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Safari in Southern Patagonia

You choose the activities and pace during this multi-day experience at an eco-friendly camp in the heart of Torres del Paine. Daily small group excursions for all abilities are offered, with expert guides to support you. From tough trekking to nature walks; from yoga classes to a stunning boat trip up close to Glacier Grey – all are on offer.

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Safari in Southern Patagonia

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Trip type

Property Based

Trip length

4 Days

From

$1,858

Location

Torres del Paine

Safari in Southern Patagonia - 4 - $1,858

Trip Summary and Itinerary Map

Day 1: Transfer to Torres del Paine National Park; EcoCamp Patagonia

Days 2 & 3: Choose your itinerary; EcoCamp Patagonia

Day 4: Transfer to Punta Arenas

Start from Punta Arenas and end at Punta Arenas

Landmarks visited on Safari in Southern Patagonia

Operator's Itinerary

Day 1: Transfer to Torres del Paine National Park; EcoCamp Patagonia

The trip begins in the morning with you being picked up from either Punta Arenas or Puerto Natales and transferred to your accommodation in Torres del Paine National Park (5hrs). Alternatively, you can start your trip in El Calafate – a transfer from here will incur an extra charge.

If travelling from Punta Arenas, we'll stop en route in Puerto Natales, a small, lively town on the shores of Last Hope Sound (Ultima Esperanza), where we'll enjoy a local lunch. This journey is through a very picturesque region – look out for wildlife.

The day ends with your arrival during late afternoon at EcoCamp Patagonia, nestled in the heart of the Torres del Paine National Park and with a prime view of the majestic Torres. This evening you'll meet your guide and a small group of like-minded travel companions as you're briefed on your upcoming adventure together.

Enjoy a sumptuous dinner in the communal dome and admire the sunset across the Patagonian steppe and Torres del Paine massif – usually around 11pm during the summer months.

Meals: Lunch, dinner

Accommodation: EcoCamp Patagonia


Days 2 & 3: Choose your itinerary; EcoCamp Patagonia

Nature walks, treks, bike trips, and private excursion options gives you the freedom every day to choose any activity that matches your interests and wishes. Please ask our travel experts for more details. You return to EcoCamp Patagonia every evening.

See the choice of excursions below, or visit our dedicated excursions page.

Meals: Breakfast, picnic lunch, dinner

Accommodation: EcoCamp Patagonia


Day 4: Transfer to Punta Arenas

In the early morning you can sit back, relax, and enjoy a scenic ride back to Punta Arenas to catch the evening flight to Santiago. Alternatively, you can continue your trip to El Calafate – a transfer to here will incur an extra charge.

Meals: Breakfast, picnic lunch


Choice of excursions

Mondays

Towers Base Trek: After a hearty breakfast we'll leave the EcoCamp and head towards Hosteria Las Torres to join the ascending trail to the Ascencio Valley on the eastern face of the Towers. Dry mountain spots, beech forests and small rivers line the picturesque route to the valley.

Our main challenge comes in the form of the steep moraine (a huge mass of boulders) which lead us to the base of the Towers – three gigantic granite monoliths, the remains of a great cirque sheared away by the forces of glacial ice.

After a tough final ascent, the Towers eventually come into full view, soaring majestically before us. Here we'll stop at probably the best lunch spot in the world! After soaking up the view, we'll backtrack along the same trail through the Ascencio Valley and return to EcoCamp Patagonia for a well-deserved dinner.

Difficulty: Demanding

Length of hike: 22km, 9hrs

Timings: 8am-5pm

Lake Pehoe boat ride and French Valley trek: After breakfast, we'll drive to Pudeto dock, located on the shores of Pehoe Lake and board the catamaran for the north-western sector of the lake. Here we'll begin the challenging trek to the French Valley (Valle Frances) along a steep trail that leads to the very heart of the Paine Massif. How far we go will de dictated by the pace of the group as a whole, but a faster walk will lead us to the hanging bridge over the French River, located at the foot of the south-east face of the Massif. From here there are fantastic views of the valley.

