Queulat means «Sound of Waterfalls» in the Chono people’s language. This park was first seen in the eighteenth century by Jesuits searching for the mythical City of the Caesars. Today, Queulat National Park, near Puyuhuapi, is admired by thousands of visitors each year, who are attracted by its beautiful evergreen and Andean Patagonian forests, its waterfalls, fjords, jagged rock walls, abundant rivers, and famous hanging glacier or «Ventisquero Colgante,» which can be spotted from the Carretera Austral.

Can’t Miss

  • The «Ventisquero Colgante,» or hanging glacier, is the most emblematic feature of the park.
  • Cross the Ventisquero River footbridge.
  • Visit the Los Témpanos and Los Pumas Lagoons. In the summer, you can also explore Los Témpanos in boat.
  • Visit the Padre García Waterfall, which is around 100 feet tall.
  • Explore Lake Risopatrón, located near Puyuhuapi, along the route.
  • Enjoy the 33 curves of the Queulat slope, winding up to the pass.

Open

Year-Round

Area

380,772 acres

Climate

Cold temperate climate, with no dry season

Rainfall

135–160 inches annually

Ecosystem

Temperate Rainforest and High-Mountain Deciduous Shrubland

Founded

October 13, 1983

Among the scenes which are deeply impressed on my mind, none exceed in sublimity the primeval forests undefaced by the hand of man." –Charles Darwin

Flora

The park is refuge to hundreds of evergreen and Patagonian Andean species, including Coigüe de Magallanes, Ciprés de las Guaitecas (Pilgerodendron), Radal, Mañío hembra, Ulmo, Tepa, Ciruelilo, Canelo, Tepu, Lenga, and Ñirre. It’s also possible to find enormous Nalcas (Chilean Rhubarb), Chaura, Chilco (Hardy Fuchsia), Michay Blanco, and dozens of different species of ferns.

Fauna

Birds such as the Chucao, the Black Woodpecker, the Hued Hued, the Picaflor Chico (Green-Backed Firecrown), and the Cachaña (Austral Parakeet) live in the forest, which is also inhabited by species such as the Piche (Dwarf Armadillo), the Quirquincho (Andean Hairy Armadillo), the Cuy Chico (Southern Mountain Cavy), the Vizcacha del Sur (Southern Viscacha), and the Huemul (South Andean Deer).

Culture

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.

infrastructure

  • Bathrooms
  • Lodging
  • Camping
  • Restaurants
  • Information Center
  • Trails
  • Trekking Circuits
  • Picnic Area

How to Get There

The park has three sectors. The first is Angostura, located 7.5 miles to the north of Puyuhuapi, where there’s a park ranger’s house and access to the Laguna Los Pumas Trail. The second, and most-visited, is the Ventisquero Sector, located 12 miles south of Puyuhuapi, past the Ventisquero Bridge. The third is the Portezuelo Sector, 32 miles south of Puyuhuapi, past the curves that wind up to the pass.

From Chaitén, head south on the Carretera Austral toward La Junta (93 miles approximately). Around 19 miles south of La Junta, you’ll reach the first sector of Queulat Park.
If you’re coming from Coyhaique, head north on the Carretera Austral (Route 7) for around 104 miles until you arrive at the southern edge of the park.

From Chaitén, take a bus toward Coyhaique (www.busesbecker.com), and get off at Puyuhuapi. If you’re coming from the south, the same company offers routes from Coyhaique to Puyuhuapi. You can find out more about schedules and frequency at the Coyhaique bus terminal (Lautaro 109, at the corner with Magallanes. Phone numbers: +56 (67) 232 067 y +56 (67) 223 7355).

Naviera Austral offers trips from Puerto Montt to Chaitén. From Chaitén, you can continue on to Puyuhuapi in bus or car.

Another option is to take one of the ferries from Quellón to Chaitén, Raúl Marín Balmaceda, Puerto Cisnes, or Puerto Chacabuco.

There are daily flights connecting Santiago and Puerto Montt with Balmaceda Airport. From Balmaceda, continue north on the Carretera Austral for approximately 104 miles to reach Queulat Park.

