Best of Patagonia 13 Days

Plan your adventure

  • Live a true Patagonia travel experience and enjoy the best Patagonia tours in Ushuaia, El Chaltén, Torres del Paine and El Calafate.
  • Embark on a boat trip to Perito Moreno Glacier, hike in Chalten’s mountain ranges next to Mount Fitz Roy.
  • Visit Torres del Paine National Park, and take a road trip through the Patagonian steppe to get to Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world.
  • Best time to travel: From October to April.
 

Enjoy the very best of Patagonia traveling through Argentina and Chile. Start your journey in El Calafate and end in Ushuaia, visit stunning glaciers, majestic mountains and pristine national parks. An ideal trip for those interested in experiencing the cultural heritage and adventurous natural beauty of Patagonia.

Itinerary

Day 1

Start your journey to the best of Patagonia
El Calafate

  • Transfer from El Calafate airport to your hotel - Day at leisure
  • Transfer from El Calafate airport to your hotel – Day at leisure

Your trip to discover the best of Patagonian landscapes welcomes you with open arms! Upon arrival, we will bring you to your hotel and have the remainder of your day to relax or explore the surroundings.

El Calafate is a starting point for adventure-seeking travelers who chace to unearth the most spellbinding natural wonders of Patagonia, like the Perito Moreno Glacier.

The Perito Moreno Glacier is one of the only glaciers in the world that’s still advancing. Though it’s not the only glacier in the area, it’s the one that made the city of El Calafate famous worldwide. For many years now, El Calafate has been considered the capital of the glaciers. Located at the shore of Lago Argentino (the southernmost, largest Patagonian lake) it’s also home to the Spegazzini glacier, which forms the natural border between Argentina and Chile, and the Upsala Glacier, named Glaciar del Gigante (Giant’s glacier) it’s the biggest glacier that sits at the mouth of Lake Argentino.

But there is much more to see in El Calafate than glaciers. Make the most of your free day and discover other secret gems of the region.

 

Say Hueque Tips 

Our recommended activities in El Calafate for your free day:

  • Glaciers are the main attractions that you can visit via hiking or a boat ride, but you have a lot more to discover about Argentine rural culture. On your free day, you can visit a typical Patagonian finca (ranch) and learn all about  Argentine rural culture, the traditions of the gaucho (cowboy) and enjoy a great asado (barbecue).
  • If you are really into knowing more about Perito Moreno Glacier and other famous icy giants of the region, you can visit The Glaciarium Museum and learn about the history of glaciers and its first explorers. Getting to the museum is really easy— There is a transfer you can take at the Tourist Office in downtown Calafate.
Day 1

Day 2

Patagonia, land of glaciers
Tour to Perito Moreno

  • Full-day Perito Moreno Glacier tour with boat trip

 

  • Perito Moreno Glacier tour,  meet the icy giant of Patagonia

During the morning, we will pick you up from your hotel and drive you to Glaciers National Park to enjoy the 6-hour Perito Moreno Glacier tour.  You will travel about 25 miles from El Calafate to the park, enjoying the best views of the Patagonian steppe. Once inside the park, you will take walkways to explore the different viewpoints, and you’ll feel unbelievably close to Perito Moreno Glacier. If you’re lucky, you may even get to see a piece of ice break off and fall from the glacier wall, sinking forever into the lake below.

 Over the course of about one hour, a bilingual guide will provide you with all the information you might want to know…and things you may have never thought about. After this visit, you will take a boat ride that will bring you close enough to fully appreciate the 262-foot ice walls of Perito Moreno! You’ll never feel closer to this gigantic and impressive natural masterpiece. At the end of the day, we will drive you back to your hotel.  

 

Say Hueque Tips

  • Walk over the Big Ice

Have you ever imagined walking across the surface of a glacier? Well, this is your chance! The Mini Trekking tour will allow you to trek on Perito Moreno Glacier… This is one of our favorite Patagonia outings; we’re sure you won’t regret it.  This is an optional excursion you can add to this day. 

