Travel DestinationsHeritage SitesExplore the Wooden Colorful Churches of Chiloé

Explore the Wooden Colorful Churches of Chiloé


We are yet here yet again with one of the unique UNESCO World Heritage Site, this time right from the islands of Chiloé. This place will definitely give you the best dose of travel goals. Churches of Chiloé are literally an artwork with 70 and more churches in a “Circular Mission”. And out of which 16 are Catholic churches reminding the religious aspects of the place.
Let’s get to know more about the Churches of Chiloé

About Churches of Chiloé

Chiloe: Image Credit/

The Churches of Chiloé are extraordinary examples of wooden architecture built between the 17th and 18th centuries. This place highly represented the culture and tradition of the Jesuit Peripatetic Mission. The Chiloé Archipelago embraces the best of richness and purity that infuses the European Culture. The entire landscape and the surrounding is a pure amalgamation of nature and spiritual values together.

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Some of the main churches listed among the 17 main Churches are Colo, San Juan, Achao, Detif. And all these churches are built with a unique architectural style built solely with wooden. However, the best part is that local people of Chiloé like fishermen and farmers are the sole reason for this wonderful architecture. That is exactly what makes the place best and the most eligible one to be listed on the World Heritage site.

History of the Churches of Chiloé

Chiloe Churches
Chiloe Churches: Image Credit/

The history of Chiloé is quite an extraordinary affair. It is said that the Chiloé Archipelago was a settlement that was colonized by the Spanish. And when the Jesuits arrived in the early 17th century, established the famous circular space for religious purposes. This is what we know as the Chiloé Churches. Gradually more and more churches were carved out of the wooden structure by the local people who were just believers and followers. Most of the architecture is predominantly influenced by European architecture. And thus this architecture and place are a great example of a cross-culture way of living. What a place will be to travel and experience? Isn’t it?

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The authenticity of the place

Church of Chiloe
Church of Chiloe: Image Credit/

The Churches of Chiloé are of immense authenticity, with perfect dates and years inscribed and confirmed by various sources. Also, the wooden architecture implied the right source and the influence derived from then colonized places. Spanish colonization had a major impact on the overall development of the place. Each and every structure of the church has been preserved with utmost care and sincerity. When we talk about protection the Churches and Chiloé are maintained under strict law and acts.

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Protection of the Heritage site

Wooden Church of Chiloe
Wooden Church of Chiloe: Image Credit/

If we start talking about the laws and rules protecting the Churches of Chiloé, it will take an absurdly long list. So has to cut short some most important rules and accepts of management of this precious Heritage site. All the 70 churches come under the World Heritage Site. Also, the Churches of Chiloé Foundation plays a pivotal role in taking care of the WHS for many years.

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It’s local level body governance with proper projection. The main challenges lays in maintaining the cultural acceptance of the tourist and protecting the place from tourist invasion. The funding mainly comes from the Inter-American Development Bank. The Churches of the Chiloé represent the cultural and religious sentiment of the people living there. Which makes it utter necessary for the government to look after the minute details of the place?

Churches of Chiloé as a tourist place

Chiloe tourism
Chiloe tourism: Image Credit/

The beauty of the place lies in the wooden architecture that predominantly captures the island of Chiloé. That is how the place pulls in a lot of tourists here. The tourist coming here are religiously important yet there are many non-religious people coming in too. A new and structural approach is working out to make an easy route to the travelers.
The people of Chiloé are quite particular about not letting globalization and modernity hit the place hard in the name of tourism. The local and national governments also take care of that factor. Chiloe has a good turnover from tourism in terms of funds. More tourists started visiting the place ever since the place got its name into WHS. However, keeping the integrity of the place in priority tourism has been evaded to some extent.

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Churches of Chiloé has a beautiful array of colorful wooden churches across the place that looks extraordinarily beautiful. The seaport area is one of the open gates for tourism as well as trade and marketing. Thus the place gained much importance in the olden days among the Spanish travelers. Churches of Chiloé are now inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2000. So next time when you plan to visit any of the World Heritage Site, let Churches of Chiloé be your first name.

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