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Patagonia Encompassed

23 Days FROM AUD 12,617 10 % off!

Overview

Uncover Patagonia’s magical landscapes on this in-depth small group tour of Patagonia.  We will take in the highlights from the north to the south.  We will travel through the pristine lakes and rivers of the Argentinean & Chilean Lakes Districts; We will discover a land of myths and legends, unique folklore and culinary traditions on Chiloe Island; And we will  marvel in Southern Patagonia’s icy beauty and its rugged, towering mountains, visiting the famous Torres Del Paine National Park, the huge Perito Moreno Glacier & the breath-taking Mount Fitzroy.  Hike in the mountains, soak in draw-dropping views, spot soaring condors, and search for illusive Puma before ending the trip in Ushuaia, the most southerly city in the world and the gateway to Antarctica!  

Trip Code: LAVIPAE

Travel Style: Small Group Tour

Location: Chile, Argentina, Patagonia

Flights: We offer a range of flight options to South America. 

WHY YOU'LL LOVE THIS ITINERARY

  • Experience the incredible beauty of Patagonia, from stunning mountain vistas to impressive glaciers and hardy wildlife.

  • You will explore the quaint island of Chiloe, dotted by beautiful lakes and small pastures. Here you can visit the small town of Castro famous for its wooden stilt houses. 

  • Explore Torres Del Paine National Park, with its awe-inspiring landscapes and overwhelming beauty.

ITINERARY INSPIRATION

Arrival in Buenos Aires, Argentina’s elegant, historic and cosmopolitan capital. We will be collected and transferred to our tour hotel. This evening we will have a welcome dinner at one of Buenos Aires premier establishments.

Arrival in Buenos Aires

Enjoy a privately guided tour of this fascinating city. The tour will take in the main highlights, but our guide will also help us to really get under the skin of Buenos Aires. In the evening we will enjoy dinner at The Argentine Experience. A unique dining experience which cleverly blends exquisite food and wine, local culture and social integration. We will learn how to make traditional empanadas, even competing against our fellow guests, and the guides throughout the evening will answer questions on Argentine cuisine and culture.

Buenos Aires

Today we take a flight to Bariloche. San Carlos de Bariloche lies on the southern shores of Lake Nahuel Huapi in the foothills of the Andes. Its location is stunning, with its Alpine-styled architecture, its picturesque lakeside setting overlooked by mountains and forests as well as numerous boutique chocolate shops and St. Bernard dogs, the city has a Swiss-like atmosphere.

Buenos Aires to Bariloche

This morning we leave the city behind to take in the breath-taking views offered by Llao Llao Peninsula’s short circuit tour. Home to several protected species as well as the iconic Llao Llao Hotel, the peninsula is nothing short of spectacular. We begin on the southern shore of the famous Lake Nahuel Huapi before heading to Mt Campanario where we take a 10-minute chairlift ride to the top of the mountain. The afternoon is free to enjoy Bariloche town.

Bariloche

It’s time for the wonderful 7 Lakes Drive! Today we will drive towards the north, skirting Lake Nahuel Huapi to Villa La Angostura and on to San Martin. This is the famous Seven Lakes Route, on which you will see the beautiful Lakes Espejo, Correntoso, Escondido, Villarino, Falkner, Machónico and Lácar. On the way back to Bariloche we pass by the meeting point of the Traful and Limay rivers, where the spectacular Enchanted Valley is located.

Bariloche

From Bariloche, our journey across the border to Chile will be a combination of scenic bus rides and lake crossings. We take in lovely flower gardens and Swiss-style architecture, lakeside drives and cross the Andes at an altitude of 976m. We will cruise on Lake Todos Los Santos, one of Chile’s most beautiful lakes with spectacular views of Osorno Volcano and the Puntiagudo and Tronador mountain peaks when the weather is clear. Puerto Varas and Puerto Montt lie at the southern end of the Lake District under the shadow of the snow-capped Osorno and Calbuco volcanoes.

Bariloche to Puerto Varas

Today we will visit two of the region's most stunning natural wonders, the Osorno Volcano and Petrohué Falls. Despite its low altitude, the upper slopes of Osorno volcano are covered in glaciers and the views from the top are truly spectacular. From here we continue to the Pertohué Falls located deep in the Vincente Perez Rosales National Park. The chute-type, icy cold, blue green falls stem from the Todos los Santos Lake the next and final stop on today's trip.

Puerto Varas

We sail to Chiloe Island, perhaps encountering sealions, pelicans and sea birds native to this area. On Chiloe Island we will head to Ancud city to visit the San Antonio Fort; an historic landmark, built in the late XVIII Century and one of the last Spanish fortifications in Chile. We continue to Dalcahue to visit an interesting Palafito market that is typical of Chiloe island. The wooden based construction is built over the water with a spectacular view out to sea. We also take in the Handicraft Market and walk to the local World Heritage listed church.

