Andes Grande Traverse

Ride across the open pampas, to the beautiful crystal-clear lakes of Las Rocas and Azul all the while on horse back. You'll spend between 4 and 7 hours a day in the saddle, some nights in local farms where you can relax with a nice glass of wine and others camping under the stars.

14 Days

$7,980

Andes Grande Traverse - 14 - $7,980

Trip Summary and Itinerary Map

  • Arrive Bariloche
  • Bariloche / Estancia La Costa
  • Estancia La Costa/ Alto Chubut
  • Alto Chubut/Puesto Blanco
  • El Bolson / Las Bandurrias Island
  • Bandurrias Island / Lago Azul
  • Ventisqueros / Rio Puelo
  • Rio Puelo / Llanada Grande / Puerto Varas
  • Puerto Varas / Airport

Start from Bariloche and end at Puerto Varas

Landmarks visited on Andes Grande Traverse

Operator's Itinerary

Day 1:

On your arrival to the Bariloche International airport, a private transfer will take you to your downtown hotel. The city of Bariloche, surrounded by lakes and mountains, is located in the very heart of the Patagonian Andes mountains chain. Depending on your arrival time, you will have time to visit the city and make some shopping before the ride. Late afternoon, a meeting with your guide will allow you to get knowing the team and the following days activities, as well as receive some security instructions. 

Accommodation: Milan Hotel.

Meals: Dinner at a traditional restaurant, specialising in different kinds of meat.


Day 2:

First day on horseback : 4-5 hours

Departure towards the 'Nirihuau' area, located 30 kms from Bariloche, where we find several family ranches. Their owners are mainly dedicated to the breeding of bovines, sheep and horses, as well as to forestation. Distribution of horses and overhaul of equipment.

Departure to 'Las Buitreras' hill, a point from where a panoramic sight of the overall area can be appreciated, as well as "La Mina" stream, located close to an old oil field. After a box lunch we carry on our horses, we continue towards the 'Nirihuau' river.

Accommodation: Estancia

Meals: Breakfast, Box-lunch, Dinner


Day 3:

Second day on horseback : 5-7 hours

After breakfast and having passed some hours riding through gentle hills and large valleys, we start ascending on a path that is mainly used by local countrymen to move their cattle, just to arrive to 'Paso sin Nombre', 1.700 meters above sea level. Leaving this area surrounded by rocks, the view opens towards the immensity and a large valley in the middle of the mountains chain, the region called 'Alto Chubut', appears. The journey continues one more hour, to reach an idyllic place surrounded by native lenga forests.

Accommodation: Camping

Meals: Breakfast, Box-lunch, Dinner


Day 4:

Third day on horseback: 5-6 hours

We will leave behind the forests and clear water streams to continue descending to the Patagonian Steppe, an area of dry vegetation where Coiron, Neneo, Calafate and some small Nires (local flora) still lives. Our route leads us to the shore of the 'Chubut' river and some old animal care establishments. We will pass by an old abandoned gold and lead mine. This night we will camp on the shore of the 'Chubut' river.

Accommodation: Camping

Meals: Breakfast, Box-lunch, Dinner


Day 5:

Fourth day on horseback: 5-6 hours 

During this day we will cross different small farms in the 'Alto Chubut' region where people lives the whole year. These inhabitants are mostly descendants of the original people: the Mapuche, forgotten in the remote Patagonian lands. We will notice a slow change in the view while we get near to the Patagonian steppe. At first, our ride takes us down the large 'Chubut' river valley, reaching the confluence of 'Rio Las Horquetas', to enter a valley of the same name. We reach 'Rio Ternero' (calf river) region, after a pronounced hill ascent. The valley is large and full of different kinds of vegetation. In this area, we find a high Nire forest as well as low stocky Nire woods called 'achaparrados' and large areas of pasture land for the cattle.

Camping under the protection of natural forest.

Accommodation: Camping

Meals: Breakfast, Box-lunch, Dinner


Day 6:

Fifth day on horseback: 3-4 hours

Our last day with horses at the Argentinean side. We will follow an old road that will lead us to 'Cuesta del Ternero' area. There we will appreciate a typical view of the Patagonian transition, where the magic of immensity will remain in our memories forever. We will leave the horses and share a last picnic with the Argentine baqueanos. A short half an hour trip in a transfer towards the magic small town of 'El Bolson'. This town, surrounded by cypresses (Austrocedrus Chilensis) and 'maitenes' (Maytenus Boaria) woods, enjoys a microclimate that favour the production of red fruits such as raspberries and cherries, as well as of hop for craft beer elaboration. Accommodation at an hotel and dinner in a local restaurant.

Accommodation: Hotel

Meals: Breakfast, Box-lunch, Dinner


Day 7:

Time: 30 minutes in a private minibus from El Bolson to Lake Puelo; 2:30 hrs Navigation in the lake.

This morning, a transfer will take us toward the Puelo lake, to continue our adventure in a turbo jet canoe. We will navigate along two lakes, thereafter crossing the rapids between Argentina and Chile. 

After the customs procedure, a local guide will help us with the luggage and, after a short walk, we will take another canoe that will drive us to 'Las Bandurrias' island within 'Las Rocas' lake. You will state that the landscape of the crystal waters, with its tempered forest and the surrounding cordillera, are contrasting when compared to the steppe. A friendly and warm welcome will be waiting you at 'Las Bandurrias'.

