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Road Trip Carretera Austral: Lago Circuit

Drive deep into this remote region along the famous Carretera Austral and discover the highlights of Aysén on this road trip. Negotiate gravel lakeside roads and ferry crossings to complete the full Lake Circuit. When not on the road, trek to staggering glaciers and seemingly endless glacial lakes and take a boat to the marble caves.

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Road Trip Carretera Austral: Lago Circuit

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Trip type


Trip length

6 Days





Road Trip Carretera Austral: Lago Circuit - 6 Days - $2,783

Trip Summary and Itinerary Map

Day 1: Drive from Balmaceda Airport to Coyahique; Hotel

Day 2: Drive to Puerto Tranquilo; Hotel

Day 3: Drive to Glacier San Rafael; Mallín Colorado Ecolodge

Day 4: Trek the trails at Mallín Colorado; Mallín Colorado Ecolodge

Day 5: Drive to Chile Chico and on to Coyhaique

Day 6: Drive to Balmaceda Airport

Start from Balmaceda Airport and end at Balmaceda Airport

Landmarks visited on Road Trip Carretera Austral: Lago Circuit

Operator's Itinerary

Day 1:  Drive from Balmaceda Airport to Coyhaique; Hotel

Arrive at Balmaceda Airport and pick up your 4x4 vehicle. You'll drive 1hr to the main town of the region, Coyhaique, following a picturesque route through the farmlands of the Carretera Austral. At Coyhaique you'll have free time to explore the town and have lunch and dinner.

Coyhaique is a rustic yet picturesque frontier town with all the services required by travellers. Surrounded by forests, hills and rivers, it's a great place to stop-off for a while, or to base yourself for exploration into the depths of Aysén.

Journey: 1hr, 60km

Meals: Dinner

Accommodation: Hotel in Coyhaique

Day 2:  Drive to Puerto Tranquilo; Hotel

This morning, you will start your drive along the extremely scenic Carretera Austral, to the south of the region. Crossing the Ibañez valley, passing Cerro Castillo's peaks and through humid forests, you will drive through some of the most remote areas of the Aysén region. Reaching the village of Puerto Tranquilo, you can enjoy an excursion by boat to the mysterious and stunning marble caves and then check into your hotel.

Journey: 3.5hrs, 220km

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Hotel in Puerto Tranquilo

Day 3: Drive to Glacier San Rafael; Mallín Colorado Ecolodge

Depart early from the lodge for the drive to Puerto Tranquilo and then on to Bahía Exploradores to take a cruise to Glacier San Rafael. You will spend a full day onboard with breakfast, lunch and coffee all included.

Navigating through the fjords, you should arrive at San Rafael Lagoon by noon where there will be time to get close to the icebergs. The boat returns to Bahía Exploradores around 5pm and you'll return to Mallín Colorado Ecolodge.

Journey: 2.5hrs, 100km to Bahía Exploradores

Meals: Breakfast, picnic lunch, dinner

Accommodation: Mallín Colorado Ecolodge

Day 4: Trek the trails at Mallín Colorado; Mallín Colorado Ecolodge

Take breakfast in the main lodge and then enjoy trekking around Mallín Colorado, through native forests of coigüe and lenga trees, with excellent views to the glaciers of Cordón Contreras, Lake Bertrand and Lake General Carrera. In the afternoon you'll have free time – perfect for enjoying the 3km of pathways around Mallín Colorado Ecolodge. Alternatively, just to relax and soak up the stunning views. 

Meals: Breakfast, picnic lunch, dinner 

Accommodation: Mallín Colorado Ecolodge

Day 5: Drive to Chile Chico and on to Coyhaique

After breakfast, drive along the cliff shore of Lake General Carrera. This is possibly the most beautiful road in Chile. You'll arrive in the town of Chile Chico and if there is a ferry running from Chile Chico to Puerto Ibáñez today, your tour will continue on to Coyhaique. If not, drive back to Mallín Colorado Ecolodge for dinner and lodging. 

Journey: 5.5hrs, 160km

Meals: Breakfast, dinner

Accommodation: Hotel in Coyhaique or Mallín Colorado Ecolodge

Day 6:  Drive to Balmaceda Airport

After breakfast, drive to Balmaceda Airport for your onward flight.

Meals: Breakfast

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What our customers think of Road Trip Carretera Austral: Lago Circuit

Highlights? Meeting and interacting with the Chilean people. Experiencing the wildness of the country. Revelling in the vast unspoiled backcountry. And so much more.

Travelled: November 2019

Grover Meyrose - United States Of America


Prices, Departures and Inclusions

This trip is USD $2,783 per person for a two-person group and USD $2,224 per person for a four-person group.


A departure can be set up on a date of your choice. Please get in touch for details.


  • Meals: 5 breakfasts, 2 picnic lunches, 4 dinners
  • Accommodation: 1 (possibly 2) nights lodging in Coyhaique, 1 night in Puerto Tranquilo, 2 nights at Mallín Colorado Ecolodge, 1 night in Chile Chico (or Coyhaique)
  • 6 days car rental: 4x4 vehicle
  • Boat excursion to the marble caves
  • Boat excursion to Glacier San Rafael
  • Ferry boat across Lake General Carrera
  • Access to hiking trails at Mallín Colorado


  • Meals not included in itinerary
  • Drinks during lunch or dinner
  • Any extra/optional excursions
  • Personal equipment (see our recommended kit list)
  • Personal travel insurance
  • Gratuities/tips
  • International and domestic/in-country flights
  • Any visa, passport and vaccination expenses

Questions about this Trip?