Day 2

Day 3

Your day at leisure in El Calafate

  • Day at leisure in el Calafate - Optional tour

 

  • Optional tour to a Patagonian ranch

El Calafate has much more to offer than just its magnificent glaciers… we recommend that you complete this adventure by taking a day tour to immerse yourself in the rural culture of Patagonia.

Inside Glaciers National Park, at the end of National Route 15 and after a 1 hr 30 min drive over a rubble road, sits one of the oldest and most traditional Patagonian ranches in the area. It’s the only ranch that continues to maintain sheep and Hereford cattle-breeding as its main occupation. You can take a day trip to visit its 30,000 acres of land, learn about its history, and witness a sheep-shearing demonstration and horse-training. At the end of the day, a grilled lambed will await, sizzling on its traditional Patagonian rotisserie.

If you would like to add on this tour for your free day, just let your travel advisor know.

Day 3

Day 4

From El Calafate to El Chaltén

  • Transfer from El Calafate to El Chaltén - Day at leisure

 

  • Transfer from El Calafate to El Chaltén – Day at leisure

Today, we’ll pick you up from your hotel to start your 4-hour trip to El Chaltén. You’ll travel along the famous Route 40, surrounded by the Patagonian steppe, and pass through La Leona River, which connects Lake Argentino and Lake Viedma, and where you’ll get to see La Leona Road house, where the famous thieves Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid hid for a while. After discovering some other gems along your journey through the top Patagonian landscapes, you’ll reach El Chaltén and we’ll drop you off at your hotel.

El Chaltén is the top-rated hiking destination in Argentina. This charming little village sits at the foot of Mount Fitz Roy and it’s surrounded by glaciers, lakes, rivers and forests. It’s also the jumping-off point for most hiking trails in the area. A paradise for sunny walkers and trekkers alike.

Enjoy your afternoon of leisure in Patagonia by relaxing in the local brewery or strolling around a little waterfall…

 

Say Hueque Tips

  • Our recommended hike for your first day in El Chaltén:

There is a quick hike you can enjoy to warm up and discover El Chorrillo del Salto, just 1 hour away from the village. Reach its little waterfall encircled by native trees and flora, like the Patagonian Orchid

Day 4

Day 5

Self-guided hikes in El Chaltén

  • Recommended hike, Laguna de los Tres and base of Mt. Fitz Roy

 

  • Recommended hike, Laguna de los Tres and base of Mt. Fitz Roy

If you liked the Laguna Torre’s hiking trail, you’ll love our next hiking favorite: Laguna de los Tres and the base of Mount Fitz Roy. Go for a medium-difficulty, 9-hour hike to the most impressive views of Rio de Las Vueltas valley. You’ll cross Del Salto Stream, with its icy waters cradled by orange-tinted rocks which frame the breathtaking views of Mount Fitz Roy.

And here’s a little secret: you can also reach Laguna Sucia from Laguna de los Tres… it’s only a 5- minute walk away. Though this hike increases in intensity during the last bit, it’s totally worth it. This is one of the best day-hikes in the world!  

 

Say Hueque Tips

  • A little secret to enjoying this hike

Seize the day, wake up early, and watch the sunrise at Laguna de los Tres (see Fitz Roy’s peaks turning red) — this is truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. You can depart from the town of El Chaltén during the night or stay one night at Poincenot campsite, just 1 hour away from Laguna de los Tres.

Day 5

Day 6

From El Chaltén back to El Calafate

  • Recommended hike - Chorrillo del Salto Fall
  • Transfer from El chaltén to your hotel in El Calafate - Day at leisure

 

  • Recommended hike – Chorrillo del Salto Fall

Enjoy an early walk around town or a quick hike this morning. We recommend that you walk to El Chorrillo del Salto, 1 hour away from the village, and reach its little waterfall encircled by native trees and flora, like the Patagonian Orchid.

 

  • Transfer from El Chaltén to your hotel in El Calafate – Day at leisure

Bear in mind that in the afternoon you will board your bus back to El Calafate, so you need to be back in time. The 3-hour drive back will be a good opportunity to relax while enjoying the passing landscapes out your window.

