Chile Patagonia and Penguins Adventure

Trip Overview

Penguins, granite towers and glaciers! Oh my! 8 Days to explore the best of Patagonia including Torres del Paine, Grey Glacier, Pehoe Lake, as well as ice fields and sub-polar forests, with time to savor local drinks mixed with glacier ice!

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The Best of Patagonia:  8 Days / 8 Nights

Short custom 5-day trips can be organized on request. Minimum 2 people.

This trip is carefully crafted with attention to the quality of the overall program. We have curated and selected well organized and meaningful activities designed to offer you the opportunity to explore and experience the true essence of the Patagonia region. Licensed and knowledgeable guides and drivers accompany you for all activities. We want your trip to be authentic and meaningful.

We ask you to keep in mind that infrastructure is limited to small pockets of civilization connected by an expansive system of paved and dirt roads.  We do our best to work around glitches and changes to the scheduled activities, but we reserve the right to make last minute substitutions in case some activities are cancelled, or we are unable to provide the level of attention needed to ensure your safety.  We cannot offer refunds for changes or activities not completed.

Your satisfaction matters and in cases where we do make last minute changes, we endeavor to make substitutions that maintain the flow of the trip with the least amount of disruption.

LEVEL Of DIFFICULTY: (Easy) Walk for short periods of time on mostly flat terrain/ board boats with steps / Suitable for all ages and abilities

Day 1: Arrive Santiago, Chile

Welcome to Chile! Our driver will be waiting at the airport. Flights usually arrive in the morning / Transfer to hotel / Lunch / Short Tour of City Center.
Hotel: 3* with private bath and breakfast 
Meals included: none

Day 2:  Fly from Santiago to Punta Arenas / Short City Tour

Pickup from Santiago hotel and transfer to Santiago (SCL) airport for flight to Punta Arenas where your local guide will be waiting. Transfer to hotel, lunch on your own, Your tour guide will take you on a tour of the city to learn more about life on the tip of the South American continent.  Return to Punta Arenas
Hotel: 3* with private bath and breakfast (Dinners will be in hotel or restaurants within walking distance of your hotel at your expense)
Meals included: breakfast in the hotel

Day 3: Punta Arenas / Penguin Colony Navigation / Drive to Puerto Natales

5AM. This tour will take us out into the legendary Straits of Magellan to visit the amazing bird life on Magdalena Island. There are reportedly between 30,000 and 40,000 pairs of Magellanic penguins on this island. Undoubtedly the best option in Patagonia to cross the mythical Strait of Magellan to admire and interact with these funny birds. 45 minutes navigation. Disembark for one hour in the island with and easy walk around with opportunity to take pictures of the penguins. The path that leads to the lighthouse goes through hundreds of caves and allows you to see these flightless birds up close. Also, you will see a lot of amazing birds like Albatross, Skuas, Cormorants and more. Then navigate to Marta Island (if the weather allows) with encounters with Sea lions and possibly (less common) Austral Dolphins, and Sei Whales.

The trip starts very early at 5AM in order to avoid windy conditions. Return time in Punta Arenas is around 12:00.
Lunch at recommended restaurant or hotel
Depart by car to drive 3 hours to Puerto Natales. Opportunity to take pictures on the way. A stop in Puerto Natales with nice views of the fjords and have an optional tea break. Then continue driving to hotel. 

Hotel: 3* with private bath and breakfast (Dinners will be in hotel restaurant at your expense because the hotel is not located near towns or other tourist infrastructure)
Meals included: breakfast in hotel, box lunch, bottled water

Day 4: Torres del Paine National Park Road Trip

Road trip around part of the park with short hikes and Pehoe Lake Navigation. Return to National Park. Road trip through beautiful landscapes with amazing lookouts and short hikes. You will be able to stop to take pictures. Potential encounters with wild fauna including Llamas. Attractions include Paine Horns Lookout hike: A stunning route that starts at the beautiful turquoise Pehoé Lake and impressive waterfall Salto Grande. It takes about an hour to finish at Nordenskjold Lake – one of the most beautiful and easy to access viewpoints in the park. (2.6 miles - 2 hours in flat terrain round trip.)
Navigation along Pehoe lake, then 30 minutes from Pudeto to Paine Grande with gorgeous views.
Optional hike to Skottsberg Lookout: 3 miles round trip, 1,5 hours. The path goes first through the burnt forest and then along Skottsberg lake, when walking next to the lake check from time-to-time reflections of the mountains in the water. Return to hotel.

Hotel: 3* with private bath and breakfast (Dinners will be in hotel restaurant at your expense because the hotel is not located near towns or other tourist infrastructure)
Meals included: breakfast in hotel, box lunch, bottled water

Day 5: Torres del Paine National Park / Blue Lagoon Lookout to Granite Towers

(Rated Easy) Trip to Laguna Azul and a lookout to the famous “ granite towers” from a different perspective.
The adventure starts with a 30-minute drive through the rugged terrain of the national park’s far eastern region, Laguna Amarga, where we observe cyanobacteria with stromatolites and sometimes flamingos, before continuing our journey to the Blue Lagoon. From the parking area, we strike off on a short (half hour) walk that includes wildlife observations and views of the Paine Massif. Wildlife is abundant in this part of the park, especially guanaco and birds. The avian community around Laguna Azul includes water birds, as well as condors and raptors. Gazing from the east, the perspective of Torres towers is much different than elsewhere in the park, and in some respects even more awe-inspiring. Laguna Azul is also the spot where Lady Florence Dixie, the intrepid Victorian-era British traveler, and author, first spotted the Torres del Paine mountains. In her 1880 book Across Patagonia, she called the three towers “Cleopatra’s Needles” because the stone monoliths resembled the obelisks of ancient Egypt. Return to hotel.

