February is prime vacation time in Pucón and beach time replaces the daily routine! Here is our run down of the best options to soak up the rays in and around the town, including details of the new beach developments currently underway.
#1. Playa Grande Pucón
If you want to be seen in Pucón during the summer months, this is where it all happens. Live music, Pucón’s Ironman Triathlon, the New Year fireworks show… to name just a few. The heat from the coarse black sand doesn’t put the crowds off from flocking to find a space at the lake edge from morning until night. The long wide beach has enough space for thousands of sun worshippers and offers many watersports options flanking the water’s edge. In addition, numerous bars, restaurants, cafés and ice cream parlors can be found between the sand and the main access streets. You will want for nothing… and all this within walking distance from the main hub of Pucón itself!
#2. Playa La Poza
Technically the Poza is the harbor of Pucón where you can hire jet skis and dock your motorboat if you are lucky enough to own one! It is also the start of more adrenaline water based activities such as parasailing and catamaran rides. This beach is not as popular for whole day stays as the Playa Grande, but if you would prefer to be close to town yet escape the crowds then it is a great place to lay your towel. Also, the sunsets are spectacular from the Poza as it looks directly west over the lake towards Villarrica.
#3. Playa Negra Caburgua
Caburgua has long been heralded as a perfect alternative to the coarse black sand at Playa Grande in Pucón. The waters are not only significantly clearer, but they also tend to be warmer too. Surrounding lush green forests are the perfect backdrop as Caburgua lake is sandwiched in-between Huerquehue National Park and Villarrica National Reserve. The terrain really does feel like a cross between Jurassic Park territory and the end of the earth!
There are many beaches located around the edges of Lake Caburgua and most are accessible only by boat. The main beach underwent a transformation completed last year to include a visitor center, tourist information, a floating dock and recreational sectors such as cycle lanes, viewpoints, cafés and handicraft stalls.
Despite the name Playa Negra, the sand is actually a solid, beigey color, perfect for an early morning jog! Caburgua itself is a small attractive town with everything you need to hand: cabañas, restaurants, typical Chilean food and small supermarkets. On your way out there don’t forget to stop at the old hanging Quelhue bridge over the Trancura river, and at the Ojos de Caburgua waterfalls.
#4. Playa Blanca Caburgua
The fine white sand of Playa Blanca at Caburgua has long been a firm favorite. A vast change from the coarse black volcanic sand of most beaches in the area, it is not surprising that Playa Blanca gets absolutely packed during the summer months. However, it is beyond doubt the best option if you have kids who want to make sandcastles! Top tip: set out early to avoid traffic and guarantee one of the limited parking spots!
#5. Playa Pucará Villarrica
Though technically not in Pucón, you do have to pass through Villarrica to reach Pucón itself and it is well worth a stop. Completely renovated in 2014, Playa Pucará is the first artificial beach in the country, though you wouldn’t think it when you see it. The adjacent 3 km long promenade offers endless attractions such as telescopes to view the crater of Villarrica volcano, go-carts for kids, food stands and local handicrafts. Designed to accommodate between 1500 and 2000 bathers the beach is long, wide, popular and endless. Top tip: take your own parasol as there is virtually no natural shade.
#6. Playa Grande Lican Ray
Located just 30 km from Villarrica, the permanent 6000 strong population welcomes around 70.000 bathers and tourists. After observing the success of the renovated Playa Pucará in Villarrica, the authorities decided to invest in development to include improved beach access, pedestrian areas and infrastructure for local businesses. The development also includes new dock access, a 44m wide viewpoint, as well as a 3800 m² floating swimming pool.
There you have it! If you have a vehicle you are simply spoilt for choice so take advantage, go explore and just bear in mind that starting out early does avoid the summer traffic. Enjoy, relax and return to Lake Lodge ready to enjoy a cold beer of a glass of fine wine overlooking this view of Lake Villarrica from your own private terrace!
We look forward to welcoming you at Lake Lodge this summer so you can share this view with us!
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