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Queilén and around

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The paved road to Queilén runs above a string of pretty little villages down by the sea. Tepua in particular is worth a visit to see its graveyard filled with mausoleos, traditional shelters that protect mourners from the elements when they visit the graves of the dead, some of which are splendidly ornate. You’ll either need a sturdy vehicle to tackle the steep dirt paths leading to the villages, or be prepared for a lot of walking.

Forty-six kilometres from Chonchi, the road pulls into Queilén, a sleepy little fishing town whose two main streets, Pedro Aguirre Cerda and Alessandri, bisect the neck of a long, sandy peninsula. The western end of town is very pretty, lined with fishermen’s houses built on a long beach sheltered by the nearby Isla Tranqui. In February the town hosts a craft fair in which all types of local products are sold, from handicrafts and farming equipment to traditional medicines.

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