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Patagonia’s extensive territory is shared by Argentina and Chile, bathed by the Atlantic and the Pacific Oceans but divided by the magnificent Andes Range. Trekking can be enjoyed in the Andes Range from Venezuela to Tierra del Fuego, Island shared by Argentina and Chile.

During this article, you will discover the most impressive Patagonia trekking tours from both sides, Argentina and Chile.

Patagonia Trekking Tours

1. Seven Lakes Route (Argentina)

Bariloche, Villa La Angostura and San Martin de los Andes

This northern Patagonia trekking tour is one of the most visited because of its accessibility. From Buenos Aires, you can get by plane, bus, or rent a car and drive. This route is an important section of the fantastical National Route 40 and connects 3 important of the region towns: Bariloche, Villa La Angostura and San Martin de Los Andes, All of them are prepared to receive any type of tourists and will enchant you with its magical views.

Highlights about the route

Bariloche is the largest city of the area and is located by the Nahuel Huapi Lake. The most recommended are Cerro Bella Vista, Cerro Chal-Huaco, and Refugios Otto Meiling and Frey. Refugio Frey is the most visited one and it offers three different trails. Two of them start in Villa Catedral, where the ski resort is. It is really easy to get there by car, by bus or hitchhiking. The third one starts from Gutierrez Lake which is beautiful to rest after the hike. Also, just to mention it, many Refugios can be connected and you can organize multi-day hikes, camping or sleeping in the Refugios. Do not forget to take a warm jacket in winter, it is cold! 


Bariloche | Patagonia-Trekking Tours

Villa La Angostura is a bit more exclusive since everything is more expensive than in Bariloche or San Martin de Los Andes. It is located between Nahuel Huapi Lake and Correntoso Lake. There are many beautiful options in this area. Cerro Bayo is an amazing option, is the ski resort of Villa La Angostura. Arrayanes Woods is also a great option, you feel like you are in an enchanted forest.

By the shores of Lacar Lake and in a narrowed valley San Martin de Los Andes offers a warm welcome to all of their guests. Starting from the city, the most known trails are to visit Catritre beach and Bandurrias Viewpoint and “La Islita”. If you want a more challenging trail you can do Cerro Colorado, Cerro Mallo, or Niyeu Volcano. Lanin Volcano also has different trails, but to get to the summit you need at least two days and to be physically prepared.

2. El Bolsón (Argentina)

This town is also located by National Route 40 and is just two hours south of Bariloche. It has an interesting history as its legal foundation was decided by the neighbours of the area. Then in the sixties, it was chosen by many hippies of Argentina to start a new ecological and bohemian life which stands today still. One of its main activities is hop plantation, just imagine how good beer is there.

Highlights about the route

El Bolson offers many trails starting near the town. You can choose to do day-hikes or multi-day hikes. This flexibility gives El Bolson an important place in most Patagonia trekking tours. Most of them start from Estancia Wharton or Estancia Doña Rosa. Also, Cerro Piltriquitron is one of the favorites.

For multi-day hikes, two main trails connect different Refugios, camping areas. From all the Refugios you can also do short walks to enjoy each area. The first one takes around 3 or 4 days in which you visit Hielo Azul, Natación, and Cajón del Azul. The second takes 5 to 6 days and adds between Natación and Cajon del Azul two stops: Horqueta and Laguitos.


El Bolsón | Patagonia Trekking Tours

3. Parque Nacional Los Glaciares (Argentina)

Calafate y Chalten

El Chaltén is Argentina’s Trekking Capital and is by excellence one of the most important destinations in every Patagonia trekking tour. This small town is located in Parque Nacional Los Glaciares, where the breathtaking Perito Moreno Glacier is located. Many trails start from El Chalten. Laguna Capri, Chorrillo del Salto, and Mirador de las Águilas are half-day trails that invite you to take some food and organize a nice picnic.


Perito Moreno | Patagonia Trekking Tours

Highlights about the route

The most famous consist of full-day trails. Laguna de Los Tres is the star of the area, from there you can enjoy the most impressive views of Mount Fitz Roy. If you don’t want to repeat the same trail on your way back, you can also start this trail from “Hosteria El Pilar” which is 30 minutes from El Chalten and accessible by bus.

