Sitting on the southwestern edge of the lake with a beautiful view of the volcano, VILLARRICA is one of Chile’s oldest towns, although it may not feel like it – it has been destroyed several times by volcanic eruptions and skirmishes with the Mapuche. Now that Villarica’s waterfront has been transformed with an attractive promenade, replacing the rather dirty beaches, the place has once again been attracting its fair share of visitors, who find it to be a more low-key, authentic destination than the ultra-touristy Pucón. Plans are afoot to beautify Villarica even more with brand new sand beaches, a yacht harbour and an urban park with theatre.

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