Puerto Varas - Chiloe

Today we head south from Castro and can enjoy the country life as we pass small farms dotted with grazing animals, and several beautiful lakes. Arriving at Chiloé National Park we´ll do an easy hike in the forest which is home to an important biodiversity of species. After our hike, we´ll visit the indigenous community of Quilque, where we´ll enjoy a local light lunch and then stop at Chonchi to visit its World Heritage wooden church.

Chiloe

We depart Chiloe Island by ferry and return to Puerto Montt, stopping at Angelmó, a small bay at the west end of Puerto Montt. Angelmó can be divided into two main areas. The first part is a long street bursting with many stalls selling traditional Chilean handicrafts. The second area is the harbour where we will find the fish market and restaurants. Angelmó is a seafood extravaganza with a large variety of fresh fish and seafood that we can see being taken out of small boats just meters from where we can eat them.

Chiloe Island to Puerto Montt

Today we will fly south to Punta Arenas, the historic capital of the Magallanes Region and of the Chilean Antarctic. The city has many treasures, including the statue of Magellan at the centre of the Plaza Armas and the iconic Palacio Sara Braun. The city's public cemetery is adorned with beautiful gardens, whilst the Mirador Cerro la Cruz is a lookout point that offers a spectacular panorama of the city's colourful houses.

Puerto Montt to Punta Arenas

Today we head towards Torres Del Paine, South America’s finest National Park and a trekker’s paradise. Declared a Reserve of the Biosphere by UNESCO in 1978 it is located amongst the Andes and the Patagonian steppe. In this area are the colossal towers and horns of granite that have given the park worldwide fame. The park preserves numerous animals like guanacos, condors, ñandues (South American ostrich), foxes and the elusive puma.

Instead of walking these continuously, we break it into three separate walks, hiking an average of 15km (9.5mi) to 20km (12mi) each day. The group is assisted by expert local trekking guides who guide us through the hiking trails.

Other than hiking there are activities available inside Torres Del Paine including tours by vehicle, boat and on horseback. Please note these activities are subject to availability and minimum numbers, and will incur an additional cost. Please ask about our Torres Light Add-On.

Punta Arenas to Torres del Paine

Las Torres Hike (Difficult)
Hiking to view the iconic Las Torres (the Towers) is a challenging yet immensely satisfying hike, a highlight for all experienced trekkers. The Towers are the three massive granite columns that encircle the smaller Torres Glacier. The Towers hike is by far the most strenuous of all the hikes. It takes in dirt paths, some steep in areas, through valleys with a great river underneath, within beautiful forests, river crossings and a final scramble over boulders to the base of the towers.
Full walk takes approximately 8 - 9 hours return including time for lunch and depending on your ability/physical strength (alternatively please ask about our Torres Light Add-On).

Torres del Paine National Park

French Valley Hike (Moderate – Difficult)
The French Valley is the most beautiful valley in the Torres del Paine National Park. It is a steep hike and offers incredible panoramic views of Los Cuernos del Paine, the French Glacier and Lakes Nordenskjold, Pehoé, Scottsburg and Toro. Finishing at the French Lookout the trail becomes steep with loose gravel and boulders. With a 300m/1000ft elevation gain we can sit, watch and hear ice crack and maybe even see a mini avalanche. We stay overnight at the Paine Grande Refuge so we do not have to return across the lake to our hotel. Full walk takes approximately 8 - 9 hours return including time for lunch and depending on our ability and physical strength (alternatively please ask about our Torres Light Add-On).

Torres del Paine National Park

Greys Glacier trek (Easy – moderate)
Grey Glacier is one of the principal tourist attractions located in Chile. The lake’s creamy blue colour dotted with floating icebergs and the Patagonia Icefield at the back is a breath-taking sight. Hiking through a combination of valleys, inclines and forest we reach the remarkable Grey Glacier Lookout point, before hiking down to the Refugio Grey Glacier viewpoint which brings us a lot closer to this magnificent ice sheet. The full walk takes approximately 7 - 8 hours return including time for lunch and depending on ability/physical strength. At the conclusion of our full day trekking we will head to our hotel in Puerto Natales (alternatively please ask about our Torres Light Add-On).

Torres del Paine to Puerto Natales

We cross back into Argentina and continue through the Patagonian steppe, where it is common to see condors flying overhead. As beautiful Lake Argentino, the biggest freshwater lake in Argentina, comes into view we know we are nearing El Calafate, our base to visit the impressive Perito Moreno glacier.

Puerto Natales to El Calafate

This morning we will venture into Los Glaciares National Park to see the world famous Perito Moreno Glacier. The glacier is more than 3 kilometers wide and averages 74m in height above the surface of the water of Lake Argentino. It is one of the very few glaciers in the world that continues to advance and if we are lucky, we may see the glacier calving as large masses of ice break away from the glacier and collapse into the water. We take a short boat trip to the south wall of the glacier. From the water we get a feel for the size of this remarkable high wall of ice - a true highlight of Patagonia.

El Calafate

Today we will visit Estancia Nibepo Aike which retains the essence of the old Patagonian ranches. It covers over 12,000 hectares at the foot of the Patagonian Andes and is dedicated to the production of cattle and sheep. It is an ideal place to dip into the life of an authentic Patagonian ranch through farm demonstrations and participating in ranch activities as well as optional hikes or horse riding. Before returning to El Calafate, we enjoy a typical Patagonian barbeque.

