Chileâs Northern Patagonia is a magical land full of natural and cultural uniqueness.
Almost half of the region is protected by national parks and reserves, providing endless opportunities for hiking. The Sendero de Chile extends from the north to the south, allowing for days-long adventures well away from tourist crowds. There are mountains to climb, glaciers to be trekked, lakes teeming with trout to be fished and roiling rivers to raft or kayak. In summer you can join locals in the celebration of their country fairs and attend rodeos.
Although most people come during those austral summer months, winter also beckons travelers. Quite a few of the parks remain open in winter. Their trails may be explored by snowshoe, alpine trekking and cross-country skiing. Near Coyhaique is Centro de Ski El Fraile, an alpine ski resort with five runs.
At any time of the year, the perfect way to relax after a long day of sightseeing or traveling is to soak in the agues termales (hot springs) that dot the countryside.
Upon re-declaring her independence at age 29, Lorraine Caputo packed her trusty Rocinante (so her knapsack's called) and began...