Quellón is a small town at the southern end of Chiloé Island. It is a fishing and transportation hub for the area and not a particularly interesting tourist destination, although you might want to experience the thrill of standing at the southern extreme of Chile's longest road, the Ruta 5 (aka Panamericana), which is marked with a plaque and monument just outside of town at Punta de Lapas.
Quellon is the southernmost town on Chiloé Island and is about 50 km from Castro. The Ruta 5 is the only road going here.
The Naviera Austral ferry to Chaitén on the mainland is expensive but sometimes the only way to travel the Carretera Austral without the detour into Argentina. In winter they only depart on Sundays only, but are more frequent in summer. Fare is CLP12,000 pp, CLP65,000 for a car (not including passengers, driver is CLP6,500). Check their website for current schedule and pricing.
Numerous buses to Castro every day (2,000 pesos, 1.5-2 hours). If you just arrived by ferry, walk one block left and half a block right and there is the Cruz del Sur terminal, from where you can buy tickets and get on board the next bus.
Taxis are CLP900 (as of 02/06) regardless of destination in town. At night the price gets higher.
The plaque marking the end of the Chilean Panamerican Highway (Ruta 5) is just outside of town at Punta de Lapas (also a relatively good beach for this far south). Take any bus on Ladrilleros that says Punta Lapas (20 minutes, CLP250).
- Whale watching. There are a few local companies arranging whale tours from November to March. For Ana Maria Jara Millo on the boat "Ana Villosa", call 82467340 or 94270380. Alternatively try Ruben Riedel on boat "Nachito", call 77138014 or 97881686.
- Everyday during summer an authentic curanto (a local specialty: stew of seafood, meat and potatoes traditionally prepared in a hole dug in the ground) takes place at the Turismo Millaguen near the end of the Panamerican Highway (Km 3, email firstname.lastname@example.org). Take any westbound bus on the main street that has "Punta de Lapas" as a destination - Millaguen is on the north side of the road down a steep driveway.
The curanto is at 1:30 (the excitement starts about 12:30 when the fire gets going - watching the construction of the curanto is as much fun as eating it). Seafood, potatoes, two types of potato-dough bread, chicken, pork, peas and fava beans are buried in a pit and cooked for an hour and half. Lunch with wine costs about CLP4,500 (02/06).
Hotel Tierra del Fuego, Pedro Montt 445 (right on the waterfront). Has a very nice restaurant that serves excellent fish dinners.
Kaffee Rose Cafe, Ladrilleros 135 (next to the Coloso Supermercado). Be sure to stop there. Good pastries, chocolates and the usual Nescafe are available.
Good camping spots on the beach south of town at Quellon Viejo. Beware of the tide.
There are about 8 hospedajes in town. None have kitchen access. The cheapest, Diegos, is 6,000 pesos per person, up from the bus station toward the main road on the left hand side.