El Calafate

Today we will arrive to El Chalten, a small town nestled quietly under the imposing peak of Chalten (also known as Mount Fitzroy). In the afternoon we will take a trek to Laguna Carpi over reasonable slopes and into the Del Salto stream valley, where we will notice more and more Antarctic beech trees. The trail takes in spectacular vistas before reaching beautiful Laguna Capri and then continuing in a loop back to El Chalten.

El Calafate to El Chalten

This is a guided hike starting directly from the hotel. We enter the Fitzroy River Valley and continue upstream – heading for its source. Here we encounter the first viewpoint located at the gorge of the Fitzroy River called Casacada Margarita. On a clear day this panoramic view displays Mt Fitzroy, Cerro Torre, Cerro Solo and the Adela range. We continue along an undulating trail until we reach the Cerro Torre viewpoint, another opportunity to take in the Adela range and other granite needles. Then we head down into a plateau section, through a southern beech tree forest and along a trail to the glacier Lagune at the base of Cerro Torre. Often, we will find icebergs floating in the lagoon. (7 hour return trek).

El Chalten

Today we head to the airport for our flight to Ushuaia. Ushuaia is the most southerly city in the world with a dramatic setting overlooking the Beagle Channel, surrounded by mountains. It is a major port for Antarctic bound vessels and an interesting city to explore.

El Chalten to Ushuaia

This morning we head to Tierra Del Fuego National Park, home to a wide range of flora and fauna, glaciers, waterfalls, mountains and stunning scenery; and where we can reach the end of the Panamerican Highway. We will take a trip by catamaran along the Ushuaia Bay and the Beagle Channel. We will see the Les Eclaireurs lighthouse, and we approach Sea Lion Island where we can view these stately sea mammals. During the trip we will be able to see many species of seabirds like southern giant petrels, black-browed albatross, skuas, southern American terns, gulls and kelp gulls.

Ushuaia

Departure Transfer: Depart Ushuaia with wonderful memories, and a new respect of our wonderful planet courtesy of Patagonia. Or perhaps join one of our connecting voyages to Antarctica, the frozen continent.

End in Ushuaia
DOWNLOAD ITINERARY PDF

Pricing & date

Patagonia Encompassed from AUD 12,617
Departing Ending Duration
13 Oct 2020 04 Nov 2020 23
10 Dec 2020 01 Jan 2021 23
31 Jan 2021 22 Feb 2021 23
16 Feb 2021 10 Mar 2021 23
12 Mar 2021 03 Apr 2021 23

Important Information

  • 21 nights accommodation in standard-superior hotels
    1 night in a hiking lodge with shared bunks 
    21 breakfasts
    11 lunches 
    7 dinners
    Guiding by an experienced tour leader and bilingual guide
    All internal transfers

    Exclusions

    International flights
    Visa and reciprocity fees (if applicable) 
    Travel insurance
    Any items not mentioned as included
    Personal expenses 

  • 3 Light Adventure (High altitude in some areas)
  • Willing to share option guaranteed. 

  • Please note park entrance fees and itineraries are subject to change without prior notice.

  • Departure date, season and availability

Accommodation

We believe that appropriate accommodation should add to the authentic travel experience, as well as providing utmost enjoyment. For that reason our accommodation is scrutinised by our staff on the ground frequently, ensuring the properties adhere to our high standards. This key will help you understand the levels of accommodation available on this tour.

SPEAK TO A SPECIALIST

Sustainability

Being environmentally accountable is a crucial part of our organisation. Chimu is currently striving towards using less paper, taking several initiatives to do so and tracking our progress along the way. Our goal: A paperless organisation. For this reason, all information given to you will be sent electronically. We encourage those who choose to travel with us to support our aspirations and actions and ask that you reconsider printing out documentation. To view these documents, you can download them to your iPad or portable computer before and during your trip.

Chimu is passionate and dedicated to sustainability measures and understands the crucial part sustainability plays within the tourism industry.

We use local guides and office staff to both maximise local employment opportunities and minimise carbon footprint. Local guides also ensure you benefit from the intimate knowledge, passion and culture of the country you’re visiting. Our guides are all highly qualified (most with university degrees) or equip with many years of experience and are paid above the standard wage. Whether it be our knowledgeable local guides, locally produced meals or the transport on tour, we do not use imported goods when local products are available. We aim to minimise our impact on the environment and give as much back as possible to the communities we work in.

While visiting the many national parks, heritage sites, museums and landmarks our travellers are encouraged to explore whilst remaining culturally aware and sensitive. We further encourage you to buy appropriate souvenirs and discourage the buying of anything wrongfully made or taken from the environment i.e. shells and endangered species products. Information on how you can be environmentally conscious, and travel responsibly will be made available in our Travellers Guides and provided during your travels by guides and staff.

For more information on our sustainability policies, including how we are striving towards being a paperless organisation, click HERE