9.2723° S, 71.9776° W
PUCON IS OFTEN TOUTED AS THE ADVENTURE CAPITAL OF CHILE DUE TO ITS NUMEROUS OUTDOOR ADVENTURE OPPORTUNITIES. BELOW YOU WILL FIND OUR IN-DEPTH TRAVEL GUIDE FOR PUCON AS WELL AS THE TOP 6 ADVENTURES.
Often touted as one of the adventure capitals of Chile (and sometimes even known as THE Adventure Capital), the small town of Pucón should be high on every adventurer's must-see travel list.
Located in the central part of the country and roughly two-thirds the way down from Santiago to Puerto Montt, the town of Pucón is very well-located for numerous outdoor pursuits; including, hiking and trekking, rafting, kayaking, canyoneering, climbing and mountain biking.
We decided to spend over a month living in the town, mainly in the hopes of exploring as many mountains as possible and working on our Spanish (as you would expect, one of those came a bit more easily to us).
While we were a bit surprised at the cost of living in Pucón (it is HIGH) we still greatly enjoyed our time there. And honestly, how could you not? The town is an outdoor adventurer's dream: from the dozens of adventure options to the plethora of stores selling any and all gear you would need (there is a Patagonia and a North Face in town), to just the overall feel that the town is full of energy (it also doesn't hurt that vegetarian foods are served widely and plastic bags are pretty much banned).
After a couple of weeks, we were seriously considering rerouting our lives and just putting down roots in the area - it was that good.
In this in-depth Pucón, Chile travel guide you will find information on (almost) all of the best adventures to be had in and around Pucón (there is a lot). As always, if you have any questions please reach out - we are always here to help!
THE BEST TIME TO VISIT PUCON
Pucón experiences 4 relatively clear seasons: summer (between December - February), fall (March - May), winter (June - August) and spring (September - November). The summer season is dry, hot and sunny, while the winters can be cold, cloudy and rainy or snowy (depending on your altitude). In fact, Pucón even has its own small ski resort nearby.
We would say the best time to visit Pucón is in November and December when the weather is super nice - sunny and warm with a few days of rain - and the massive summer crowds haven't arrived just (January and February can be absolutely crazy because of the high number of tourists). Plus, during this time you can still find affordable lodging, book fun tours the day of, and get a more authentic feel for the town.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO TRAVEL TO PUCON
Overall, Pucón is a pretty expensive town - especially when it comes to lodging and food. We would say that you can expect to spend around $60 - $80 per person per day in Pucón during the busy season (this includes lodging, food, and tours).
If you are looking to live on the cheap, then definitely plan well in advance so you have more lodging options available and/or try to visit during the off-season (December - though still in the beautiful summer time - is much cheaper than January).
💬 INSIDER TIP: while Pucón overall is pretty pricy, there were still a few things we found to be quite a bit cheaper than other places (especially the USA); including, wine (you can easily find a good bottle or box of wine for less than $3), most fruits and vegetables - especially if purchasing them from the local fruterias, and rental cars (we paid roughly $32 a day for a decent rental car).
💱 Exchange rate (2023): $1 USD = 863 CLP (Chilean pesos)
TOP 6 ADVENTURES IN PUCON, CHILE
1 | Go for a Hike
Pucón is known to be one of the top adventure hubs in all of Chile - which is really saying something when you consider just the sheer number of adventure possibilities within the narrow South American country.
While rafting might be one of the more popular outdoor pursuits (see more on this below), it is not the only option for outdoor adventure lovers. In fact, we would say that the hiking options are absolutely top notch and should be high on everyone's Pucón travel itinerary.
Below are some of the best hiking areas and trails in and around Pucón:
Located only a short bus ride away from downtown Pucón, El Cani Sanctuary is a great place to go if you want to check out the famous Araucaria trees (also known as Monkey Puzzle trees), get some amazing views of the nearby volcanoes, and visit a few mountain lakes.
This privately owned sanctuary - the first in all of Chile - has one major trail to explore: the Laguna Negra Trail. It measures just over 14.5 kilometers (9 miles) and ends at either a large mountain lake or a stunning mirador. The reserve offers maps with directions and points of interest to all visitors, so you have no chance of getting lost.
COST: it costs 4,000 CLP ($4.60 USD) per person to enter the sanctuary; you will also need to make a reservation beforehand (do it here).
LOCATION: El Cani Sanctuary is located around 30 minutes by bus from Pucón. Find the exact location here.
► Find our full El Cani hiking adventure guide here.