The Best of Patagonia

Perito Moreno Glacier Argentina Boat Tours
Hiking Trips and Tours Patagonia Argentina
Argentina Patagonia Accommodation
The Best of Patagonia
Duration:
11
Days
Priced from:
4999.00
USD

The Best of Patagonia

Trip Overview

Best of Patagonia Adventure travel trek tour, Argentina and Chile, with Bikehike Adventures as featured in outpost magazineExperience once in a lifetime adventure travel in Patagonia. This Patagonia trekking tour extends through an intensely beautiful region of South America. We spend the first five days of this adventure trek in Chile before pushing forward into Argentina. Each region is rugged and beautiful with cliffs, turquoise glaciers, and tangled pine forests.

We visit Torres del Paine National Park, trekking during the day and sleeping in a luxurious Eco-Camp by night. Next, we journey onward to Argentina’s Los Glaciares National Park, hiking in the world-famous Cerro Torre and Fitz Roy ranges. Here we spend our nights in cozy mountain lodges and comfortable family-run hosterias.

This Patagonia adventure package is packed to the max. You'll enjoy hearty meals, long days, and numerous animal sightings.

WOW FACTORS

  • Trekking across the mixed grassland and light forest of Chile's Torres del Paine National Park
  • Hiking across the forests and pampas (lowlands) of Argentina's Patagonian Fitz Roy National Park
  • Sleeping in tented domes at an eco-camp, offering an unrivaled ambiance of nature and luxury

Awarded one of the '73 Great Adventures' by Outpost Magazine.

Activities

Difficulty Level

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Itinerary & Map

Day 1

Santiago - Punta Arenas - Torres del Paine
Arrival
All travellers must arrive into the Punta Arenas airport by 11:00am. We'll be there to greet you and transfer you to the famous Torres del Paine National Park, 345 km/216 miles away. The drive is approximately 5 hours, but a very scenic one and in the summer months (December to March) the sun sets around 11pm, so we have plenty of light to admire the landscape en route while entering the park. If we’re lucky we’ll see guanacos, rheas and huge rabbits grazing on the plains. We stop for lunch in Puerto Natales, and have some time to explore the town. The craggy snow-peaked mountains become visible as we approach the park and check into our cozy EcoCamp at Los Torres. There will be an extensive orientation meeting this evening over dinner where we will answer any questions that you may have about the adventure that lays ahead. Overnight at the EcoCamp.

Accommodation: EcoCamp
Meals: Lunch, Dinner

Day 2

French Valley
Hiking
Our active adventure begins with a 30-minute catamaran journey crossing Lake Pehoe to Pudeto where we'll start our challenging trek to Valle Frances, along a steep trail that goes into the very heart of the Paine Massif. A vigorous walk brings us to the hanging bridge over the French River, located at the foot of the southeast face of the Massif. We have a wonderful view from this vantage point. We'll then continue up the trail until reaching the upper section of the valley with panoramic views of our dramatic surroundings. We'll rest with a picnic lunch, before heading back on the trail descending through an undulating terrain of mixed grassland and light forest until reaching our home for the night - the Refugio Paine Grande - located on the shores of Lake Pehoe. An optional trek to Mirador Britanico is also available during the day's hike.

Accommodation: Cabin
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3

Pehoe - Grey Glacier
Hiking
After a hearty breakfast we set off on a hike along the shores of Lake Pehoe to the northern end of the glacial Lake Grey. We'll enjoy a picnic lunch before boarding a boat that sails to the blue face of Glacier Grey. This dramatic glacier is an ancient wall of ice sculpted by time and the elements. It’s common to see and hear pieces calving thunderously into the deep gray lake below. The journey concludes crossing Lago Grey and from here we’ll transfer from Lake Grey’s southern end to the eco-camp for the night. If the weather conditions do not allow us to navigate Grey Lake, we’ll hike about two hours along the Grey Trail until reaching a sightseeing point offering a spectacular view of the Glacier. We then return to Paine Grande and take a catamaran to Pudeto's dock, from where we'll drive back to our camp for the night. 

Accommodation: EcoCamp
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4

Torres del Paine National Park - Valle Ascencio
Hiking
Today is a full day trek to the famous Towers of Paine, a triad of sculpted granite peaks that are the remains of a great cirque that has been sheared away by the forces of glacial ice. For 10 km/6 miles, we trudge along rolling dirt tracks through a pine forest and traverse the mountains with wide-open vistas of the deep valleys below. The last 3 km / 2 miles is a scramble on foot over rocks and boulders to the base of this beautiful sculpture. You’ll feel the intensity of the natural world, as you sit beneath the jagged spires. This place is truly magnificent. After feasting on the view and a picnic lunch, we backtrack along the same trail through Ascencio Valley and return to the eco-camp. Dinner is a typical Chilean BBQ to celebrate our achievements. Approximately 8-9 hours of moderate hiking.

