Wooden churches of Quinchao island
During our 3 day road trip around Chiloe island, we (me and Rachele and Gabor from www.surfingtheplanet.com) spent a couple of hours exploring the island Quinchao. We took a car ferry from Dancahue (a port on Chiloe island) to Quinchao for 3,000 pesos per car and saw a very cool rainbow on the ferry, one of many you can see on Chiloe and Quinchao.
Once on Quinchao island, we drove directly to the first important village Curaco de Velez and got to the main plaza where the wooden church is – a green and brown church, the oldest of the churches of the archipelago. It was reconstructed so it doesn’t look old at all. There was the mass going on inside. The plaza was very cool with nice green trees and the traditional houses around. And wifi zone, who would expect it in here! We all went online on facebook on our phones for a second and then continued the road trip.
We took a little road to Chullec village and I really loved that place! The church was one of the original ones without being restored, with no colours but the one of the wood and it was situated on the beach with hundreds of birds around and some old boats. Nothing but the noise of the sea and sea gulls, so peaceful!
Then we continued to another little town Palqui. Its church was painted with white and blue colours in the front and had a small garden in the front and a cemetery behind it. This one looked very traditional, right next to the main road with a bus stop and a small plaza of the villages surrounded by apple trees.
After, we finally got to Achao, visited the market and the coast, then the biggest wooden church. It was not painted at all from outside but of many colours inside. Some of the columns were original yet, just the tree trunks. It says you should not take photos inside the church as the flash hurts the decoration but we didn’t use the flash at all, nor did the other visitors who all took photos. In the front there were statues of the Saints, the Santa from the area was brought from Europe later on when the original one was destroyed. The other statues were the original wooden ones.
The ceiling of the church is resembles a ship bottom it was the only thing the locals knew more about – fishing and boats. It’s painted dark blue. There is a museum in the back of the church, with a lot of photos of life of local people from Quinchao island, their musical instruments, things they use in the kitchen, clothes, and other interesting local things.
We learned a lot about Quinchao island, the wooden churches here and the life of local people in the Achao museum and then we drove to the end of the island – Chequian village. There was this little church there in the end of the road where the island ended.
Afterwards, we drove back to Villa Quinchao, a village named like the whole island and took photos of the church there. It was quite big and old. We tried to find a restaurant to have lunch there but everything was closed with no life inside. So we had to drive back to Dalcahue to have lunch and this is where our Quinchao trip ends.
I really had a blast exploring Quinchao island, watching all the animals, cows, horses, sheep, pigs and goats all around eating the green grass. The people were mostly very friendly too, not that we saw many. Got some pretty nice view as there are some viewpoints all around the island.