Pichilemu is about a 3 1/2 hour bus ride southwest of Santiago and is most famous for its world class surfing. If you’re in Chile and surf, want to learn, or just like watching, you’ll need to make a stop in Pichilemu. It’s an easy place to get stuck in with its beaches, seafood, and small coastal town vibe, but you can easily experience all Pichilemu has to offer in just two or three days if that’s all the time you have. We went for a weekend and managed to hit up all the must-see’s, do’s, and eat’s. Here are a few pointers to get the most out of your time in Pichilemu.
Where to Stay:
There are tons of cool places to stay in Pichilemu ranging from backpacker hostels to boutique hotels and bed and breakfasts. We went the hostel route and chose a place called Sunset Hostel in the La Puntilla area. Wherever your tastes lie, I would recommend trying to find lodging near La Puntilla. That way you are right in front of one of the nicest stretches of beach and also close enough to the center of the town and its restaurants, bars, etc.
If you’re interested in surfing, most hostels will have board and wetsuit rentals available, which was the case with Sunset Hostel. They also had a (clean!) hot tub and a pizza oven so we really couldn’t complain.
Where to Eat:
Docas – Come to Docas for their huge beer selection and reasonably priced food. They have a little bit of everything from burgers to kebabs, and paired with a refreshing cerveza, it’s the perfect way to refuel after the beach. It’s located right in the center of town and has some outdoor seating which makes for prime people watching.
Cardumen Café – If you’re looking to break free from the Nescafe prison that is most of Chile, Cardumen Café is your place. Real coffee, teas, and smoothies make this place a necessary stop before a day in the water. They have two locations in Pichilemu – one in the town center and the other is a truck that is usually parked near Punta de Lobos
Ceviche stands – You can’t come to the coast and just not have ceviche. Don’t be turned off by the small stands on the beach that seem to be surrounded by fish parts, these have the freshest seafood and some of the best ceviche I’ve ever had.
What to Do:
Pichilemu is first and foremost a surf town, so understandably so, the waves are the main attraction.
La Puntilla (beginners) – This may not look like a beginners beach at first glance but don’t let that discourage you. The waves carry you away from the rocky boarders of La Puntilla, and the waves never get too big here. Get your wetsuit on and get in the water! If your hostel/hotel doesn’t rent boards there are plenty of places along the beach that offer wetsuits, booties, boards, and lessons if you’re interested in getting some pointers before hitting the waves. There are lots of first time surfers getting lessons here, so its a good place to learn, but the water can get pretty crowded, so be aware of your surroundings.
Punta de Lobos (advanced) – Punta de Lobos is South Americas most famous left pointbreak and hosts a good number of surf competitions throughout the year. The waves here are significantly larger than at La Puntilla and should probably be left to experienced surfers only. That doesn’t mean that beginners and non-surfers should skip it though. Punta de Lobos is a great place to just hang out, watch some surfing, and enjoy the beautiful scenery, so be sure not to miss it.
Did I miss anything? What are your favorite spots in Pichilemu? Let us know in the comments section!