Located near the coast in southern Chile
, the charming city of Valdivia is in the Los Rios region. The Calle-Calle River and Cruces River surround the main downtown area, offering scenic views set against the rolling hills in the distance.
From picturesque beaches to a diverse cultural history, you'll have lots of interesting activities at your fingertips when you stay at one of our Valdivia vacation rentals. Explore the downtown culture and unique German history, lounge away at one of the beautiful beaches, or explore the several scenic lakes throughout the Los Rios region.
History of Valdivia
As the capital of the Los Rios region
, Valdivia was named after its founder Pedro de Valdivia. The city rests at the meeting point of three rivers flowing out to the ocean: the Calle-Calle, Valdivia, and Cruces Rivers.
In the mid-1600s, Valdivia was colonized as a part of Peru and became one of the most fortified cities of the New World. However, in the late 19th century, German immigrants gained entry to the country through Valdivia and settled throughout the area.
Things to Do in Valdivia
You'll find lots of natural and cultural attractions to choose from year-round in Valdivia. The city is home to several beautiful parks, where you can stroll through and enjoy the natural scenery. Oncol Park features dense forest with stunning views of the coastline along the way to the park.
The Borderío Ecological Park is another popular choice for learning about the local wildlife. For charming gardens and flowers, visit the Botanical Gardens at Southern Chile University in the city. Visit the gardens, then head over to the local fish market along the riverfront, which turns into a local souvenir market in the afternoons.
At the mouth of the Valdivia River, the small island of Mancera features the Castillo San Pedro de Alcantara. Explore the castle ruins and learn about its history - the fortress dates back to 1646 and was part of the original fortification of the Valdivia port.
For outdoor recreation, simply head to the coast just a few miles from the city. Playa Pilolcura offers a scenic cove for sunbathing, swimming, and lounging on the sand. Plus, boating, fishing, and water sports abound anywhere you go in this southern region of Chile!
Day Trips from Valdivia
features plenty of outdoor recreation and scenic lakes to explore. Check out the town and spend the afternoon relaxing on the beach of Lake Panguipulli, complete with views of the nearby mountains and hills.
Southeast of Valdivia, the Huilo-Huilo Biological Reserve offers zip lining, bird watching, and more in the heart of the Patagonian Rainforest. You can go hiking on interesting trails through the forest, visit a gushing waterfall, and have snowy explorations in the winter months.
The scenic southern city of Puerto Montt
is about 132 miles south, and offers lots of local history, delicious salmon and seafood, and outdoor scenery. Similar to Valdivia, you'll find more German foods and traditions in this town, plus you can learn about the native Mapuche people and experience endless acres of old forest at Alerce Andino National Park.
Stay at one of our Valdivia vacation rentals and treat yourself to an unforgettable retreat in southern Chile!
Photo Credit: Punto Ambiental via Flickr