Puerto Montt - Hornopirén - Yelcho - La Junta - Coyhaique
Your road trip to Carretera Austral beggings here at “El Tepual”, Puerto Montts’ airport in southern Patagonia (Chile). We will drive through Route N°7, better known as “Carretera Austral” (Austral Road), your first glance of Patagonia’s legendary lands (1 hour) to the ferry crossing connecting Caleta La Arena and Caleta Peuelche.
From Caleta Pehuelche, your trip continues by land to Hornopirén where you will stay for the night. Enjoy your first road trip in Carretera Austral! This is just the beginning.
Carretera Austral is known for its “bimodal ferry-car” system to navigate the famous road. This means that many stretches of the road include sections you can make by land, and others, only by boat.
Wake up early in the morning and set sails to continue exploring Carretera Austral. We will drive you to Hornopirén jetty to engage in a 3h 30 min trip by ferry to Caleta Gonzalo and from there, to Yelcho Lake área.
Enjoy this first long sail to Marvel at the incredible Chilean Fjords, and discover the straight course of wáter surrounded by titanic mountains. After the ferry, take a 6-mile gravel road (30 min) and reach your next ferry crossing to Caleta Gonzalo, much more briefer than your first, just 30 min sailing.
From Caleta Gonzalo, you Will travel 60 miles by land crossing the Pumalin National Park to Lake Yelcho surroundings where you will overnight.
On your way to Yelcho, you will make different stops to engage hiking trails skirting the Carretera Austral road immersed in the great native forest. Lunch will be on the road (box lunch).
There are many hiking trails and attractions in Carretera Austral you can find along the way. You just need to pick one and start the adventure!
Enjoy your leisurely morning in Lake Yelcho área where you will lodge. Enjoy a relaxing hike in the surrounding and continue exploring the Pumalin National Park landscapes. Enjoy lunch in your accommodation and hit the road again in the afternoon.
Continue traveling through Carretera Austral for 1 h 15 min, and discover on the way, little villages like Santa Lucía and Villa Vanguardia. You will finally leave Los Lagos Region to enter the Aysen área and reach the town of La Junta. Overnight in La Junta.
Aysen is a magnificent region famous for its stunning glaciers and for hosting the San Rafael Lake National Park and the Northern and Southern Ice Fields of Patagonia. Other natural attractions combine volcanoes and densely vegetated areas with open grasslands.
Wake up early and start the adventure tour of the day! You will enjoy kayaking or rafting in the Rosselot River. Go down the river for about 0.6 miles and reach the confluence with River Palena one of the three famous watercourses in Aysen.
Ride for about 10 miles, 2h 30 min paddling, through the stunning vegetation of the área and birdwatch many species of native birds. You will finally touch base on a beach, hop on a vehicle to Puerto Raul Marín Balmaceda and reach the delightful “El Sauce” hot springs. Enjoy a relaxing time admiring the mountains and a lunch box at the spa before heading back to La Junta.
You will be briefed about technical tips to better enjoy your kayak experience so any questions should find their answer with the experts! But if you prefer a more traditional tour, you can switch with a ride to Puerto Raul Marin Balmaceda and an enjoyable lunch in a chosen restaurant.
Enjoy an early breakfast and engage Carretera Austral once more. Head to the town of Puyuhuapi, a quaint mountaineering village, just one hour away. Then, continue to the highlight of this trip, the Queulat National Park and its hanging glacier!
Once inside the park, enjoy a 657-yard path through native woods to reach the Queulat Glacier’s jaw-dropping viewpoint. Queulat is called a hanging glacier because it perches on the top of the mountain and seems hanging there at its peak. A truly amazing natural spectacle. Enjoy a box lunch in the park before continuing to travel.
Finally, keep driving through Carretera Austral and reach Coyhaique, the regional capital, about 4 hours away. Enjoy a peaceful overnight in Coyaique.
A few minutes away from Coyhaique there is a private farm where you will enjoy the day. Meet the owner of the farm and enjoy a horseback ride through the mountains and the shore of Simpson River.
This is a 2-hour incredible experience and a unique way to discover the Patagonian landscape and the horseman traditions, a cornerstone of the “gaucho” (cowboy) culture. At the end of the ride, return to Coyhaique and enjoy lunch followed by a leisurely afternoon.
You don’t need any previous experience to enjoy this horseback ride. The people organizing the tour are professionals and will be glad to answer any questions you may have about the animals and how to manage the reins. However, if you prefer to do another type of tour on this day, feel free to mention it to your travel agent. We specialized in tailor-made travel experiences!
Enjoy your last hours in the breathtaking surroundings of Carretera Austral and prepare to head to the Balmaceda airport where this trip ends. This is a 1-hour ride and pick-ups are usually scheduled 2 h 30 min before your flight departure time.
We specialized in tailor-made travel experiences in Carretera Austral and other incredible destinations in Argentina, Chile, and South America. If this trip doesn’t meet your expectations, talk to one of our knowledgeable travel agents and tailor this trip to your budget and timetable.
PEACE OF MIND THIS IS A CARBON NEUTRAL TRIP
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. It feels good to do it right. Learn more about our actions against climate change here.
FLIGHTS NEEDEDFOR THIS ITINERARY
No local flights are needed for this itinerary. This trip begins in Puerto Montt and ends in Coyhaique
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