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Aconcagua - 6959 m. - is a serious mountain, biggest in the southern and western hemisphere, the 332. biggest peak in the world, something quite challenging. Safe in infrastructure and crowds of people, unpredictable in weather – what I can confirm absolutely. It needs a special aproach and photos.  Exactly for that and account on my succes I give 11 form 10.

NP Huerquehue – real gem of IX. region of Chile. Park is quite similar to NP Lanin in Arqentina, but it´s absolutely worth to visit when you haven´t seen the Monkey Puzzle Trees (Aracarias). Except that, there are truly bueatiful lagoons with emeraldine water, steep cliffs and marvelous forest with outlook to smoking volcano Villarica. I spent there just one day, but 2 days are optimum, but when you don´t have time like me, one afternoon is better then nothing. But go at least until second lagoon (600-800  meters of elveation difference), where are the first araucarias. Bus goes from Pucón 6-7 times in a day, drive takes 1 hour and bus stops just at the entrance of park. There are more hiker trails. To cross NP and do a circle are possible. Entrance fee is 7 US$, with camping more. See the photos and map. 9 of 10 when you haven´t been in araucaria forest.

NP Alerce Andino – East of Puerto Montt in Chile - you can see here the rest of once abundant tree giant – Fitzorya Cuppressoides or shortly Alerce. But you have to search for them. The forest due to the plenty of rain-fall is very dense and the tree-tops are blending together in the sky. Bus from Puerto Montt to turn-off to NP (Chaica part) near the village Lenca goes 5-6 times a day (the first one at 8 o´clock). But the entrance is still 7-8 km up the road. Chance to get a lift is higher in early afternoon. First alerce is next 3 km farther, the lagoon 5,5 farther, and last lagoon 8 km from entrance. I walked about 30 km and the half of that is just walking in not very interesting valley. May be there are some alerce better to access in Argentina (NP Alerce). The weather is quite colder, the rain can occur whenever and lagoons are not so provoking to bath like those in NP Huerquehue. Crossing to north part of park I don´t reccomend, there´s no trail, just wall of mountainan. Otherwise the trail is in a good condition, but hardly marked, but every important crossing is marked clearly. See the photos and map. Just 4 of 10 account on such a long walk, although having quite a good weather.

NP Puyehue - is situated in IX. region of Chile near the border with Argentina. I was in the part with the volcano of the same name (2236 m), where I spent the night. The weather is very instable there and the rain-fall or rain-shover are present more time a day, humidity is very high, but it´s quite colder. Buses heading to/from Argentina (there are about 4 buses per day from Osorno also) stop just at the entrance of NP. The superelevation of Puyehue is 1800 m. Half of the way you go in dense, humid, always-green forest, the footpath is marked in the begining with wooden sticks red in colour. At the margin of the forest there is a cottage. From there you can go to geyser, lava fields, lagoons (7-8 hours). I went to Puyehue´s summit. There are many foot and horse steps, but no clear way, no trees or other orientation point – pay attention in bad weather. And the weather changes here very fast, therefore you need to do your own clear footpath. It´s quite exhausting. Outlook from the top is beautiful, also the crater full of snow is big and majestic. There are just a few of turist (I met 15 people). I slept on the summit, the night was quite cold, but the morning unforgetable. The entrance fee je quite high – 14 US$, you can hire a horse to do a trip (to qeysers, to summit). You can buy some basic food and take water at the entrance, because the spring near the cottage I haven´t found. I spent in NP 24 hours as stopover on my way from Argentina. See the photos and map. 8 of 10 when you hold on on summit until the morning comes.

Vale Encanto - very nice archeological place north of Santiago with the most famous Chilean petroglyphs (fee 1 US$). They are drawn on the big stones dispersed among the trees and cacti in hot valley. Sometimes it´s hard to identify them, it depends on the angle of view, the best time is in afternoon, but it works in the morning also. There are many buses from Ovale that pass the turn-off to Vale Encanto, you can take the long distance buses to Santiago as well. It is another 4-5 km from turn-off, bigger chance to get lift is in the afternoon. There is no food or safe water service. Socos Termas few kilometers south of Vale is not a thermal bath, but nice hotel with smal pool with partialy mineralised water – more cold than warm. But the surrounding is nice. NP Fray Jorge is quite off the way (40 km), and you are not allowed to go there to spend the night. See the photos. It´s amasing but I give 6 of 10 when comparing with other locations and when I take into account the walk.

