Depart from Coyhaique very early in the morning to go 223 km. (140 miles) south on the Carretera Austral to the town of Puerto Tranquilo. Throughout the journey you will see beautiful forests of Coigue, Lenga, Ñire and Ciruelillo trees. You’ll pass through iconic landmarks as it is “Chiguay Lagoon”, “The stone of the Count” and the “Ibañez Portezuelo” which has the highest altitude of the whole Carretera Austral (1.000 meters a.s.l). Approaching the Ibañez River, the magnitude of the imposing “Cerro Castillo” will be appreciated and you will pass by the village of Cerro Castillo. All this area belongs to the National Park “Cerro Castillo”.
Throughout this journey cross a wide valley once half covered by volcanic ash, known as “Bosque Muerto” or dead forest, traces of Hudson Volcano’s eruption in 1991, nowadays you’ll notice how nature has given a second chance to this place. The tour continues to descend through the valley of the Murta River which you may see covered up by colored cloak in spring due to the local “Lupinus” up to where the General Carrera Lake is born.
There will be stops on route to take photos. After about 3½ to 4 hours drive, you will reach Puerto Tranquilo for lunch in a local restaurant. In the afternoon, a short hop takes us to the shores of General Carrera Lake for the boat trip to “Marble Chapels” Sanctuary of Nature.
This is a place of unique beauty, where wave action has polished the limestone to form really attractive caves.
In the afternoon, return to Coyhaique with a stop in Cerro Castillo town to buy snacks if you desire.