Chiloe, Chile!!

Hitchhiking, beautiful places, and a God who speaks so clearly!!

We left Valdivia with the hopes of hitching all the way to Chiloe in one day. We weren’t really sure what that would look like, but thought it was plausible with the possibility of us getting a hitch with the right person. We got up early, had one last amazing breakfast at AiresBuenas Hostel, said goodbye to the friends we made there, and hit the road. We walked and walked and walked for quite some time before getting a hitch out of town.

A dad picked us up and took us from Valdivia to Ruta 5 (The highway that runs through Chile) and from there a milkman picked us up. The milkman took us all the way to where he was getting of the highway to drop off the milk, and this happened to be right next to a little hill. The best part about hitchhiking is getting dropped off in the middle of nowhere!! We decided to climb the little hill and have lunch at the top. After lunch, it took us quite some time to get another ride. We walked and walked again until an older man picked us up and insisted on taking us into the town of Puerto Varas. Again, another great thing about hitching.. You never know where you will end up.

Mid hitch lunch on top of a hill.

Mid hitch lunch on top of a hill.

This hitch was such a blessing. The little town of Puerto Varas is so beautiful. We were able to relax for a bit, talk to people about traveling down to Chiloe, have amazing tacos, and really enjoy the city. The morning we were supposed to leave Puerto Varas there was a huge thunderstorm with loads of rain. It literally poured for over five hours. We figured we would have to buy a bus ticket out of town, but the Lord had other plans.

Puerto Varas!!

Puerto Varas!!

Huge Volcano in the background!

Huge Volcano in the background!

Our tiny little hobbit room!

Our tiny little hobbit room!

Walking around..

Walking around..

Delicious street tacos!!

Delicious street tacos!!

We enjoyed checking out all the boats in town!

We enjoyed checking out all the boats in town!

Such a beautiful night!

Such a beautiful night!

The cute little town of Puerto Varas at night.

The cute little town of Puerto Varas at night.

We walked with another lady to find the bus station to get our tickets, but when we got there the computer was down so we couldn’t buy our tickets, but instead only reserve them. This turned into us hanging out at the hostel until about 2:00 in the afternoon, and by that time the rain had let up, so we cancelled our bus reservations and made our way out of town to hitchhike to Chiloe!!

Pouring. Pouring. Pouring.

Pouring. Pouring. Pouring.

We didn’t even have time to take our backpacks off before someone had pulled over to pick us up. He took us all the way to the Chiloe exit, and from there a really nice semi truck driver literally drove us all the way into Castro, and he even bought us chocolate bars! It was perfect- again we got picked up so quickly and both the people that picked us up were extremely nice and patient with our poor Spanish.

The driver who picked us up.

The driver who picked us up.

There is the semi that picked us up hitchhiking and brought us to Castro.

There is the semi that picked us up hitchhiking and brought us to Castro.

Once we got into Castro, we had to try and find the place we were planning on staying for the night- a camping AirBnB place. We didn’t have internet to search for the address, and had no idea where it was, so we started just walking down one street to find internet. As we were walking, we looked to our right and there it was. The place we were supposed to stay for the night just happened to be on the random street we chose to walk down. Thank you Lord!! We set up camp, met our camping neighbors, and walked around for a bit before enjoying dinner.

This is our Airbnb were we camped for a few days and stayed inside for a couple nights.

This is our Airbnb were we camped for a few days and stayed inside for a couple nights.

Another view of the Airbnb's backyard.

The cool backyard campsite at the Airbnb.

The cool backyard campsite at the Airbnb.

Another view of the Airbnb’s backyard.

Castro, Chiloe

Sunset from our fourth night on the beach and our first night in our new killer site!!

From our campsite in Castro we were able to see the ships lit up at night. Pretty beautiful view!

From our campsite in Castro we were able to see the ships lit up at night. Pretty beautiful view!