Villarica vn. -  gorgeous volcano (2840 m) in volcanic chain in middle Chile near town Temuco. You can observe magma-eruption in crater. From Pucón to ski resort, where the slope and the trail begin it is about 14 km. Taxi costs 16 US$, but many people go there in the evening to see the sun-set. But in the middle of way there is a ranger´s house, but the fee of 10 US$ you can pay on your return. When people are present, the chair lift starts in the morning. But there are overmuch people because of easy climb and number of agencies in Pucón to buy the trip. First part of ascent is on rocks, then about 700 meters of elevation on snowy slope – footpath in switchbacks. You can slip on melting snow (but the weather on Villarica is much better than more in south), you should have piolet (ice axe) or crampons. Night trip or sleeping on summit could be possible. There are more chairlifts. You have to find that about 500 meters behind big sandwich-haus on the road behind the big sharp curve. From the top station of chair lift the trail goes uphill to the left on rocks, then on switchbacks directly to summit. I was told there are no crevasses on this way – the are in the other partes of Villarica´s slope ( mostly in the north and east – see from the summit). Return is very fast – at first in snowy canal on your hams (very funny!), then directly sliding in the small rocks. Ascent takes 4-5 hours, descent 1-2 hours, fee is 6 US$. Then you can rest in one of many thermal baht (See LP). It´s hard to get there without agency, the trip for whole evening (from 20,00 to 01,00) costs 21 US$. See the photos. And the outlook from Villarica? Let´s try it! 9 of 10.

NP Lircay -  reportedly the best one-day trek between Santiago and Temuco (LP). Park is not so exotic like the others, but very nice, more similar to European mountains, but very hot and dry. There ase some volcanos, but not so symetric like Osorno. One or two-day stop is very good choice – night spent on Enladrillado (12-13 km from entrance) has to be marvelous. There are 6-7 buses a day from from Talca – first goes at 7 o´clock, drive takes 1,5 hours until the camping where you can leave your luggage. The trail is badly marked, go directly until the sign changes the direction. At the entrance you get rough plan of treks – see the  photos and map. I give 7 of 10.

Iquique - fantastic desert town on the narrow strip of shore. Behind Iquique the great desert platform sharply rise up to about 600 m of elevation, the huge sand dune is just behind the last dusty street of city and farther nothing more then rocks and sand of Atacama – the driest desert in the world. Atmosphere is great – when you bath in the ocean in 2-3 m high water-waves and you look at desert wall. Water is quite cold, but waves are perfect, only few of people bath, most of them just sit in chair on the beach.
See the photos. Archeo-historical places remarked hereunder you can visit by agency (look LP), but you can´t do all three in one day. The best way is to rent the car. Like in other places in Chile, the cheapest cars are not so expensive to rent, but they are sold out or booked for weeks in advance. Toyota Corola is about 50 US$ per day. 8 of 10 when you do the whole circle.
Humberstone - one of many mining towns where the Chile-saltpetre was processed. Now it is a ghost town. Houses, hospital, market, saloon, church, theater and iron pool with dedans are the silent witnesses of the past. It is very impressive. Life conditions are horrible, gloominess of surrounding is tremendous – absolutely no plants, just barren land. Humberstone is like wild-western village and is worth to visit for at least 3-4 hours, acces is very simple. It is just at the turn-off from Panamericana to Iquique. Santa Laura (manufacture) is about 2 km more remote. Fee is optional (2 US$). When you have little of time, it´s pity not to visit. See the photos. 7 of 10.
Gigante de Atacama - Atacama´s giant is the biggest human image in the world. Lonesome old-timer looks from the slope with his rectangle eyes. The feeling is strange, like the visit of Abu Simbel. Not having the car or buyed the agency trip, the transpor t could be difficult. May be there are som buses, but from turn-off it is about 2 km to the hill (then go left!!, i tis on its west side). The best is to be there without the crowds. See the photo. When you see his rectangular head, body and alien eyes, you have the feeleing, that Deniken was right. 6 of 10.
Pintados - This archeological place is also not visited frequently. There are 4 hills with about 350 perfect geoglyphs in lenght of 2 km. Lokality is about 4-5 km from turn-off from Panamericana. The visit as walking-tour is surely exhausting the the heat of day, and I doubt about the presence of water. LP´s characterisation is exact. Best time to see the pictures and get a lift is in the later morning. Disposing of car don´t hasitate about the visit, and you can fully enjoy the spirit of the past. See the photos. 7 of 10.

Osorno - volcano Osorno (2661 m) is absolutely suggestiv and inevitably attracting. You can look at Osorno over the Lago LLanquihue or you can try to stand on its summit under the blue sky. I had the perfect weather to climb it (what is rare because of 300 rainy days per year), but the guide costs 330 US$ for one-day trip!! Disregarding the equipment. And I was the only one in the whole Puerto Varas with intention to do it . Trek takes 12-14 hours of marching and the trail begins at the end of chair lift in 1500 m. See the map.  No point to deal the price! I am not mountaineerer and I haven´t had experiences to climb Osorno alone. There is no clear pathway , the slope in some parts has 60 grades of inclination. Simple trip to chair lift costs 25 US$. When you succes on summit under blue sky, surely 10 of 10 - see the photos.

