The Carretera Austral (Ruta 7) starts in Puerto Montt and goes southwards to Villa O'Higgins, small town in the very south of Chile.
I took the first bit of the Carretera Austral passing Chaitén, La Junta, Coyhaique, Puerto Ibáñez crossing the huge Lago General Carrera to Chile Chico.
The inaccesible Carretera Austral passes national parks, goes through fjords, passes beautiful old trees, sparkling rivers and dolphins in the Pacific.
Taking the bus here actually means to take a bus, drive an hour, hop on a boat for two more hours, go back on the road ... and so on. There is water everywhere. And sometimes the 240 kilometres to your next stop take more than ten hours.
Take your time - lots of time - for the beautiful landscapes of the Carretera Austral and its beautiful people.
And don't loose faith. In this sparsely inhabitated area buses are not frequent and just the important bits are paved. The timetable changes constantly and maybe you've got to wait a couple of days for the next bus or you've got to sleep somewhere cause the minibuses don't drive by night or you even have to find out by asking around the phone number of a private minibus driver taking the route... or buses which should leave at 5am leave at 4:30 instead.
Between Chilo Chico and Los Antiguos in Argentina there is even no bus service, due to tax issues. You have to walk or hitchhike the border crossing.
Another big adventure in this part of the world... money withdrawel...Read more