Welcome to Puerto Varas


With all of the conveniences of Puerto Montt just a short trip away, Puerto Varas is a top choice for an extended stay and also makes a good base for exploring the region. Some find it too touristy, but its juxtaposition of German heritage and contemporary Chilean adrenaline is both beautiful and addictive.


Top experiences in Puerto Varas

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Puerto Varas activities

$71 Day Trips & Excursions

Frutillar, Puerto Varas, Petrohué Waterfalls from Puerto Montt

After pickup from cruise port or hotel, you will head to Frutillar. Walk alongside Lake Llanquihue, the largest lake in Chile, with the view of Volcano Osorno in the background. Here, you shall enjoy seeing the majestic German houses with beautiful gardens full of fragrant roses, and the begonias. After you have walked around town accompanied by your expert guide, head to the van where you will go see the monumental “Theatre of the Lake” of Frutillar. You can enjoy some "kuchen" (Chilean dessert) in this town or at any of the other stops during the day. From here, head back south to the town of Puerto Varas. Puerto Varas was colonized by German settlers and is known for its German traditions, seafood, natural scenery and luxurious hotels. This town is located on the shores of Llanquihue Lake and the perfect cone of Osorno Volcano and the snow-capped peaks of Mt. Calbuco and Mt Tronador are visible from the lakefront. You will enjoy walking around town filled with fragrant roses and historical statues that represent the history and founding of the town. If you enjoy shopping for souvenirs to take back home or simply enjoy looking at the local crafts this is a great place to do it. You can also enjoy having a cold German beer at one of the many cafes in front of the lake. The German beers they sell were all originated and are still made right here, in southern Chile. From here, we continue our journey to Ensenada, and then towards Petrohue Waterfalls which is the cherry on the top of this great excursion. If time allows, we always stop along the way and visit the friendly llamas and alpacas that love to be fed! Once you get to the location where the falls are located, you'll embark on an easy walk with your guide to a pathway that leads to the waterfalls. You will see water tumbling over the lip of volcanic rocks, with the waters turning beautiful shades of blue and green. Surrounded by a thick forest, the falls stand against the gorgeous backdrop of Osorno Volcano, making for amazing photo opportunities. The mysterious and breathtaking emerald color of the lake is due to a microscopic algae and minerals in the water. Legend says that whoever drinks from its waters will have good luck for the rest of his or her life.

$240 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Puerto Varas to Bariloche Andean Lakes Crossing, Return Option

One-Way Lakes Crossing: Puerto Varas to Bariloche (1 day)After meeting in our local offices, head northeast toward Petrohué, a town bordering Llanquihue Lake, the second largest lake in Chile. During the drive, gaze in awe at two snowcapped volcanoes stealing the show, Calbuco and the perfectly cone-shaped Osorno.Enter Vicente Pérez Rosales National Park, expansive landscapes of soaring volcanoes, fragrant forests, rivers and glassy lakes, and learn about the park’s history with a knowledgeable guide. Disembark and stroll toward one of the park’s top attractions, the raging Petrohué Waterfalls, cascading down lava beds created by Osorno volcano looming in the background.Next, board a ferry and sail across Todos los Santos Lake, enveloped by the foothills of the Andes, to Peulla, a hamlet near the Argentina border. During the 2-hour boat ride on the shimmering green waters, weather permitting, be dazzled by views of Osorno, the ‘sharp-pointed’ Pontiagudo volcano, and El Tronador volcano, ‘The Thunderer,’ located in the southern Andes.Disembark at Peulla and enjoy a leisurely lunch (own expense) at a hotel, perhaps following it up with a pisco sour in the lounge.Then go through customs, board a bus and capture amazing views as you cross the border in the Andes range at 3,202 feet (976 meters) above sea level. Snake your way down the mountains to Puerto Frías, sail across the deep turquoise-colored Felix Frías Lake to Puerto Alegre, where you’ll take a bus to Puerto Blest. In the evening, cruise from Puerto Blest across the last of your lakes of the day, the sapphire-blue waters of Nahuel Huapi, spanning 346 square miles (897 sq km), its fingers stretching deep into beech and cypress woods.Arrive at Puerto Pañuelo after an hour and take a bus ride to the city of Bariloche, a tourism hotspot sprawled along the shoreline of Nahuel Huapi Lake.If you've opted for the round trip back to Chile, see Itinerary below for details.

$44.10 Private & Custom Tours

Puerto Montt and Frutillar Shore Excursion from Puerto Varas

You start the tour from the port visiting the main square, the most important church and the viewpoint of Puerto Montt from where you can appreciate all the city located in front of the Bay of Seno de Reloncaví.You continue visiting the city of Puerto Varas, which has a population of 35 thousand people. This city is known for its streets adorned with roses and beautiful gardens, located in front of Llanquihue Lake, an icon of tourism in southern Chile, which still retains the typical wooden houses of larch and a rich cuisine, the result of the legacy of German colonization since 1852.Later you arrive at Frutillar, a typical small town of German colonization, a pearl in the south of Chile. An oasis of peace and calm with wooden houses, beautiful gardens and the incredible Lake Theathre, where they perform important classical music events. Walk on his lakefront street, with the Andes Mountains and volcanoes line view. Visit its craft emporiums, take a delicious coffee (optional) with a rich German cake, it is a delight difficult to compare.At the end you return to the port to complete this tour.Optional services: coffee/food and German Museum ticket.