The next day was spent walking aimlessly around Castro trying to schedule a boat off the island and figure out what the island had to offer. This proved to be more of a task than we thought with nobody having patience with our broken Spanish. We eventually found where we needed to buy the ticket and found out that there were no boats leaving that had open seats for a week and a half. So there you have it, we were staying on the island for a week and a half, when we had planned to be there for only three or four days.

{Traveler’s Tip… Book your ticket off the island before you get to the island! Research what you want to do and how long you want to be there because the boats off the island only leave certain days and during the high season they fill up fast. If you want to book your ticket in person, the place to do it is at the tourist place that can be found on the same street as the big yellow church, but to the right of the plaza when looking at the church.}

We got new coffee/food/whatever mugs.

We got new coffee/food/whatever mugs.

Palafitos everywhere!!

Palafitos everywhere!!

The older more traditional palafitos

The older more traditional palafitos

Castro, Chiloe

The Castro city church.

And the church at night!

And the church at night!

The colors all over this island were amazing!!

The colors all over this island were amazing!!

The gorgeous wooden church on the inside!

The gorgeous wooden church on the inside!

The "sandwiches" here were amazing. And we finally found some good beer and mixed drinks!

The “sandwiches” here were amazing. And we finally found some good beer and mixed drinks!

Again, another treat from our favorite cafe in Castro: Lemon Pie.

Again, another treat from our favorite cafe in Castro: Lemon Pie.

Our favorite cafe in Castro, Chiloe. We had a nice coffee, hot chocolate, and a carrot cake.

Our favorite cafe in Castro, Chiloe. We had a nice coffee, hot chocolate, and a carrot cake.

Palafitos everywhere.

Palafitos everywhere.

Castro, Chiloe

A cool boat beached.

After booking our tickets, we hung around Castro for a couple of days enjoying the city before hitchhiking to Parque National Chiloe. Our first hitch was with two guys that were extremely excited about us being from the states because the motor they just picked up was one from the states as well. After them, a girl named Daniela picked us up and took us all the way to the national park. She was really nice, and since she spoke English, we were able to talk a lot with her!

The national park was not what we expected, and we actually ended up just camping on the beach for five nights instead of doing one of the treks in the park. This turned out to be amazing. We were in the middle of the beach where nobody else was around and were able to fulfill our dream of sleeping on the sand. The first night we laid out the footprint of our tent, threw out our sleeping bags, and slept under the stars. Nothing between us and the stars except for the nighttime breeze. On top of it being a perfect night with the weather to sleep under the stars, there was also a completely full moon! It was gorgeous!! Our God is way too good to us!

Making our way to the beach.. walking over a bridge that is partially made out of an old boat.

Making our way to the beach.. walking over a bridge that is partially made out of an old boat.

Playing with an anchor that we found on the shore.

Playing with an anchor that we found on the shore.

Soakin' in some sun while we can!!

Soakin’ in some sun while we can!!

Too much beauty not to share!!

Too much beauty not to share!!

Sunsets!!!

Sunsets!!!

In the morning, we were awoken by a slight mist, which ended up turning into rain. We quickly set up our tent, threw everything inside and laughed at how we woke up after falling asleep so perfectly! The next few days were spent enjoying soaking in the sun when it wasn’t raining, collecting seashells, and spending lots of time with the Lord. It was just what we needed.

LOVE

LOVE

We didn't really have any shade on the beach so we improvised with putting some sticks in the ground and attaching the hammock to it. It worked out really well, actually.

We didn’t really have any shade on the beach so we improvised with putting some sticks in the ground and attaching the hammock to it. It worked out really well, actually.

Our first penguin. A dead one... So sad.

Our first penguin. A dead one… So sad.

The wind was so crazy on the beach that it was picking the sand up and blowing it right through the mesh of our tent.

The wind was so crazy on the beach that it was picking the sand up and blowing it right through the mesh of our tent.

A nice GoPro pic of our arboursabroad handle and us camping on a beach to ourselves.

A nice GoPro pic of our arboursabroad handle and us camping on a beach to ourselves.

