Your trip begins today in Santiago, Chile. We meet our local guide at our centrally-located hotel where a brief orientation meeting will be held. After a short transfer out of the city we?ll arrive at our starting point, a coastal community located in the Valparaiso district. After a bike fitting we?ll start our first ride of the trip, an incredible journey through the coastal mountains and along the Pacific coastline. We?ll pause for lunch along the way at a local house where we?ll sample traditional Chilean cuisine prepared with fruits and vegetables grown on the property. Our day ends approximately 52 km from where we started in the coastal city of Matanzas. Our hotel for the night is beachfront and offers spectacular ocean views. Lunch and dinner included.
Driving: 1.5 hrs / Biking: 28 miles, elevation gain / loss: 2,153'-2,907'
Today is a day of transitions?we start off riding along the coastline before we point our bikes inland, tackling the infamous Cuesta Los Leones pass that will take us through the coastal range and into the Colchagua wine valley. As we leave the coast behind and descend into the valley we?ll be treated to endless vistas of vineyards as we enter one of Chile?s most famous regions for the production of wine and olives. Our hotel tonight is a historic hacienda built in the 17th century. Surrounded by rolling meadows and native forest, it?s the perfect place to relax after a big day of riding. We?ll have the chance to do a tasting with the vineyard?s sommelier before dinner tonight. All meals included.
Biking: 47 miles, elevation gain / loss: 3,365'-2,879'
Chile?s Central Valley is known for producing world class wines, specifically bold reds and unique varietals such as the Carm�n�re. Sandwiched between the Andes mountains and the coastal mountain range, there?s no better way to explore this area than on bike. Pedaling along quiet country roads allows us to truly appreciate the stunning combination of mountain and vineyard views. Stops for wine tasting and a local lunch are included in today?s ride and we have a special traditional quincho waiting for us for tonight?s dinner. All meals included.
Biking: 55 miles, elevation gain / loss: 1,336'-1,405'
We continue our ride across the central valley heading south. Today?s ride crosses the border from the Colchagua Valley to the Maule Valley. Maule is lesser visited than the Colchagua and features heirloom grape varietals and traditions going back hundreds of years. We?ll pass through a number of huasos, small villages who rely on farming and the production of grapes and olives. Soft hills and rolling farmlands will guide us to our final stop in the central valley. After a short transfer, we arrive at the very special Casa Bouchon. A renovated adobe hacienda, Casa Bouchon has been making wine for 130 years, over the course of four generations, and their passion for the craft is obvious to all who visit. The sommelier will guide us through Bouchon?s history of winemaking during a special tasting tonight. The hot tub with unparalleled stargazing is a nice treat as well. All meals included.
Biking: 52 miles, elevation gain / loss: 2,500'-2,524'; Driving: 1 hr
Take a relaxing morning to enjoy the hacienda. We?ll leave mid morning and start our transfer from the wine valleys to the lakes region. The transition between the two regions is distinct ? we?ll watch as the Mediterranean hills and vineyards are replaced by sparkling lakes, lush green hills, and lines of volcanoes. We?ll stop at the local market of Chillan enroute. Chillan?s market is one of the oldest trade markets in Chile and is famous for its gastronomy. We?ll take some time to explore the market where we can find everything from fruits endemic to Chile to local crafts to fresh out of the oven empanadas. After our stop in Chillan, we?ll continue driving to Panguipulli, an idyllic town located alongside a lake that will act as our base for the next two nights. All meals included.
Driving time: 6 hours
Today we?ll get a feel for what the lakes region is all about! Lake Panguipulli is one of several glacial lakes that make up Chile?s Lakes Region?deep blue water surrounded by lush rainforest and smoking volcanoes ate every turn. Our ride today contours around and along the lake, which is nearly 20 miles. The road appears carved into the hillside and the undulating hills make for good old-fashioned roller coaster fun. There is very little development along the lake allowing us 360-degree views of rolling Andean forest. We?ll have lunch in Choshuenco on the shores of the lake before heading back the way we came? always with the lake at our side. Dinner is at the hotel tonight. All meals included.
Biking: 33 miles, elevation gain / loss: 2,450'-2,783'; Driving: 1 hr (option to bike back)
We bid farewell to Panguipulli and start riding north to Lake Calafquen, along a portion of the famous route of Seven Lakes. The ride along the lake is beautiful in its own right but the appearance of the sleeping giant, Villarrica, on the horizon is a real treat. Along the way, we?ll pass Mapuche villages and have the chance to sample local treats such as sopapilla and fresh juice. We arrive in Pucon in time for lunch. After lunch, we have the option of relaxing and exploring the walkable streets of Pucon, biking an additional road to thermal hot springs, or embarking on an afternoon rafting adventure on the lower Trancura River. Dinner is on your own tonight.
Biking: 25 miles, elevation gain / loss: 1,437'-1,530' (optional bike to the hot springs is an additional 12 miles with 1,345' elevation gain); Driving: 30 minutes
Our trip has been frequented by views of volcanoes so it seems only fitting to take on the challenge and bike to the base of one of the most imposing ? Lanin. Today?s ride is a big one?featuring over 4,000 ft in elevation gain. It?s well worth the effort to see the volcano from a closer vantage point and the views of the surrounding lakes and countryside can?t be beat. Keep an eye out for the famous Auracaria (monkey puzzle) trees of the region. They prefer to grow on high elevation volcanic slopes so today?s ride is a perfect chance to see them. If you prefer downhills to uphills, the ride can be done in reverse. Whether you ride up or down, we all meet, back to town for a celebratory dinner in Pucon. All meals included.
Biking: 43 miles, elevation gain / loss: 4,280'-1,326'; Driving: 1 hr
Wake up in the scenic foothills of the Andes. If you choose, rise early to catch the sunrise or maybe go for a stroll along the shore of Lake Villarrica. After breakfast, we head to the airport for our departing flights. Trip members can opt to return to Santiago for connecting flights home or extend their travels in Chile. Breakfast included.