenic waterfalls formed by basaltic rock and several majestic snow-capped volcanoes such as Quetrupillán (2.390 m / 7.841 feet) and Rucapillan (2.847 meters / 9.340 feet). The vegetation changes from raulí (Nothofagus alpina) and hualle (Nothofagus oblicua) forests to araucarias (Araucaria araucana) as we ascend to Chinay, the highest point of the day at 1.250 meters / 4.101 feet altitude. From Chinay we’ll experience a descent through the forest; jumping and dodging natural obstacles like roots and mud puddles.

After an almost 7-hour exhausting hike, we will reward our physical effort by visiting the Geometricas Hot Springs. This place offers the perfect combination between thermal facilities and natural surroundings. Located in the environs of the park, Termas Geometricas has 16 strategically located thermal pools, allowing the visitors to never feel overcrowded. The natural surroundings are exuberant and the facilities are simple but very cozy. Finally we get in the minibus and return to Pucón. While driving down the road we’ll have a wonderful view of Calafquén Lake, which is situated on the eastern border of Coñaripe, a town that was totally destroyed by the 1964 eruption of the Villarrica volcano (Rucapillan).

Lodging at selected Hotel in Pucon
/ Breakfast / Box Lunch /

Day 05

TRANSFER OUT TO TEMUCO OT BUS TO PUERTO VARAS

Private transfer from Pucón to Temuco airport or Bus Station
End of services

/ Breakfast /

* This Hiking trip can be extended one day by ascending Villarrica Volcano.
** You can continue this great Hiking tour heading by bus towards Puerto Varas town, enjoying some extra Hikes at Vicente Perez Rosales and Alerce Andino National Parks. As well connecting with Puerto Montt and taking a 2 hrs flight to Punta Arenas, being able to hike Torres del Paine National Park.

• Professional local English speaking guide
• Lodging 4 nights at comfortable Hotels
• Private services and air conditioned vehicles
• Mentioned meals on itinerary; breakfast, box lunch dinner
• Transfer In and OUT
• Hikes and visits described on itinerary
• Entrance fee to National Parks, Reserves and attractions.

• International and local flights (we can help you buy local flights)
• Accident Insurance (you MUST have your own insurance)
• Laundry
• Beverages & cocktails not included on menus
• Tips for drivers and guides

Hiking, natural hot springs, Chilean culture, history, flora and fauna

Tour dates 2014-15 – You can set your own date with a minimum of 2 persons

DIFFICULTY
Medium, designed for people who lead active lives and are comfortable participating in up to [6] hours of physical activity per day. Programs at this level generally involve some activities of higher intensity and/or a more vigorous pace. This program is not suitable for hikers that have problems with altitude.

PACKING TIPS
We advise you to bring clothing for warm and cold weather; base layers, windbreaker, gloves, hiking boots, a pair of sneakers, sunglasses, bathing suit and sandals. Don’t forget your camera!

HOTELS
As indicated in the program or similar

VEHICLES
Clean and comfortable air conditioned vehicle

AIRLINE INFORMATION
We can help you buy local flights at the best rates for you, just let us now

INSURANCE
Any policy you purchase should, at the very least, cover trip cancellation, loss of baggage, accident/life coverage, travel delays, and non-refundable airline tickets. Carriers for travel insurance include Travel Guard and Travelex. You may also consider insurance that covers emergency medical evacuation. Search the web to find the best deal that suits your needs – read the fine print

SAFETY
Chile is by far one of the safest countries in South America in terms of public health and crime. We are proud to affirm that our police are one of the least corrupt in the world; they are always friendly and helpful.