We'll then continue our ascent to the upper section of the valley where we'll take in the extensive mass of the valley's geological formations: Hoja (Blade), Máscara (Mask), Espada (Sword), Catedral (Cathedral), Aleta de Tiburon (Shark's Fin) and the stunning Fortaleza (Fortress).

After all this ascent, we'll stop for a picnic lunch and rest up. Afterwards, it's a descent through undulating terrain of mixed grassland and light forest to Refugio Paine Grande, on the tranquil shores of Lake Pehoe. From here, we'll board the catamaran back to Pudeto, from where we'll be transported back to EcoCamp Patagonia.

Note: The trek to the French Valley varies throughout the season, depending on the catamaran connecting Pudeto and Lake Pehoe. During May (low season) the catamaran does not operate so this excrusion will be replaced with a 15km/9 mile trek to Los Cuernos. This trek follows the sinuous Los Cuernos trailwhich leads to the beautiful Lake Nordenskjold. We'll have plenty of time to admire the park's exquisite flora and fauna and the magnificent views of the park's central lakes and Paine's Horns – the majestic black peaks of slate atop grey granite which crown the centre of the Massif.

Difficulty: Medium 

Length of hike: 18km, 6hrs 

Timings: 8am-8pm 

Lakes Sarmiento and Sarmiento Chico: This relaxed, predominantly flat walk covers diverse natural scenery and offers the chance to visit a startlingly blue lake, isolated from all the other water systems of the area.

First you'll examine the geology of the area’s turbidite rock folds, before descending the isthmus which separates Lake Sarmiento from Lake Sarmiento Chico which were once a single lake to eventually arrive at a picturesque bay on the western side of Lake Sarmiento.

On the ascent back to the van there will be some stunning views  across Lake Sarmiento from its western shore, looking towards its eastern coast glimmering on the horizon.

Difficulty: Very easy

Length of hike: 4km, 2hrs 

Timings: 9.30am-3pm 


Tuesdays

Drive and walk the Western Lakes; Glacier Grey Boat Ride: We'll drive across the park, admiring the views of Paine Grande and its snowy peaks, and Los Cuernos with its black, granite horn-like spires. During the journery we'll stop at various viewpoints to observe and photograph herds of guanacos, Andean condors and interesting flora.

As we walk along the shore of the beautiful Lake Pehoe, we'll see the tumbling Salto Grande waterfalls. This is where water from Lake Nordenskjold cascades down into Lake Pehoe and from here we can drive up to Grey Lake and wander along the beach. We'll have a picnic lunch by the lake before taking a boat trip across the freezing waters to the towering blue walls of Glacier Grey. After this incredibly close look at the glacier, we'll drive back to the EcoCamp.

Note: The Grey Glacier boat trip is subject to availability, so please confirm your reservation in order to participate on the day of your arrival. During shoulder season – September, October and April – the boat trip to Glacier Grey may be cancelled as the boat requires a minimum of 15 passengers to sail and sometimes this minimum might not be reached. If this is the case we we'll go on an alternative excursion in the park. In May, the boat trip doesn't run at all – the alternative excursion in this case is the Pingo Trail Nature Walk (9km).

Difficulty: Easy

Length of hike: 0.8 km, 1hr

Timings: 10am-8pm

Western Lakes drive and Cerro Ferrier hike: We'll start the day with a drive across the park with views of Paine Grande's snowy peaks and the black, granite, horn-like spires of Los Cuernos. Walking along the shores of the beautiful Lake Pehoe we'll see the tumbling Salto Grande waterfalls – this is where water from Lake Nordenskjold cascades down into Lake Pehoe.

We'll drive south to a beach on the shore of glacial Lake Grey from where our hike to Cerro Ferrier begins. This is a fairly steep route which takes us through a fairytale-like Magellanic forest. If you're lucky, you might see the Huemul, the endangered South Andean deer.

