On this incredible self-drive itinerary you will be driving through awe-inspiring views of the crystal clear lakes, ancient evergreen forests, roaming mountains, snow-capped volcanoes, vast green meadows, rolling hills and charming towns full of traditions and local flavours of both Argentina and Chile. You will experience the famous 7 Lakes of Argentina plus the many more that Chile has to offer at your own pace.
This itinerary can be tailored from Puerto Montt to Temuco self-drive or with a driver if you prefer.
Pick up your car at the airport or city car rental office in Temuco. Your destination for today will be the town of Pucon located at the foot of the Villarrica volcano and at the eastern end of the Villarrica Lake surrounded by extensive native forests. This town will be a good base for visits to the nearby national parks, hot springs, waterfalls and lakes.
For this day we recommend a combination of hiking in the Huerquehue National Park, where you will be able to see the famous Araucaria trees and then relax by the thermal springs.
Day at leisure to explore the beautiful area of Pucon.
Today you will experience the natural contrasts between the Chilean and Argentinean slopes of the Andes. Crossing the mountain range at 1,207m the country side will change dramatically. Green rolling farmland and lush native forests of the Villarrica National Park will be replaced by the dry but very colourful Pampa of the Lanin National Park. The immense Lanin Volcano will be a constant point of reference during the trip as you drive through spectacular forests of ancient Araucaria trees growing at the base of the volcano. In the Afternoon you will reach San Martin de los Andes, situated on Lacar Lake.
Explore the 7 beautiful lakes on the route to Villa La Angostura and pass through two different National Parks; Lanin and Nahuel Huapi. The unpaved Seven Lakes route will take you to the tranquil village of Villa Angostura from there you will continue onwards to Bariloche.
Morning tour of Bariloche’s surrounding mountains, lakes and parks. Take a chair lift up Campanario Hill from where you will have incredible views.
Free afternoon. Bariloche is famous for its chocolates made in the Swiss tradition; visit Mamoushka or ask your guide for their personal recommendations!
Today you will drive back into Chile. You will cross from Nahuel Huapi National Park into the Chilean Puyehue National Park.
After a brief journey inland past Rupanco Lake drive along the border of the Llanquihue Lake: the third largest lake in South America. On your way to Puerto Varas stop and visit the lakefront town of Puerto Octay known for its German influences. From Octay, head towards the charming town of Frutillar recognised for its 19th century architecture, famous theatre and local museum. Afterwards continue your drive around the lake front where the perfectly cone shaped Osorno Volcano will be continually seen. This is the same route that German colonists embarked on centuries ago.
Day at leisure. Options for today include a full-day tour to Chiloe Island, a land of myths and legends famous for its folklore, its culinary traditional of course for the beautiful colourful stilt houses.
Or alternatively you can add more days to stay in Chiloe and have more time to explore or just relax before returning home.
Return your car at the Puerto Montt airport or down town car rental office.