Hotel: 3* with private bath and breakfast (Dinners will be in hotel restaurant at your expense because the hotel is not located near towns or other tourist infrastructure)
Meals included: breakfast in hotel, snacks, bottled water

Day 6: Grey Lake Navigation to Grey Glacier + Short Hike

(Rated Easy) Grey Lake hike plus roundtrip navigation by catamaran to the ice wall of Grey Glacier with opportunities to see icefall 2:45 H. We will start with a short, flat hike over the Grey Lake Beach with the possibility of sighting icebergs on the sand with the Grey Glacier in the skyline. Then continue the hike for 15 minutes to the Grey Lake Peninsula Lookout, with a breathtaking view of the entire lake and native forest. Return to the beach and board the catamaran to start the navigation to the glacier. Expect possible ice falls from an ice wall around 80 meters, while you enjoy a drink inside the comfort of the main cabin. Navigate through glacial greywater (where the glacier name came from) surrounded by Lenga Forest is a stunning experience. Return to Hotel.

Hotel: 3* with private bath and breakfast (Dinners will be in hotel restaurant at your expense because the hotel is not located near towns or other tourist infrastructure)
Meals included: breakfast in hotel, box lunch, bottled water

Day 7: Torres del Paine National Park / Puerto Natales & Milodon Cave

(Rated-Easy) Easy wake up. Transport back to Puerto Natales Town (1:30 m). On the way stop at Milodon Cave, a huge cavern more than 200 meters deep, 80 wide, and 30 high. More than 15,000 years ago the cave was inhabited by what are now large, extinct animals such as the Mylodon (a type of bear) and Jaguar and was probably a popular hunting site for the native inhabitants. The Milodon Cave became known to the world a little over 100 years ago in 1895 when the settler Eberhard Hermann visited the cave and found a strange skin with thick hairs. It was determined to be the fur of a large extinct sloth, known as a Milodon. This led to numerous scientific expeditions and looters looking for remains to sell to collectors and museums, mainly in Europe. In 1968 this area was declared a Historic Monument by the Ministry of Education, and in 1993 became the Milodon Cave Natural Monument (Monumento Natural Cueva del Milodón), joining the System of Protected Areas of the State. Optional hike at Cerro Benitez with possible condor encounters. Optional Lunch in Puerto Natales at recommended restaurant.

Hotel: 3* with private bath and breakfast (Dinners will be in hotel restaurant at your expense because the hotel is not located near towns or other tourist infrastructure)
Meals included: breakfast in hotel, box lunch, bottled water

Day 8: Fly Puerto Natales (or Punta Arenas) - Santiago 

Transport from Hotel to Airport. Flight Punta Arenas – Santiago
Transfer to hotel in Santiago for overnight. 

Day 9: Depart Santiago

Transfer to Santiago airport at least 4 hours prior to scheduled departure for internatoinal flights. Or continue your adventure to Easter Island

OPTIONAL 3Day Easter Island Extension


Tour Options

8 D / 8 N
Difficulty Level:
Starting From$4392 in DBLper person

Sgl supp add $1100

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get to Patagonia?

Schedule your International flights to arrive and depart from Santiago, (SCL) Chile.  We take care of the rest.  

Do I need to prepare for high elevation?

No. Elevations in this trip are no higher than Blue Ridge Parkway in the Appalachian Mountains. Up to 3000-4000 feet at most.

Do I need a visa to enter Chile?

US passport holders do not need a visa to enter Chile. Citizens from other countries should check with their home embassy to determine their status for entry to Chile.

Why is the cost to travel in Chile higher than some other countries in South America?

The answer to this question has several components:

1. Chile is a member of OECD organization that promotes economic cooperation and development among other OECD countries. These countries are considered high-income destinations.
2. Other countries in South America are "developing" and their economies have different standards for wages and living standards.
3. Patagonia is isolated from major development and infrastructure. Everything is farther away and the effort to provide basic comfort and safety costs more.



This Adventure Includes

    • All 3* accommodations with private bath and breakfast including Santiago
    • Roundtrip flights between Santiago and Punta Arenas (or Puerto Natales depending on season)
    • Airport transfers
    • English-speaking guide service
    • All ground transportation for all scheduled activities
    • Entry fees to everything listed except where noted

Not Included

    • International flights to Santiago, Chile
    • Lunches / dinners / drinking water (except where noted B-breakfast, L-lunch, D-dinner)
    • Gratuities at your discretion
    • Travel Insurance Mandatory coverage for all ground and Chile domestic flights. SQUAREMOUTH (or use your own provider)
    • Alcoholic beverages
    • Sturdy shoes and warm clothing
    • Day packs with rain covers
    • Excess luggage fees (1 purse + 1 carryon 10lb + 1 checked bag max 23 kg allowed)


    • 30% deposit and copy of passport required at time of booking. (Passport must not expire within 6 months of your travel dates)
    • Itinerary subject to change
    • Suitable for most travelers age 10 and over
    • Allow 1 additional travel day to get to Chile and 1 added day to arrive home
    • Easter Island Extension can be added on at the end or before the trip to Patagonia
    • Dining in Patagonia region may be limited to hotel restaurants due to isolation. That's just the way it is