Chachani - 6057 m. - is said to be the easiest six thousand mountain in Peru. But don´t be mistaken when it´s your first six thousand. Base camp is in 5200 m, but it requires much more than 850 meters of efort to stand on summit. There is a great traverse, which is exhausting mostly on return. You need crampones and ice axe for sure and to do it on your own can be dangerous in bad weather, if you are not experienced climber. There are plenty of agencies in Arequipa – opened until 21,00-22,00 (look LP). Buy the food befor you step into the jeep, because they do the shop-stop in the very very expensive shop – there are many tourist, but no locals. Trip begins in the morning about 8-10. After one and half hour of drive you ascent to base camp. It takes only less then one hour. Next day we got up at 2 o´clock and at eight we stood on the summit. The best climbers do it in one and half hour to the top. To get to base camp without agency on your own is very difficult, the way I can´t describe, it´s impossible to remmember. From the base camp the trail goes firstly to south to the saddle (uphill left) and then on southern slope in traverse of Fatima under the next sadle. Then uphill on Angel, but in the middle of ascent there is another traverse to saddle under Chachani. Then straight forward. El Misty is other good choice – there is not so much of snow, but the journey is much longer in exhausting sandy terrain. Colca canyon is possible to visit only in two days. In Arequipa I visited sauna and Museum of Huanita de Ampato. Both are very worth to visit. Main square and old town of Arequipa are very beatiful. I spent 2 days in Chachani and Arequipa , but it is worth more. See the photos. Chachani – when you are aclimatized and not cursing the oxygen concentration like those Dutchmen - then 9 of 10.

Titicaca - doesn´t need any introduction. When you want to visit the Isla del Sol from Copacobana, there are many agencies. The price is about 1,5 US$, but all agiencies leave at 8 in ihe morning to Challapampa and after one hour they go back. Then all agencies leave at 13,00 o´clock, but they go just to the Escalera del Inca. At 17,00 o´clock you are back in Copacobana. There is no exception. Last bus to La Paz goes at 18,00 o´clock. Private trip to the Escalera del Inca costs 22 US$ together. Taxi to Yampupata you can deal for 14 US$ together. Boat from Yampupata to Escalera del Inca costs 7.5 US$ together, but this charge you can´t bargin. I visited during one hour that I spent on the island Escalera del Inca, the hill above and Pilko Kaina. But don´t try it not beeing well aclimatised, you will have a bad flashback for such a magical place. For Isla del Sol is optimum one and half day. There are beatifull beaches, spots, ruins to be alone. The charge from Copacobana to the Peruvian border is 2 US$ for 7 km, border and officers are trouble-free. Then taxi to Yunguyo (2 km) costs 1/3 US$, from Yunguyo to Puno about 1,5 US$, but takes 1,5 hour by local bus. Long-distance bus is much more slower at border (1 hour), but faster on road, more expensive, but more comfortable. Trips from Puno to Sillustani by agency are only from afternoon until the evening – nothing in the morning . Private taxi tour costs 20 US$ together. By local bus look LP . The first boat from Puno to Islas Floatantes goes at 8,00 in the morning, private sail is for 13 US$ (together, but you have to bargin). For 3 U$ together you can sail on reed-boat from island to island with Aymar sailor. See the photos. Titicaca is famous and great, when you have more time than me, then 8 of 10.

Nazca - legendary plain with lines, pictures and graves of old. strange civilisation - well-known because of Deniken´s books. I met Dutchmen, who had paid for Inca trail astronomical price, but then they have to be satisfied with tower outlook instead of flight because of saving the money. You don´t need to vomit (like me) to consider the flight over the pictures an unforgetable experience . There are many agencies, try to negotiate about the price. Off-season you don´t need to book it day earlier. Off-season price is 40 US$ for direct flight , 45 for flight with two turns over every picture. Both prices incud air-port tax. Sometimes you have to wait for take-off little longer than you are said. I recommend not to eat the breakfast and to take some prokinetics. Cementario Chauchilla is also worth to visit, but after the flight it may be quite exhausting. The price is 10 US$ with the visit of pottery-show and exhibition of minerals. See the photos. I give „only“ 8 of 10 due to the dizzy feelings still longer time after the flight.

Cuzco - There´s no need to introduce closer this world-known town. All important is written in LP, here I say just that sometimes the open-hours and close-hours of churches may vary; the visit of the ruins behind the Cuzco is possible to manage on horse-back (27 US$ when you´re alone); later you can avoid the controls because on Sunday you can´t buy the touristic ticket in office; in the evening the town is overcrowded with gringos calling themselves travellers and the athmosphere is quite simmilar to London´s bars (but the food is great). Boiled Indian corn (maize) you have to salt properly, fort Sacsayhuamán is very atractive also in the evening by arteficial lighting. See the photos. Also in the case you don´t have enough time to make Machu Picchu it´s 7 of 10.

