Travel
South America
 
South America Destination Guide

Chiloe

Chiloe

Chiloe Island, Southwestern Chile. Lying some 30 mi off the mainland, it has an area of 3,241 sq mi(8,394 sq km). Spaniards captured it from Indians in 1567 and controlled it until 1826, making it a last foothold in Chile of royalist forces during the wars for independence. Heavily forested, the island is little developed. The island's inhabitants make their living by agriculture, fishing and forestry.

Isla Grande de Chiloe a verdant patchwork of undulating hills, is 180krn long but just 50km wide, and surrounded by smaller islands. Most of the towns and farming are on the eastern side, while the western shores are nearly roadless and the interior still thick in forest. Nearly all the 130,000 chilotes (residents of Chiloo) live within sight of the sea. More than half make their living from farming, but many also depend on fishing. Ancud and Castro are the only large towns. Throughout the island, in towns and along hillsides, are distinctive shingled houses and characteristic wooden churches, some up to 200 years old.

Huilliche Indians first raised potatoes and other crops in the fertile volcanic soil. Jesuits were among the earliest European settlers, but mainland refugees arrived after the Mapuche uprising of 1599. A Spanish royalist stronghold, Chiloe resisted criollo attacks on Ancud until 1826.

Chiloe is one of the country's poorest areas, and perpetual hardship has forced many chilotes to leave. A rich folkloric tradition has contributed to Chilean literature, but to some urban dwellers, 'chilote I is synonymous with 'bumpkin.' In part, this reputation derives from insularity, which in turn has encouraged self-reliance, courtesy and hospitality that enchants. Images and references to chilote folklore pepper the island.


Top Attractions


Museo Regional de Ancud
Fuerte San Antonio
Mercado Municipal


Chiloe Hotels


Camping Arena Gruesa
Hospedaje Vista at Mar
Casa del Apostulado
Residencial Maria Carolina
Hospedaje O'Higgins
Hospedaje Capri Hotel
Hospedaje Germania
Hospedaje Alto Bellavista
Hospedaje Reuter Miranda Hotel
Hostal Liuhay
Hotel Madryn

Santiago
Valparaiso
Vina Del Mar
Ovalle
La Serena
Copiapo
Calama
San Pedro De Atacama
Iquique
Arica
Parque Nacional Lauca
Talca
Chillan
Concepcion
Los Angeles
Temuco
Villarrica
Pucon
Valdivia
Osorno
Puerto Montt
Chiloe
Castro
Punta Arenas
Puerto Natales
Hanga Roa

Argentina
Bolivia
Brazil
Chile
Colombia
Ecuador
Falkland Islands
French Guiana (Fr.)
Guyana
Paraguay
Peru
Suriname
Trinidad and Tobago
Uruguay
Venezuela
Amazon Rainforest
Amazon River
Angel Falls
Easter Island
Nazca Lines
Galapagos
Lake Titicaca
Iguazu Falls
Machu Picchu
Bariloche
Patagonia
Petrohue Falls
Wildlife
South America History
Inca Civilization
Travel Warnings
Travel Tips