Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Double dose of Lican Ray and Lago Calafquen

Two of our days in Villarrica we hopped a bus after breakfast and headed south to the town of Lican Ray.  After a short half hour we arrived in town and headed to the water.  The beaches there are black from the volcanic rocks and the water in Lago Calafquen is clear as can be.  The first day we swam at the town beach and then rented kayaks to paddle around the peninsula.  Cal and Harper loved being in the boats and Harper worked up the courage to hop out and swim in deep water.  We found a secluded beach and pulled up on shore for a while.  The kids threw rocks, collected interesting-shaped sticks, and splashed around in a little tide pool someone had made earlier.  It was a great day. 
On our second trip to Lican Ray we decided to hike around the peninsula and found another great beach.  It was rocky and we were glad to have hauled our water shoes all the way from home, but the water was even warmer than on the public beach and it was a great spot to camp out for the day.  Harper and Danny swam around the “big rock,” which kept Cal anxiously awaiting their return, and both kids had fun jumping into the water from some nice-sized boulders. We shared the beach with some other families and Cal shared his cookies with these nice little girls he was trying to befriend.  After a while we hiked back around the peninsula and it felt so nice to be surrounded by the forest.  The trail wound around the peninsula and had some really nice lookouts and huge beech and araucaria trees (more about them later!)  

The water is so clear. 
Harper and Danny rest up after their swim around the "big rocks"

Happy family

Danny out for a swim

Harper works on her Ariel impersonation

Cal stands between two Mapuche carvings.  The Mapuche are indigenous people of the area and were able to successfully keep out the Spanish invaders until the mid 19th century.  We visited a small Mapuche museum in town one day and learned about typical homes, meals, and artesania.  Their wood carvings are amazing pieces of art.

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