A well-marked trail within the National Park and all safety measures and comfort will ensure a nice hike.
Villa La Angostura
offers the chance to access high panoramic points from where the beauty and magnitude of the environment may be appreciated. On Quetrihué Peninsula, very close to the port, three viewpoints were waiting for us. After our mild effort, they offered a splendid view of Lake Nahuel Huapi and the city.
We started hiking at the area from where catamarans leave towards Victoria Island and the myrtle-tree forest
. A huge wooden arch showed us the beginning of the trail that after 12 kilometers reaches Arrayanes National Park. It may be covered either on foot or by bike.
Following the same trail, we would get to two viewpoints showing Bahía Mansa
and the residential area of Villa La Angostura. The third one featured Bahía Brava
and its beach.
We resolved to set out early in the morning. The mist that usually covers the water body had not disappeared yet. Afterwards, that soft almost transparent cloud gradually abandoned the surface of the lake until it vanished and a mild breeze caused the water to move gently, as if it was stroking it.
Once in a while, some duck would cross the lake surface and leave a soft wake visible from the top. This added some magic to the tour which required a dose of effort at the beginning.
The trail was supported by a wooden rail on the lake’s side and a huge wall of rock right opposite. It was broad and comfortable and there were some extra steps to secure our pace. We took some deep breaths to let the new air into our lungs.
Thus, we reached the first viewpoint and fulfilled our wish to see the village from the heights. A large forest accompanied the beach area and, inside, beautiful residences overlooked the lake. In front, the enigmatic Lake Nahuel Huapi with its islands here and there. Above, Bayo Hill with its foothills.
We took advantage of that moment to take some pictures with different backgrounds; that would be a great way to remember each of these spots, such as the famous residence called El Messidor, property of the government of the Province of Neuquén
Thanks to a sign established by the National Park authorities, we discovered that there was a very narrow thick trail that led to the other side of the peninsula and, as a result, to the viewpoint on Bahía Brava
. As we took it, we had the chance to enjoy the Patagonian forest from the inside.
The previous breeze slowly changed into a soft wind that caused the tree branches to rock. We listened to that sound during the entire hike.
A little farther ahead, we could see a light at the end of the trail. It was the lake shore again, this time on Brava Beach. The last stretch was keeping a surprise for us: an important slope. We gave some extra strength to our legs to reach the wooden observation deck.
One Last Effort and We Made It
We confirmed that the third viewpoint was the windiest of them all. There was an explanation for that fact: we were facing West, the direction from which Patagonian winds come. Almost breathless, we looked at each other, watched the environment and the words just came out: “it was worth it!” The scenery was a must.
We went down carefully choosing our steps. “Hi! How nice! Is it a long way to the viewpoint?”, some German guys asked enthusiastically in our language.
With our eyes on the lake, we saw the different shades in the water. The deeper, the darker. Emerald green covered the zones close to the beaches. From a distance, we could appreciate a group of people getting on the catamaran. They looked like tiny colorful spots within the enormity.
Little by little, and as we reached the plain, the sound of the port and the nearby area got us back to the rhythm of the city we had chosen to spend our vacations.