The nightmare that became our reality

Settle in, get comfy. This post sure is longer than most! Apologies too for the lack of photos… priorities were, understandably, elsewhere. We were due to catch an overnight bus from Uyuni up to Sucre. The duo of Nicole and Andy had turned into the handsome foursome of Nic, Andy, Sarah and James (an Austrian/Australian…

A three day salt flats tour

Disclaimer: probably the best three days of our trip so far.  We were picked up at 6.30am from our hostel in San Pedro and driven to the border crossing. As we waited for our turn, our group bonded. Two Kiwis, one Australian, a German, an Austrian and a Spanish girl. I was super excited to…

San Pedro de Atacama

San Pedro de Atacama is a desert. Landing in Calama nearby was eerie, like landing on the moon. The desert landscape is sparse and extends in every direction. The roads, the houses and the surrounding mountains all appear the same reddish, dusty colour. It’s high. Over 2200 metres above sea level, it served as our…

Pucón and beyond

Pucón is frequently described as being Chile’s adventure capital, much like New Zealand’s Queenstown. It sits lake front, its surroundings are incredibly scenic and the town feels quite touristy, but the similarities probably stop there. Queenstown is far bigger (area and population), comparatively a lot more expensive and doesn’t have a rather prominent volcano as…

The hardest day of my life

The weather was supposed to be iffy, but in the following days it was predicted to get worse. It was going to cost us two days worth of budget, each. We didn’t have the appropriate equipment, but not to worry, they said. It’s an opportunity that doesn’t come around all that often, so yeah, we…

The serenity of Puerto Varas

In stark contrast to Santiago, Puerto Varas is a sleepy, lakeside village about the size of my hometown, Havelock North. It sits alongside Lake Llanquihue and is backed by not one, but two, impressive volcanoes. Osorno is the epitome of generic volcano, and being covered in snow and against a blue sky it just took…

Eating our way through Puerto Varas

We were led to believe that the food in Puerto Varas was going to be of the absolute highest quality. German influences, lots of sea food, gorgeous beer and wine – yes please! Our food experience ended up being good, but not amazing. We were gutted that we didn’t get to eat at Mesa Tropera,…

A day like no other

And one I’ll hopefully never live again. It started when we arrived back from a day trip to Valparaíso to find the subway station closed. It was only 6pm. This didn’t seem right so we circled the station twice more only to find every entrance barricaded and definitely no way in. We found a bus…