This trip is the perfect double whammy – skiing in Chile and exploring the best of Patagonia’s hiking trails and wildlife

 
In just 6 days you discover Chile’s cosmopolitan capital Santiago, enjoy scenic views in the heart of the Andes Mountains while skiing in world class ski resort Valle Nevado and explore the highlights of Chilean Patagonia while staying at the unique Ecocamp Patagonia in Torres del Paine!

Very limited time possible (due to Valle Nevado closing date & EcoCamp opening date), only available during September.

 

 

Highlights

  • Skiing/snowboarding in Valle Nevado
  • Scenic Andes Mountains views
  • Santiago de Chile City Tour
  • Patagonia hiking & Wildlife
  • EcoCamp Patagonia Suite Domes
  • Torres del Paine park highlights

Brief Itinerary

Day 1, Arrival in Chile’s Capital

Day 2, Skiing in the Andes

Day 3, Onward Journey to Patagonia

Day 4, EcoCamp Patagonia Wildlife Safari

Day 5, EcoCamp Patagonia Wildlife Safari

Day 6, Return to Santiago

Day 1, Arrival in Chile’s Capital

Santiago de Chile

Upon arrival at Santiago de Chile’s International Airport, you will be met by a Cascada representative and driven to your comfortable hotel to check in. After a short time in the hotel to freshen up and unpack our guide will come pick us up and we’ll head downtown in Santiago’s modern metro to begin our Santiago City Walking Tour.

We get off at metro stop Moneda and surface in front of Chile’s famous presidential palace La Moneda, a symbol of Chile’s political past and its famously turbulent history. From here we head along Paseo Ahumada, a city centre walkway famous for its crowds, shops, and diversity of people. At the end of the Paseo we reach Plaza de Armas which is Santiago’s main square and Chile’s kilometer zero (the point from which all distances in the country are measured). From here we head to Santa Lucia hill where Santiago was founded in 1541by Pedro Valdivia and as we climb up we get great panoramic views of the city and the Andes Mountain backdrop. Our tour finishes by visiting the bohemian Lastarria neighborhood at the bottom of the hill, linedwith cafés, restaurants, small theaters, bookstores and boutique shops. Here we relax, chat with the guide and enjoy a coffee before taking the metro back to the hotel.

  • Overnight at hotel Meridiano Sur – boutique hotel in Santiago

 

Day 2, Skiing in the Andes 
Valle Nevado
We are picked up early, at 7am, and start our adventure driving towards the Andes mountains. We quickly leave behind the city streets and follow a beautiful winding road going up to the ski centers. The views are breathtaking – white Andean mountains stretching across the horizon in clear blue skies. We arrive in Valle Nevado around 9am and choose our ski/snowboard equipment. After a brief explanation about the ski centre and distribution of a map with all the slopes, the excitement begins! If you want classes you can arrange this at the ski centre, there is a multitude of English speaking guides awaiting students.
Around midday we take a break for lunch and enjoy the culinary delights of Don Giovanni restaurant. Then we head back for an afternoon on the slopes, which cover 2,000 acres.  
At 5pm when the lifts stop running we give back the equipment and board the van back to Santiago to enjoy the downhill views while resting our legs. We arrive back at our hotel about 19.00.

  • Overnight at hotel Meridiano Sur – boutique hotel in Santiago

 

Day 3, Onward Journey to Patagonia
Santiago de Chile

You’ll be picked up from your hotel in the early morning and driven to the airport to check in for your onward flight to Punta Arenas. You’ll be picked up at Punta Arenas airport and driven to EcoCamp Patagonia, located in the world-famous Torres del Paine National Park. See our weekly transfer board for EcoCamp’s pick up & drop off schedule. En route we make a stop in Puerto Natales, a small, lively town on the shores of “Seno de Ultima Esperanza”, where we enjoy a hearty local lunch. The whole journey is very scenic, with plenty of wild birds and wonderful landscapes to be seen. The day ends with our arrival and overnight stay at EcoCamp Patagonia, nestled in the heart of the park with a view of the Torres. During summer the sun sets around 11pm, so upon arrival there’s plenty of light to admire the Patagonian steppe with its guanacos and snow-peaked mountain horizon.

