Where We Be
Talca, Chile
Talca is located three hours south of Santiago in
the "bread basket" of Chile. During the bus ride,
mountains rose up on either side of us as we
traveled down a valley filled with vineyards and
fruit orchards. Talca itself is located smack-dab in
the middle of the Maule Valley, a hugely significant
grape-growing region for the wine export industry.

Talca surprised us – we liked it more than we
expected we would. We had thought of it as just a
convenient stop along the way to the Lake District,
but we ended up liking it for its own self. We
enjoyed the relaxed pace of the town, the lack of
other tourists, the warm temperatures, and the
friendly people. One taxi driver actually gave us a
ride for free, he had so much fun reminiscing with
us about his time in Miami! Another fellow walked
us to the correct local bus instead of just pointing
the way for our trip into the surrounding wine

During our first stroll through town, we came to a
pleasant pedestrian avenue where people sat on
benches, ate ice cream, and bought school
supplies for their kids (the school year is just
starting here). We sat on a bench under a shade
tree and thoroughly enjoyed the peace and quiet.
Talca is located in the  middle of Chile's breadbasket so every kind of fruit and vegetable seems to be grown here
We had a fine dinner and drank an excellent local reserve wine at a restaurant called "Vivace"
We got to see a bride walk down the aisle at this church
To the left is the delicious "Tortellini al Roquefort" dish I had at Vivace. The strange concoction to the right is a traditional Chilean drink called "Rico Mote con
Huesillos." We kept seeing signs for it posted everywhere and finally tried it. It's a cold drink of rehydrated peaches in nectar with barley kernels (mote). Not bad!
The Plaza de Armas offers a pleasant green space in the middle of the city
Enjoying a fine day of summer weather in Talca
This is the pedestrian avenue that runs through the center of town
We stayed at the lovely Hostal del Puente for $35 per night (with private bath)
We had leftovers from our big dinner the night before at this picnic bench at the Hostal del Puente
We visited the wine and cultural museum a few miles outside of Talca
Courtyard at the museum -- the hacienda itself makes up most of the museum
It's not every day you see a wooden life-size recreation of The Last Supper. The guide at the museum had us enter the room in total darkness then slowly
raised the light levels until Jesus and his twelve disciples appeared out of the darkness. It was a bit eerie seeing these morose figures staring back at us.
Strange Dr. Seuss tree
We've noticed Chileans usually eat their ice cream BEFORE dinner to stave off any hunger pangs
This traditional hacienda is built around a courtyard and serves as HQ for Maule Valley wine tours