Enjoy a historic walk around the Patrimonial Route in Puerto Varas and discover the city's colonial past. You'll see the very best German-inspired architecture on this route that takes in ten different houses. The best thing about this self-guided tour is that it costs nothing and you'll learn a whole lot from the approximately two hour tour.
See German colonial history on the Patrimonial Route
Puerto Varas was created by German immigrants who settled here between 1852 and 1853. The Bittner, Von Bischofshausen, Gebauer, Schminke, and later the Klenner, Vyhmeister, Schwabe, Leichtle, Luckeheide, and Minte families, among others, made their homes here and began a gradual settlement of the area. The route takes in many of their old houses and is a chance to admire the unique architecture from this era of colonization in south Chile.
A fascinating walking tour
Grab yourself a city map at the tourist information office near the lakefront or from your hotel to follow the "Paseo Patrimonial," as it is known locally. The two-hour tour will take you past ten historic homes listed as Monumentos Nacionale, ideal photography opportunities on your journey. Highlights include: The Kuschel House was built in 1915 and was the property of Wilibaldo Klenner. It's now the information center for Pumalin Park. The two-story house has an oak framework structure, with a wooden horizontal walls and a stone base. There's an interesting dome on the roof with metal covering. The German House was built in 1914 by the Klenner family. A bungalow house with a roof space, it is being used as a family residence just as it was when it was first built. Again, it has a wooden framework, as well as grooved iron plates. Juptner House derives from 1910 and was property of the Juptner Klenner family. The wooden structure is covered with tiles made of larch. Maldonado House, another wooden structure, is the oldest of the houses on the route, and was built in 1893 by the Emhardt family. Yunge House was built in 1921 by Juan Hitschfeld. The two-story wooden building has an attic and a larch tile cover. Note the concrete and wooden alloys at the edges that strengthen the house's structure. Along the route, there's also Gotschlich House (from 1910), as well as some that now serve as lodgings: Casa Schwerter, Casa Hitschfeld, and Casa Wetzel. Pause along the lakefront to admire the views of the water and two volcanoes, which are visible on a clear day. End the day with a well-earned drink or meal at one of the many inviting restaurants and cafes.