  • Overnight at EcoCamp Patagonia Suite Dome

 

Day 4, Trek Towers Base (sample activity from itinerary)
Torres del Paine NP, Chile
We walk 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. Our big challenge comes as we climb the steep moraine, a mass of boulders leading us 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 before us, with the glacial lake visible below. Is there any better place in the world to have lunch? After feasting on the view and our picnic, we backtrack along the same trail through Ascencio Valley and return to EcoCamp.

  • Overnight at EcoCamp Patagonia Suite Dome

 

Day 5, Drive & Walk Western Lakes, Navigation Glacier Grey* (sample activity from itinerary)

Torres del Paine NP, Chile

We drive across the Park, admiring the view of Paine Grande and its snowy peaks, and Los Cuernos with its black, granite horn-like spires. Walking along the shores of the stunning Lake Pehoe, we see the furious Salto Grande waterfalls where the water from Lake Nordenskjold cascades down into Pehoe. The walk continues over the gentle Nordenskjold trail until until we reach its spectacular lookout point. Later, back at Lake Pehoe, we are driven south to a beach along the shores of glacial Lake Grey. Here we enjoy a tasty box-lunch by the lake 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, we drive back to EcoCamp.

(*During September the boat trip to Glacier Grey may be cancelled as the boat requires a minimum of 8 passengers to sail, which might not be reached in some cases. If this is the case we will plan an alternative excursion in the Park.)

  • Overnight at EcoCamp Patagonia Suite Dome

 

**During Shoulder Season (September, October and April) the boat trip to Glacier Grey may be cancelled as the boat requires a minimum of 8 passengers to sail, which might not be reached in some cases. If this is the case we will plan an alternative excursion in the Park.)

 

Day 6, Return to Santiago

Torres del Paine NP, Chile
We board an early morning vehicle, sit back, relax, and enjoy a scenic ride back to Punta Arenas on time to catch the evening flight to Santiago. Those heading to Argentina board an earlier transfer heading to the border.

 

Departures

Every day on request. From 09th of September to 01st of October, 2017

Starting/Finishing Points

The trip starts with your pick up from the aiport in Santiago on day 1 and ends with your drop off at the airport in Punta Arenas on day 6 or El Calafate / Argentina.

Season Dates

From 09th of September to 01st of October, 2017. (EcoCamp opens on the 09th of September)
**Dates may depend on the snow situation in Valle Nevado. After the Valle Nevado season is closed please see our regular Ecocamp Tours running from September to April.

Included

  • Private transfer from and to the airport in Santiago
  • 2 Overnight in Santiago city hotel
  • Private walking city tour with bilingual guide in Santiago
  • Subway tickets and coffee or nonalcoholic beverage during the Santiago city tour
  • 2 way private transportation from your hotel to Valle Nevado
  • One day skiing ticket at Valle Nevado with lunch and basic ski/snowboard gear (skis/snowboard, boots and poles)
  • 3 Overnight in Ecocamp Patagonia Suite Dome
  • Regular bus tickets Calafate<>Natales if finishing in Calafate
  • Excursions and all ground transport as indicated in the itinerary at Ecocamp
  • English speaking guide. Guide ratio 1:12. Max group size: 16 people at Ecocamp
  • Park fees for Torres del Paine National Park.
  • Meals:

    Day 1: snack

    Day 2: B,L

    Day 3: B,L,D

    Day 4: B,BL,D

    Day 5: B,BL,D

    Day 6: B,L

Not Included

  • Flight tickets
  • Soft drinks or snacks not served with the meals included at the EcoCamp. Bringing US$ in cash for buying extra drinks/snacks or souvenirs in Torres del Paine NP is suggested.
  • Insurance
  • Voluntary tipping
  • Items of personal nature
  • Ski/snowboard class

Starting / Finishing Point 

The trip starts every day on request at Santiago airport and ends at Punta Arenas airport in or el Calafate. Please visit our Weekly Transfer Board for details of EcoCamp pick up and drop off times from both Chile and Argentina, so you can coordinate your flight from Santiago to Punta Arenas in order to be met by our transfer service.  

