After spending 8 months away from the United States I finally got to see my parents when they came to visit me in Puerto Montt and the Aysen region of Chile! We decided to do a cruise with a company called Skorpios to see the glaciers in the Northern Patagonia Ice Field as well as the fiords in the area.
Upon meeting my parents in Puerto Montt we simply walked around town and then went to an amazing restaurant called El Fogon de Pepe for pisco sours and an asado. I obviously wanted to introduce them to the South American culture and food immediately and this was a great place to do it.
The next day, we took a cab to the Skorpios dock and set sail around lunchtime. The view leaving the port was absolutely amazing with views of Volcanos Villaricca and Chacabuco. Our first stop was that afternoon on the island on Chiloé where we went to the small town of Quemchi to walk around and enjoy this small fishing village (staying only an hour or so).
On Day 2 of the cruise, we stopped at another one of the islands in the fiords and did a small hike to the park. While the weather was a little cloudy the village was very charming and it was nice to see the islands in the area. For me, it was absolutely crazy that all of these tiny islands were inhabited and usually by only a hand full of people. That afternoon we also had the opportunity to go near a small island filled with sea lions. This was absolutely amazing because it was my first chance to see sea lions in the wild. They are such playful and powerful creatures!
The third day was definitely the highlight of the trip for me because we arrived to the Northern Patagonian Icefield and Glacier San Rafael. We left the main ship on small boats and spent 3ish hours getting really close to the glaciers. We even got to enjoy some whisky with glacier ice! The best part during this excursion was the opportunity to see a HUGE piece of the glacier break off into the water. While I had been around other glaciers in the Southern Patagonian Ice Field this was my first chance to see something like this and the power and mass of the glacier was truly impressive.
Day four consisted on taking a boat ride around the Quitralco fiord in the morning and then taking a hike up to the viewpoint where we were docked. The view of the fiord was breathtaking and definitely worth it! We were also able to enjoy an asado for lunch on day 4 because we had been docked since the evening before and the chef had time to slow cook the meat (as is necessary with an asado). The meal was great and that afternoon we had time to enjoy the hot springs which were private for Skorpios cruise members.
Day 5 was spent traveling back north through the fiords with another stop on the island on Chiloe in the town of Dalcahue. We had several hours to spend here enjoying the cute churches and local artisanal markets. Luckily, I don’t have much space in my bag so I could only buy a couple of small things. The sunset from the boat on day five was one of my favorites and it was a perfect last evening on the boat.
Overall, the trip on Skorpios was amazing. There was an amazing breakfast buffet, 3 course lunch, afternoon tea, and 3 course dinner every day along with unlimited alcohol. This was a wonderful change from my backpacking meals of pasta and instant mashed potatoes. I was so glad to share this experience with my parents and we enjoyed every minute of the trip. If you are looking for a cruise of the fiords and Aysen region of Chile I would definitely recommend Skorpios!!