Patagonia Tour Highlights
Torres Del Paine National Park (Chile)
One of the world's most beautiful national parks, Torres del Paine is named after the massive granite towers that rise out of the earth. Covering more than 180,000 hectares, the park boasts stunning scenery with snow covered peaks, glaciers, beautiful lakes and valleys with a diverse variety of unusual flora and fauna. Some of the varied and amazing creatures you might spot include skunks, Andean condors, black-chested buzzard eagles, chilla foxes, culpeo foxes, guanacos (a relative of the llama), Chilean flamingos and rhea (a type of emu). The best way to discover the national park is on foot and trekking here will take your breath away. Some of the walks are quite demanding, but there is a good range for all grades of walkers. Options include a full day trek with incredible views of the famous 'towers' (this walk can be demanding with the final section walking in scree, however it is well worth it), a full day trek and catamaran trip across Lago Pehoe for a full view of the Grey Glacier and a more sedate 3 hour scenic boat trip (dependant on boat availability).
Perito Moreno Glacier, El Calafate (Argentina)
Los Glaciares National Park is located 80 km from El Calafate, south east of the Province of Santa Cruz, Argentina. The park was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1981, and the outstanding Perito Moreno Glacier is one of its most outstanding attractions. With a height of around 60 metres and a front of five kilometres and an ice expanse covering some 250 km squared, the Perito Moreno Glacier is an incredible sight. Named after Argentine explorer Francisco Merino, the glacier is coloured in a variety of hues from blue to grey to white. It continually creaks and cracks. Advancing at a speed of around 2m per day, it can put on a spectacular show when giant chunks of ice at the outermost edges crack under tremendous pressure, rupture and crash into the water. Visitors have the chance to walk around some paths and terraces where you can get some great views of the glacier. You can also take a boat cruise almost the full width of the glacier for amazingly close-up views.
Tierra del Fuego National Park (Argentina)
Tierra del Fuego National Park was founded in 1960 on the Argentine part of the island of Tierra del Fuego, in the Straight of Magellan, Patagonia. Located close to the city of Ushuaia, the national park stretches 60 km north from the Beagle Channel along the Chilean border. The park has dramatic scenery, with waterfalls, forests, mountains and glaciers, and features animals such as guanacos, foxes and beavers, rabbits and muskrats and 90 species of birds including carancas, torrent ducks, Austral parakeets, condors and oystercatchers. A popular way to get to the National Park is to take the End of the World Train (Tren del Fin del Mundo) a tourist steam train running over 5 km from Ushuaia.