Valdivia Chile is known as the City of Rivers because of the many bodies of water that run around and through it, making the town a popular port destination. When you travel to Valdivia, you will experience the ancient culture and history of the city that was founded in 1552, and even if you're not specifically interested in the history of Chile, it's sure to be an unforgettable part of your trip.
Deciding when to travel to Valdivia is not difficult, as the weather and climate provide ideal conditions for boating tours, hiking excursions, and sightseeing expeditions to local attractions. The colorful history and culture of the area are reasons tourists have made Valdivia Chile a popular resort area year-round. Travelers can expect temperate climates during the spring and summer months, which run from November to April. Normal rainfall takes place throughout these seasons and is heavier during the fall and winter, from May to October.
Valdivia Chile has many interesting areas to visit, beginning with the local riverside market situated along the Cruces River at the Schuster docks. A bustling market area for tourists featuring food, produce, seafood, and handcrafted items, locals provide Valdivia tours by boat along the river or all-day excursions traveling along seven local bodies of water.
Vacationers with Valdivia travel plans at the beginning of February will be entertained for a week as the annual celebration honoring the founding of the city in 1552 by Pedro Valdivia begins. During the week of festivities, parades, fireworks, rides, cultural activities, sports, and markets of handcrafted items take place at Park Saval.
Valdivia travel will take you back in time as you walk through the Spanish forts built centuries ago, the remains of which are near Valdivia at Nieble and Corral. Access to the fort at Niebla is by car or bus; access to Corral is by ferry. Other architectural sights include San Sebastián de la Cruz Castle, which is on one side of the Cruces River, and on the other side, at Mancera Island, are the San Pedro de Alcantara Fort and the San Antonio church built in 1748. In the depths of the river between the two forts are the remains of a sunken ship that went down during a devastating earthquake in 1960.
A pleasant tour to add to the itinerary when you travel to Valdivia is at the Kunstmann Brewery, established in the 1960s. You will be taken on a guided tour to see the brewing process, enjoy beer sampling along the way, and finish with a stop at the souvenir shop and museum. A German restaurant is part of the brewery and serves traditional German beer and cuisine in the beer garden. Those particular interested in this aspect of Valdivia should consider a trip in January, when they can join the celebration at the annual Kunstmann Bier Fest, a four-day celebration with music, parades, dancing, and plenty of beer.
An additional point of interest for sightseers is the Universidad Austral de Chile, which houses a botanical garden filled with local examples of plants and flowers along with an extensive area devoted to growing multiple types of vegetables. The Sanctuary of Nature is a natural wetland created by an earthquake and is home to a variety of aquatic birds, including the black-necked swans that make their nests here.
Valdivia travel by train is available aboard the Valdiviano steam locomotive, built in 1913. Still in service after nearly 100 years, the steam locomotive travels along the Calle Calle River through forested landscapes from Valdivia to the station at Antihue. If you're interested in adding other historic destinations to your Chile vacation, the cities of Puerto Montt and Pucon are a relatively easy distance away and well worth a visit during a journey through this part of South America.