Parque Nacional Corcovado
Parque Nacional Isla Magdalena
Parque Nacional Melimoyu
Parque Nacional Isla Magdalena
Parque Nacional Melimoyu
Take the Naviera Austral ferry from Quellón to Puerto Cisnes. The voyage takes 12 hours and the ferry stops in Melinka before docking in Puerto Cisnes. The ferry leaves Quellón on Tuesdays and Saturdays and makes the return trip from Puerto Cisnes on Wednesdays and Sundays. Find out more about the itinerary and reserve your tickets in advance at: http://www.navieraustral.cl/rutas/ruta-cordillea-corta.
During the trip in ferry, you’ll have the chance to take in the coastline and wind through the fjords and channels near Corcovado and Melimoyu National Parks. You’ll spend the first night aboard the ferry and, depending on the day of the week, the tides, and the weather, you’ll arrive at Puerto Cisnes between 7 a.m. and 9 a.m. We recommend taking the afternoon to explore this beautiful bay and its surroundings. Some possible activities include: fishing in the Cisnes River, walking the “Patrimonial Route” to learn about the town’s history, visiting the Municipal Market, hiking the Leucotón Hill for a panoramic vista and, if the weather is nice, relaxing at Las Truchas beach, the first authorized swimming area in the Aysén region.
You’ll also find various options for lodging, restaurants with delicious dishes made with hake, trout, and conger eel, and stores selling traditional artisan wares made with fish leather, among other local crafts.
Today, we invite you to explore the areas around Isla Magdalena National Park. The best way to do this is in one of the boats setting out from Puerto Cisnes, which cross the Puyuhuapi Channel in a voyage of around an hour (one way). Kayaking through the bay is also an option. Whichever way you choose, this will be a great day for spotting marine life, and it’s not unusual to see Toninas (Commerson’s Dolphins), Humboldt Penguins, and Cormorants, among other species.
Return to Puerto Cisnes in the afternoon to continue enjoying the great tourist offerings of this bay on the shores of the Puyuhuapi Channel.
Head 21 miles east on Route X-25 toward the Carretera Austral. We suggest detouring 3 miles north to visit the marvelous Bosque Encantado (“Enchanted Forest”) trail in Queulat National Park. The trail winds through a beautiful forest and ends at Laguna Gnomos, which is surrounded by a natural amphitheater formed by mountains, glaciers, and waterfalls. If you walk at a relaxed pace, enjoying the sights and sounds of the trail, the hike will take around 5 hours out and back.
Once you’ve finished the hike, continue south on the Carretera Austral for roughly 112 miles until you arrive at Coyhaique. In the city, you’ll find a wide variety of lodging, restaurants, and other services.
We recommend taking this day to explore the areas around Coyhaique and visit Río Simpson National Reserve or Coyhaique National Reserve before continuing on to your next destination, whether that’s heading to the Balmaceda Airport, driving back along the same route, or crossing into Argentina via Coyhaique Alto.
Naviera Austral also offers a Cordillera Route, which sets out from Quellón and docks at different ports in the northern part of this region, including: Melinka, Raúl Marín Balmaceda, Santo Domingo, Melimoyu, Puerto Gala (Isla Toto), Puerto Cisnes, Puerto Gaviota (Caleta Amparo), Puerto Aguirre, and Puerto Chacabuco. For more information and to make reservations, visit: http://www.navieraustral.cl/rutas/ruta-cordillera.
If you’d like to head north instead of south, you should consider using the towns of Puyuhuapi or La Junta as a base for visiting other trails in Queulat National Park, which have beautiful views of the hanging glacier. After that, you can continue north along the Bimodal Route or via Villa Santa Lucía, taking Route 235 to Futaleufú or Palena, both of which are border towns.
From Coyhaique, you can cross the border at Coyhaique Alto and continue north or south along Route 40 in Argentina.
Quellón is located 119 miles south of Chucao, which is where the ferries from Pargua dock after a crossing that takes around half an hour.
At Quellón or Puerto Chacabuco, you can take a Naviera Austral ferry to Puerto Cisnes, a bay located 20.5 miles west of the Carretera Austral.
Sky and LATAM Airlines offer daily flights to Balmaceda, located 34 miles southeast of Coyhaique.
Corcovado, Melimoyu, and Isla Magdalena National Parks do not currently have public access infrastructure.
On the way to Quellón, you can take the opportunity to visit Chiloé National Park and the private Tantauco Park.
Remember to check ferry schedules and book your ticket in advance on the Naviera website. We recommend arriving at the dock an hour before your departure time, especially in January and February, when demand is highest.
Check ferry schedules at http://www.navieraustral.cl/rutas/ruta-cordillea-corta and http://www.navieraustral.cl/rutas/ruta-cordillera.
Route X-25, which connects Puerto Cisnes to the Carretera Austral, is paved.
There’s a gas station and an ATM in Puerto Cisnes.
Drive carefully on the Queulat slope; it has 33 closed curves and the road is quite narrow.
Be sure to bring at least one spare tire.
To check the schedule and status of the border crossing at Coyhaique Alto, visit: http://www.pasosfronterizos.gov.cl/complejos-fronterizos/aysen/paso-coyhaique/.
A pristine ecosystem that is difficult to access, this park consists of evergreen forest, fjords, bays, rivers, deep valleys and dozens of hidden lakes.
A dream place, this remote park suits lovers of pure wilderness. Among its great natural attractions is whale watching.
Located between the mainland and the Guaitecas archipelago, in the county of Río Cisnes, this is one of the largest islands south of Chiloé.
Queulat National Park is 165 kilometers north of Coyhaique. Created in 1983, its area consists of 154,093 hectares.
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