Tupiza - is the usual city but the surroundings are magic. The coloured mountains are beutifull and the trips to neigbourhood are must-to–do-it. You can walk ( to canyon El Caňon) or go by jeep, but best and most practised way is horse-back riding. There are many agencies – see the LP. The horses are slim, but good tempered (but pay attention! our young guide holded the seat of horse most of the time – and he was very good horse rider). Hilly land is full of colours and you´ll see the Bolivia´s country-side. There are one to four days trips, but when you are not accused to ride, the optimum is two days. But when you gallop on the dusty village roads passing the sitting provincials, you give 8 of 10. See the photos.

NP Lauca - Appropiate time to climb volcanos Parinacota and Pomerape is from juni to september. In the time of my visit we were said, that there was too much of snow and high risk of unstable weather, snowy storm and lighting. There is only one company from Terminal rural of Arica that gives you fine price to NP (12 US$) and you don´t need to pay the whole charge to La Paz (20 US$). All buses leave in the morning, there is no exception in afternoon. From turn-off to beautiful hamlet Parinacota it is 4 km, there are no cars to hitch-hike. In village I recommend the visit of small church with pictures of Spaniards crossing the Jesus (LP). Ask the children for the key a buy some plants from them. The hill behind the village is possible to climb in 3-4 hours beeing acclimatised already. The border is opened until 22 ,00, but don´t rely on hitch-hike the trucks, they are very reluctant to take any passenger . See the photos. Maybe there is any trail from Chilean side to Payachates, but nearly everyone goes from village of Sajama in NP of the same name. There are only two cars in the village, so don´t try to hitch hike. You can call to the village for small van (taxi) with young driver César, but I miss the number. In other case you have to walk 7 km from crossing Lagunas. The charge for taxi is fixed and is paid together. To Sajama 5 US$, to themal bath 3 US$ (very recommended – you sit in the hot wather with legs dipped into the mud, there are lamas everywhere on the green bofedalos and you look at six and half thousand meters high volcanos with snow under the blue sky). When you want to climb Parincota, the charge for taxi is 80 US$. Caesar will wait for you under the mountain (I was said so). Many people don´t use the guide fo Parinacota, but you need to have some equipment (crampones, ice axe, warm cloth). Vn. Sajama is not much more dificult, you don´t need to be mountaineerer to climb it, but it´s better to go with guide not to loose the way (then it´s very dangorous!). I don´t know the price, but it can´t be very expensiv. I gues 100 US$ together. Both villages are small, dreaming, with dusty roads, white churches , lamas, simple restaurants and very pleasent people. 7 of 10 also for both NP. See the photos and map.

Licancabur - 5916 m. - When I was first time in Chile three years ago, I was fascinted by Licancabur. One glimpse is enough to inscribe it into the deepest part of your brain. That time I didn´t know, that it is not so difficult to climb it. It is the hight-light of Atacama and beeing acclimatised and going very very slow, it can be climbed nearly by everyone. You can buy the trip in San Pedro de Atacama, but it is very expensive (150 US$ pays everyone, not together). Other volcanos are in the same style – Lascar: 160 US$ for one day, vn. San Pedro: 350 for three days and Llullaillaco costs about 450 US$. But try Eusebio Saires in new pension on Laguna Verda. He is perfect guy – sympathic, friendly, smiling and chewing the koka all the time. His charge is 70 US$ together (1-6 people) and in the afternoon or in the evening he is waiting for possible clients in old or new pension (they are 700 m apart). Adventure usualy begins at 4,00 (wake up an hour earlier). Ascent time is 6-8 hours, descent is very fast: 2 -3 hours in slope covered by small rocks. Outlook doesn´t need to be decribed – see the photos. You need only warm cloth and good boots. But wife of Eusebio´s driver, who climbed with us, weared three stocks, three skirts, three sweaters, small hat and old sandals. The heavy rain can occur in the afternoon on Laguna Verde, but there´s good weather nearly every morning. Two weeks after my visit was Licancabur and other mountains covered by snow. It can happen. You can climb Licancabur on your own as well – without the guide – but I don´t think it´s good idea. Gooing from Laguna Verde to San Pedro de Atacama can be problem, because all the jeeps go in 2-3 days intervals, Eusebio´s driver can pick you to the border only (about 4 km), but the principal road from Argentina (where is the big traffic) is another 7 km. Although the Licancabur has not six thousand, the scenery, blue lagoon in the crater and Eusebio deserve 10 of 10.

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