Chile Chico / Lago G. Carrera

Chile Chico - Photos: Jorge GonzálezChile Chico - Photos: Jorge González

The District of Chile Chico lies on the southern margin of Lake Carrera, in the Province of General Carrera in the Eleventh Region of Aisén. It is located 1,777 kilometers away from the Chilean capital, 190 from Cochrane and 395 from Coyhaique.

To access this location either from the north or the south, visitors must go along Route 7, also known as Carretera Austral (Southern Road). Chile Chico or Puerto Ibañez is reached along secondary roads that border Lake Carrera. The localities of Bahía Jara, Fachinal, Mallín Grande, Puerto Guadal, Puerto Bertrand and Río Leones belong to this district.

The scenery is a prelude to the gorgeous nooks hidden by southern Chilean Patagonia, where the contrast produced by the aridity of the pampas and the fruit and poplar tree groves in the farms create the illusion that this lands belong to central Chile. Chile Chico features a micro climate with ideal temperatures for growing vegetables, fruit and cereal.

Before reaching the shore of Lake General Carrera, visitors will enjoy Laguna Verde (Lake Green) and Río Manso (Gently-flowing River), whose source is the lake itself. Both environments are ideal for angling. Likewise, the area known as Cajón Cofré features plenty of volcanic vestiges and a lake bearing the same name where black-necked swans and other aquatic birds may be spotted.

Lake General Carrera is the heart of the area, the largest in Chile and the second largest in South America, after Lake Titicaca. This great water body belongs to two nations and on the Argentinian side it is called Lake Buenos Aires. It was discovered in 1880 by Argentinian geographer Carlos Moyano. Afterwards, the American anthropologist known as H. Prichard would get to this location in 1901 in order to explore the banks of Puerto Ibáñez and Chile Chico in search for Tehuelche traces.

On the way to Jeinimeni, 25 kilometers away from Chile Chico, lies one of the main local attractions: Piedra Clavada. This 40-meter-high rock eroded by the wind stands alone in the middle of a pampa, surrounded only by pullout grass.

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