All glass and hardwood, La Refugia (‘The Refuge’) showcases the richest and wildest elements of Chiloé, Chilean Patagonia’s most enchanting – and little-explored – Pacific island archipelago.
Getting there can be done in one of three ways. You can helicopter, you can fly on limited commercial flights or you can ferry. We recommend the ferry experience to keep it as local as possible but either way, Juan, our impossibly charming guide, will greet you like an old friend upon arrival.
Boarding a beautiful eucalyptus boat, he enthuses over life on the island – its folkloric history, penguin colonies and pristine beaches. After unpacking, setting in and exploring the grounds at La Refugia, cozy into the front of the log fire, steaming mugs in hand, to take in wilderness views over the Reloncaví Sound.
With this moment of stillness, ponder the history of this once indigenous tribe stronghold which Juan’s La Refugia knows all too well. Now dotted with the remaining churches and fjords, Chiloe Island is a spot on example of slow change into the 21st century and Juan is ready to tell all as you prepare for the coming day’s adventures and explorations.
Tomorrow it will be time to saddle up and explore the archipelago on horseback but tonight its time to simply relax and enjoy the present for what it is.