There are natural termas (thermal waters or hot springs) within the Aysén Region, but the Palena - Queulat area offers easy access and great concentration. These hot springs are framed with amazing backdrops; evergreen forests, ferns, flowers and other elements of the fjords and channels generated by glacial erosion of the earth’s crust during the last glaciation and the collapse of the central valley due to tectonic activity.
The thermal waters of the Palena – Queulat area are related to the volcanic activity in the area, especially the Melimoyu volcano, which remains active even though its last eruption was estimated to have occurred between 8 thousand and 11 thousand years ago. Here are three of the many options for relaxing in the thermal baths of the area, each with a different style and price. Your choice, or visit all three, and enjoy the variety!
The Termas del Ventisquero Puyuhuapi, are located 6 km south of Puyuhuapi, alongside the Carretera Austral. When you leave the parking lot and step down the stairs leading to the baths, you will find yourself immersed in beautiful native gardens that later open up to provide a backdrop for the panoramic views of the fjord, which you will enjoy as you relax in the warming waters. The pools vary in temperature between 35 °C and 44 °C and most have roofs overhead, so regardless of the weather, inside the waters you’ll be toasty warm. During the summer months the baths are open until 23:00, allowing you the chance to relax under the stars. In addition, there are changing rooms with lockers and towels, showers, and a coffee shop with great pastries, coffees and snacks.
Puyuhuapi Lodge & Spa is another great option, located on the other side of the Puyuhuapi Fjord. To access the spa, you’ll travel 14 km south from Puyuhuapi, to their parking area and pier. You should coordinate your visit in advance so that they will have the boat waiting to transport you to the other side of the fjord. The Lodge, Spa and Baths are all located on a private peninsula called Dorita Bay where you,ll find the perfect combination of sea waters, fresh waters, and thermal waters. There are 3 outdoor baths overlooking the fjord that can be used both day and night. In addition, there is an indoor swimming pool and a full treatment spa with massage and other services based on the properties of the thermal water and muds of the area. And if one day is not enough, simply reserve a stay in their luxury accommodations for a few more days of total comfort. Keep in mind, during the high season the facilities are for the exclusive use of the guests of the lodge. Reserve ahead.
Further north, in kilometer 17 of Route X-12, from La Junta to Port Marin Balmaceda, you’ll find the El Sauce Rustic Hot Springs, owned by the Berger’s, one of the original families to settle in these valleys. The Bergers provide access to the thermal waters on their lands, with facilities that are rustic, unique and wonderful! First, there’s the adventure of getting to the springs. You enter their farm through a gate located at Route X-12 and drive approximately 3 km before reaching the springs. Here, in the middle of a rustic and natural setting, you find changing rooms, bathrooms, areas for barbecuing and wooden walkways leading into the nearby forest where the baths are located and are improved only by the addition of cypress decking and river pebbles. It’s magical. During January and February, the front gate is open from 9:30 to 20:30, Monday to Sunday. In other months you should contact them beforehand to arrange your visit.