Accommodation: EcoCamp
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5

Torres del Paine - El Calafate, Argentina
Free Day
Early this morning we transfer to the bus station in Puerto Natales where we’ll board a public bus to Argentina. Our Chilean guide assists the group getting on the bus, but doesn’t accompany the group. Upon arrival into El Calafate, Argentina, there will be an Argentine representative to meet us and assist us with the transfer to our hotel for the next two nights. The remainder of the day is at leisure. 

Accommodation: Hotel
Meals: Breakfast

Day 6

Los Glaciares National Park
Hiking
After breakfast we transfer to Los Glaciares National Park in the sub-Antarctic Continental Ice-cap. Between the 48 and 51 South parallels, the Andean Range is covered by a large extension of permafrost known as the Patagonian continental icecap. It stretches 901 km/560 miles from north to south. It is so large, that it is also called "the third pole" because of the huge concentration of ice. It is the origin of 47 major glaciers, such as the famous Perito Moreno glacier that you will have the chance to see. With some luck we'll spot some wildlife in this area including condors, buff-necked ibis, black-chested buzzard eagles and ashy-headed geese. In the afternoon, we return to El Calafate to our hotel where the remainder of the day is at leisure. Dinner is with the group this evening.

Accommodation: Hotel
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7

El Calafate - El Chalten
Optional Biking & Canoeing
After breakfast, we’ll be transferred to the bus station to connect with the public bus to El Chalten, a small windswept town at the foot of Mt. Fitz Roy. There is some free time in El Chalten for lunch, and then we’ll transfer to our cozy Adventure Camp. This wilderness active adventure camp is located 17 km/10.5 miles north of El Chalten on the shore of Rio de Las Vueltas. It is surrounded by native beech-tree forest and stunning views of the north face of Mt. Fitz Roy. The lodge has a dining room, offering delicious local cuisine and robust Argentine wines. Mountain bikes and canoes are available for guests wanting to enjoy the outdoors, or if you prefer, there is a cozy fireplace to relax in front of. Overnight in cabins at Laguna Condor Adventure Camp. 

Accommodation: Cabin
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner 

Day 8

Mount Fitz Roy
Hiking
First a wholesome and hearty breakfast and then we’re off for a full day trek. We ascend gradually all morning along the Rio Blanco to the Rio Blanco base camp. This is the camp where climbers wait for a break in the weather when attempting the always-difficult ascent of the granite monolith named after Darwin’s ship, the HMS Beagle. Weather permitting, we’ll ascend more steeply to the Laguna de Los Tres where we will have close-up views of several of the routes used to climb Fitz Roy. In the afternoon, we’ll trek to Laguna Capri where we’ll be rewarded to dramatic views of the Fitz Roy and the peaks of Saint Exupery, Poincenot, Mermoz and Guillaumet. We’ll also have a short hike to the Rio de las Vueltas view point to overlook the Cordon del Bosque valley. We’ll end the day at our campsite in Poincenot where we’ll spend the night in tents. 

Accommodation: Tent
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner 

Day 9

Cerro Torre - El Chalten
Hiking
This morning we’ll hike in the direction of Torre Lagoon. We’ll cross old glacial moraines and wet plains that were formed by previous courses that were formed by the Fitz Roy River passing by the Madre e Hija Trail. We’ll eventually make it to Torre Lagoon where there are good possibilities to spot a wide range of birds, including the Magellanic woodpecker. At Torre Lagoon it is usual to see huge icebergs that have calved off of the Torre Glacier. There are various paths over the glacial moraine that we’ll follow, allowing us to visit other viewpoints. At the source of the Fitz Roy River there is a Tyrolean traverse (ropes and pulleys), used by the climbers to access the Torre Glacier and get to the base of the mountain they plan to climb. Late afternoon after a rest and lunch, we’ll return to a comfortable hotel in El Chalten where we spend the night. 

Accommodation: Hotel
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 10

El Chalten - El Calafate - Buenos Aires
Transfer
After breakfast we will transfer back to El Calafate by public bus. From here, we will transfer to the airport in El Calafate to connect with our flight to Buenos Aires. You'll be met upon arrival and transferred to a comfortable hotel in this lively cosmopolitan city. The evening is at leisure.

Accommodation: Hotel
Meals: Breakfast

Day 11

Buenos Aires
Departure
Today you will be transferred to the international airport to connect with flights home.

Meals: Breakfast

What's Included

TRIP INCLUSIONS:
Meals as indicated, all accommodation (twin shared), all internal transportation (excluding internal flights), airport transfers and English-speaking guides.

