Chile: Colchagua Valley to Valparaiso Road-trip


We only had one night at the B&B but it would’ve been nice to have more; such a tranquil location and the owner was wonderful.  I definitely recommend it though you do need a car as it’s a little out of the way (that’s its attraction).

So, we squashed ourselves and possessions into the sub-compact car  … (which was actually smaller than this photo suggests).. midget carand headed north-west.  Well, we wanted to go north-west but Lee, the GPS, was incredibly contrary & stubborn and we basically spent the first 3 hours on the road doing circles on country roads not more than 50 miles from the B&B!!!  Lee wanted to take us onto private property multiple times; once through a guarded entrance.  And he had us turning onto crappy roads with dicey-looking bridges:

Eventually the circle grew enough to include a sign for a town on my Chilean map and we were finally on Routa 66!   It was a really hot day; the a/c was useless; the car struggled on any-degree incline;  the manservant & I were barely speaking and I had to beg for a toilet stop as that little car had amazing fuel economy!  We stopped at a supermarket where there was a toilet and food for late lunch – a little different to the beachside cafe we’d envisioned when planning this day!

I certainly had plenty of time to take photos of the passing landscape;  here are 150-ish miles condensed…..

It was such a relief to eventually round a corner and see the Pacific Ocean!   The 4.5 hour trip took about 8 hours!

And, the trip wasn’t finished as we had yet to find our accommodation!



11 responses

  1. Well I see you found the wine store anyway. 😉 That is super aggravating getting lost like that, at least the weather was good though, can you imagine if it had been raining? I had a hard time with GPS in Puerto Rico when I was at the nice mountain retreat. I had good directions from the hotel website, and the GPS I think was pretty accurate getting me there but roads weren’t marked and when I would go out on a day trip I never once found where I was trying to go, I think I went out twice and could not find what I was looking for, tried to find something else that was in the area, couldn’t find that, and finally I had to go to the bathroom so bad after a couple hours of driving around I just went back and hung out at the pool again. (really rough alternative, too) The GPS kept changing the name of the road I was on when I never even took a fork in the road or anything, it was so bad and I wasn’t even that far from the place I was going, like 15 minutes or something.

    • Oh and you were by yourself! The B&B owner offered to draw me a map but I said oh so confidently “no thanks; we have a GPS” ! I was pretty sorry about that once it started feeling like 100 degrees in the car. At one stage we came to a T-intersection where both the left sign and the right sign said the same town – and it was not a town on my map!

  2. I’m liking that the photographs you post are not the usual landmarks we see on TV documentaries….like the gas bottle on top of the post, and the rough bridges…and all the others. It’s a really interesting series you’ve got going here. Pity my wet season electricity won’t allow me to spend time ‘biggering’ all of you pictures. Oh, and my own travel plans by necessity need to be based on available toilet facilities. 🙂

    • I do worry about using up all your electricity GOF as these posts are so photo-centric. I only have a few more days of Chile to do.. I like a mix of the grittiness with some glossy brochure-type images.

  3. Love the story and GREAT pictures. As a former shipping and logistics person, I particularly like that the shipping container stack caught your eye. And somebody has been diligent with the supermarket display. I had a boss who called a supermarket shelf the most expensive piece of real estate in the land (manufacturers pay for shelf height prominence here). Hope you and manservant could relax and laugh in the evening. As for the car. Well, it is a Hyundai. We have the i30 hatchback, 1.6 litre turbo charged. Goes like the clappers and lovely to drive. Smallest you can get here in Oz is the i20, 1.4 litre. Seems from your description that you had something even smaller? And no grunt? Maybe already driven to death?

    • Aren’t the shipping containers great! Valparaiso is the main shipping and passenger port in Chile. The photographed containers were quite a way outside the city lines. I did a stint as a night packer in Coles & then Woolies and presentation was very important – they called it “facing up”. The “ends” are the most valuable and I imagine the shelves around your feet are probably the cheapest – no-one looks all the way down there!

      I’m not good on cars as we don’t own one so I tend to not notice them (unless they’re about to run over me on a crossing!). The manservant is 6’3″ and “big boned” so he was squeezed in there and I found that even with my seat back as far as possible my knees were only an inch or so from the glove box… Amazingly though when I dropped my camera lens cap you would think I was looking through a mini-van all the searching I had to do.

  4. Pingback: Chile: Back to Santiago & Adiós Chile | Aussie Emjay's Blog

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