Argentina & Chile
Patagonia & the Lakes District
• Perito Moreno Glacier
• Torres del Paine N.P.
• Visit a working estancia
• Tierra del Fuego and the Beagle Channel
• Magellanic and gentoo penguins
• Osorno, Calbuco, Puntiagudo and Tronador volcanoes
• Wine tasting in the Maipo Valley
• Valparaiso - UNESCO World Heritage Site
• 17 land days
• Maximum 16 travelers
• Start in Buenos Aires, Argentina, finish in Santiago, Chile
• All meals included
• Includes 4 internal flights
• Activity Level: 2
FROM: $9,295 USD
Comfortable hotels with private bathrooms.
Some long drives
Stunning glaciers, turquoise lakes, extinct volcanoes, zodiac adventures, wine tasting and tango lessons are just a few of the amazing highlights of this Patagonia adventure!
Begin in the cosmopolitan city of Buenos Aires, Argentina where we learn the sensuous tango and visit the expansive Tigre Delta by riverboat. Fly to the "end of the world", Ushuaia, and explore the Beagle Channel and Tierra del Fuego National Park. There, we visit a Magellanic and gentoo penguin rookery.
Patagonia is a nature lover's delight for its incredibly remote and beautiful scenery and unique fauna. Visit Los Glaciares National Park and cruise by boat along the Perito Moreno Glacier and cross into Chile to Torres del Paine National Park. Explore the Chilean Lakes region and see the vibrant green Petrohue Falls before flying to Santiago. Explore the sights of Santiago and enjoy wine tasting in the world-famous Maipo Valley to round out this amazing adventure.
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Argentina & Chile detailed itinerary
DAY 1: ARRIVE IN BUENOS AIRES
Upon arrival in Buenos Aires, you are met and transferred to our centrally located hotel. The remainder of the day is free to explore the city of Buenos Aires.
In the evening, we have our introductory meeting and dinner.
Overnight in Buenos Aires.
DAY 2: BUENOS AIRES CITY SITES
We explore Argentina's capital today beginning with neighborhoods like La Boca, which retains the spirit of Italian immigration, and Palermo with its open green spaces, exclusive avenues and first class bars and restaurants.
Recoleta, marked by French style, is one of the classiest residential neighborhoods in Buenos Aires, with great cultural activity and spaces dedicated to the arts. The Colon Theater, the National Congress and the Presidential Palace are some of the sites that we see. We take a trip through history to Recoleta Cemetery to see the mausoleums and crypts of national heroes, including Eva Peron.
In the late afternoon we have arranged for tango lessons! We learn this sensuous national dance of Argentina in a typical district house and then we enjoy dinner and a tango show.
Overnight in Buenos Aires.
DAY 3: TIGRE DELTA
Today we have a full day excursion to Tigre and the 2000 km maze of waterways that make up the Tigre Delta at the confluence of the Rio Lujan and the Rio Tigre. The town was founded in 1820 and named after the local "tigres" (jaguars), which are now extinct. There are antique shops, riverside restaurants and many beautiful old buildings, including the lovely Argentinean Rowing Club. We will explore some of the Delta's rivers and streams from the comfort of riverboats, passing many of the "Belle Epoque" buildings, and the natural beauty of the Parana River Delta.
This evening we will experience more of the cosmopolitan atmosphere that Buenos Aires is famous for.
Overnight Buenos Aires.
DAY 4: FLY TO USHUAIA, END OF THE WORLD MUSEUM
An early morning transfer to the airport for our flight to Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world. This afternoon we take a sightseeing tour of the town to visit the Casco Antiguo - the port and steep streets that offer colorful panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and the Beagle Channel.
The visit ends with a visit to the Museum at the End of the World, located in one of the oldest buildings in the city.
Dinner and overnight in Ushuaia.
DAY 5: TIERRA DEL FUEGO, BEAGLE CHANNEL
Today we have a full day to explore Tierra del Fuego National Park. The day begins with a 1-hour walk along a beautiful coastal path before getting into our rafts to explore Lapataia Bay. Lapataia Bay is a secluded fjord at the north of the Beagle Channel, and as such is surrounded by spectacular scenery. During our raft journey, we can see a variety of wildlife and seabirds as we navigate the waters of the bay and its shoreline.
We return to Ushuaia for dinner and overnight.
DAY 6: PENGUIN ROOKERY, MARTILLO ISLAND
Today, we continue our exploration of Tierra del Fuego - its history, its magnificent flora and fauna, and its traditions. After breakfast, we drive to the historic estancia Harberton, where we board our zodiac and travel on the Beagle Channel to Martillo Island. On the island we spend an hour with the guide, who will show and teach us the habits, characteristics and nesting grounds of the Magellanic and gentoo penguins which return to the island every year. The unique location of this island gives us the chance to view an incredible variety of sub-aquatic life, making it an amazing spot for seeing albatrosses, petrels, skuas, cormorants, vultures, South American terns, among other species.