After ascending for about 1.5hrs we'll reach a stunning viewpoint that will offer a unique perspective of the Paine Massive, Grey Glacier and some of the most famous lakes of the National Park. We'll then return to Grey Beach to meet our fellow travellers coming back from the boat ride. Together, we all head back to the EcoCamp to enjoy a relaxed evening.

Difficulty: Demanding

Length of hike: 12km, 4hrs

Timings: 7.30am-6.30pm

Lazo Weber hike: We'll have breakfast at 8.30am and set off at 10am. The drive takes us past the Estancia Lazo Weber where we'll enter the National Park by Laguna Verde and begin our 12km hike on the Lazo Weber Trail. This hike is generally flat, apart from a few hills, and is packed with native flora and fauna, so have your camera at the ready for the guanacos, owls, eagles, condors, and caranchos. The are superb views of the Paine range on our right. 

We'll stop for a picnic lunch by the magical Laguna Honda and enjoy the unique landscape and fresh breeze. Along here is is one of the quietest forests in the national park, a fantastic opportunity to see native trees such as the lenga and the coihue.

Later in our hike we'll reach El Toro viewpoint where there are 360-degree views of the Paine mountain range, the Patagonian Andes, and a variety of rivers and lakes, including the Paine, Grey, and Serrano Rivers, and Lake Toro, the largest in the region.

From here it's a 1hr descent towards the Paine River where we'll meet up our van. However, before we head back to the EcoCamp, we'll look for more animals to photograph and soak up the beautiful scenery. We'll arrive back at our EcoCamp at about 7pm, ready to share a hearty dinner and reminisce about the day's adventure.

Note: If the weather is not good, an alternative excursion will be provided. 

Difficulty: Medium

Length of hike: 12km, 5hrs

Timings: 10am-6.30pm


Wednesdays

Sarmiento Lake and Fauna Trail: This trek is mainly level and full of highly diverse natural landscapes with a unique opportunity to visit a stunning blue lake, separate from all the other water systems in the area. There will be plenty of time during the trek to watch graceful guanacos and great grebes.

Firstly, we'll observe the geology of the area's turbidite rock folds, before heading down the isthmus separating Lake Sarmiento from Lake Sarmiento Chico. These two lakes were once a single mass of water. We'll be walking on a slight slope and then along the eastern edge of Lake Sarmiento Chico.

In time we'll reach an impressive bay on the western side of Lake Sarmiento, and be treated to a breathtaking view that could easily be mistaken for a painting. From here we start the ascent back to our van, with a breathtaking panorama of Lake Sarmiento's eastern coast, shimmering on the horizon. Our van will drive us back east, along the northern shore of Sarmiento Lake, to the starting point of the Fauna Trail.

Walking north along the trail on the Patagonian plains, we'll see guanacos, ostrich-like nandus and perhaps even the occasional puma print! After passing Goic Lagoon and around 5km into this part of the relaxed trek, we'll finish at the Laguna Amarga ranger station from where we'll be driven back to EcoCamp.

Difficulty: Easy

Distance: 10km, 5hrs

Timings: 10am-5pm

Estancia day and horse riding: Today you head to the enchanting Estancia Dos Elianas where you'll have a briefing about horse riding. The ride begins with a thrilling two-hour ride to the breathtaking Sierra Ballena.

You'll have roasted lamb for lunch and then take a captivating tour of the Estancia, immersing yourself in the rich traditions of Patagonia.

Towards the end of the day you'll have another delightful meal, savouring sopaipillas, jam, cheese, and bread, all prepared using local ingredients.

Note: During Sept and May, this excursion will be replaced with Condor & Salto Grande Lookouts.

Difficulty: Very easy

Distance: 6km, 2hrs

Timings: 8am-5pm

Laguna Inge and Cuernos Pass: Today you'll head to Laguna Inge - a hidden gem, nestled just 4km southwest of EcoCamp, on the mesmerizing Los Cuernos trail. As you follow the picturesque trail, you'll be surrounded by vibrant flora and fauna and may even catch a glimpse of majestic condors soaring overhead.

