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Hostel Pachamama, Putre, Chile

Llama in Hostel Pachamam courtyard © Emma FieldBest for…outdoorsy types.

Something of a cross between a farm and a Kiwi hiking hut, Hostel Pachamama is centred on a courtyard roamed freely by a family of llamas.

Private and dorm rooms surround the sun-filled courtyard, which are in turn surrounded by the peaks of the Andes. The beds are an insomniac’s dream: at bedtime, you sink into a soft mattress and piles of blankets.

There is a communal, well-stocked kitchen, lounge, dining area and one computer with free internet access in a large, barn-like room on the corner of the courtyard. Breakfast is served in here – it’s simple but does the job. Expect ham, cheese, bread, jam, butter and coffee or tea. Showers and toilets are shared, basic and clean.

Hot water is available 24 hours, but tends to cool down the more people there are showering at the same time. Bring warm clothes – it gets cold at night. A group of five inquisitive llamas munch steadily on the garden in the centre of the courtyard during the day and sleep behind the building at night.

Sitting out in the courtyard in the sun reading my book one afternoon, I was startled by a gentle snuffling in my ear as a curious llama gathered up the courage to investigate me! I could hear them from my bed at night – an oddly comforting sound.

The centre of Putre and a selection of restaurants are within an easy walk of the hostel, and it makes a perfect, rustic base from which to explore Parque Nacional Lauca.

Hostel Pachamama
Head south of Putre village centre and ask for directions!
Tel: (+56) 099 286 1695
ukg@entelchile.net

Read related features and images
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Overland Traveller copyright © Emma Field 2010