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Close to people's heart

Patagonia, National Parks

Argentina/Chile - Budget – Self-guided tour – 14 days / 13 nights
patagonielessenciel

 Highlights…:

• Take the famous Route 40 from El Calafate to El Chalten ;
• Admire the superb glacier Perito Moreno ;
• Hike in El Chalten, Argentinean capital of trekking ;   
• Reach Fitz Roy, the sacred granite mountain of Patagonia ;
• 4 nights in the heart of Torres del Paine National Park.

Nature : box black box black box black box black box black -  Culture : box black box withe box withe box withe box withe
Encounters : box black box withe box withe box withe box withe -  Trekking : box black box black box black box black box withe

 

Starting from $ 2495 USD*

 

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Travel through the unspoiled vastness of Patagonia on this journey to the end of the world. This adventure takes you to the remote region of Patagonia to glimpse some of its wildlife and explore its majestic mountains and glaciers.
The National Park of Los Glaciares in Argentina and the National Park of Torres del Paine in Chile, both declared World Heritage for the extraordinary natural beauty of their glaciers, icebergs, lakes and rivers. Only the high peaks of granite have resisted and continue their fight against the erosion, leaving behind a variety of incredible landscapes. Patagonia‘s scenic beauty will leave you a true sense of wonder.

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ITINERARY…

Day 1 – BUENOS AIRES, THE CITY THAT LOOKS AND FEELS EUROPEAN
Arrival by international flight
After landing in Buenos Aires, our driver will take you to your hotel, located in the city centre. A member of our team will provide you with a road book and a mobile phone to keep in touch with us 24/7. The rest of the day is yours to explore on your own the most famous and picturesque areas of the capital city: El Caminito and San Telmo, at the origins of Tango, Puerto Madero, the ancient harbour and Plaza de Mayo. 
  • Transport : private transfer - 45 min + public transport
  • Accommodation: family run hotel
  • Included meals: none
Day 2 – PATAGONIA, PURE NATURE…
Flight Buenos Aires > El Calafate
Bus El Calafate > El Chalten
Private transfer to the airport for your flight to El Calafate. From there, a bus will take you directly to El Chalten, a colourful town on the edge of Los Glaciares National Park. Truly beautiful scenery along the route, with the turquoise waters of Lake Argentino and Lake Viedma. Take a first glance at Viedma glacier and the granite peaks of Mount Fitz Roy. Stay freely this day at El Chalten, resting and enjoying this small town and its many viewpoints.
  • Transport: regular bus service - 3h
  • Accommodation: family run hotel
  • Included meals : breakfast
Day 3 – ICE AND GRANITE
Early departure for your first hike at the foot of Mount Fitz Roy with its peaks and glaciers. Walk along turquois lakes before returning to El Chalten. A beautiful trek to discover the hanging Piedras Blancas Glacier and move along the shores of the lagoons Madre and Hija and De los Tres, all set in a magnificent scenery and wildlife.
  • Accommodation: family run hotel
  • included meals: breakfast
  • Trekking : 6 - 7h easy hike
Day 4 – PLIEGUE TUMBAO TREK
Leave early in the morning to climb Pliegue Tumbado with 360° views across the Fitz Roy massif and Lake Viedma. This fantastic trek crosses the Patagonian steppe and native forests where you can observe native fauna and possibly spot some marine fossils.
  • Accommodation: family run hotel
  • Included meals : breakfast
  • Trekking difficulty: 8h medium hike. 800m gradual change in altitude.
Day 5 – FITZ ROY, MAJESTIC SUMMIT
Bus El Chalten > El Calafate
Hike to Lake Torre for stunning views of Mount Torre, a major challenge for best climbers. The lake, fed by Mount Torre’s glacier, lies at the foot of this incredible 1000m high granite tower, with its famous needle shaped peak surmounted by ice cap. The Fitz Roy, also known as cerro Chalten, is very arduous to climb. Leave El Chalten by bus in the late afternoon to arrive in El Calafate in the evening.
  • Transport: regular bus service - 3h
  • Accommodation: family run hotel
  • Included meals : breakfast
  • Trekking : 5 - 7h depending on the trail
Day 6 – ESSENTIAL PERITO MORENO
Experience the famous Perito Moreno Glacier. This is the most active glacier in Patagonia and with some luck you will hear the terrible cracking noise and possibly observe a massive block of ice falling into Lake Argentino. Depart from your hotel for the Los Glaciares National Park following the old road that borders the lake. Stop just a few kilometres from Perito Moreno glacier to enjoy a short hike to admire the glacier along the arm of Lake Rico. Inside the park, reach the main observation point and later enjoy different perspectives of Perito Moreno from the many viewpoints. Enjoy this amazing show of ice from up-close. Back to El Calafate by the conventional route.