Once you arrive in El Calafate, the bus will drop you off at your hotel. Now is your chance to take another Patagonia day trip around the area or to try some tender Patagonian Lamb, or maybe a heavenly Calafate ice-cream. In Calafate, food options are varied and plentiful; from veggie delicacies to the best demonstration of national steaks, there really is something for everyone. You can choose a fancy restaurant for dinner or a more traditional local tavern to spend an unforgettable night.

Day 6

Day 7

Travel to Chile
Torres Del Paine and Puerto Natales

  • Full-day visit to Torres del Paine National Park
  • Transfer to your hotel in Puerto Natales

 

  • Travel to Torres del Paine National Park

In the early morning, we’ll pick you up from your hotel to start your trip to Chile and your full-day visit to Torres del Paine National Park.

First, we’ll drive through the Patagonian steppe for 2hr 30min (you might be able to see rheas, guanacos, Patagonian hare, and even condors!) until reaching the border of Chile in Cancha Carrera, where we’ll go through customs. 

We’ll keep traveling through isolated and windy landscapes, occasionally dotted by guanacos and native green-orange-tinted bushes; you’ll truly feel the momentous solitude that characterizes Patagonia. Torres del Paine is a gift that keeps on giving; it will unveil its enthralling natural beauties little by little… 

Along a winding road, we’ll make different stops to have a close-up view of various attractions like Cascada Paine (Paine Waterfall), Paine Range at Lake Sarmiento, and the Paine Horns at Lake Nordenskjold. Depending on the weather, we’ll depart on an hour-long walk to reach the lake and get closer to the striking mountain peaks. At midday, after having stopped by the Lago Pehoé Viewpoint to gaze at the vastness of the French Valley, we’ll have our boxed lunch with this mountainous backdrop. 

 

  • Transfer to your hotel in Puerto Natales

At the end of this dreamy travel experience, we’ll leave you at Laguna Amarga, where your transfer will pick you up and take you to your hotel in Puerto Natales.

 

Say Hueque Tips

  • Something to take into account

Things to take into account during your trip from Argentina to Chile: it is not allowed to take any fresh food, plants, seeds, etc. They are very strict, and fines can be high. If you are not sure whether something is allowed, please declare it (they will provide you with a form) and they will inform you if you can bring it or not. And please, don’t forget your passport!

Day 7

Day 8

Hike to Base las Torres
Torres del Paine National Park

  • Full-day hike to Base las Torres

 

  • Full-day hike to Base las Torres 

Today we’ll pick you up really early in the morning from your hotel to drive you to the sector Las Torres and take you to Cerro Paine Ranch, the jumping-off point for our hike, where you’ll have an informative talk about this high-difficulty, amazing outing.

We’ll take the road heading into the valley and after 10 minutes walking, we’ll get to an old rope bridge that crosses the Ascencio River. You’ll see a fork in the road about 500 feet ahead; take a left at the fork to get to the Base Towers!

After following a winding, green slope for about an hour, you’ll pass by a Chilean campsite on the opposite bank of the river. We’ll continue walking for another 45 minutes until reaching Almirante Nieto Hill. Your next stop: the ‘mirador’ (viewpoint) and the foothill of the moraine!

We’ll continue hiking for an hour, and the path will become steeper and steeper as you approach the most amazing view of the three towers: Central, Monzino and Dagostini. Prepare to see some condor nests and the great Peineta Hill!

Time to rest, this is the reward for courageous Patagonia travelers! Take a moment to enjoy this amazing backdrop before returning via the same road to the fork where you started, and your driver will be waiting to take you back to Puerto Natales.

Day 8

Day 9

From Puerto Natales to Punta Arenas

  • Bus from Puerto Natales to Punta Arenas - Day at leisure

 

  • Bus from Puerto Natales to Punta Arenas – Day at leisure

Today, travel deeper into the best of Chilean Patagonia! First, make your way to the bus station of Puerto Natales for your departure to Punta Arenas. We advise arriving there 30 minutes before the departure time, in order to avoid any last-minute inconveniences. This is a 4-hour trip in a standard bus through the steppe, crisscrossed by mountains and fjords. Upon your arrival at the bus station in Punta Arenas, you’ll head to your hotel — you can walk, or take a taxi for around $5-7 US dollars.