The other main trail is Cerro and Laguna Torre which is stunning because of the different landscapes you get to enjoy. Loma del Pliegue Tumbado is not the most mentioned of El Chaltén trails but is a viewpoint you will never forget because you get to see Mout Torre, Mount Fitz Roy, Mount Solo, all their lagoons, and to the other side, you get to see Viedma Glacier. More trails can be combined with these three and enjoy a multi-day hike.

Between el Calafate and El Chalten stands Perito Moreno Glacier. This glacier is one of the most famous in the world and you can enjoy two ice-trekking excursions.

4. Patagonia National Park (Chile)

This park is also a must-stop in the Aysen Region when driving through the Carretera Austral. It is one of the largest parks in the world, protecting more than 750.000 acres and four ecosystems. In this park, you will enjoy the Patagonian steppe, deciduous forest, wetlands, and high mountain. Many of these lands were donated by Tompkins Conservation and now depend on the Chilean National Forestatal Corporation (CONAF).

The nearest towns are Puerto Ingeniero Ibáñez, Puerto Guadal, Chile Chico, Puerto Bertrand, and Cochrane. If you prefer sleeping in a bed, in a lodge or hotel, you can visit the park from all these locations. But if you don’t mind sleeping bags, you won’t regret sleeping between mountains and just enjoy the wilderness of this park.

The campings that are accessible by car have toilets, cooking shelters, tables, and sometimes showers. But the campings that are along the trails have no facilities, there is both backcountry/wild camping. Is important to know that there is no food or other services inside the park. You should take everything you will be needing for those days such as mosquito repellant, camping portable bin, camping shower…Except for the water, there is plenty of mountain water.


Famous Carretera Austral | Patagonia Trekking Tours

Highlights about the route

For just half-day activities you can visit the museum and combine it with small trails like Sendero La Vega, a trail to the confluence of rivers Baker and Chacabuco, another trail to the confluence of rivers Neff and Baker, Chacabuco Ravine Trail, and Carpinteros trail.

If you want a full day activity the trails of Lagunas Altas, Lago Chico circuit, Aviles Circuit, and several circuits starting from the Tamango Area. From the Tamango Area start several trails with different difficulties. Also, there is the possibility of doing expeditions that last between two or seven days, depending on the route you choose.

5. Torres del Paine National Park (Chile)

Chile’s Trekking Capital and one of the most famous trekking locations in the world. It is the ultimate place to visit on a Patagonia trekking tour. Torres del Paine can be visited from Puerto Natales doing daily activities or staying inside the park. For those who want to stay inside, different alternatives go from Camping to Luxury Hotels.

Highlights about the route

The park can be divided into different areas with different accesses and different trails:

  • In the western area, we recommend visiting the Grey Viewpoint, starting from Paine Grande, or Refugio Grey and the Hanging Bridges. From the Paine Grande area, you can also visit El Frances Valley and the shores of Lakes Pehoe, Skottsberg and Nordenskjold.
  • In the Eastern Area, Laguna Azul and Laguna Cebolla are very beautiful day treks, but you can also access the famous Base de las Torres (Base of the Towers).
  • Laguna Toro and Laguna Verde are the recommended trails from the Southern Area.
  • The Northern Area is only accessible when doing a circuit and sleeping in the park in Refugios or camping.

The most famous circuits are the “W Circuit” and the “O Circuit”. The W trail can be done between 3 and 4 nights, and you will see the highlights of the Park. The O Circuit is longer and for more experienced and trained people, you get to go around the massifs visiting the northern area. It takes 8 days and 7 nights.


Torres del Paine | Patagonia Trekking Tours

Other Patagonia trekking tours

If you want to get to know Patagonia and how diverse it can be I recommend combining some of these Patagonia trekking tours. There are also many other destinations that we didn’t mention which are worth visiting too, find the list below:

– Cerro Castillo National Park, Chile

– Villarica and Pucon, Chile

– Tierra del Fuego Island, both Argentinian and Chilean sides.

– Ruta de los Parques / The Parks’ Route in Chile

Are you ready for your next adventure?

Now you know how many options you have to trek in Patagonia, the best thing is that all the places we mentioned are all unique and different from each other.

Both countries have very interesting cultures which are a combination of prehispanic, Hispanic, and immigrant influences. Also, gastronomy in the area is very good on both sides of the Andes.

So, what are you waiting for to start planning your Patagonia trekking tour?

About the Author

From Buenos Aires, Argentina, Morena Domsch enjoys traveling and getting to know other cultures, nature, and communicating her passions. She has a four-year degree in Tourism and Hospitality and now she is studying to be a Sommelier.


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