Heather found a horse jaw on the beach of Chiloe.

Heather found a horse jaw on the beach of Chiloe.

Watching the sunset while snuggled in warm in our tent!!

Watching the sunset while snuggled in warm in our tent!!

Again.. absolutely amazing sunsets!!

Again.. absolutely amazing sunsets!!

Can't beat this view!!

Can’t beat this view!!

Oh the places our backpacks will go!!

Oh the places our backpacks will go!!

When the water went out the traces left from the shells were so pretty!

When the water went out the traces left from the shells were so pretty!

We had so much fun collecting beach goodies from around our tent!

We had so much fun collecting beach goodies from around our tent!

After sleeping for three nights on the beach, we decided to get out of the sand and try and find somewhere where we could get fresh water, since we only had less than a liter left. We packed up camp, and started hiking down the coastline. We found a river that flowed into the ocean, so we hiked up a little trail and found the absolute perfect spot to spend a couple more nights.

A bridge made out of a boat.

A bridge made out of a boat.

A cool beach house on Chiloe.

A cool beach house on Chiloe.

Our second campsite!!

Our second campsite!!

Couldn't resist capturing the reflection on the water!

Couldn’t resist capturing the reflection on the water!

After spending two more nights again just enjoying the beauty around us, we decided we would try to hitch to a different place we had heard of that had a really nice hike. We got a hitch into the town of Cucao, had an awesome lunch, and started walking in the direction of Rahue to go to Muelle de las Almas. Luckily we were able to get two more hitches to the lookout because it was an extremely long drive up and down hills that would not have been fun to walk.

Muelle de las Almas was amazing. This lookout is something that an artist constructed on someone’s property and the owners use it as a tourist attraction. It is in such a beautiful place, and we were so glad the people that own that land share its beauty with other people. It felt so good to get back on a trail and hike again. The hike reminded us so much of the Oregon Coast, and got us thinking about all the beauty we have back around our hometown.

{Traveler’s Tip.. Do the hike to Muelle de las Almas. The scenery is gorgeous, and it’s a fairly simple hike and definitely worth the money. Hitchhiking out there and back was pretty easy, and we think the only other way to get out there if you don’t hitch is by doing it through a tour, but those cost an arm and a leg and the entrance fee is only 1,500 CHP (just over 2 USD).}

Hiking to the lookout!!

Hiking to the lookout!!

Such a fun trail!!

Such a fun trail!!

The scenery here is absolutely gorgeous!

The scenery here is absolutely gorgeous!

Random artwork, but glad we got to enjoy it!

Random artwork, but glad we got to enjoy it!

Ready to fly!!

Ready to fly!!

God's beauty combined with manmade beauty!! Couldn't ask for a better hike!

God’s beauty combined with manmade beauty!! Couldn’t ask for a better hike!

Running out to get a pic!

Running out to get a pic!

After sitting and enjoying the beauty for an hour or two, we decided we should head back so we could catch a hitch back into town. We weren’t sure if we were going to stay in Cucao for a night, or head into Castro, but the hitch that we picked up was going all the way to Castro, so we decided we would go there too. We road in the back of a truck for nearly two hours with another couple, and we all nearly froze. But hey, it was a ride so we had to take it!

At this point, we still had five more nights to kill before our boat took off. We spent the five nights moving from place to place, simply relaxing and spending time trying to figure out where the Lord has us heading next, and kayaking down the shore line of the palafitios in Castro.

Some of the best potstickers we have ever had.

Some of the best potstickers we have ever had.

Then the sushi came out and we almost fell on the floor because of the excitement/anticipation for the meal.

Then the sushi came out and we almost fell on the floor because of the excitement/anticipation for the meal.

Palafitos everywhere!!

Palafitos everywhere!!

More palafitos.

More palafitos.

Kayaking by the palafitos.

Kayaking by the palafitos.

More palafitos.

More palafitos.

Treasure Hunting!

Treasure Hunting!

