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Cultural Immersion in Futaleufú, Chile

At Expediciones Chile we believe that experiencing Patagonian culture should be part of your vacation experience. Our native wood lodge is located in the heart of the village of Futaleufu, which allows you the opportunity to immerse yourself in the authentic Chilean way of life.

Futaleufu is a quiet alpine village, surrounded by the glacial Andes. Only founded seventy years ago, it remains a historic frontier outpost and its rustic charm prevails. Horses outnumber automobiles. Local artisans craft beautiful wood and wool products. Many locals live simply on the vast countryside. And an old-fashioned Patagonian rodeo frequently rides into town to entertain the area’s inhabitants.

At Expediciones Chile, we strive to create the perfect balance for our clients, giving them a wide array of adventure activities during the day, and in the evening, the opportunity to experience local life.

We recommend that you interact with people in town, allowing both the opportunity to learn about each other’s way of life: Drink Patagonian mate (mah-téh; a traditional tea) with our neighbors. Ride horseback with a local Huaso (Chilean cowboy) and experience how a modern frontiersman lives. Savor the flavors of locally baked breads, unique Chilean empanadas and pastries. Join Chilean youth in a game of fútbol (soccer); we organize several games each week. Discover for yourself a community that has etched out its remote existence apart from the rest of Chile, devoted to its national roots, but greatly influenced by a distinctive Argentine culture.

These are only a few of the great experiences you will have staying at our village lodge.


In addition to those experiences that you will have in town, we also offer cultural excursions. The following are a few of our options:

Overnight at Benedicto’s Ranch
Hike or ride horseback to a local rancher’s farm and spend the night at his rustic homestead. The farm is six miles from the lodge in Futaleufu, and located in the Las Escalas Valley. Benedicto, a 56-year old widower and his assistant, Hernán, entertain their guests with extravagant homemade, organic feasts. Guests can get lessons in spinning wool, knitting, weaving and milking cows. Bilingual guides can also offer lessons on the Spanish language. The home has two matrimonial beds and four twin beds to comfortably sleep up to eight guests. It is an unforgettable cultural experience.

Overnight at Abuela’s House in the Espolon Valley

Traverse the pristine Espolon Lake by sea kayak and then hike to the town of Espolon to spend the evening with abuela. She offers homemade feasts including delectable homemade honey and jam. Spend the night in her comfortable #-bedroom home. Abuela always enjoys sharing her way of life with her international guests.

The pueblo of Futaleufu has a unique culture that stemmed from the early pioneers of the Futaleufu Valley. Due to the harsh terrain, the founding of the pueblo occurred only seventy years ago and it marked the beginning of recorded human history in this region of Patagonia. The Chileans who eventually made this area their home migrated from the Lakes District via Argentina. During the ensuing decades, the only contact these nationals had with civilization was by way of the Argentine border towns. Until the road was built in the early seventies, the economy of Futaleufu was largely dependent on Argentina.

The early economy was based on trade, and the currency most in use was the Argentine peso. A system of barter enabled the inhabitants to purchase the essentials of life, such as flour, sugar, and kerosene oil. Because of the strong ties with Argentina, the inhabitants became deeply influenced by the culture of the estancias (large estate ranches) in their manner of dress and speech. The cuisine also tended to mirror that of Argentina. Dishes are prepared over an open fire. The clothes of the Argentine gaucho (cowboy) are still the preferred form of dress for working in the open fields.

Futaleufu offers beauty, culture and excitement, all in one. Chilean cuisine can be sampled in several of the town’s restaurants, along with typical Chilean pastries and breads that are baked fresh daily at one of two local bakeries.

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Information about the weather in Patagonia Climate in Chile & Argentina. Weather forecasts.
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Custom ecotours in Chile of the Futaleufu valley that include bird watching and nature treks.

Kayak School
Learn the eskimo kayak roll at our kayak school. Receive world class kayak instruction from our paddling school.

University of Futaleufu
Checkout our large group, instructional and corporate team building programs offered every tear..
Futaleufu Information
Information About the Futaleufu River in Patagonia Chile. Futaleufu guidebook of river sections.
Ex Chile Travel Agent Info
Information on traveling in Chile. Travel agent discounts and commisssions.

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Office internships and employment opportunities in rafting, kayaking and fly fishing & adventure travel offfice.
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Kayak Chile Whitewater
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con las mejores aguas blancas de clase mundial (5,4,3,). Kayak de mar, mountain biking, cabalgatas, sit-on-top kayaking cayoning, caminatas, pesca con mosca y mucho más aventuras podrás encontrar en el corazón de la patagonia Chilena, y desde el comfort de nuestro nativo y caluroso Hotel. Rafting en lel Río Futaleufú en Español.

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