CHILE

EcoCamp Patagonia Wildlife Safari

from £2294 5 nights | Nov - Mar Exc. flights See price details
  • Departs:
  • Nov - Mar

Overview

This once in a lifetime holiday explores the highlights of Torres del Paine National Park, widely regarded as one of the most spectacular and unforgettable hiking regions in the world. Spend time trekking the trails and soaking in the stunning scenery of the most famed region of Patagonia, while always keeping your eyes peeled for some of the weird and wonderful wildlife that roams there.

Highlights

  • Witness the awe inspiring vistas of Torres del Paine National Park
  • Take part in optional hikes and bike rides to immerse yourself in the scenery
  • Opportunities to spot guanacos, pumas and condors
  • Stay in the comfortable and unique surroundings of a remote EcoCamp

Enjoy the best of the park's scenery, flora and fauna on nature walks, viewpoint treks and cycling excursions, all in the company of local expert guides. EcoCamp Patagonia’s domes, nestled in the park’s wilderness, provide cosy accommodation under open, star filled skies.

Each departure is different, with daily activities in Patagonia being dependent upon the weather, the day of the week, your personal preferences and your desired level of adventure or relaxation.

Almost all elements of this itinerary are flexible, meaning that you can adapt the duration, intensity and format of your tour in collaboration with your travel companions. It is possible to increase flexibility even further with private excursions - at additional cost.

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7 Reasons to visit Patagonia

by Zoe Baillargeon from Cascada Expediciones
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Itinerary & Accommodation

Day 1: Punta Arenas - EcoCamp Patagonia
The trip begins with a non-private transfer from Punta Arenas Airport, to EcoCamp Patagonia - located in the world-famous Torres del Paine National Park (approximately a 5 hour drive excluding breaks).
Day 2: Hiking or biking to Laguna Azul
Hiking to Laguna Azul
On the way to Laguna Azul you will have the chance to enjoy some marvellous views of the famous national park, as well as pass through the Pampa Guanaco. Here you may spot many elegant guanacos and even walk amongst them. After soaking up these beautiful surroundings, continue the drive to Laguna Azul, where a picnic lunch will have been prepared for you! Enjoy the picnic while looking out over the lake, with a view of the three granite towers in the distance. After lunch, walk south to Macho Cañon, where you can observe the typical fauna of the Torres del Paine National Park, including more guanaco herds. From here jump into the van again, heading back to the EcoCamp in time for cocktail hour.

Biking to Laguna Azul
After breakfast, drive to Estancia Laguna Amarga and hop on a mountain bike, before pedalling towards Laguna Azul campsite approximately 20 km to the north east. Cycle past an array of fauna, including guanacos and ostrich-like ñandús. Then head north past the cascading Paine waterfall, where you can stop for a break to admire the view. Continue past a small canyon in the middle of the Patagonian flora and fauna before looping up towards Laguna Azul. Upon arrival enjoy a picnic lunch. Once finished, there’s time to explore the surroundings and climb to the nearby sightseeing point with a panoramic view of the lagoon and the towers in the distance. The cycle ride back to EcoCamp is optional - anyone who is tired after the journey is welcome to travel back in the support van. Back at EcoCamp the cyclists reunite with their safari hiking counterparts to enjoy the evening.
Day 3: Western Lakes hike & Glacier Grey by boat
Drive across the park, admiring the view of Paine Grande and its snowy peaks, and Los Cuernos with its black, granite horn-like spires. Stop at various viewpoints on the way to enjoy observing and photographing herds of guanacos, Andean condors and interesting flora. Continue down past Pehoe Lake and enjoy a short scenic walk along the tip of its southern shore, with views of the vast Toro Lake. From here, drive up to Grey Lake and wander along the beach on the shores of the glacial water. Here enjoy a tasty box-lunch before embarking on a boat ride across the icy waters to the towering blue walls of Glacier Grey. After this incredible sight of the glacier up close, drive back to EcoCamp.

