Puerto Montt, the capital of the Los Lagos region of Chile, is often called the gateway to the country’s glacial lakes, volcanic landscapes and surrounding national parks. The port is also home to an over-100-year-old German settlement as well as to indigenous communities of Mapuche people. Adventure travelers often base themselves here and in Puerto Varas when planning treks to Chiloé and Patagonia. Even a short visit, however, provides a fascinating look into Chile’s diverse cultures and offers a taste of the country's stunning scenery.
From a stroll around Puerto Varas overlooking Lake Llanquihue, one of Chile’s largest lakes, to a meal in the fishing village of Angelmó of the practically still-snapping catch of the day, washed down with a traditional German-style white wine, Puerto Montt is a fascinating introduction to southern Chile and the people who make their home in one of the world's most photogenic landscapes.