colonia dignidad / chile
Paul schäfer and his sect founded colonia dignidad in chile in 1961, where he fled to avoid prosecution in germany for child abuse. His involvement with the pinochet regime and the chilean secret service, the torture and murder of opponents of the regime, the sexual abuse of children and many other disgusting things can be read in detail in wikipedia.
Today, the former facility has been converted into a hotel called “hotel villa baviera” and is run by former victims of the colonia dignidad. We were given the opportunity to speak at length with a victim who moved to chile with her parents as a two-year-old in this group. It was very moving to hear her describe the inner workings of a cult. It was a short lecture on how brainwashing, manipulation, suppression, abuse of power, isolation from outside information works and what it does to people.
park national conquillio / chile
You don’t have to look far to see a volcano in chile. The park canguillo is overlooked by the active snow-covered volcano llaima, which we had already seen from the argentine side. There are several trails in this araucaria-covered national park with great views of lakes and the surrounding volcanoes.
termas geométricas / chile
We already know several hot springs between alaska and fireland, but the “termas geometricas” in chile is something special. 18 different pools with different water temperatures squeeze into a small gorge in southern chile.
Douglas Tompkins / pumalin n.p. / chile
Why does someone who wants to do good on a large scale face so much suspicion? that’s what happened to douglas tompkins and his wife. In 1990, the founder of the North Face company and co-owner of Esprit sold a large part of his shares and invested in nature conservation. In chile (and later in argentina), he bought large, contiguous areas of rainforest to protect them through sustainable nature parks. There were many opponents who distrusted him and made the purchases difficult or even prevented them.
His promise to hand over the protected areas “pumalin” and “patagonia” to the chilean state was posthumously fulfilled by his wife kristina in 2018. he himself died in a kayaking accident in 2011.