Afterwards we return to Harberton and start the return trip to Ushuaia for dinner and overnight.
We return to Ushuaia for dinner and overnight.
DAY 7: TO EL CALAFATE
This morning we have some time to soak up the adventurous atmosphere of Ushuaia before flying to El Calafate, the gateway to Patagonia. This afternoon, we will have time at leisure to explore this charming rural town. You may want to visit the Regional Museum and learn about the first settlers and the difficulties they had when they arrived in the area.
Overnight in El Calafate.
DAY 8: PERITO MORENO GLACIER
We begin our day at a look-out for some amazing panoramic views of the mountains and glaciers of Los Glaciares National Park in southwest Santa Cruz province. The park is famous for the Perito Moreno Glacier, one of the many glaciers that make up the Southern Patagonia Ice Field, the world's third largest reserve of fresh water.
At Perito Moreno we enjoy a boat cruise along the front of the glacier for a very different perspective. In this area the glacier is 60 to 70 meters high. We return to El Calafate for the evening.
Overnight in El Calafate.
DAY 9: TO TORRES DEL PAINE NATIONAL PARK
Today, we drive to Torres del Paine National Park, enjoying the spectacular scenery on the way. We will leave Argentina and arrive in Chile. Before the border, we will stop for lunch at a beautiful working estancia (sheep ranch), feasting on their organically grown produce. Torres del Paine National Park, in Chilean Patagonia, is a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve and is one of the most remote, unspoiled and beautiful places on Earth.
Overnight in the Paine area.
DAY 10: NORDENSKJOLD AND GREY LAKES
We spend the day exploring Torres del Paine National Park, including unique views of the towers and horns, as well as the colorful Nordenskjold and Grey Lakes, with their pristine blue waters and icebergs.
We have short walks during the day (an hour or so in length) and for those who wish for more walking, this can also be arranged. There is a variety of flora and fauna found in the park, from grasslands to forests. Some of the fauna that populate the park include guanacos, rheas, condors, mountain lions, foxes and a wide variety of birds.
Overnight in the Paine area.
DAY 11: TO PUERTO NATALES
Today, we explore the northern part of Paine National Park for yet more spectacular views of Chilean Patagonia. We then visit Milodon Cave, where, in the late 19th century, Captain Eberhard found bones and fur of a long extinct giant ground sloth. We then continue on to Puerto Natales.
Overnight in Puerto Natales.
DAY 12: TO PUERTO VARAS
We have some time for sightseeing on this leisurely travel day. Enjoy the scenery as we drive to Punta Arenas for our short flight to Puerto Montt and then transfer to Puerto Varas.
Located on the southern shore of Lago Llanquihue, facing the cone of the Osorno Volcano, Puerto Varas combines the best of the area's nature and culture. Originally settled by the Germans in the mid-to-late 19th century, the town itself is charming.
Overnight in Puerto Varas.
DAY 13: VOLCANOES AND PETROHUÉ RAPIDS
Weather permitting, today we will have breathtaking views of some of the many stunning volcanoes found in the Lake District. We drive along the lake towards the Osorno volcano, most likely one of the most beautiful cones in the world, due to its nearly perfect shape. On our way, we pass close to the Calbuco volcano with its blown-off top. As we drive up the Osorno, which may be still in the clouds, we will have better views of the Puntiagudo and Tronador volcanoes, the latter one being the highest peak in the area (over 11,000 ft) and on the border with Argentina.
Once back at lake level, we drive further east to reach the stunning All Saints Lake (Todos los Santos) with its emerald color, and will have lunch close to the shore.
After lunch we drive to the Petrohué Rapids in the Petrohué River that drains the All Saints Lake. We will have time for one or two short strolls and enjoy unbelievable views of the rapids with the Osorno in the background and the forested mountains around. After our visit, we will drive back to Puerto Varas. Time permitting, you may be able to visit the town on your own.
Overnight in Puerto Varas.
DAY 14: TO SANTIAGO
A short drive this morning takes us back to Puerto Montt where there may be time visit the Angelmo Flea Market before boarding our flight to the capital, Santiago de Chile. Upon arrival, we take in the sights of the city - visiting the historic center, which includes the Presidential House "La Moneda" and Constitution Square, the ex-National Congress and Justice Tribunal buildings enroute to the impressive Plaza de Armas.
We visit one of the world's largest urban parks, San Cristobal Hill. This lush park includes a zoo, a cable car, international gardens and restaurants. At the top of San Cristobal Hill, there are spectacular panoramic views of the city. Crowning the hilltop are beautiful tiered gardens and an impressive statue of the Virgin of the Immaculate Conception that can be seen from most points in the city.
Overnight in Santiago.
DAY 15: VALPARAISO
Today, we discover the exceptional beauty of Valparaiso, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2003. Prior to the construction of the Panama Canal in 1914, the port of Valparaiso was the most important in the South Pacific. Ships from around the world called here once they rounded Cape Horn or passed through the Strait of Magellan.