(*During Shoulder Season (September, October, April and May) the boat trip to Glacier Grey may be cancelled as the boat requires a minimum of 15 passengers to sail, which might not be reached in some cases. If this is happens an alternative excursion will take place in the park).
Day 4: Sarmiento Lake & Fauna Trail
This predominantly flat trek boasts stunning, diverse natural scenery and offers the chance to feast your eyes upon a startlingly blue lake, which is secluded from all the other water systems of the area. There will be ample opportunity to spot many graceful guanacos and great grebes along the way.

First, examine the geology of the area’s turbidite rock folds, before descending the isthmus which separates Lake Sarmiento from Lake Sarmiento Chico (the two lakes were once a single mass of water), walking along a slight slope, and ambling beside the eastern edge of Lake Sarmiento Chico. Eventually you will arrive at an impressive bay, admiring a view which could easily be mistaken for a piece of art! Here, begin the ascent back to the van on a path taking you past a panoramic view of Lake Sarmiento from its western shore, looking towards its eastern coast glimmering on the horizon.

From here, drive until you reach the starting point of the Fauna Trail. As you walk northwards along the trail you may see fauna including guanacos, ostrich-like ñandús and maybe the occasional puma print! Later, pass Goic lagoon and after an approximate 5 km relaxing walk, reach the Laguna Amarga ranger station where you’re picked up and driven back to EcoCamp.
Day 5: Pehoe Lake by boat and French Valley hike
After breakfast, you will be driven to Pudeto dock, located on the shores of Pehoe Lake. Board a catamaran that will take you to the north-western sector of the Lake where you will begin the challenging trek to Valle Frances (French Valley) along a steep trail that leads to the very heart of the Paine Massif. A swifter walk will lead you to the hanging bridge over the French River, located at the foot of the south east face of the Massif, where you will be treated to fantastic views of the valley.

Then continue to ascend towards the upper section of the valley where you will be able to marvel at the extensive mass of the valley's geological formations: Hoja (Blade), Máscara (Mask), Espada (Sword), Catedral (Cathedral), Aleta de Tiburón (Shark’s Fin) and the magnificent Fortaleza (Fortress).

After the upward trek, pause for a picnic and relax for a while. This day's adventure will end as you descend through an undulating terrain of mixed grassland and light forest which will take you to Refugio Paine Grande, located on the peaceful shores of Lake Pehoe. From here, you will board the catamaran back to Pudeto, where you will be collected and transported back to EcoCamp.

Please note:
- An optional trek to Mirador Britanico is also available.
- The excursion to French Valley varies throughout the season depending on the catamaran connecting Pudeto and Refugio Pehoe.
- During September, October, April and May (shoulder season) the catamaran service will be out of operation. Therefore, the excursion will be replaced by a journey from Estancia Lazo to Weber Bridge.
- From 1st of November until 31st March, hiking is limited and restricted past Camp Italiano.
Day 6: EcoCamp - Punta Arenas
Board the mini-van and enjoy a scenic ride back to Punta Arenas (non-private). From here you can choose to fly back to Santiago or continue your adventures elsewhere. This transfer is timed in conjunction with an evening flight to Santiago. Alternative transfer times may incur additional costs.
Notes

Please note:

Museums throughout Chile are generally closed on Mondays and many tourist establishments may be shut or fully booked during National Holidays. Therefore please inform us of any key elements of your trip that hold particular importance to you, even if they are not being pre-booked, so that we can tailor your itinerary accordingly.

The itinerary outlined above is a rough guideline only. The duration, order and intensity of your stay will differ depending on the weather conditions, days of the week, time of year, availability, number of participants, flight arrival/departure and the fitness and wishes of you and your travel companions. It is possible to have private transfers and excursions, (when available), for a supplemental charge. Please contact our team of travel specialists for details.

A version of this itinerary can be undertaken during the shoulder season months of September, October, April and May, but will involve several changes and restrictions to the daily activities. Please contact our team of specialists for details.

