Getting there & around
Chillán's modern bus station, Terminal María Teresa (272-149; Av O'Higgins 010), just north of Av Ecuador, is used by most long-distance carriers. Two companies, Tur Bus and Línea Azul, also run from the old Terminal de Buses Interregionales (221-014; Constitución 01), at the corner of Av Brasil.
Tur Bus (272-163; cnr Interregionales & María Teresa) service leaves from Inter-Regionales and Maria Teresa bus stations. It runs numerous northbound buses to Talca and Santiago; southbound, it leaves twice daily for Concepción and Los Angeles, and daily for Angol, Temuco, Valdivia and Puerto Montt. Buy tickets from its office (228-699; Av Libertad) or at the stations.
Línea Azul (211-192, 272-158) has many buses that go to Concepción, plus two daily to Santiago; it also travels to Valle Los Trancas at 8am each morning (US$3), returning at 4pm. This service continues to Termas de Chillán in summer, and sometimes on weekends in winter (call to confirm).
Buses Jota Be (272-157) makes several journeys daily to Saltos del Laja and Los Angeles, with additional services to Angol. Via Costa(272-178) goes to Concepción and Santiago, while Bio Linatal (277-453) has 15 buses leaving north and south each day between Talca and Concepción.
Sol del Pacífico (272-177) also goes to Santiago, Viña and Valparaíso. Other companies covering the Panamericana include Buses Jac (273-581), and Condor(270-264) traveling between Temuco and Santiago.
For local and regional services, such as to Ninhue, go to the Terminal de Buses Rurales (223-606; Maipón 890). For travelers, the most useful service leaving from here is run by Petorbus(223-606), which goes to surf hangout Buchupureo from platform 18 at 9am and 4:30pm each day (US$2.80, 2½ hours).
If you prefer to drive, try Renta-car (212- 243; 18 de Septiembre 380), where you can get a car for about US$35 a day. Note that if the mountain roads are slippery you may be required to drive with wheel chains, which it is possible to hire (for around US$13.50). Ask at the Sernatur office in Chillán or at the Centro de Ski Termas de Chillán office.
Trains between Santiago and Temuco arrive and depart from the train station (222-424; Av Brasil) at the west end of Av Libertad. There are six trains daily to Santiago (US$14.30, 4¼ hours) and one nighttime train (at the ungodly hour of 2:45am) to Temuco (4¾ hours, US$15).