Here we explore a labyrinth of streets that stretch over the many-tiered hillsides facing the bay and see an antique funicular (wooden cable-car elevator) that transports residents up and down the hills. We see the imaginative architecture and bright colors of the centenarian homes built by the first European settlers - most of which were English and German.
Enjoy the breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean as we visit the 21st of May Hill with its Naval Museum and barracks. Other highlights include the Turri Clock, Stock Exchange, and El Mercurio Newspaper building, as well as the "Plaza Sotomayor" with its impressive Naval Heroes Monument, ex-Intendencia and Justice Tribunal buildings.
We return to Santiago for our overnight.
DAY 16: WINE TASTING IN THE MAIPO VALLEY
Today, we learn all about the history and magic of wine-making in some of the most prestigious wineries in Chile. We visit a winery to watch the wine-making process, and take a walk around the vineyards, the production plant, the wine cellar and see the final product bottled.
We hope to visit at least two wineries today before returning to Santiago for our farewell dinner and overnight.
Overnight in Santiago
DAY 17: DEPART SANTIAGO
We say a fond farewell to our new friends today as we transfer to Santiago airport for our departure flight.
HOW BIG ARE THE GROUPS?
Each group is limited to 16 participants. Small groups are an important ingredient in adventure travel. They allow for more interaction and more personalized service throughout the itinerary.
WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE TOUR PRICE?
All accommodations throughout; all meals, starting with dinner on day 1 and finishing with breakfast on departure day (i.e. the last day of the ElderTreks tour); bottled drinking water throughout the trip; all internal transportation; airport transfers on day 1 and departure day (i.e. the last day of the ElderTreks tour); all day trips and entrance fees as outlined in the itinerary; tips for hotels (porterage), bus driver, restaurants, national guides, and spot guides; services of a trip leader.
WHAT IS NOT INCLUDED IN THE TOUR PRICE?
International flights, tips to ElderTreks tour leader, alcoholic drinks, visa’s and travel insurance.
ARE THESE “EDUCATIONAL” TOURS?
Yes, in the broadest sense of the word, “educational”. We visit museums, National Parks and Reserves and have talks and discussions on many aspects of history, culture and nature. But this is only a portion of the educational experience.
We believe that it is equally educational to meet local people on a non-commercial basis, visit their homes and even try to learn a few words in the native language. Sometimes the most “educational” moments are spent sipping a cold drink in a street market.
HOW DO WE TRAVEL DURING THE TOUR?
We travel by minivan or bus and fly between Buenos Aires/Ushuaia/El Calafate & Punta Arenas/Puerto Montt/ Santiago. We also sightsee by boat.
WHAT ARE OUR ACCOMMODATIONS LIKE?
We always stay in good accommodations — both hotels and lodges. Accommodation can be in hotels or in cozy estancias.
WHAT ABOUT THE WEATHER?
Weather in Patagonia can change rapidly; in one day you can experience 4 seasons. Dampness and wind can make the temperatures feel lower and rainfall can be encountered throughout the travel season. However, it can get warm enough to wear shorts.
WHEN IS PAYMENT DUE?
A non-refundable deposit of $500 USD (plus insurance if you require it) is due at time of booking and will reserve your place on the tour. Payment of the full land cost is due 120 days before departure. Cancellation charges are applicable and are outlined in the “Terms and Conditions” section of our brochure.
IS MEDICAL INSURANCE REQUIRED?
Insurance coverage is not included in the cost of your trip. Please note that medical insurance is not required for this adventure but is recommended. ElderTreks offers comprehensive travel insurance with Manulife for Canadian guests, and John Hancock for American guests. Please CLICK HERE to view and purchase your insurance policy today. If you are purchasing insurance elsewhere, please ensure you provide the details to ElderTreks as soon as possible.
WHAT SHOULD I TAKE ON THE TOUR?
There is a detailed “What to Take” list in our Trip Kit, which we will send to you after you have booked the trip.
WHAT MEALS ARE INCLUDED?
All meals during the itinerary are included starting with dinner on day 1, and finishing with breakfast on day 13. We eat a variety of local foods delivered in a wide range of settings. In many cases, we simply order a number of dishes and share, allowing you to sample new foods and decide what you enjoy best.
CAN YOU ARRANGE MY FLIGHTS?
We would be happy to take care of your air arrangements. ElderTreks offers personalized flight itineraries — not group flights. Stop over en route, come in a few days early, or extend your stay. Call us for a customized itinerary.
WHAT IF I WOULD LIKE MORE INFORMATION?
If you have any further questions about the adventure, please call our office for more details. A Trip Specialist will be happy to answer your questions. A Trip Kit containing further details on the destination will be sent to you once you have booked the trip.
Dates & Prices
All pricing is currently listed in USD
*Single Supplement is the additional amount applied to the cost of the trip to those who are travelling solo and do not wish to share.