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Pucon: Travel to Pucon and Discover this Beautiful Chilean Town

Updated on August 27, 2011

Quite touristy, the small town of Pucón is located in the middle of the IX Region of Chile, just 790km to the south from Santiago, the capital of the country. Pucón lies on the eastern shores of Villarrica Lake directly below the outstanding perfect cone of Volcán Villarrica, one of the most active volcanoes of Chile. This tourist resort of roughly 9000 habitants is the gateway to Chile’s lovelies Villarrica and Huerquehue National Parks. Pucón is also a winter sport center, with skiing at the slopes of the nearby Villarrica Volcano. The architecture of the town follows a European wooden style that together with the beauty of its sights turn Pucón into one of the most charming tourist destinations in Chile.

Travel to Pucon and climb Volcan Villarrica: one of the most popular attractions in Pucon
Travel to Pucon and climb Volcan Villarrica: one of the most popular attractions in Pucon

Things to do in Pucón

In the summer season, Climbing Volcán Villarrica (see below) and rafting in the white waters of the Trancura River are the most popular excursions in Pucón. Every Pucón travel agency of the main avenue will try to sell you one of these tours (or both), if you dare to walk near them.

The national Parks of Huerquehue and Villarrica are excellent for trekking. Both have well-marked trails with beautiful sceneries. The Villarrica path is higher and more difficult. The path crosses a broad volcanic plateau that stands well above the tree level. On the other hand, in the Huerquehue trail you hike in the temperate rainforest.

Other popular activities in Pucón are: fly-fishing, hunting, mountain biking, and horse riding.

In winter, from late June to early September skiing and snowboarding in the Ski Center of Volcán Villarrica is the exclusive activity.

Climbing Volcán Villarrica

Perhaps the most popular excursion in Pucón is the climb of Volcán Villarrica. This active Volcano lies in the Villarrica National Park near Pucón and it is probably the most climbed summit in Chile. Nowadays, the park authorities require tourists to make the ascent with an approved guide. But, if you are a trained mountaineer or guide and present proof of your qualifications, then you can climb the volcano on your own. The climb is very straightforward and rather monotonous. It is necessary to carry an ice axe and to use crampons. From the Refugio Villarrica the climb takes roughly nine hours, return journey included. So, a good level of fitness is essential. The views from the rim are spectacular. You can see almost all the neighborhoods mountain ranges and the Villarrica Lake below.

Rafting in Pucon
Rafting in Pucon


The small village of Pucón in the Lake District could be the highlight of your Chilean vaction. Especially, if you like outdoor activities.


The photos in this Hub are courtesy of: Villarrica Volcano: Radzfoto, and Rafting in Pucón: BernieCB


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