TRIP DOES NOT INCLUDE:
International airfare, internal flights (Santiago - Punta Arenas, El Calafate - Buenos Aires), airport departure taxes, gratuities, meals not indicated and items of a personal nature.

MEALS:
10 Breakfasts, 7 Lunches, 7 Dinners

ACCOMMODATION:
Hotel: 4 Nights
Tent: 1 Night
EcoCamp: 3 Nights
Cabin: 2 Nights

Trip Facts

Weather in Argentina, Chile & Patagonia

Buenos Aires
October to November: Pleasant afternoon temperatures, 20-26°C (69-79°F) with six to eight hours of sunshine daily.
December to February: Hot summer season with average afternoon temperature of 29°C (84°F) with nine hours of sunshine daily.
March to April: Pleasant afternoon temperatures, 20-26°C (69-79°F) with six to eight hours of sunshine daily.
June to August: Winter months bringing mild afternoon temperatures of 14°C (57°F) with only four hours of sunshine daily.

Santiago
October to March:
 Summer. Dry. Average temperature is 29°C (85°F).
April to September: Winter. Average temperature is 15 to 20°C (59 to 69°F). Evenings are cool.

Patagonia
The weather in Patagonia, though extremely variable, can often be wet, cold and windy. Throughout the country, the proximity of the Pacific and the Andes creates numerous pockets of localized weather patterns known as microclimates. The average temperature during the day is 11°C (51°F). At night, the temperature drops to 3°C (38°F).

October to April: Cool, cloudy and dry.
May to September: Cold. Although there are no snowfalls, the influence of the ocean reduces the severity of winter.

Travel Documents

A valid passport is required for Canadian and American citizens to travel into Argentina and Chile. Make sure your passport is valid for at least six months beyond your date of arrival. Citizens of other nations should contact the embassy or consulate for entry requirements. 

Food and Water

A great part of Argentina adventure travel is the food. Some of the must-tries in Argentina include carbonada (beef stew with rice, sweet potatoes, squash, maize and chopped apples and peaches), matambre relleno (stuffed and rolled flank steak served cold or baked) and almendrado (ice cream rolled in crushed almonds). You should exercise caution with food sold in the streets. 
Some of the must tries in Chile are empanadas de pino (pastry-style turnovers stuffed with olives, meat, raisins and onions), parilla (a mixed grill of assorted meats cooked over charcoal) and pastal de choclo (traditional dish of beef, vegetables and chicken baked in a casserole). Exercise caution when eating food from street stalls. Tap water is treated in Buenos Aires & Santiago, although to be on the safe side it is advisable to drink only bottled water, which is available widely. Fruit drinks, soft drinks, coffee and tea are all widely available and safe to drink.

FAQ

How big are BikeHike's groups?

Our adventures are built for small groups, with a maximum of 14 travellers on each guided tour. Each group is diverse, comprised of men and women of many different nationalities and ages. By travelling in small groups we leave minimal ecological impact, cause less disruption to the native life and are able to gain a better appreciation for our surroundings.

What should I pack for this hiking trip?

We have prepared a packing list that you can download by clicking the link to the right on this page. 

How fit do I need to be to join this trip?

We understand that people come in many fitness levels, so we've graded our trips accordingly. There are four difficulty levels on our trips: Easy, Moderate, Challenging, and Strenuous. 

This is a “challenging” trip.

Although the hikes themselves are not particularly strenuous, their length and challenging terrain will be more taxing than expected. Days are full, average 6-9 hours per day. The terrain is along trails of rolling hills, through forests, along coastlines and partly scrambling over rocks and boulders (sometimes in the snow). The winds can be extremely strong and the temperatures change from one moment to the next. For the most part, you are only expected to carry your daypack on the trail while hiking. The rest of your gear will be carried by the included porter service. Your daypack should be large enough to include your lunch, water, camera, sunscreen and any layer clothing you may need to adapt to the changing weather on the trail.

We strongly recommend that you begin a regular fitness program - that is if you are not already doing so. Four times a week, 60 minutes per session should be a minimum to prepare you for this adventure. The optimal workout would include weight training and cardiovascular activities such as walking, cycling and aerobics.

 

Has this trip been run before?

BikeHike Adventures has been operating since 1994. 

The logistics of organizing tours to remote corners of the world can be very complex. Our trip development department spends long hours researching destinations, routes, ground operations and equipment. All itineraries are screened without clients before they are added to our growing repertoire of adventures. Nothing is untested. 

Can you tell me about your typical BikeHike travellers on this trip?

Our travellers share a common love for outdoor adventure. Most are looking for a physical adventure in an unfamiliar destination. This trip attracts one of our most diverse groups. A typical trip is comprised of men and women in good physical condition, who exercise regularly and are invigorated by a personal challenge.

