We have always loved the south of Chile. These endless forests of native fauna catch our attention every time we have the opportunity to get away from the city for a few days, so we take advantage of every long weekend we can to leave the city to explore our country. This time, the trip took us on a trekking in the Nahuelbuta National Park.
This time we decided to go to the La Araucanía Region, a place we had not been lucky enough to visit before. They had told us a lot about this area, where it is possible to go trekking, swim on hot days in Lake Lanalhue, surf in the city of Lebu and many other activities.
What most struck us was the Nahuelbuta National Park, which, although it is far from being one of the most visited in the country, surprised us with its beauty. The locals and guides of the areas told us that there is no traveler who regrets to come, simply amaze anyone.
After 8 hours of car trip from Santiago, we stayed in one of the closest towns to the park. As we wanted to sleep in a quiet place and where we could relax, we decided to stay in a hotel on the banks of Lake Lanalhue, one of the most beautiful lakes in the area and where every summer many families come to enjoy the sun, do water sports such as skiing aquatic, rides in boats and jet skis and bicycle. We went in October, so the temperatures were not warm enough to bathe, one more reason to come back!
The next day our adventure began with a trekking in the Nahuelbuta National Park. It can be reached by two roads, one that leaves from Angol and another from Cañete. It is important to go in a car with very good traction because, especially in the rainy season, the roads can be quite bad. From Cañete the road is only 46 kilometers but it takes about 2 hours to reach the park access, it is full of curves and you can not avoid stopping to look at the flora.
You can see how the landscape changes as you go up to the Nahuelbuta mountain range, at 1,400 meters above sea level, the trees thicken, increase in size and the environment becomes damp and cold.
Declared a national park in 1939, the Nahuelbuta National Park covers an area of more than 6,800 hectares and is characterized mainly by its enormous thousand-year-old araucarias that at great heights can grow quite far from each other, and from which lichens hang from their branches and in its trunk. These towering trees live on the banks of the different paths within the park and on all sides, making you feel really small because they can reach more than 50 meters high. The oldest ones date back to 2,000 years ago, so they have accompanied us for millennia in this place.
In the park live pumas, pudúes, foxes and other smaller animals. They are not easy to see, because they stay away from the trails and tourist areas, but you can be lucky and manage to spot some in your visit. If you meet one, look at it from afar and do not interrupt what you are doing.
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