Visit South America and travel to Patagonia on a trekking adventure

Visit South America and travel to Patagonia - a fascinating region in the far south of Chile and Argentina, rich in natural beauty, dramatic vistas and cosmopolitan cities oozing with passion and culture. Feel the contrast as you trek the W Hike through the Patagonian wilderness and explore the urban metropolis of Santiago. From camping near the end of the earth and witnessing gargantuan glaciers to indulging in the modernity of Buenos Aires, this trip will reward those with a sense of adventure, an appreciation of nature and an interest in diversity.

Start
Santiago, Chile
Finish
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Countries
Argentina,
Chile
Themes
Walking & Trekking
Code
GPTV
Physical rating
Cultural rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1 Max 12
Carbon offset
1 052kg pp per trip


Highlights

  • Savour Chilean culture in Santiago
  • Admire Chile's landscapes in Punta Arenas
  • Camp in the heart of the Patagonian wild
  • Trek past Patagonia's dramatic granite pillars, sparkling lakes and gushing waterfalls
  • Be amazed by the blue hues of the Perito Moreno Glacier
  • Absorb Argentina's passion in Buenos Aires

Itinerary

Bienvenidos! Welcome to Chile.

You can arrive at any time on day 1 as there are no activities planned until the important welcome meeting tonight. Your leader will leave a note at reception telling you where and when this important meeting will take place. Please ask a member of reception for this information. After the group meeting there is the option of joining the group for dinner.

Although Santiago covers a large area, the city centre is quite compact and easy to get around. Its centre is roughly triangular in shape and in its heart is the Plaza de Armas, the chief plaza and the cathedral. Panning out from here are wall-to-wall shops, restaurants and parks. For a more serene look at Chilean life, head out to the barrio Bella Vista, Santiago's 'Paris Quarter' or take a cable car up to Cerro San Cristobal. If the weather permits, you'll have impressive views over the city and the peaks of the Andes.

In Santiago our centrally located hotel has a restaurant and bar, and is situated in close proximity to downtown attractions. Rooms have air-conditioning and ensuite bathrooms.
Today is a travel day as we fly from Santiago to Punta Arenas (3 to 5 hours approx. depending on flight connections available) before travelling by local bus to Puerto Natales (approx. 3 hrs)

Seated on the shores of a beautiful lake, Puerto Natales is the gateway to Torres del Paine National Park and a great place to catch up with fellow hikers for a pre or post trek meal in one of the many quaint local restaurants.
Travel by local bus and catamaran to reach our first campsite of the trek at the Torres del Paine National Park. After lunch and setting up camp, we trek to the first look out point of Grey Glacier (12 km in approx 4 hrs)

Sitting at the end of the earth is the awe inspiring Chilean Patagonia. Few people have the opportunity to see this area and those who do find it difficult to forget. Once a sheep estancia, the park was established in 1959. This is magnificent trekking country where nandues, condors and pink flamingos abound. Upon arriving in the park you will most likely be greeted by a herd of guanacos, relatives of alpacas. These strange animals provide great photo opportunities but don't get too close; they're likely to spit at you. There's also some of the world's best trout and salmon fishing.

The real star of the show, however, is the magnificent landscape. With sparkling lakes, gushing waterfalls, glaciers and striking mountains, much of our time trekking is spent slack-jawed in awe of our surrounds.

On Day 4 we trek to the French Valley (22 km in approx. 8 hrs)

On Day 5 we cross Peohe Lake by catamaran and travel by local bus to Laguna Amarga. This will be the starting point of today's hike (12 km in approx. 4 hrs)

Day 6 is another long trekking day to one of the most spectacular look out points - Mirador de las Torres (18 km in approx 9 hrs)

During these treks you will carry a small day pack with your personal belongings, such as rain jacket, water, snacks and camera.

Dinners are simple (pastas, rice, chicken) and are served in a common dinning area. Lunches consist of sandwiches, fruit and sometimes a chocolate bar. Soft and alcoholic drinks are not provided and there is limited selection to buy from at the general store. If you particularly like certain snacks (almonds, nuts, raisins) or a drink (a bottle of wine, spirit) please make sure you bring it with you.

Bathroom facilities are available in the campsite with communal showers and bathroom separated by gender.

You and a fellow traveller will share a tent for the next 4 nights. Sleeping bags are not provided on this trip so please bring your own. Alternatively you can hire it locally for approximately US$40 for the 4 nights. Make sure you inform your leader on day 1 of the trip if you intend to hire it locally for him/her to make the necessary arrangements. A thermarest/inflatable mattress and small pillow are provided.

Important: The strictly traditional "W hike" involves an overnight at Camping Los Cuernos. The space available to set up camp in this area is very limited (particularly on the busy summer months) and the terrain uncomfortable. The above itinerary skips this campsite by driving to the other side of the park (Laguna Amarga). We believe this change enhances the enjoyment of the trekking days.
Today is travel day as we make our way to El Calafate in Argentina.
Today we travel by minivan (approx. 2.5 hrs) and after a spectacular drive, you have free time to enjoy the amazing scenery at Perito Moreno Glacier.

This is one of the few advancing glaciers in the world and at 3km (1.8 miles) wide and 35km (21 miles) long is a spectacular sight. Watch and listen to the crack of the ice as it plunges into the waters below.
Return to Buenos Aires by plane for a final night out. Please note that while we intend to return to Buenos Aires in the early hours of the afternoon, airline schedules in Argentina are known for changing without much notice, meaning that we can potentially arrive in Buenos Aires as late as 10pm on Day 9.
As there are no activities planned, you are free to depart at any time on Day 10.
View trip notes to read full itinerary

Inclusions

Meals
9 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 4 dinners
Transport
Plane, Local bus, Private minibus, Boat
Accommodation
Hotel (5 nights), Camping (with basic facilities) (4 nights)
Included activities
  • 4 Day W-Trek in Torres del Paine

Dates

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Important notes

1. Name and passport number are required at time of booking in order to issue domestic airfares. Delays to provide this information or changes may result in third party booking fees or domestic flights cancellations.
2. A single supplement is available on this trip. There are no exclusion nights.
3. Bookings within 45 days from departure may incur in late booking airline fees. If applicable, this will be informed at the time of booking.

Trip notes

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Your trip notes provide a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what’s included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

View trip notes

Reviews

Our Patagonia Trekking trips score an average of 4.78 out of 5 based on 49 reviews in the last year.

Patagonia Trekking , March 2016

Patagonia Trekking , March 2016

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