Along Melimoyu’s coasts, the Blue Whales are the protagonists. It’s estimated that 10% of the world’s population of cetaceans migrate to the Corcovado Gulf during the Southern Hemisphere summer to feed on Krill. Dozens of rivers flow from the area’s glaciers into its channels and fjords, bringing organic material from the forests and bogs and giving life to an aquatic ecosystem rich with biodiversity where an abundance of wildlife makes its home. This pristine habitat in Cisnes features incredible landscapes dominated by the imposing Melimoyu Volcano (“four pieces” in Mapudungún). It was once considered to be a possible entry point to the mythical––and perhaps enchanted––City of the Caesars.
Melimoyu is the nexus point between the southern edge of Chile’s temperate rainforests and the far north of the Patagonian subantarctic forest. Its dense forests mix species from the Valdivian rainforests with temperate resinous forests made up of Ciprés de la Guaitecas (Pilgerodendron) and Tepú. Coigües, Cipreses, and Canelos are among this forest’s most emblematic species.
This unique ecosystem is home to a variety of species, such as Darwin’s Frog, Pumas, Foxes, Pudú Deer, and a vast number of different species of birds. Along the coasts, you can find Chilean Dolphins, Peale’s Dolphins, Penguins, Seals, and Sea Lions, in addition to Humpback Whales and Blue Whales, among others.
The parklands are ancestral territory of the Chono people, a nomadic people that navigated the islands and channels in their canoes, moving between the south of Chiloé and the Taitao Peninsula. They hunted sea lions, fished, and gathered shellfish and seaweed along the coast.
Melimoyu National Park does not have land access at this time.
From Quellón, it takes 12 hours by ferry (Naviera Austral–Cordillera Route) to reach the town of Melimoyu.
From Puerto Cisnes, it takes 7 hours by ferry (Naviera Austral–Short Cordillera Route) to reach Melimoyu.
It’s also possible to organize private boat trips from Raúl Marín Balmaceda, which is located 47 miles from La Junta.
The town of Melimoyu has a landing strip, and you can schedule a private flight with companies such as Archipiélagos, Aerocord, or Pewén.
Navigate the channels of northern Patagonia to view Corcovado National Park and Melimoyu. At Puerto Cisnes you can cross the Puyuhuapi channel to explore Magdalena Island National Park and Queulat National Park.
(*)Corcovado, Melimoyu, and Isla Magdalena National Parks do not currently have public access infrastructure.
At the mouth of the Palena River and the southeastern edge of the Gulf of Corcovado, this small, remote town is located 47 miles from La Junta.
Capital of the Guaitecas municipality, Melinka is a town in the Guaitecas Archipelago, which is made up of more than 40 islands.
Located on the small bay of the Puyuhuapi Channel, next to the mouth of the Cisnes River, 20 miles from Route 7.
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