La Gringa Carioca Hostal is happy to help guests plan and arrange trips into the Futaleufú countryside or further afield. These trips get vacationers off of the typical tourist routes and allow them to experience life in “authentic” Patagonia. If you have ever been wondering what it was like to be a pioneer, living off the land, without electricity and limited connectivity with the outside world a rural tourism experience will provide that.
These trips are not easy to arrange and will require some advanced notice. Oftentimes the only way to let word to these remote families that you will be coming is via the public radio station, their only connection to the outside world.
These adventures can be great for children also, giving them an appreciation another culture and quickly vanishing way of life.
Rural Tourism Options:
The Espolon village is an isolated settlement on the northwest side of Espolon lake. The village is connected to the outside world through a ferry service that runs on certain days of the week. Hostal guests can take the ferry to the other side, then horseback or hike through the little settlement and spend a night at a remote Patagonia ranch. You can return the following day on the ferry or even trek back to Futaleufú along the lake or through the mountains.
Traditional Patagonia Farm
Located in Las Escalas, a rural sector 30 minutes from La Gringa Carioca Hostal by vehicle, is a traditional Patagonia farm committed to organic agriculture and wool production. They offer guests an opportunity to encounter every aspect of rural Patagonian farm life. Guests can milk cows, make cheese, shear sheep, and weave by hand, take a tour of their gardens and collect eggs from the henhouse. With few exceptions, the methods employed there are the same as the original pioneers who lived in the region 75 years ago. The farm also sells woolen goods like sweaters, ponchos and blankets all hand made from the sheep on the farm.
A trip to the farm can be scheduled as a day event from La Gringa Carioca Hostel or guests can hike out to it spend the night and return to the bed and breakfast the following day.
Azul Valley Glacier Ride
Starting near the confluence of the Futaleufú and Azul river guests can get on horses and ride up the Azul River Valley to a remote Andean glacier. The ride goes through stands of giant old growth coihue tress. Participants would overnight at a remote ranch and then return to the bed and breakfast the next day.
Pumalin Park, Amarillo Hot Springs, Chaiten Volcano
There are numerous other adventure options and tours that guests can participate in from La Gringa Carioca Hostel. Among the most visited places are the Amarillo Hot Springs and Pumalin Park, about 170 kms distant from Futaleufu. Pumalin Park offers an iconic experience, with well marked trails that pass in between forests of coihue, luma, ulmo and other species of trees found in a Valdivian temperate rainforest. Another option is to hike up the smoking caldera of the recently erupted Chaiten Volcano. This is a spectacular hike through a zone recently devastated by ash and lava flows.