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The wilds of Patagonia stretch from the ice fields of Argentina to the fjords of Chile, spanning twisted granite peaks, sweeping steppe, and pristine glacial valleys. On a variety of excursions by foot, horseback, and 4x4, take in the region’s most spectacular scenery, from the imposing spires of Monte Fitz Roy and the Paine Massif to the calving Perito Moreno Glacier and its iceberg-dotted laguna. Delve deeper into these unspoiled landscapes to discover hidden turquoise lakes and rushing waterfalls, and get to know the culture of the horsemen who call Patagonia home.
Join a private guide for a hike beneath the iconic Fitz Roy Massif in Argentina’s Los Glaciares National Park.
Accompanied by a gaucho, horseback ride through an ancient forest to a lookout point with panoramic views of the Paine Massif.
Witness the powerful calving of the Perito Moreno Glacier from multiple perspectives, strolling nearby walkways and joining a boat cruise for up close views.
Itinerary - 10 Days
Day 1 — Arrive Buenos Aires, Argentina
Arrive in Buenos Aires and transfer to your hotel in the heart of the fashionable Recoleta district. Spend the day at leisure, exploring the area’s galleries and museums or relaxing at an inviting sidewalk café. Alternatively, go on an optional private tour of the city that takes you through the Plaza de Maya in the center of the historical district, into the antique shops of the traditional San Telmo neighborhood, and along the rainbow-colored houses of La Boca. Mio Buenos Aires
Day 2 — El Chaltén
Fly to El Calafate in the southern Andes and take a scenic drive to El Chaltén. This tiny town is situated at the northern edge of Los Glaciares National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site that makes up part of South America’s largest ice field. El Chaltén is a popular starting point for treks into the surrounding mountains and will serve as the base for your first hiking excursion. Hosteria Senderos (B, L)
Day 3 — Monte Fitz Roy
Take to the surrounding mountains on a trek beneath the dramatic ice-clad spires of the Fitz Roy massif with a private guide. Watch for rare bird species like the Patagonian parrot and red-crested woodpecker while passing through lenga forests, and take in spectacular views over the Valley of the Vueltas River, a stunning example of a glacially carved landscape. Your destination is the Laguna del los Tres, a turquoise lake framed by the jagged granite peaks of Monte Fitz Roy. Circle the shoreline for views over the nearby Laguna Súcia, and then enjoy a picnic lunch in this spectacular setting before heading back to El Chaltén for an evening at leisure. Hosteria Senderos (B, L)
Day 4 — El Calafate
Return to El Calafate and enjoy time to explore the charming town center on your own. Design Suites Calafate (B, L)
Day 5 — Perito Moreno Glacier
Spend a full day discovering the magnificent natural displays of the Perito Moreno Glacier. This continually advancing mass regularly calves great chunks of ice into Lake Argentino, the enormous fresh-water reserve at its base. View the glacier’s rugged face from nearby walkways, and then join a boat cruise on the surrounding waters for a different perspective. Design Suites Calafate (B, L)
Day 6 — Torres del Paine National Park, Chile
A scenic drive brings you to Torres del Paine National Park, where you’ll settle into Tierra Patagonia, a National Geographic Unique Lodge of the World perched at the edge of Lake Sarmiento. National Geographic travelers will receive a book about the property and take an exclusive architecture tour of this award-winning structure, getting an insider’s perspective on the cutting-edge design techniques used to merge its form with the surrounding landscape. Sit down to an excellent meal with views of the peaks of Torres del Paine this evening. Tierra Patagonia (B, L, D)
Day 7 — Torres del Paine National Park
Venture into Torres del Paine National Park today and choose from a variety of ways to explore, including hiking, walking, and 4x4 or horseback-riding excursions. Encounter the sapphire waters of Laguna Azul and the rushing cascade of the Salto Grande waterfall, and trek to a mountaintop for vistas overlooking the twisting pinnacles of the Torres del Paine. Along the way, keep an eye out for some of the area’s resident creatures, including eagles; condors; foxes; and ñandú, an indigenous type of ostrich. Tierra Patagonia (B, L, D)
Day 8 — Torres del Paine National Park
Delve further into the park on an excursion of your choosing. Hike to iceberg-dotted Grey Lake, climb rocky peaks for spectacular views of karst cornices, or take a leisurely walk through the heart of the park’s carved terrain. Ride horseback alongside local gauchos across sweeping glacial valleys, enjoying views of the iconic Paine Massif along the way. Or visit a nearby working estancia, or ranch, and tour the property to learn about everyday life in Patagonia. Tierra Patagonia (B, L, D)
Day 9 — Torres del Paine National Park
Spend a final day exploring Torres del Paine, setting out on one last excursion into the wilds of Patagonia. Or just enjoy the comfort of your lodge, relaxing in its state-of-the-art spa while taking in stunning views of the sparkling Lake Sarmiento, framed by snow-dusted peaks. Tierra Patagonia (B, L, D)
Day 10 — Punta Arenas/Depart
This morning transfer to Punta Arenas, where you’ll catch your flight home. (B)
About Private Expeditions
National Geographic Private Expeditions are specially crafted itineraries designed for independent travelers that combine guided excursions, fascinating insights into culture and wildlife, and top accommodations. Simply select a trip and decide whom you'd like to travel with and when you want to travel. We'll take care of the rest.
Prices are per person, double occupancy and are subject to availability. For a single-room, add $2,500.
Internal flights between Buenos Aires and El Calafate are an additional $385 (subject to change). International airfare to Buenos Aires and home from Punta Arenas is not included in the expedition cost.
A holiday surcharge and restrictions may apply to certain travel dates based upon international or local holidays, as well as local events and festivals.
Travelers should be in good health and comfortable walking or standing for extended periods of time. Daily activities may include city walking tours, visits to sites, game drives, or easy hikes, with options for more physical activities such as hiking, kayaking, snorkeling and biking.
Click here for a description of all activity levels.