My sojourn in Puerto Varas was planned as a quick stopover prior to taking the journey in the morning by boat and bus across the Andes. In hindsight an extra day here and one less in Punta Arenas would have been preferential.
It has been a glorious day. On the flight sat next to two ladies of a certain age, from Wiltshire, returning from a five day Antarctic cruise, sans husbands. Lovely conversation that meant that the two hour flight whizzed by, as almost did the Andean ice fields that we flew over.
Picked up at airport by a sweet English speaking girl who drove me the 25 minutes to Puerto Varas. What a shock. You could have been in England. Green pasture fields, rolling countryside, cows grazing and overcast sky. Pueto Varas itself doesn’t seem like a port at all. Not in the sense that Punta Arenas was. It is set in a delightful bay with a beach and the buildings are all clad in clapboard or wood shingle tiles.
I checked in and wandered down the hill and along the front when I heard what iI thought was a rock gig. It was in fact a blind busker belting out some good tunes and playing a mean harmonica. Listen HERE.
My host suggested I ate at an Italian restaurant which also made artesan beer so at 7.30 I returned to town where the busker was continuing to strut his stuff. When I left the restaurant he was stiil going and as the sun set and there was an evening stillness I could see clearly, for the first time, one of the reason for coming here. The majestic Orsono Volcano across the lake.