As well as immersing yourself in the beauty of the lakes, you'll also have fantastic views of Los Cuernos on the Paine Massif.

You'll finally arrive at your destination, Refugio Los Cuernos, where you can rest and soak up the views, before returning to EcoCamp.

Difficulty: Intermediate

Distance: 18km, 6hrs

Timings: 10am-5pm

Lake Pehoe Lake boat ride and French Valley trek: As per trip on Mondays.

Towers Base Trek: As per trip on Mondays.


Thursdays

Towers Base Trek: As per trip on Mondays.

Lake Pehoe boat ride and French Valley trek: As per trip on Mondays.


Fridays

Drive and walk the Western Lakes; Glacier Grey Boat Ride: As per trip on Tuesdays.

Western Lakes drive and Cerro Ferrier hike: As per trip on Tuesdays.

Lazo Weber hike: As per trip on Tuesdays.


Saturdays

Towers Base Trek: As per trip on Mondays.

Lake Pehoe boat ride and French Valley trek: As per trip on Mondays.

Lakes Sarmiento and Sarmiento Chico: As per trip on Mondays.

Sarmiento Lake and Fauna Trail: As per trip on Wednesdays.


Sundays

Wild horse tracking: You'll take a 4x4 vehicle to the Laguna Azul area and drive into the folds of the Cordillera Masle to arrive at a puesto. Here you'll be introduced to the area's history and wild horses. Using satellite tracking equipment and experienced guides you begin trekking in search of the wild horses.

Along the way you'll have great views of Lake Stokes, the Dickson range and the Towers.

Note: This trip isn't available from May-Sept, during which time it will be replaced with a short nature walk close to EcoCamp.

Difficulty: Intermediate

Distance: 8km, 6hrs

Timings: 8am to 5pm

Salto Grande and El Condor viewpoint: After breakfast we'll journey west by van along the south shore of Lake Nordenskjold. The first stop will be the magnificent Salto Grande waterfall – its impressive tumbling waters flowing from Lake Nordenskjold into Lake Pehoe. From here it's a short walk to the Cuernos viewpoint, which has stunning panoramic view of the mighty Horns.

From the viewpoint, we'll drive to the shore of Lake Pehoe and start a two-hour round-trip trek to El Condor viewpoint. The trail ascends gently through the steppe vegetation which provides a great opportunity to learn about the local flora. From here we'll see the shocking blue of Lake Pehoe and the River Paine and on a clear day it's possible to see the vast Southern Patagonian Icefield in the distance. We'll rest here while taking in the whole Paine Mountain range and its stunning snowcapped peaks.

After a picnic lunch in this superb spot, we'll retrace our steps along the same trail and drive back to EcoCamp.

Difficulty: Easy

Distance: 2hrs

Timings: 10am to 5pm

Laguna Inge and Cuernos Pass: As per trip on Wednesdays

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What our customers think of Safari in Southern Patagonia

Safari in Southern Patagonia trips scored 4.5/5 from 61 reviews

Puma Tracking was an incredible experience. Our guide Matias was a skilled tracker and knew the animals and their behaviors. He was extremely respectful and knowledgeable of land, flora and fauna. Having Petaca and her cubs approach us on her own and accepting us into her world was very moving and humbling.

Travelled: December 2022

Suzanne -

If you like hiking (or the outdoors in general) and wine, Chile is one of the best places on the planet to visit. Landscapes remind me of the Montana nickname - Big Sky Country. Wildlife was more abundant and more accessible than we expected. People were friendly and helpful. Didn't really go in with specific expectations, so we really were not "surprised" by anything. I/we learned much more detail about the society and the original European settlers than we knew. I had no idea that Croatians migrated in some numbers to the area - like my ancestors (Rick).

Travelled: March 2021

Richard Hallsted -

I cannot think of one particular moment that stands out. The most memorable are all my wow! moments when first seeing a particular mountain or glacier.

Travelled: February 2023

Leanne -

The entire experience at Torres del Paine EcoCamp. Everyone there believes in the power of nature and sustainability and human connection. It was truly a magical place.