Companies such as Pewén and Aerocord also offer daily flights from Puerto Montt to Chaitén. From Chaitén, you’ll need to take a bus to Puyuhuapi (there is no car rental service).

Trails

Los Pumas Trail

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • Duration

    6 hours (out and back)

  • Distance

    6.5 miles total

  • Open

The trail starts 0.3 miles from a campsite at the shore of Lake Risopatrón and ascends steeply through the forest for 1.5 miles before arriving at Los Pumas Lagoon.
Starting point: Angostura Sector (7.5 miles north of Puyuhuapi)

Download trail on kml format

Mirador del Ventisquero Trail

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • Duration

    2 hours (out and back)

  • Distance

    2.1 miles total

  • Open

One of the best-known trails in the park, which ascends the glacier’s moraine, offering views of the lagoon from above.
Starting point: Ventisquero Sector parking lot (12.5 miles south of Puyuhuapi)

Download trail on kml format

Laguna Témpanos Trail

  • Difficulty

    Low / Medium

  • Duration

    30 min (out and back)

  • Distance

    0.7 miles (out and back)

  • Open

The trail begins by crossing the foot bridge over the Ventisquero River and reaches the lagoon beneath the «Ventisquero Colgante» (hanging glacier). In summertime, boat trips on the lagoon are available.
Starting point: Ventisquero Sector parking lot (12.5 miles south of Puyuhuapi)

Download trail on kml format

Mirador Panorámico Trail

  • Difficulty

    Low

  • Duration

    20 min (out and back)

  • Distance

    0.25 miles total

  • Open

A short trail to a lookout point, with views of the «Ventisquero Colgante» (hanging glacier) and the confluence of the Ventisquero and Desagüe Rivers.
Starting point: Ventisquero Sector parking lot (12.5 miles south of Puyuhuapi)

Download trail on kml format

Aluvión Trail

  • Difficulty

    Low

  • Duration

    30 min (out and back)

  • Distance

    0.7 miles total

  • Open

A walk through the evergreen woods. Ideal for birdwatching.

Starting point: Ventisquero Sector parking lot (12 miles south of Puyuhuapi)

Download trail on kml format

Salto Padre García Trail

  • Difficulty

    Low

  • Duration

    25 min. total

  • Distance

    0.2 miles (out and back)

  • Open

A short walk that descends around 500 feet to a 100-foot-tall waterfall. 

Starting point: Portezuelo Sector.

Download trail on kml format

Tips

  • Entrance fees to Queulat Park

    Chileans
    18 to 59 years old $ 4000
    12 to 17 years old $ 2000
    Older 59 years old exempt
    Children under 12 years old exempt
    Different capacities

    Under 17 and older 59 years old exempt
    18 to 59 years old $ 2000

    Foreign
    > 18 years old $ 8000
    12 to 17 years old $ 4000

    Flat rate for different capacities

  • Camping Ventisquero Area: (Concession).

    6,000 / person / night, max 8 people per site + Entrance Fee

    More information at http://experienciaustral.com/product/camping-parque-queulat/ / contacto@experienciaaustral.com

  • Camping Angostura Area (CONAF)

    6,000 / 6px / night + Entrance Fee

  • Nautical tour

    Laguna Témpanos Ventisquero Sector (Concession):
    Adult: 6,000 Children: 4,000 (Minimum 4 pax, 45min duration) + park admission fee.
    More information at http://experienciaustral.com/product/paseo-en-bote-queulat/

  • The Ventisquero Campsite has only 10 sites, so it’s a good idea to make a prior reservation. It’s run by Experiencia Austral, which can be contacted here http://experienciaustral.com/product/camping-parque-queulat/ / contacto@experienciaaustral.com
  • Experiencia Austral also offers boat tours of Laguna Témpano in the summers
  • Icefalls from the glacier are common. We recommend budgeting time to observe them
  • Food and lodging can be found in Puyuhuapi, La Junta, and Puerto Cisnes
  • It can be very rainy, even in summer
  • Walking quietly, you’re more likely to see bird species such as the Chucao and the Hued Hued
  • Be careful while driving on the winding Queulat road, which is often transited by cyclists as well

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