Torres del Paine look-out (via Valle Ascensio)

Trekking up Valle Ascencio to arrive at the Torres del Paine lookout is the highlight of the W Circuit or Full Circuit in Torres del Paine National park. Located at the East of the park, this viewpoint looks straight out onto the three granite 'torres' from which the park takes its name and beneath them, a still grey-blue lake.

After having made the 2-hour journey by bus or private transfer into Torres del Paine National Park from Puerto Natales the day before, this day-trek up to the look-out (which is included in almost every operator's itinerary) starts from the base of Ascencio Valley, at Refugio Las Torres/Camping las Torres or Hotel Las Torres.

The hike up to the look-out is considered by many as one of the most difficult days on the Full Circuit, along with Paso John Garner, as you ascend some 800 metres. It takes roughly 4 hours to reach the Torres del Paine viewpoint from the start of Valle Ascencio, a pretty windy place to trek in Patagonian summer so make sure to bring a windproof jacket if you're there between October to March. It's also important to bear in mind that the last 45 minutes up to the look-out are a steep uphill climb over rocks and sandy terrain, and many hikers take trekking poles to help their knees on the way back down.

After trekking up to the look-out, hard-core climbers can continue up along Valle Silencio, past Campamento Japones and through dense rainforest for views of 'los Cuernos' mountains, Escudo (the Shield) and Fortaleza (the Fortress), as well as the back of the spectacular granite spires, Las Torres.

Map of Torres del Paine look-out (via Valle Ascensio)

Trips that visit Torres del Paine look-out (via Valle Ascensio)

Fitz Roy and Paine Hiking Tour

This small group trekking tour combines the best hikes in Patagonia: Torres del Paine W Trek, Fitz Roy and Cerro Torre. Discover Perito Moreno Glacier in Los Glaciares National Park by boat expedition. Our tour leader and expert guides ensure…

  • 12 Days
  • $5,495
South America - Wild Patagonia

An epic, in-depth small group tour travelling the length of Patagonia in a kitted-out truck which will take you to places other tourist don't get to experience. Stay in comfortable hotels, visit wineries, volcanic lake districts, estancias, vast plains and…

  • 27 Days
  • -
Independent Trek in Paine & Chaltén

Combine fantastic day hikes around the Fitz Roy massif in Argentina's Los Glaciares National Park with the famous W Trek in Torres del Paine National Park in Chile. All travel, border crossings and accommodation is included and arranged for you,…

  • 11 Days
  • $4,385
W Trek in Winter

Our expert guides make it possible to follow the majority of the W Trek and experience its highlights in the beautiful winter months of Patagonia, despite of chillier conditions and limited services. Based in Torres del Paine's famous refugios, you'll…

  • 5 Days
  • $2,295
W Trek with Lake Brush Extension

Trek the famous W Trek, but with a difference. Starting in the remote Bernardo O'Higgins National Park, trek on ancient and wild trails to enter the magnificent Torres del Paine National Park, before joining well-trodden paths to the renowned EcoCamp…

  • 7 Days
  • $3,280
W Trek Glamping Highlights

Hike Torres del Paine's famous W Trek in a dynamic manner with expert guides, whilst basing yourself in unique accommodation in the heart of the park. Trek the stunning French Valley, to the base of the iconic Towers and visit…

  • 5 Days
  • $2,390
Glamping W Trek

Discover Torres del Paine's famous treks with expert guides, combining refugios with comfortable and unique accommodation. Trek to Los Cuernos, explore the French Valley and hike to the famous viewpoint at the base of the Towers, whilst also visiting the…

  • 7 Days
  • $3,280
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…

  • 5 Days
  • $2,565
5-Day W Trek from Serrano Base Camp

Discover Torres del Paine's extraordinary W Trek on a series of fantastic day-hikes, each taking in stunning panoramic views. Enjoy a boat trip to the immense face of Glacier Grey and spend a day watching wildlife, hopefully spotting the elusive…

  • 5 Days
  • $2,795
Experience Paine's Nature and Wildlife

Stay in a secluded, all-inclusive luxury yurt camp where you'll wake each morning in a forest overlooking Patagonia's stunning Toro Lake. Journey through breath-taking scenery to complete world-famous hikes and other activities in Torres del Paine while being looked after…

  • 6 Days
  • $5,710
9-Day Torres del Paine Circuit

Tackle Patagonia's most iconic circuit trail, fully supported with porters and a local guide. Cross the John Gardner Pass, explore the park's remote northern sections, revel in the stunning French Valley and finish at the Towers viewpoint – this itinerary…

  • 9 Days
  • $3,195