Travelled: February 2020

Jenny -

The time spent in the wild in each of the three major destinations--El Chalten / Fitz Roy, Torres del Paine, and in the channels and fjords between Punta Arenas and Ushuaia. Of course, we had remarkable luck with weather and visibility in each location!

Travelled: April 2023

Anonymous -

The highlight of my trip was seeing the wildlife up close and personal. My EcoCamp dome was nestled in the bushes where the chincols (rufuos-collared sparrows) sang for my arrival. Guanacos were not sparse and I felt I got the full experience being able to see them anytime we traveled on the road. In addition, the iconic rock formations were stunning and a real privilege to see in person. I enjoyed the experience at EcoCamp. The structure of eating with your group tour for breakfast and dinner was an absolute bonding experience with people from all over the world. The most exciting moment for me was seeing the young pumas napping while the guanacos walked by to taunt them. I came for the hiking experience as well and the hikes were challenging but not intimidating. My guides were exceptional at knowing about the park, motivating me through my treks, and making me feel comfortable back at EcoCamp.

Travelled: March 2021

Sarah -

Seeing the vastness of the mountains and their snowcapped peaks as we approched the park. It was an unforgettable and moving sight.

Travelled: January 2023

Karen -

The weather was the best part as we got lucky and out of 17 days had about a half of a day of rain. Beyond that, the hiking and landscapes were spectacular, the people were friendly, the guides were wonderful, the food and lodgings were all spectacular as well.

Travelled: March 2021

Eric -

Highlight was our stay at Eolo Hotel in El Calafate and our gorgeous hikes in El Chalten to Laguna de los Tres and Laguna Torre.

Travelled: March 2021

Jaclyn Westland -

Seeing the Torres del Pains and the wonder and the vastness area of beauty. The towers, the lakes, the glacier’s were amazing. But the eco camp was fantastic and all the employees were wonderful. I will be back and will recommend others to use swoop and come see the wonders of your National Park.

Travelled: December 2022

Debbie -

Cape Horn on the Ventis Australis

Travelled: November 2022

Sean -

There were so many to pick just one is an almost impossible task! However, the view from the Lazo Weber viewpoint on a stunning, clear day was spectacular.

Travelled: November 2023

Paul -

Reaching the base of the towers in Torres del Paine with clear skies and then experiencing snow as soon as we started the descent.

Travelled: December 2022

Anonymous -

Exceptional. Highlight was our stay at EcoCamp; between the brilliant guides (all our guides were young exceptional women which made it extra special), the people we met there, the hikes/activities, the overall experience was top notch. The FANTASTIC guides; Marcela, Angie, Francesca, Claire and our server Ingrid are women I will talk about and remember for a long long time. I find it incredible and inspiring that young people in their 20s are so dedicated to this type of work. They work long hours and consistently had a smile on their face and each had so much knowledge to share. In another life, I want to be them!

Travelled: March 2021

Seda Sejud -

Climbing up the last part of the Base of the Towers hike and seeing the view for the first time. This was made even more special when the clouds rolled in as we left and it began to snow. Perfect timing!

Travelled: December 2022

Leigh -

Lake Deseado was memorable in so many moments! We didn't have high expectations because it was a fill-in when Covid canceled our cruise from Ushuaia, but the lake was exquisite from our first glimpse. Then, the lodge itself (very isolated) was lovely in every detail. The view from our windows was of pristine waters with mountains in the distance. The short path to the dining facilities took us past beautiful birds, a brook and a beaver dam. Andres and the staff were welcoming, very helpful and genuine. We were a family of 14, joining one another from many parts of the United States and the only ones at the lodge. We were amazed at the menu, and managed to order everything from brie with local berries to guanaco, everything delicious. We over-80 grandparents got plenty of help so we could climb some trails and coast down the mountain on a bike. We also loved the library's collection of books about Patagonia. Our teens found challenging trails. Thank you to everyone including the gracious owners of Deseado Lodge!

