Chaltén - Calafate - Torres del Paine - Puerto Natales
Upon arrival at the El Calafate airport, we will start our 4-hour trip to El Chaltén. Start this travel itinerary to Patagonia by traveling to this famous mountaineering village in Argentina!
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, 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 first afternoon of leisure in one of the best destinations of Patagonia by relaxing in the local brewery or strolling around a little waterfall…
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.
Today, we have a recommendation for true hiking-lovers— Trek all the way to Cerro Torre and Laguna Torre, one of the most famous hiking trails in Argentine Patagonia. Step into the wild for about 8 hours and 12 miles. This is a moderate-difficulty hike, but there is no steep climbing involved, so no previous experience is required!
The journey starts at a notable wooden sign which reads ‘Laguna Torre’ and features a woodpecker; you probably already saw the sign if you visited the Cerro Torre Viewpoint the previous day. From there, you will continue through a stunning, multi-colored landscape; snow-capped mountains will rein over the native forest of lenga and ñire trees. You’ll pass by the De Agostini campsite and continue to the front moraine…you can hit the summit in 15 minutes! From here you can descend to the lagoon and watch the floating icebergs, or continue to the Mascardi viewpoint, 1 mile up the hill.
In the afternoon you will board your bus back to El Calafate to continue exploring the best natural wonder of Patagonia. 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 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. If you want to try some creamy Patagonian craft beer all you have to say is: “Una birra por favor” ¡Salud! (Cheers!)
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 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.
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.
Your Chilean journey is about to begin! In the morning, you’ll make your way to the bus station. Most hotels are walking distance from the bus terminal, but if you prefer to take a taxi, you might spend roughly $5/7 USD.
After this 5-hour trip, you will have crossed hundreds of miles of green landscapes that are dramatically situated between the mountains. Once you arrive to Puerto Natales, the guardian Milodon – the last giant sloth that walked the Earth 5000 years ago – will wave its bronze hand at the entrance of this picturesque town.
You’ll make your way to your hotel (most are just a few blocks away from the bus station) and you will have time to explore this small town, the base for visiting the world-famous Torres del Paine National Park, the best natural wonder of Chilean Patagonia.
How to enjoy your one-night stop in your travel itinerary to Patagonia? You can walk along the shores of Magellan Strait, or just relax in one of the little cafés in town while admiring the patchwork facade of colorful houses.
It is not allowed to take any fresh food, plants, seeds, etc. from Argentina to Chile. Once you are inside Torres del Paine National Park there will be no shops, so Puerto Natales will be your last chance to buy provisions for the next day. Shops don’t provide plastic bags so if you buy something you’ll have to bring your own ecological bag or make some space in your hiking pack.
Today we’ll pick you up from your hotel early in the morning to take you to the first stop of this 10-hour adventure-trip, Milodon Cave. This natural monument, located 15 miles north of town, is composed of three caverns and a rocky conglomerate called Silla del Diablo (Devil’s chair), due to its chairlike shape.
Before getting to the caves, we will pass by La Silla del Diablo and learn about its mysterious legend… a story told by the oldest man in Patagonia who believed that the Devil appeared to those who came looking for him on dark nights.
We’ll keep on traveling to Torres del Paine National Park, and on the way, you’ll get to see Sofia Lagoon, Prat Range, Porteño Lake, and the stunning Grey Lake viewpoint. You’ll go over Serrano Bridge and continue to Grey Lake sector, where you’ll have time to walk along the shore. Once you go back to the parking lot, we’ll take you to a restaurant to rest and have lunch (not included in the price of our service).
After lunch, we’ll head to Salto Grande sector. You’ll visit Nordenskjold Lake’s viewpoint before continuing on a sinuous route to Amarga Lagoon area. We’ll also make a stop at Paine’s turquoise waterfall whose waters come directly from Paine River.
Heading back to Puerto Natales, we’ll stop at Sarmiento Lake viewpoint to take the last picture of the stunning Torres del Paine.
This is your opportunity to continue exploring the best of Patagonia near Puerto Natales. Take a walk on the shores of Last Hope Sound and explore the little, picturesque town on foot.
Our favorite recommendation for this day is the boat trip to meet the Balmaceda and Serrano Glaciers, where you’ll sail the fjords like the first pioneers of Patagonia and discover the natural wonders of Bernardo O’Higgins National Park. This is a full-day trip where you’ll be in contact with nature and one of the most awe-inspiring landscapes in Chilean Patagonia.
Today get prepared to take the bus back to El Calafate. To get to the bus station a taxi will cost you roughly $6/8 dollars. We highly recommend being ready half-an-hour before the departure time at the bus terminal.
Once you arrive at the bus station in El Calafate, you will make your way to your hotel. Enjoy the rest of the evening downtown, sipping on a local craft beer accompanied by a delicious Patagonian lamb stew. Calafate ice-cream or a golden-caramel flan con dulce de leche will be your best choice for dessert.
Today we’ll pick you up from your hotel and drive you to the airport to take your flight to your next destination. Your travel itinerary to Patagonia is about to end… but if you want, you can extend your trip and keep on exploring Argentina. Check out some of our other tailor-made trips in Patagonia and the rest of Argentina, we’ll be glad to help you design your next travel adventure.
FLIGHTS NEEDEDFOR THIS ITINERARY
No local flights are needed for this itinerary. Tour begins in El Calafate and ends in El Calafate.
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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