The Nonguén National Reserve is located near Concepción, so if you are in town, it is a must-see. The place is well known and recommended by locals! It is so green, fresh and unique, and also a fantastic place to go hiking to as it has a lot of trails to offer. The Reserve is a place of nature preservation, and it has an extraordinary deciduous forest and lots of wildlife.
The Reserve is meant to protect the flora and fauna from the expansion of the crops. Why is this important? Because it protects the last remnants of the deciduous forest that once covered the whole coastal range in the region! It also hosts some endangered species of trees. The place also protects the animal life, most of which are endangered and rare species. Among the species you can find here, there are foxes, pudús (a South American species of deer), and birds.
Do you enjoy hiking? In the national reserve, the clean air will be your companion through your walk, and the shadow of the centenary trees will make your experience even better. As I told you before, there are a lot of walking trails that you can choose to have a stimulating hike on:
Los Copihues trail: This is an interesting path as it crosses the native forest, which is so beautiful! Everything is green and fresh! This is a medium difficulty path, and it should take you around an hour and a half to complete. Fun fact! The Copihue is a flower and, furthermore, one of our national icons.
Los Olivillos trail: This is a new trail! It forms a circuit with the "La Confluencia" trail. Why is it called Olivillos? First of all, an olivillo is a tree; the trail crosses a forest of the said tree, hence the name. Another appealing thing about this park is that you can walk near the Nonguén estuary.
Los Canelos trail: This is the longest trail of the national reserve (11 km long). Even though it is long, it is super worth exploring it as it goes through the heart of the place. Marvel yourself with the exotic vegetation around you: there is also a bit of native forest and even fauna if you keep an eye on!
La Confluencia trail: This is a broad path that crosses two bridges; it is as dreamy as it sounds. At the end of the path, you encounter the beginning of the Nonguén estuary. If you pay attention, you can hear and see plenty of flora and fauna; I recommend you close your eyes and listen to the soothing sounds of nature. This trail should take you 1 or 2 hours to finish it.
Lo Rojas trail: This one is the most difficult of them all; it goes up to a hill and takes about 3 hours to complete. Also, it is a prolongation to the "Los Copihues trail." It goes up to a balcony, from which you can appreciate the Andes mountain range and the Bio-Bio river-mouth. Sadly, this trail is closed due to a fire at the beginning of this year.
First of all, it is strictly forbidden to smoke and basically use everything fire-related, for apparent reasons. Also, no pets are allowed on the premises. Keep in mind that it is very likely to find yourself with no phone reception, and there are no electrical outlets to charge your electronic devices.
Entrance is free for kids under eleven. For kids from 12 to 17 years old, it costs around 3 dollars and for adults (18 and up) it is approximately 5 dollars.
The services in the place include areas to eat and have picnics (cold snacks, since fire and heat sources are prohibited inside the park); the place also has bathroom facilities. Remember the national reserve is near Concepción, so there are restaurants, a spa, and shops nearby but outside the premises.
If you want to disconnect and enjoy nature at its finest, this is the place for you! The Nonguén National Reserve is unforgettable. I assure you hiking in there is an experience that will make you feel as if you were in a place you belong; the fresh air and green surroundings will stay in your memory forever.
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