Travelled: January 2022

Kathie -

How can I answer this? The glaciers of Patagonia, Eco camp as a base for fantastic food, adventures and friends, the Ventus Australis for sophisticated exploration and great information ( as well as making new contacts), Puerta Varas for adventures and the best guides on the planet plus so much more.

Travelled: April 2023

Gina -

When Rene and Danni safely lead us to Base of the Towers and back! Their guiding leadership skills were exceptional. They take great care and pride in their responsibilities. I'm 71 and Danni is 28. The pride we felt in reaching the summit, was shared equally with Rene and my cousin Jamie. They both shared the conditions were the worse they had climbed it. My mantra was: She Believed She Could , So She Did! Slow and Steady! I wouldn't win the race, but I would Finish! 😍🙏❤️👩‍🦯 Thank you for these adventures and accomplishments!😍 Kit Harvey

Travelled: May 2023

Kit -

Walking into our room at AWA hotel in Puerto Varas and seeing the Osorno volcano against the clear blue sky in al its glory in the floor to ceiling window. Cruze Andino.

Travelled: December 2022

Anna -

Multiple: Seeing a puma on 1st day in park Staying at EcoCamp Patagonia, the great food, all the people I met there.

Travelled: November 2023

Tammy -

Review:

Safari in Southern Patagonia

Prices, Departures and Inclusions

The 2023/24 season guide price in Chilean Pesos of CLP 1,615,900 per person is based on two people sharing a standard dome in high season for three nights. Prices will be confirmed in Chilean Pesos and converted to your local currency on the day of booking.

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Book now to guarantee your place and price for the 2024/25 season. Prices, on the same basis as above, start from CLP 1,777,500 per person. The operator's final price may be slightly higher when they confirm their rates; we guarantee you will not pay more for your trip if you book before then. If the final rate is less than initially quoted to you, the lower rate will be honoured.

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Departures can be set every day between September and May, subject to availability, with your stay set between three and seven nights. Please enquire for full details of pricing.

Additional Notes

Itinerary – This itinerary is an example of how you could spend your time on this all-inclusive experience. Please see the full list of day excursions on the excursions page.

Seasons – The seasons are divided into four periods as follows:

  • Low Season: 9th Sep to 15th Oct 2023 & 18th Apr to 4th May 2024
  • Shoulder Season: 16th to 31st Oct 2023 & 1st to 17th Apr 2024
  • High Season: 1st Nov to 14th Dec 2023 & 21st Jan to 31st Mar 2024
  • Peak Season: 15th Dec 2023 to 20th Jan 2024

Group size –  16 maximum, 1 minimum, with a 1:6 guide to group member ratio.

Transfers – Transfers from/to Punta Arenas or Puerto Natales to/from EcoCamp Patagonia are private, small group transfers.

Optional transferThe public bus connection to/from El Calafate is included in the trip price – you can upgrade to semi/fully private transfer at an extra cost.

Low and shoulder season – During this time some excursions are subject to the weather conditions and may be cancelled or modified for safety reasons. For example, the navigation on Lake Grey, the excursion to the French Valley and the Tower base trek. In this case, the original itinerary would be modified accordingly or you would be offered a good alternative excursion within the park.

Single Supplement And Child Policy

Child policy – Minimum age 6 years old to participate in the program. Children aged 6-9 years old are welcome to participate in nature walks. Children aged 10-12 years old may participate in trekking excursions but the family must hire a private assistant guide. Children aged 12 years old and up are welcome to participate in all activities and are treated as adults. Please enquire about the child discount policy for more details.

Includes

  • Meals: 3 breakfasts, 4 picnic lunches, 3 dinners
  • Accommodation: 3 nights at EcoCamp Patagonia
  • Transfers to/from either Puerto Natales or Punta Arenas
  • All private transport included in the itinerary
  • Entrance fee to Torres del Paine National Park
  • Boat ticket for crossing Grey Lake and/or Lake Pehoe
  • English and Spanish speaking guide

Excludes

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

Questions about this Trip?