Some of the fun shells on the ground!

Some of the fun shells on the ground!

And again... we loved this place!!

And again… we loved this place!!

View of the Palafito Sur Hostel when the water was out!

View of the Palafito Sur Hostel when the water was out!

The older more traditional palafitos

The older more traditional palafitos

The fun colors of the palafitos made our cameras clip way too many times!!

The fun colors of the palafitos made our cameras clip way too many times!!

A comparison of the low and high tides...somewhat high tide...

A comparison of the low and high tides…somewhat high tide…

Castro, Chiloe

…and low tide!!

In Chiloe, there are more than 300 species of potatoes that grow nowhere else in the world. So these deepfried potato chips were a nice treat!

In Chiloe, there are more than 300 species of potatoes that grow nowhere else in the world. So these deepfried potato chips were a nice treat!

{Traveler’s Tip… If you want to camp in town, there is a green house listed on AirBnB that has camping in their backyard. It’s super cheap and the location is great. It’s on the main waterfront street of Castro. If you’re not into camping, stay at Palafitio Sur Hostel. It’s a beautiful palafitio, and you can take out their kayak for free!!}

The Lord really used this time to speak so clearly to us, and although we were bummed at first about spending so much time on the island, we knew the Lord had our time there written out in His plan. We really enjoyed not having to think about where we were going in the next couple days, and truly just relaxing, which believe it or not, is something that doesn’t really happen often when you are backpacking.

We were finally able to leave Chiloe Saturday evening. We spent Saturday just relaxing at the hostel, enjoying a nice Valentine’s Day dessert at our favorite coffee shop in Castro, and packing our backpacks for our next adventure. We began hitching out of town around 4:00. Our first hitch was with an older man who took us down to the next big city. From there, a man picked us up and took us all the way into Quellon where our boat was taking off. This hitch was way more than we ever could have dreamed of. When we got into Quellon the man insisted on taking us out to dinner and buying our dinner for us! On top of that, he was working on the ferry we were taking, and he let us stay in his truck until it was time to board the ferry at 11:30pm. Again, hitching turned into such a huge blessing for us!

Before leaving Chiloe, the man who picked us while hitchhiking invited us to dinner and bought us this sandwich. He said, we better split. Good thing we did because this sandwich was HUGE!!!

Before leaving Chiloe, the man who picked us while hitchhiking invited us to dinner and bought us this sandwich. He said, we better split. Good thing we did because this sandwich was HUGE!!!


…On A Side Note…

 We are really far south in Patagonia right now, and are doing a lot of hiking and camping. With that said, we don’t have Internet service often, and when we do it’s usually not good enough to upload pictures and post a blog! So sorry we are so far behind, that just means you have more to look forward to later!!


…Where We Have Been And Where We Are Going…

 Wow! It has been just under a month since we have been to Chiloe. We have been so many places since! We have thoroughly enjoyed lots of hikes, incredible landscapes, and meeting loads of new friends! We traveled with two Chilean guys for a week before getting stuck in Villa O’Higgins for seven days where we became a traveling family with six other people. (When you get in a car accident with people, then get stuck in bad weather and only have one warm/dry place to hang out, you get really close to the people you are with!) Yes, we got in a car accident and nearly died, but no worries, everyone was okay. And yes, we got stuck in a tiny tiny town because the boat wouldn’t leave due to “bad weather”, but again no worries, we are on the move now!! We are still traveling with three of the six people, and we will be doing the Torres Del Paine circuit with them in just a couple days.


…Prayer Requests…

 *Pray for good health. Like we said, we are hiking and camping a lot so our health needs to be in top condition!

 *Pray for easy transitions with buses/hitchhiking. The services down here aren’t so regular and we don’t want to get stuck in one place again for a week!

 *Praise God for the beauty He has created for us to enjoy, and the ability that we have to share that beauty with you all!

 *Pray for our friends back home that are pregnant! Trust us, there are lots, and pregnant people need prayer!! So do their hubbies!!

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