We'd run short of planning time and so thought we'd just take Lonely Planet's suggestion of Hostal Hofmann as a good base for 5 days of local exploration. Now we know why we so appreciate the up to the minute intelligence we get from Trip Advisor. To be fair, most of what Lonely Planet says is true. The place IS billed as a hostal and not as a B&B or hotel, and though breakfast was basic and rather skimpy (i.e. just two thin slices of sausage and cheese per person, some bread with jam, juice and Nescafe with milk, the Kuchen was a special treat (ours contained big ripe cherries on one morning, fresh blueberries and then rhubarb on others). We have issues however with Lonely Planet’s description of wonderful steaming showers. Ours seemed to fluctuate randomly between generally satisfying and ice cold about every 2 to 4 minutes. Showers were marginally passable in our micro bathroom, as we discovered on the 4th day, if just left to run on the hottest setting, as long as other guests were not using the water at the same time. The place is respectably clean, though regular vacuuming of the carpeting in our room would have been nice. Owner Carmen (who speaks Spanish, German and passable English) is friendly and helpful and can provide a modest discount (10%) voucher for Termas Geometricas if asked. The internet here was a very big problem for us however as we work most mornings while we travel. The available service was limited to a very slow connection through an Entel dongle attached to a single shared computer in the lobby. Fortunately we were able to find marginally passable WiFi in town to get by. Lican Ray is a relatively small town that makes an OK base for exploring the area if you've got a car (recommended). We quickly tired of the local restaurants during our stay though. We found that there was better food and much more to do in Villarica and Pucon and next time we'd probably opt to stay in Pucon despite its being overrun by tourists in some places. Overall, we can’t rate this place as much more than average and we think that perhaps Hostal Hofmann is just able to coast on its Lonely Planet reputation without trying too much. We'd stay there again in a pinch (or to have some of that delicious Kuchen) but at prices approaching local hotels with much better facilities, services and location, we think it's overpriced for what it is. It might be worth putting up with for a night though as it is about an hours closer drive to the Termas Geometricas and other hot springs.
Location: Chile > Araucania Region > Lican Ray
Ranked #1 of 2 Specialty lodging in Lican Ray