Remember the houses you were drawing as a child when you got your first drawing equipment? Square, simple and very colourful. And then, with time you realized that in real life they are a bit greyer, more serious and sadder.
Not in these two places, Chiloe and Valparaiso, where the rainbow of houses covers a small piece of Chilean earth.
But every one of them has its own unique personality.
Chile + Corsica = CHILOE
Latitude 42° 28′ 51” S
The second biggest island of Chile but probably the most charming.
We got there on a boat from Chaiten, the last of our Patagonian stops.
After a night in Quellon where we already started enjoying the seafood we headed to Castro, the heart and capital of Chiloe. We very quickly understood that it was a magic place, with very special people to start with our couchsurfing hosts Manuel and Juanjo ending with every single person that crossed our way.
Chiloe is Chilean Corsica, very independent in the way of thinking, cuisine, and lifestyle. People there never say, “I’m from Chile”. They are “from Chiloe”. That is a world apart.
Then coming back to the “rainbow”. You’ll see there a rainbow of palafitos – a very particular stilt house of all colours, made mainly from wood – and of tiny cute wooden churches spread all over the island, as Chiloe was one of the first places of Christian missions in the country.
We also had a chance to meet the real Chilote and Chilota, as we were staying with Manuel and Juan-Jo sharing the endless talks about Indians (Manuel spent 10 years living with different tribes), music and different habits in our countries. We even experienced a day in the countryside at Manuel’s mother place – imagine this! Thanks to all this we will be thinking of Chiloe like about our Chilean home.
Valparaíso, the beautiful bordello 🙂
Latitude : 22 46′ 00”
The second “etape de charme” was definitely Valparaiso, a port village less than 2 hours away from Santiago.
You have never seen such a mess of colours, graffitis, street art, stuff. Every single “rubbish” that anywhere else would be considered as such here is customised, decorated, painted and becomes a very odd and arty detail of this whole bohemian mess. People here know how to find beauty in every single thing and this “favela” town becomes an open air gallery. You can wander in the same streets a thousand times and always discover something new about it.
And you know what, there are no people dressed up in hipsters! What a relief!:-)