$46 Day Trips & Excursions

Petrohue Falls from Puerto Varas

During this tour we will see the main attractions that gain the interest of nature´s lovers. Wonderful places like Pescado river, small community in the edge of the LLanquihue lake.In the mouth of Pescado river it will be possible for us to see a church dating back to early 20th century.We will visit the waterwheel El Condor and the Puerto Humos, a special place where the delicious smoked salmon fish is prepared.The tourist will have time for shopping and tasting the fish. After 15 minutes drive arrival at the Ensenada village and we will go to The Laguna Verde which is located on the foothills of the majestic Osorno volcano.Time to walk around and soon afterward we move to a local restaurant called “El fogón Pucarà”, a place where the bovine and pork stick-roasts are prepared. Time for lunch.In the afternoon we will be arriving at Vicente Perez Rosales National Park, to see the world famous Petrohuè falls, and then we finish our excursion in the area of Todos Los Santos (All Saints Lake).A little trek is possible here, or you can take some pictures or rent a boat to sail the wonderful deep emerald lake.We return to Puerto Varas at dusk.

$284.44 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Andean Lakes Crossing from Argentina to Chile by Bus and Boat

Depart from Bariloche in the morning upon pickup from your hotel and enjoy the scenic drive to Puerto Pañuelo, your first stop en route to Chile. Relax aboard the coach and keep an eye out for the characteristic Swiss-style architecture of the wooden buildings as well as beautiful gardens and flowers that dot the landscape. When you arrive at the port, board your catamaran – either Victoria Andina or Victoria del Lago – and set sail on Nahuel Huapi Lake for an hour-long ride to Puerto Blest, located about 15 miles away. Your guide will inform you about the history of the area as you take in the grandeur of the landscape, including a variety of birds that inhabit the green forests surrounding the lake. Upon arrival at Puerto Blest, board a bus for a ride that borders the Frías River for just three miles to Puerto Alegre. Then, sail aboard City of Faith over the peaceful and pristine waters of Lake Frías and admire its deep green hue as you take in magnificent views of Cerro Tronador. Hovering approximately 11,500 feet (3,500 meters) above sea level, the extinct volcano is the Lake District’s highest mountain.After a 20-minute voyage, reach the small port of Puerto Frías, where you’ll go through departure procedures at Argentina customs before continuing by bus to Peulla. Along the way, appreciate the lush vegetation of the Cordillera de Los Andes and marvel at Tronador, which has nine glaciers on its summit. Enter Vicente Pérez Rosales National Park, Chile’s first national park, and arrive in Peulla. Once you’ve carried out entry formalities, you'll have free time to purchase lunch (own expense).Around 3:30pm, set sail on Todos los Santos Lake with great views of Osorno Volcano, Tronador and Puntiagudo Hill (if the weather allows). Then, continue to your final destination of Puerto Varas by bus, stopping en route for an optional visit to the Petrohué Waterfalls (Saltos del Petrohué), where green falls cascade over volcanic rock in the upper reaches of the Petrohué River (admission not included).

$533 Multi-day & Extended Tours

4-Day Chilean Lakes Region Tour: Puerto Montt, Puerto Varas and Chiloe Island

This four-day excursion through Chile’s lakes region takes you from Puerto Montt to Lake Todos los Santos and Chiloe Island. You have a choice of two four-star hotels, and private transfers and breakfast are included. All transportation and tours are private except on Day 2Day 1: Puerto Montt -- Puerto VarasAfter being met at Puerto Montt airport, start your experience with a scenic tour of Puerto Montt by private car. The drive takes you past the Plaza de Armas square and the cathedral, to a viewpoint for panoramic vistas over the town and Chiloe Island. Follow the coastal road to the fishing village of Angelmó for a seafood tasting and to browse the local woven handicrafts. Returning to Puerto Montt, you’ll be transferred to your selected hotel. The rest of the day is yours to explore on your own.Accommodation: Hotel Colonos del Sur Mirador  or Indigo Cabañas del Lago  in Puerto VarasDay 2: Puerto Varas -- Puella -- Puerto Varas (B)After breakfast at your hotel, a scenic drive takes you along the shore of Lake Todos los Santos. Stop to admire the Petrohue Falls in Vicente Pérez Rosales National Park before boarding a catamaran to cruise on the lake’s emerald-green waters to the small village of Puella. During the nearly two hour cruise, admire the scenic views of Osorno Volcano and the peaks of Puntiagudo and El Tronador ringing the lake. Arrive in Puella in time for lunch (own expense), with free time to explore the tiny village before cruising back to Puerto Varas and return to your hotel. The rest of the afternoon and evening are yours to explore at your leisure.Day 3: Puerto Varas -- Chiloe Island -- Puerto Varas (B)Enjoy breakfast at your hotel before leaving Puerto Varas for a private day excursion to Chiloe Island, the second largest island in Chile. You’ll visit the island town of Castro, famous for its brightly colored houses built on stilts over the water, known as palafitos. Your private tour of Castro includes a visit to the church on the main square, Plaza de Armas, and a tour of the town’s museum. Learn about the 1960 seaquake that devastated Chiloe Island, and see traditional artefacts and exhibits to learn more about the island’s inhabitants. Then take a scenic drive to the Gamboa lookout, where you can clearly see the brightly painted palafitos. The drive back to Puerto Varas includes a stop in the town of Ancud, known for its craft market and handicraft stalls. Returning to your hotel in Puerto Varas, the rest of the afternoon and evening are yours to explore on your own.Day 4: Puerto Varas -- Puerto Montt (B)After breakfast at your hotel, a private transfer will return you to Puerto Montt airport to catch your onward flight.