Alternative more physically challenging itinerary

Day 1: Transfer from Punta Arenas to EcoCamp Patagonia
Transfer from Punta Arenas Airport to EcoCamp Patagonia - located in the world-famous Torres del Paine National Park (approximately a 5 hour drive excluding breaks).

Day 2: Trek to Towers Base
After a hearty breakfast set off from Ecocamp towards Hostería Las Torres and join the uphill path to Ascencio Valley on the Tower's eastern face. Dry mountain spots, beech forests and small rivers line the scenic walk towards the valley. The big challenge comes as you climb the steep moraine, a mass of boulders leading towards one of the world's most famous views overlooking the Towers. The famous Torres del Paine (2,900 m/ 9,400 ft) consist of three gigantic granite monoliths, the remains of a great cirque sheared away by the forces of glacial ice. After an uphill slog, the Towers eventually come into full view, rising majestically, with the glacial lake visible below. After lunch, backtrack along the same trail through Ascencio Valley and return to EcoCamp.

Day 3: Drive and Walk the Western Lakes and Hike to Cerro Ferrier
Begin the day driving across the park, admiring the view of Paine Grande's snowy peaks and the black, granite, horn-like spires of Los Cuernos. As you walk along the shores of the stunning Lake Pehoe, you will see the furious Salto Grande waterfalls where the water from Lake Nordenskjold cascades down. Continue south to a beach along the shores of glacial Lake Grey. Here, you begin your hike to Cerro Ferrier, a fairly steep route through a fairy-tale-like Magellanic forest where you might spot the Huemul, the endangered South Andean deer. Head uphill for about an hour and a half to reach a breath-taking lookout offering a unique perspective on the Paine Massif, Grey Glacier and some of the most famous lakes of the National Park. Then walk back to Grey Beach to meet your fellow travellers returning from the boat ride. Together, travel to EcoCamp to enjoy a relaxed evening.

Please note:
An alternative nature walk to Pingo (6km/4mi) may be offered depending on the weather conditions and the participants’ physical condition.

Day 4: Pehoe Lake by Boat and French Valley Hike
After breakfast, you will be driven to Pudeto dock, located on the shores of Pehoe Lake. Board a catamaran that will take you to the north-western sector of the Lake where you will begin the challenging trek to Valle Frances (French Valley) along a steep trail that leads to the very heart of the Paine Massif. A swifter walk will lead you to the hanging bridge over the French River, located at the foot of the south east face of the Massif, where you will be treated to fantastic views of the valley.

Then continue to ascend towards the upper section of the valley where you will be able to marvel at the extensive mass of the valley's geological formations: Hoja (Blade), Máscara (Mask), Espada (Sword), Catedral (Cathedral), Aleta de Tiburón (Shark’s Fin) and the magnificent Fortaleza (Fortress). After the upward trek, pause for a picnic and relax for a while. This day's adventure will end as you descend through an undulating terrain of mixed grassland and light forest which will take you to Refugio Paine Grande, located on the peaceful shores of Lake Pehoe. From here, you will board the catamaran back to Pudeto, where you will be collected and transported back to EcoCamp.

Please note:
- An optional trek to Mirador Britanico is also available.
- The excursion to French Valley varies throughout the season depending on the catamaran connecting Pudeto and Refugio Pehoe.
- During September, October, April and May (shoulder season) the catamaran service will be out of operation. Therefore, the excursion will be replaced by a journey from Estancia Lazo to Weber Bridge.
- From 1st of November until 31st March, hiking is limited and restricted past Camp Italiano.

Day 5: Hiking or Biking to Laguna Azul
Hiking to Laguna Azul - On the way to Laguna Azul you will have the chance to enjoy some marvellous views of the famous national park, as well as pass through the Pampa Guanaco. Here you may spot many elegant guanacos and even walk amongst them. After soaking up these beautiful surroundings, continue the drive to Laguna Azul, where a picnic lunch will have been prepared for you! Enjoy the picnic while looking out over the lake, with a view of the three granite towers in the distance. After lunch, walk south to Macho Cañon, where you can observe the typical fauna of the Torres del Paine National Park, including more guanaco herds. From here jump into the van again, heading back to the EcoCamp in time for cocktail hour.