Accommodation: 'Las Bandurrias' Island

Meals: Breakfast, Box-lunch, Dinner


Day 8:

Seventh day on horseback : 5 - 6 hours

Departure towards the 'Lago Azul', with its astonishing color and abundant fishing possibilities. About three hours on horseback will be necessary to reach the lake. There we will have our lunch on its edge. After the picnic, we will follow our pathway on horseback towards 'Las Rocas' lake. We will pass through an ancient Valdivian type forest, with its completely different vegetation which is found in very few Chilean areas. The scenery of the day : wet ground and very ancient trees, as well as majestic mountains surrounding us. A short travel on a boat up to Las Bandurrias island. This short day on horseback will allow us to rest and enjoy the environment.

Accommodation: 'Las Bandurrias' Island

Meals: Breakfast, Box-lunch, Dinner


Day 9:

Eighth day on horseback: 6 hours

After breakfast, we will embark to be rejoining our horses where we had left them the day before. We will ride one hour up to the source of the Puelo river. The river is deep and wide.  A local will help us to cross on his boat. This will offer the horses an opportunity to swim. The pathway goes on through the woods along the Puelo river to the west, to reach Ventisqueros valley. We will pass the river that cross the valley on our horses just to arrive to our lodging place. In the evening, a peaceful environment will allow us to enjoy a good wine together.

Accommodation: Local guesthouse

Meals: Breakfast, Box-lunch, Dinner


Day 10: 

Ninth horseback riding: 6-7 hours

We will start the journey on horseback, mostly committed to the Ventisqueros valley. We will cross several times the river on horseback, in the middle of a wonderful landscape. It is a sparsely populated place, where some residents subsist on livestock breeding. We will take advantage of the river shore to have breakfast and thereafter continue our route up to the end of the valley, where we will spend two nights at a local resident's place.

Accommodation: Homestay

Meals: Breakfast, Box-lunch, Dinner


Day 11:

Tenth horseback riding: 4 hours

Today, we will visit a neighbour valley, where we will enjoy the view of a hanging ice glacier. The route is surrounded by vegetation and leads to a larch forest. It is a poorly populated region, in the middle of pristine nature. We will have lunch nearby 'El Toro' river, before descending mid afternoon to reach our host. This will leave us time to take advantage of the remaining afternoon to hike, take a shower, rest or interchange with the residents. Another unforgettable dinner. 

Accommodation: Homestay

Meals: Breakfast, Box-lunch, Dinner


Day 12: 

Eleventh day on horseback (6-7 hours)

Departure towards the Puelo river. Ancient woods, open spaces, crossing rivers, a glorious journey in the middle of mountains, waterfalls and solitary landscapes. We will enjoy for sure a great breakfast at the Ventisqueros edge. In the afternoon, we will continue the journey passing by different country establishments where the peasants keep using the same procedures to daily cultivate the land, just as their ancestors did. At a certain point of the path, the vegetation becomes more dense. Feel the pleasure to cross the Puelo river just as the locals do: In a rustic boat while the horses swim!

Accommodation: Homestay

Meals: Breakfast, Box-lunch, Dinner


Day 13:

4 hours from Llanada Grande to Puerto Varas and a Ferry crossing of about 45 minutes at the Tagua Tagua lake.

For our last riding day, we depart towards the village of Llanada Grande. At midday approx. we will arrive at the place where a transport will be awaiting us. It is right there where we will deliver our horses into the skilled hands of the baqueanos and start a one hour trip in a car, to arrive at the Tagua-Tagua lake. We will cross same on a ferry boat, thereafter continuing along the estuary. We will be able to admire the Llanquihue lake, as well as the Calbuco and Osorno volcanos, same being part of the National Vicente Perez Park Rosales (a 4 hours journey). Arrival to Puerto Varas at about 8:30 PM. Farewell dinner and night at hotel.

Accommodation: Hotel

Meals: Breakfast, Box-lunch, Dinner


Day 14:

Breakfast at hotel. A private transfer will take you to the airport.

Prices, Departures and Inclusions

Departures can be set up for a minimum of 2 people, please enquire for more details 

Start date Price (pp)
January 2019
7-Jan-2019 $7,980* Provisional Date
February 2019
4-Feb-2019 $7,980 Provisional Date
March 2019
4-Mar-2019 $7,980* Limited Availability

* Note: Prices are per person. Paid in USD ($) - figure above is based on today's exchange rate. Actual cost $7,980

The price per person for a group of 2 people is USD $7980

The price per person for a group of 3 people is USD $7640

The price per person for a group of 4-6 people is USD $6490

The price per person for a group of 7-10 people is USD $5880

Includes

  • All private transfers specified
  • All meals detailed in itinerary
  • Wine at dinner on riding days
  • Transfers on motor boat and ferry boats
  • Bilingual Guides
  • Local Guides (baqueanos)
  • VHF commmunication radio
  • Saddle Horses
  • Pack Horses

Excludes

  • Meals not indicated in itinerary
  • Personal expenses and equipment
  • Travel insurance
  • Gratuities
  • Any visa, passport and vaccination expenses

Questions about this Trip?