Stay informed about the latest reopening dates for national parks and their sanitary protocols for visiting via the official Conaf website
Futaleufú means “Large River” in Mapundungún, and the Futaleufú River has indeed earned its name: it’s considered one of the top three rivers in the world for rafting and an ideal river for kayak aficionados. It flows into Lake Yelcho and is known far and wide as a paradise for fly fishing as well.
Futaleufú lies in the ancestral territory of the Tehuelche people. The first settlers arrived from Argentina around 1912 and made their home in the mountainous countryside. The city was officially founded in 1929. Known for horseback riding, yerba mate, and “gauchos,” or Chilean cowboys––a rich local culture that can also be explored in nearby rural communities, including Espolón and El Azul, among others––this area has developed a strong tradition of rural tourism, with excellent options for visitors looking to trek or go horseback riding.
In Futaleufú, you’ll find various amenities for tourists, including cabins, hostels, hotels, and restaurants, in addition to a variety of different activities. Get more information at:
Futaleufú is located 97 miles from Chaitén and 6 miles from the border with Argentina.
If you’re coming from Puerto Montt, you can arrive via the Bimodal Route (Ruta Bimodal). Take the Carretera Austral to Caleta La Arena, then board the ferry to Caleta Puelche (no reservation required). You can also get to Caleta Puelche from Cochamó and Puelo via Route V-69. From Caleta Puelche, continue to Hornopirén. At Hornopirén, you’ll need to board another ferry south, and the Hornopirén–Leptepu and Fiordo Largo–Caleta Gonzalo legs should be booked in advance. (You can make reservations at www.taustral.cl and http://www.barcazas.cl/.) From Caleta Gonzalo, drive 81 miles to reach Santa Lucía, then continue east 47 miles until you reach Futaleufú.
If you’re coming from Coyhaique, take the Carretera Austral 215 miles north to Villa Santa Lucía. From there, continue east 47 miles to Futaleufú.
If you’re coming from Argentina, drive to the town of Trevelin, then take Route 259 to the border. When you’ve passed Chilean customs and border control, continue 6 miles to Futaleufú.
Buses Kemel offers daily routes from Puerto Montt to Chaitén. There are also routes available between Chaitén and Futaleufú (Buses Cárdenas) and Coyhaique and Futaleufú (Buses Becker to Villa Santa Lucía and then connecting with Buses Cardenas to Futaleufú). Finally, ABSA and Río Palena also offer direct routes from Puerto Montt to Futaleufú, via Argentina, a trip of around 12 hours. Trans-Andean company Jacobsen offers routes from Futaleufú to Esquel.
Naviera Austral offers voyages from Puerto Montt and Quellón to Chaitén, though this service is only available certain days of the week. Prior reservations are required. From Chaitén, continue in car or bus to Futaleufú.
Pewen and Aerocord offer daily 35-minute flights from Puerto Montt to Chaitén. These flights leave at various times, depending on the day of the week, and are subject to change depending on weather conditions. Futaleufú also has a landing strip. Pewen flights directly to Futaleufú (you can book it in Puerto Montt).
Located south of Puerto Montt, Pumalín Park is home to millenary alerce (Fitzroya) trees and offers more than a dozen trails for exploring landscapes ranging from temperate rainforest to glaciers.
A pristine ecosystem that is difficult to access, this park consists of evergreen forest, fjords, bays, rivers, deep valleys and dozens of hidden lakes.
In December the «Fiesta del Arriero» is celebrated in del Azul sector.
In January takes place the «Ruta de los Valles» competition for
In February «El Pilchero» festival takes place in Espolón sector, which will allow you to experience the gaucho culture.
In February, the week of Futaleufú is celebrated, a family event where tourists are welcome.
In February the «Futa XL» takes place, an international sporting event that gathers the best kayakers of Chile and the world.
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