Biking to Laguna Azul - After breakfast, drive to Estancia Laguna Amarga and hop on a mountain bike, before pedalling towards Laguna Azul campsite approximately 20 km to the north east. Cycle past an array of fauna, including guanacos and ostrich-like ñandús. Then head north past the cascading Paine waterfall, where you can stop for a break to admire the view. Continue past a small canyon in the middle of the Patagonian flora and fauna before looping up towards Laguna Azul. Upon arrival enjoy a picnic lunch. Once finished, there’s time to explore the surroundings and climb to the nearby sightseeing point with a panoramic view of the lagoon and the towers in the distance. The cycle ride back to EcoCamp is optional - anyone who is tired after the journey is welcome to travel back in the support van. Back at EcoCamp the cyclists reunite with their safari hiking counterparts to enjoy the evening.

Day 6: Transfer Back to Punta Arenas
Board the mini-van and enjoy a scenic ride back to Punta Arenas. This transfer is timed in conjunction with an evening flight to Santiago. Alternative transfer times may incur additional costs.

Accommodation Options

EcoCamp Patagonia

  • Grade:
  • Type: Unique and Boutique

An eco-friendly tourist resort set in the heart of one o…

Prices & Dates

2017/18 Season

Ecocamp Patagonia Wildlife Safari

Prices are per person, based on twin occupancy of a standard dome (with shared facilities) - please contact us for details of other occupancies and domes.

Departure DateDurationPrices from (approx.)
01 Nov - 13 Dec 2017 6 days £2,294
16 Dec 2017 - 20 Jan 2018 6 days £2,524
21 Jan - 31 Mar 2018 6 days £2,294

The above prices are approximate and may vary. They are based on the 6 day Patagonia tour outlined on the itinerary page. Alternative durations are available and private transfers and excursions may be booked for a surcharge. Please contact our team of travel specialists for full and up to date details, prices and availability.

Please note: A version of this itinerary can be undertaken during the shoulder season months of September, October, April and May, but will involve several changes and restrictions to the daily activities. Please contact our team of specialists for details and prices.

Inclusions and Exclusions

Includes non-private return transfers between Punta Arenas Airport and EcoCamp - based on Santiago flight times (alternative transfer times may incur additional cost) • Accommodation on a full board basis (with lunch box while on excursions) • Alcoholic and soft drinks with meals - restrictions apply • All ground transport (including boats) as indicated on the itinerary • English speaking guide on excursions (guide to passenger ratio is 1:12, with a maximum group size of 16) • Any applicable park fees

Excludes All airfares • Additional airport or airline security charges • Passport and visa expenses (we will be pleased to advise you on any necessary documentation, however this is passengers' own responsibility) • Government arrival and departure taxes • Any additional pre or post tour accommodation/meals/land arrangements (if required) • Excess baggage charges • Alcoholic and soft drinks not consumed with meals • Telecommunication charges, laundry costs and other charges of a personal nature • The discretionary gratuity at the end of excursions for guides and staff • Travel insurance

We would be pleased to quote for the best available airfares and comprehensive travel insurance to suit your specific holiday requirements.

2018/19 Prices and Dates

2018/19 Season

Ecocamp Patagonia Wildlife Safari

Prices are per person, based on twin occupancy of a standard dome (with shared facilities) - please contact us for details of other occupancies and domes.

Departure DateDurationPrices from (approx.)
01 Nov - 13 Dec 2018 6 days £2,479
14 Dec 2018 - 20 Jan 2019 6 days £2,729
21 Jan - 31 Mar 2019 6 days £2,479

The above prices are approximate and may vary. They are based on the 6 day Patagonia tour outlined on the itinerary page. Alternative durations are available and private transfers and excursions may be booked for a surcharge. Please contact our team of travel specialists for full and up to date details, prices and availability.

