Without doubt, Puerto Varas is one of Chile’s most emblematic cities. Located in Region X (known as the region of lakes and volcanoes), it is just 20 kilometers from Puerto Montt. This city is magical from every perspective and its many attractions can be enjoyed during the daytime as well as at night. It is located on the shore of Lago Llanquihue (Llanquihue Lake), where there is a lovely walkway along the beach, which is where part of the daily life of the inhabitants takes place. Puerto Varas and Lago Llanquihue are emblematic of the German Colonization in the region, which began in 1853.
Activities in Puerto Varas
There are plenty of activities, both in the city of Puerto Varas and nearby.
· Visit the Vicente Pérez Rosales National Park, the oldest park in Chile, created in 1926. Located in Llanquihue Province, it has a surface area of 253,789 hectares. Access to the Park is via International Route 225 from Puerto Varas.
· Visit the Saltos de Petrohué which are located inside the Vicente Pérez Rosales National Park; these are a small series of waterfalls down volcanic rock originating from the Osorno Volcano (2652 m.a.s.l.) which flow into the Río Petrohué, which in turn drains into Lago Todos Los Santos. They were produced by unique geological formations resulting from glacial advance and retreat. The water is emerald colored and the falls are surrounded by abundant vegetation. The Todos Los Santos Lake is of glacial and volcanic origin. The turquoise color of its water is a result of the large quantity of silicate crystals created by the glacial erosion and melt on the Tronador Volcano. If you like, you can take a boat ride from Petrohué for a view of the Osorno and Puntiagudo Volcanoes and the native forest on the lakeshore all the way to Peulla.
· The Cathedral of Puerto Varas – the Parish Church of the Sagrado Corazón de Jesús (Sacred Heart of Jesus) is an icon of the city and a fine example of Chilean architecture. It was begun in 1915 at the behest of the Jesuit order, inspired by typical European 19th century architecture. Constructed in oak with steel sheets, it was completed in 1918. Its internal layout is divided into a main nave and two lateral naves, which end in a great dome under which is the altar. The church can be found on the corner of San Francisco and Verbo Divino streets.
· Visit the Pablo Fierro Museum, located on Avenida Costanera, founded in 2006. It has a great collection of antiques, drawings, paintings of local historical buildings, most of which are painted by the artist, Pablo Fierro, for whom the museum is a personal artistic project.