Itinerary Modifications

Santiago: If it is not possible to operate the excursion to Valle Nevado because of poor snow/weather conditions, the tour will be replaced by another excursion. 

Patagonia 

The weather in Patagonia can be difficult to deal with at times. We reserve the right to change the order of the days in any itinerary at the discretion of the trip guide and based on operational considerations. The trip guide can modify, change or eliminate part of the itinerary based on safety/weather considerations.
The excursion to French Valley does not operate in September and therefore the excursion will be replaced by another activity
Please note the following modifications during September the boat trip to Glacier Grey may be cancelled as the boat requires a minimum of 8 passengers to sail, which might not be reached in some cases. If this is the case we will plan an alternative excursion in the Park.
The Towers Trek excursion might be cancelled because of weather conditions and safety considerations.

Transport

In Torres del Paine and throughout Patagonia transport is in minivans that normally seat from 8 to 14 people. Pick up / Drop off times shown in the Weekly Transfer Board are approximate and will be confirmed locally by our 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 leaves 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 Easy trip options do not demand extensive physical activity, other than walking a maximum of two consecutive hours over fairly flat terrain. We stop as many times as necessary depending on the rhythm of the group. Travelers doing the active excursions will find them more energetic and to enjoy these more active treks it is essential to be in shape before arriving. All trails visited in the programs are under 1,000m / 3,000ft high so passengers don’t need to worry about altitude.

What you need to bring

Passengers need to be prepared for summer and winter all at once. Essential equipment includes a one day backpack (10liters – 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 woolen socks, fleece jacket or sweater, shorts or comfortable loose pants, sun protection (glasses, hat, lip balm and screen) and optional capilene underwear for the upper and lower body. US$ in cash for buying extra drinks/snacks or souvenirs in Torres del Paine NP. Essential equipment also includes ski wear for Valle Nevado, or willingness to rent ski clothes at the resort. 

 

Santiago de Chile: Meridiano Sur Petit Hotel  (Nights 1-2)

 

EcoCamp Patagonia (Nights 3-5)

Ecocamp Patagonia is located in the heart of Torres del Paine National Park in Chile, with views of the majestic granite towers. The region’s first sustainable lodge south of the Amazon and the first of its kind in the Patagonian wilderness, EcoCamp offers upscale camping in domes inspired by the region’s ancient nomadic inhabitants. Children from 6 to 12 years receive a 50% discount if staying with their parents in the same dome (advisable 6 years minimum age). Discount will be applied after the online inquiry. Check out the kids’ guide to EcoCamp!

 

EcoCamp Patagonia Suite Dome 

(Heating & Private bathroom, 28m²/300ft²)

Suite domes were designed to further our goal of providing comfort in a natural setting with minimal environmental impact, and also maintain the hotel’s familiar and cozy vibe. The domes have comfortable double or twin beds, a wood stove and a private bathroom with a state-of-the-art composting toilet. Stargaze through the ceiling windows while falling asleep, after enjoying a spectacular sunset from your private terrace.

 

EcoCamp’s Suite Dome Lofts

(2 floors, Heating & Private bathroom, 37m²/398ft²)

Suite dome lofts are two-storey domes which fit up to four people and have comfortable double or twin beds both up and downstairs. These domes, ideal for families or groups of friends, come with a wood stove, a private terrace and a private bathroom with a state-of-the-art composting toilet. Stargaze through the ceiling windows while falling asleep, after enjoying a spectacular sunset from your private terrace.

 
 

 

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