Jiamin returned in January from a hiking and kayaking trip to Torres del Paine and El Chalten. Here they tell us about their experiences on the trip and in booking with Swoop and our partners…
How were Swoop Patagonia?
We enjoyed working with swoop Patagonia because of your good planning, level of detail, patience and quick response time. Your recommendations of activities were also helpful.
If I was to make a recommendation it would to indicate on the itinerary which days we need to source our own accommodation when transiting between trips.
Would you recommend us to friends, family or colleagues for a trip to Patagonia?
How were Swoop’s partners in Torres del Paine and Chalten?
Trekking in Torres del Paine: While generally professional, your partners who supported our W Trek in Torres del Paine were not very responsive in the lead up to the trip. We enjoyed the itinerary though, the guide was overall above average and his experience enabled us to see the Torres del Paine. However, on the last day for the hike to the grey glacier boat trip he had stayed up late the night before (New Years Eve) and woke up late. We thus had to walk really fast to catch the boat ride to the grey glacier, doing 12 km in 3 hours which meant that we could not enjoy the hike or take photos.
Kayaking in Torres del Paine: It was with Swoop’s Kayaking partners on our Kayaking trip that we had the best experience. The guide was very knowledgeable and experienced and they made an effort to provide good food on the kayaking trip. I would strongly recommend working with them.
Trekking in El Chalten: Swoop’s partners in El Chalten were also not very responsive in the lead up to the trip. The guide Marianna was nice and generally good. She gave us flexibility to take our time during the hike and explained the flora and fauna of Patagonia well. Overall, they were above average.
Did you manage to visit anywhere else in Chile or Argentina?
We thoroughly enjoyed our trip. We also had fun in Buenos Aires and Santiago.
What was the highlight of your trip?
The highlights of our trip were the Perito Moreno Glacier, Torres del Paine, French Valley, and the Kayaking trip. Weather was bad and we could not see the Fitz Roy. That was the toughest part of the trip but no less rewarding.
Do you have any tips for other people planning a trip?
Possible tips would be definitely to bring hiking poles and waterproofs. Fit hikers could consider ice hiking on the Perito Moreno glacier, which would probably be very beautiful. Also, might be good to manage expectations of people staying at Refugio’s which generally serve bad food and box lunches.