Punta Arenas is the southernmost city in Chile, located on the Magellanic Strait, and is the leading port for Antarctic cruises and scientific research. Before the construction of the Panama Canal, Punta Arenas was the most important maritime crossroad between the Pacific and the Atlantic Ocean, and thus, the city grew as a commercial center surrounded by European-style buildings. Its colorful houses, standing out from a backdrop of snow-capped mountains, are a site for sore eyes. 

 

Say Hueque Tips

  • What to do in Punta Arenas?

You can enjoy the evening by taking a 3-hour city tour to visit Mirador Hill (and discover the most gorgeous views of Magellan Strait), or stop by the Maggiorino Borgatello Museum to see the masterfully crafted pieces made by the Onas, Yaganes and other natives of the area.

Day 9

Day 10

From Punta Arenas travel to Ushuaia

  • From Punta Arenas travel to Ushuaia

 

  • Bus from Punta Arenas to Ushuaia – Day at leisure

In the early morning, you will get to the bus station to embark on a full-day bus trip to Ushuaia, the last destination of your best of Patagonia journey through Argentina and Chile. Take into account that you’ll be crossing borders again today!

This is a 12-hour trip in a comfortable bus, equipped with reclining seats, where you’ll cross the Patagonian steppe. Look out the window and you’ll see yellow and green grasslands with Chilean gauchos riding into the wild and grazing unbothered sheep until you reach the ferry crossing. It will take around 45 minutes to cross the mythical Strait of Magellan and hit the road again to cross the Chilean border, finally entering Tierra del Fuego Island on Argentine soil.

As the famous end-of-the-world city approaches, grazing sheep will turn into wild guanacos and horses, with snow-capped mountains and evergreen woods arising at the entrance of Ushuaia. Once you get your “Southernmost City” passport stamp, you’ll realize that this intrepid journey through remote Patagonian roads was absolutely worth it.

Upon arrival in Ushuaia, you will journey to your hotel (taxis to and from the bus station should cost less than $10 US dollars). Ushuaia is a small town, and it is really easy to get around on foot. The Yamanas, the region’s first inhabitants, named the area ‘Ushuaia’, which means “protected bay” in their language. Ushuaia was officially incorporated into the Republic of Argentina in 1884, and it soon became a penal colony, in order to establish a permanent Argentine settlement.

Take the afternoon to explore the town, learn about the region’s rich history at the Prisoners’ Museum, or visit the Galleria of Fuegian History (it has a lovely restaurant as well!). Please, don’t forget the local gastronomy! Ushuaia has the best seafood in Argentina.    

 

Say Hueque Tips

  • Something to take into account

This bus trip allows you to see the landscape of other, lesser-known parts of Chile, and will give you a much more complete perspective of the area. However, we understand that it is a long journey, and can be a very tiring day. For an additional cost, you can choose a quicker option; from Torres del Paine, you can drive back to El Calafate and then fly to Ushuaia.

Day 10

Day 11

Hiking & paddling in the National Park
Ushuaia

  • Hiking and paddling in Tierra del Fuego National Park 

 

  • Discover Tierra del Fuego National Park wildlands

Today we’ll pick you up from your hotel to start a 10-hour, moderate difficulty, adventure in Tierra del Fuego National Park, just 7.4 miles away from the city and bordering the shore of the famous Beagle Channel.

 Upon arrival to Ensenada Bay, you will have time to enjoy the view over the Beagle Channel before you start hiking along the coast. Four miles of trail awaits you, where you’ll discover native flora, wild fauna and the remains left by the Yamanas, the native inhabitants of the area. After this 3-hour hike, you will reach Lake Roca, where lunch will be served.

 After a full homemade picnic, you will start the second part of this adventure. Take your oar and plunge into a 1hr 30 min paddling trip along the Lapataia River (only available for children over 5 years old). Make it all the way to Lapataia Bay, where the Panamerican Highway and National Route 3 end at an awe-inspiring landscape.

 After discovering the unique vastness of this stunning setting, we’ll take you back to your hotel to rest and enjoy another Patagonian evening. 