Please note: A version of this itinerary can be undertaken during the shoulder season months of September, October, April and May, but will involve several changes and restrictions to the daily activities. Please contact our team of specialists for details and prices.

Inclusions and Exclusions

Includes non-private return transfers between Punta Arenas Airport and EcoCamp - based on Santiago flight times (alternative transfer times may incur additional cost) • Accommodation on a full board basis (with lunch box while on excursions) • Alcoholic and soft drinks with meals - restrictions apply • All ground transport (including boats) as indicated on the itinerary • English speaking guide on excursions (guide to passenger ratio is 1:12, with a maximum group size of 16) • Any applicable park fees

Excludes All airfares • Additional airport or airline security charges • Passport and visa expenses (we will be pleased to advise you on any necessary documentation, however this is passengers' own responsibility) • Government arrival and departure taxes • Any additional pre or post tour accommodation/meals/land arrangements (if required) • Excess baggage charges • Alcoholic and soft drinks not consumed with meals • Telecommunication charges, laundry costs and other charges of a personal nature • The discretionary gratuity at the end of excursions for guides and staff • Travel insurance

We would be pleased to quote for the best available airfares and comprehensive travel insurance to suit your specific holiday requirements.

Useful Information

Patagonia Tour Information

Itinerary Modifications
The weather in Patagonia can be difficult to deal with at times. The tour provider reserves the right to change the order of the days in any itinerary at the discretion of the guide and based on operational considerations. Some excursions are subject to weather conditions and might be cancelled or modified for safety reasons. In such an eventuality an alternative excursion will be provided.

Children
The minimum age requirement for the standard option tours is 6. Children aged 10 - 12 may participate in the more challenging trekking excursions but the family must hire a private assistant guide. Children aged 12 and up are welcome to participate in all activities and are treated as adults.

Transport
In Torres del Paine and throughout Patagonia, transport is in minivans that normally seat from 8 - 14 people. Pick up / Drop off times are approximate and will be confirmed locally by the operations team. An exclusive toll-free emergency number will be available for anyone needing additional support while they are in Chile.

Weather
The vast unbroken stretch of ocean to the west and south of the South American continent leave the Patagonian Andes very exposed to winds that circle the Antarctic landmass. In addition, the strong marine influence and the affect of the Southern Patagonia Ice field make the weather hard to predict. In spring or early summer fine weather may deteriorate almost without warning, bringing rain and even snow. Even in summer (December to March) you should come prepared to find strong cold winds (up to 130km/hr) and rainfall. The summer’s average temperature is 11ºC/52ºF (24ºCmax, 2ºC min). However, just as quickly as the weather turns nasty, it can become lovely and sunny. So come prepared for all types of weather!

Physical Demands
The standard trip options do not demand extensive physical activity, other than walking a maximum of two consecutive hours over fairly flat terrain. You will stop as many times as necessary depending on the rhythm of the group. Travellers doing the more challenging excursions will find them more energetic and to enjoy these more active treks it is essential to be relatively fit before arriving. All trails visited are under 1,000m / 3,000ft high.

What you need to bring
You need to be prepared for summer and winter all at once. Essential equipment includes a one day backpack (10 litres - to carry camera, glasses, rain coat, etc), trekking or hiking boots, extra shoes for evenings or in case others get wet, waterproof jacket, two pairs of woollen socks, fleece jacket or sweater, shorts or comfortable loose trousers, sun protection (glasses, hat, lip balm and screen) and optional thermal underwear for the upper and lower body. Cash for buying extra drinks/snacks or souvenirs in Torres del Paine National Park.

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travel guaranteeWe will always offer the best price available at the time of booking and guarantee no surcharges - see our 100% Guarantee for full details.

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Speak to a specialist: 1-844-584-0668

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Tailor Made


If you can't find exactly what you are looking for, let us find it for you.

Our team of Travel Specialists have extensive first-hand knowledge of our destinations and are passionate about travel.

Meet the team

Speak to a specialist:
1-844-584-0668

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