April 24 2017

Puerto Montt: what to see in the gateway to Chilean Patagonia


Puerto Montt is one of the most critical ports in Chile and the gateway to Chilean Patagonia from the north. It is also a beautiful city with attractions you should include in your travel plans! Here are ten places you can't miss.

Puerto Montt is the starting point to discovering the Chilean side of Patagonia.

Founded in February 1853 at the head of the Seno de Reloncaví, this "village" was to be a base for trade between the region and the rest of the country, a role it maintains today, says InterPatagonia.

The place was already playing a crucial role in the province of Llanquihue in the Los Lagos region before it became a city. There was a shipyard where locals extracted the local alerce wood (redwood) for timber to commerce, and many families lived in the surrounding area.

This large concentration of people led the Chilean government to create a strategic city for national trade, as it's in a bay that connects the country with the Aysén and the Magallanes and Chilean Antarctica regions.

Today, Puerto Montt stands out for its picturesque port architecture, marked by the influences of German immigrants and native communities, and a natural environment that includes lakes, rugged coasts, islands and forests, and volcanoes.

That is why it is one of the must-see cities in Chilean Patagonia!

Must-see stops in Puerto Montt include:

  1. The seaside resort of Pelluco, where you find restaurants and bars to enjoy excellent views of the bay of Puerto Montt and the historic church of Santa Cruz.
  2. The Cayenel neighborhood, located between Allende Avenue and Chillán Street, next to the waterfront overlooking the bay, is one of the city's oldest commercial districts.
  3. The cove and fish market of Angelmó, next to the Muelle de Los Paseos, is renowned for its palafitos and local food restaurants, making Puerto Montt Chile's seafood capital, says Frommer's travel guide.
  4. The monument Sentados Frente al Mar, a statue of two lovers embracing on the city's waterfront, the work of artist Robinson Barrí, inspired by a song about Puerto Montt by the band Los Iracundos.
  5. The Parque Costanera begins on Avenida Allende and ends at the city's Main Square (Plaza de Armas).
  6. The Pueblito Melipulli, a market of craft stores, local products, and restaurants, is located next to the Puerto Montt bus terminal.
  7. The Cathedral of Puerto Montt, also known as Parroquia Nuestra Señora del Carmen de Puerto Montt, is built of alerce redwood, with its characteristic copper dome and design inspired by the Parthenon of Athens.
  8. The Bicentennial Chinquihue Stadium ranked sixth in the 2013 Stadium of The Years list of the most beautiful stadiums in the world by the StadiumDB database.
  9. The Juan Pablo II historical museum, where you learn more about the city, is located on the waterfront.
  10. The Caleta La Arena is a picturesque town located 45 minutes south of Puerto Montt, on the first stretch of the Carretera Austral highway.
  11. Puerto Montt's several viewpoints, from the Miramar viewpoint on the waterfront to the Valle Volcanes viewpoint at the city's highest point.

The municipality of Puerto Montt offers free guided tours to several of these attractions, be sure to check their availability!

We invite you to download our guide to activities to do in Patagonia to find out what other regional attractions to visit.

How to get to Puerto Montt

By sea, you can get there from Puerto Natales on board the Navimag ferry, Esperanza, which takes you sailing along the Patagonian Fjords scenic route.

By land, you can access the city via Route 5 (the Panamerican Highway), which connects Chile from Arica to Puerto Montt. You can arrive by car or bus.

By air, you land at Puerto Montt’s “El Tepual” Airport. There are several daily flights from Santiago. Flights take approximately two hours.  The airport is just 16 km from the city center.

A city you can't miss in your Patagonian travels

Your trip to Chilean Patagonia may could you to Puerto Montt. Spend a couple of days there and visit some of these ten attractions to enjoy this pleasant destination.

These are our favorite must-see attractions in Patagonia!


Leave a comment

Posts that may interest you

Your Guide To Living Patagonia like a local

Want to live Patagonia at its fullest on your next trip? Then, go local.

All cities and destinations in Chilean Patagonia have hidden secrets. You could be one of the few lucky tourists to discover them.