Day 11

Day 12

Sail the Beagle Channel
The symbol of Ushuaia

  • Beagle Channel boat tour

 

  • Beagle Channel boat tour, visit Ushuaia’s famous islands

In 1833 Charles Darwin sailed the Beagle Channel and found something great. Today it’s your turn: become another explorer of this channel, primitively named Onashaga Channel since the Onas where its first discoverers.

Make your way to the tourist pier (located downtown) to embark on a 4-hour Beagle Channel navigation in a fully equipped boat with a capacity for up to 26 people. With Argentina on your left and Chile on your right, you’ll sail this natural border until reaching the iconic Les Eclaireurs Lighthouse, which is still in operation.

On the way, enjoy uplifting panoramic views of Ushuaia Bay, crowned by the Martial Glacier’s diverse marine wildlife, such as cormorants (flying birds, closely related to penguins) and fur seals. Hop off on Bridges Island to explore its vegetation, and visit the archeological remains of the Yamanas (the native inhabitants) accompanied by a specialized bilingual guide. 

 During the trip, enjoy bottomless hot cocoa and cookies, or try the maté (loose herbal tea), which is every Argentinian’s favorite drink. Once we get back to the port, you can make your way back to your hotel or stop in a local cafe or brewery to enjoy an amber craft beer paired with a traditional Patagonian appetizer.

 

Say Hueque Tips

  • Optional tour- Walk among penguins in Ushuaia

Have you ever walked amongst penguins? If not, Ushuaia is your chance to fulfill that bucket-list dream… you can add to this day the Magellanic Penguin Rookery Tour on Martillo Island (available from October to April at an additional cost). On Martillo Island you will also see a very rare type of penguin that is typically only found in Antarctica: the yellow-crested penguin.

Day 12

Day 13

The end of your trip to the best of Patagonia

  • Transfer from your hotel to Ushuaia airport

 

  • Transfer from your hotel to Ushuaia airport

Today we’ll take you to the airport, where this trip will come to its end. But don’t be sad! You can return whenever you want (we’ll welcome you with open arms), or… continue your trip towards the North of Argentina, to beautiful Salta or the wine region in Mendoza. Argentina still has plenty to offer! Check out our travelers’ favorite trips to Argentina and Chile.

Day 13

Prices per person

INN & B&B

From

USD 1952

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Confort

From

USD 2281

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Superior

From

USD 2617

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Luxury

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  • Prices in US Dollars.
  • Valid until April 2022 (ask for prices in Christmas and New Year).
  • Prices are per person, based on 2 people in double occupancy. Single rates are available on request.
  • Flights are not included in the price, but can be arranged on request.
  • We care deeply about our planet, as we know you do. When you book with us, the carbon emissions from your trip are 100% offset. We are working to create more sustainable, responsible and meaningful ways of exploring South America.

INCLUDED

  • Transfers and tours mentioned in the itinerary
  • Daily breakfast
  • Meals according to itinerary: lunch (day 11)
  • 4-night accommodation in a hotel (El Calafate), 2-night accommodation in a hotel (El Chaltén), 2-night accommodation in a hotel (Puerto Natales, Chile), 1-night accommodation in a hotel (Punta Arenas, Chile), 3 -night accommodation in a hotel (Ushuaia).
  • Bilingual guide (English / Spanish).
  • Round-trip bus El Calafate / El Chalten / El Calafate
  • One-way bus Puerto Natales / Punta Arenas
  • One-way bus Punta Arenas / Ushuaia

NOT INCLUDED

  • National Park entrance fees
  • International or domestic flights
  • Guides during your days in El Chaltén are not included, since the trails are well-marked. However, if you would like to be accompanied by a guide, please let us know at the time of booking and we will advise you about the additional cost.
  • Travel / Medical Insurance – To get a free quote please follow this link: World Nomads

FLIGHTS NEEDED
FOR THIS ITINERARY

No local flights are needed for this itinerary. Tour begins in El Calafate and ends in Ushuaia.

Estimated cost for the flights in South America: If you plan to visit other destinations in the region, local flights cost approximately $100 to $250 USD per segment (destination). We offer special rates on flights for this tailor-made itinerary.

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