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Sunday, 8 November 2015

Jaro and his bike are now in Chile (late October/15)....

In late October, Jaro flew to Chile, and is staying in the town of Valdivia.  Here is his blog:

View from the balcony of my 4th floor apartment 

 The airline ticket was C$1307, plus oversize bike case (about $50), plus an exit row seat on the YYZ - SCL flight ($80, I think).
 There is a submarine outside my apartment
I was originally looking at going to the Canary Islands, but the long-term visa for Spanish territory is very expensive and they want a lot of documentation. Another big factor was the exchange rate - the Euro is still expensive, while Chilean Pesos has been losing against the Loonie.
Valdivia has a reputation as one of the nicest towns in southern Chile, and is a popular tourist destination. For me, the region as a whole makes cycling interesting.

For about the same monthly rent I paid in New Zealand for an unfurnished apartment, here I have a one bedroom fully-equipped place, including such things as an electric tea pot, microwave oven, dishes. There is also cable TV and Wifi.   In Solana Beach, CA, my unfurnished apartment rent was nearly double the rent here and it was not in such a nice  location  - prime waterfront with balcony. The kitchen is quite small, but well equipped. The cooktop has only two heat pads, so one needs to plan ahead a bit, but the oven is nice.

The living room is not big either, but the photo is a little misleading because of the horizontal-versus-vertical proportions - the ceiling is about 3m high!  Doors between the rooms also go up to the ceiling, which makes for unusually tall doors.  Same with the linen cupboards -  I can barely reach the top shelves and I am quite a bit taller than most Hispanics here in Valdivia. The weirdest part is the mirror in the bathroom, which also goes way up to the ceiling. Never seen anything quite like it. 
The balcony is quite long, so there is access from both the living room and the bedroom.

The Valdivia airport is about 30km from town, so I took a taxi.  No, did not rent a car - everything is manual transmission, and I had lots of other things to worry about - besides being tired, after the long trip.

Photos belong to Jaro Franta.

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