Que Chilote, If Ya Know What I Mean


Cucao, Chiloe: It’s A One Sheep Town

Chileans come out to Chiloe, an island chain in the southwest, for a mix of nature and culture.  Chilote culture is said to be  distinct from the mainland, but to be honest the whole thing is hard to pick up on as a  foreigner. All over the island, there are signs declaring whatever being advertised as “Cien por ciento Chilote!” yet it is hard to tell what makes the Completos (absurd, ginormous Chilean hot dogs) different here than elsewhere.

Nature wise, Chiloe more than lived up to it’s reputation for cold and rain. The rain makes this land verdant year round, with strange overgrown jurassic looking plants everywhere. Take a look at that thing on the right! You’d half expect an Ewok to jump out from behind it if only the Ewoks weren’t too depressed to come out and play.  We expected this part of Chile to remind us of the US Northwest, but hadn’t figured we’d stumble on an Aberdeen. It’s a hard bit land but the folks in  Chiloe make a go of it living off the sea, some farming and during the summer a fair bit of tourism, half of which are young dreadlocked kids from Santiago whom the locals do their best to tolerate. Salmon farming is the big industry out here, as I learned from a guy on the bus working on a feed operation. Big Salmon are pushing their producers to feed the fishies soy meal, which apparently is the cheapest way to put some lox on the table. That is, if they can figure out a way to get GMO’d Chilean salmon to eat a legume grown in China or the States. Crazy huh? At least the shellfish are all natural, and I must say we had some mighty fine empanadas made with clams.
We stayed in Chiloe for two nights, and three days first in the central city of Castro and then out on the coast in Cucao just in front of the Parque Nacional where most of the pictures below were taken.  

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Next up, Puerto Varas!


About andesnotthemint

Alexis, Mark, 2 seasons, 1 continent, a very long mountain range.
This entry was posted in Chile, Chiloe, Mark. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Que Chilote, If Ya Know What I Mean

  1. howie says:

    Fun fact: Ginormous Chilean hot dogs are actually vegan, and all-natural. Just shave the spindly things off the rod-shaped Ewok-hiding-place plant, peel, grill, and enjoy!

  2. sarala says:

    I love reading your posts — they make me laugh out loud, thanks for doing them. Very interesting plants that you are coming across indeed. And my mouth is watering for some of the seafood that you are eating. And now thanks to Howie’s post, I now know about the vegan version of the ‘Chilean hot dog’. Thanks Howie!!!

  3. Pingback: It Really Rains A Lot In The Rain Forest | Andes Not The Mint dot com

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