The age range on this trip is typically from 30-60, although we occasionally get younger and older travellers as well. 

Which airport do I have to fly into and out of?

On Day 1 of the trip, you must arrive into Punta Arenas Airport no later than 11:00am. To conclude the trip on Day 11, you can depart from Buenos Aires at any time. 

*Notes:

  • On Day 1, you are responsible for booking your own flight from Santiago to Punta Arenas.
  • On Day 10, the flight from El Calafate to Buenos Aires is not included in the trip price. Please don't book this flight until we have given you the information on which is the best flight to book.

Can I take this trip if...

I am a solo traveller? How does solo accommodation and costing work?

This trip is quite popular with singles, couples, mature families and friends alike. So we have a great mix on this trip. 

Unlike many adventure travel companies, we don't charge single supplement fees to solo travellers. Instead, we pair you with another traveller of the same gender. If we can't find you a roommate, you get your own room at no additional charge.  A single private room supplement fee is only required if you specifically request a confirmed private room for the duration of the trip. Learn more about solo travel with BikeHike

I have special dietary requirements?

We will do our best to accommodate special dietary requests (e.g. vegetarian, gluten free, etc.), but ask that you please discuss your request with us when signing up for a trip.

I am travelling with children? Is this trip child friendly?

This trip is generally not a family focused trip for young children. However, this trip could be suitable for strong and active older teenagers. 

We do offer many other Family Focused trips, some of which are able to accommodate children as young as six.

More about this trip...

Is there wifi on this trip?

During the Chile portion of the trip, there is no wifi connection. 

What is the best time of year for this trip?

The season for this trip runs from October to April. In Patagonia the weather is always unpredictable, and it’s possible to experience all four seasons in one day, even in the summer months of December to March. Patagonia is also renowned for its intense winds. It is best to come prepared for all types of weather from cold and snowy to hot and sunny. The summer’s average temperature is 11’C / 52’F.

Is this trip at high altitude?

There is no high altitude on this trip to worry about. All of the hikes are below what is considered “high altitude”.

Accommodation

Most of our trips include comfortable mid-range accommodations. This includes accommodation that provides a clean and comfortable experience in characterful surroundings that reflect the destination. To build stronger connections with the communities and support the local economies, we avoid using large international chain brands on BikeHike trips. 

This trip includes the following types of accommodation:

ECOCAMP  

At the EcoCamp, you will be staying in a permanent dome style structure that has proper beds. The locations are luxury campsites with tents mounted on wooden platforms. However, there will be no heat in the sleeping tents but you'll have cozy fleece blankets and duvets. You'll have access to a dining room and kitchen (cooks prepare all the meals), as well as shared washrooms with flush toilets, hot showers and sinks. This is an incredible experience as you'll be tenting in Patagonia! 

CAMPING 

There is one night of camping in tents. They are set up for you. The sleeping bags and mats are provided. There is an outhouse only, no showers. There is a dining tent where we eat our meals, prepared by a cook.

CABINS (MOUNTAIN HUT)

In places such as Argentina our cabin stays are comfortable but rustic. In every case, your night's stay will showcase the natural character of the location.

HOTELS

In an effort to keep money in the communities we visit around the world, BikeHike prefers small hotels, bungalows, and haciendas that showcase the character and local flair of each destination.

Click HERE for more information about accommodation styles.

Price

(Land only, based on twin/shared room)
4999.00
USD
per person

No single supplement fees
** Guaranteed departures on two travellers

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Add-Ons

  • It's easy to add days before and after your tour. Just ask! 
  • A perfect extension is our 3-day Argentina's Iguazu Falls tour
  • Another popular trip extension before or after our Argentina trips is visiting Mendoza, Argentina's famous wine region. (We actually do quite a few custom extensions for foodies and wine-lovers who want to fully embrace that aspect of the country). 
Day Destination Activity Lodging Meals
1
Santiago - Punta Arenas - Torres del Paine
Arrival
EcoCamp
l,
d
2
French Valley
Hiking
Cabin
b,
l,
d
3
Pehoe - Grey Glacier
Hiking
EcoCamp
b,
l,
d
4
Torres del Paine National Park - Valle Ascencio
Hiking
EcoCamp
b,
l,
d
5
Torres del Paine - El Calafate, Argentina
Free Day
Hotel
b
6
Los Glacieres National Park
Hiking
Hotel
b,
l,
d
7
El Calafate - El Chalten
Optional Biking & Canoeing
Cabin
b,
d
8
Mount Fitz Roy
Hiking
Tent
b,
l,
d
9
Cerro Torre - El Chalten
Hiking
Hotel
b,
l
10
El Chalten - El Calafate - Buenos Aires
Transfer
Hotel
b
11
Buenos Aires
Departure
b

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