  • Transport : van - 2h
  • Accommodation: family run hotel
  • Included meals : breakfast
  • Trekking : 1h30 
  • Entrance to the park not included (ARS$ 260 p./p.)
Day 7 – EL CALAFATE
Free day for you in El Calafate to enjoy the surroundings. We recommend the navigation on Lake Argentino, a horse ride and a visit to Laguna Nimez. …
Excursions can be booked either on site or through us.
  • Accommodation: family run hotel
  • Included meals : breakfast
Day 8 – TORRES DEL PAINE, CHILE
Leave early in the morning to the National Park of Torres del Paine in Chile. Crossing the Argentine pampas to the Chilean border, you will observe ñandus and guanacos in their natural environment. Arrival at the Park is schedule at about 10am. A van will take you to the most outstanding view points of the park with some beautiful trails. Make sure you get in touch with nature. Finally the van leaves you at Pudeto, on the other side of Lake Pehoe, where you take a boat across the lake.
  • Transport: van - 5h
  • SAccommodation: refuge
  • Included meals : breakfast and dinner
  • English speaking guide
  • Entrance to the park and lake crossing not included
Day 9 – GLACIER GREY
Today you will hike to Grey Glacier. The hike is a little demanding but with spectacular landscapes. First you will observe the impressive icebergs floating on Lake Grey; on the way back, you will appreciate the Grey Glacier, this incredible river of ice with its 5km and 70m high front.
  • Accommodation: refuge
  • Included meals : breakfast, lunch and dinner
  • Trekking : 6 - 7 h – 600m change in altitude.
Day 10 – FRENCH VALLEY
Discover the French Valley in the morning where glaciers hang from mountain peaks. The trail is incredibly beautiful, running through native flora and exposing the many hanging glaciers and waterfalls. Climb the valley without the bags that you will get on your way back, before heading to your next destination, camping Italiano.
  • Accommodation: refuge
  • Included meals : breakfast, lunch, dinner
  • Trekking : 7 - 8h – 500 to 800m change in altitude
Day 11 – LAKE NORDENSKJOLD
Hike along the blue waters of Lake Nordenskjold passing by the Horns of Paine, a massif remarkable for its colours and shapes. Finally, take an impressive trail winding its way towards the famous vertical granite face towering more than 1.000 meters, overlooking a small glacier mounted on a glacial lake.
  • Accommodationt: refuge
  • Included meals : breakfast, lunch and dinner
  • Trekking : 8 - 10h – 500 to 800m change in altitude
Day 12 – El CALAFATE 
Return to the park’s entrance to take a van back to El Calafate, where you are scheduled to arrive by the end of the day. Before leaving though, we recommend you to enjoy the sunrise over the Paine Towers. Catch sight of the first rays of the sun turning the massif into a brilliant pink hue.
  • Transport: van - 4h
  • Accommodation: family run hotel
  • Included meals : breakfast and lunch
  • Trekking : 2h30 
Day 13 – BACK TO BUENOS AIRES
Flight El Calafate > Buenos Aires 
Free morning in El Calafate. Transfer to the airport for your flight to Buenos Aires, where our driver will take you to your hotel.
  • Transport: van - 30mn
  • Accommodation: family run hotel
  • Included meals : breakfast
Day 14 – FINAL DAY IN ARGENTINA
Departure of your international flight
Free time for you to explore the capital city. Three hours before your international flight, a transfer vehicle will pick you up at your hotel to take you to the airport.
  • Transport : private transport - 45 min
  • Included meals : breakfast
 
End of your adventure in Patagonia…

 

This program is only given as an indication. Transhumans reserves the right, directly or through its local partners, to replace transportation, accommodation, itinerary, as well as dates and departure times, without the participants being able to claim any compensation.This program is only given as an indication and can be arranged according to your needs. 

Dates and Prices

PRiCE 2016 (in $ per person): $ 2495 USD*/p.p.

*Price based on 2 participants in low season.


The price includes:

  • 2 domesticflights : Buenos Aires > El Calafate > Buenos Aires
  • Ground transfers as mentioned in the program
  • 13 nights: 9 nights in family run hotel, 4 nights in refuge - double room
  • Excursion to Perito Moreno glacier
  • Excursion to Torres del Paine park
  • All the meals mentioned in the programme
  • A road book with all the information necessary for the smooth running of your
  • A mobile phone to be in contact with us 24/7

The price does not include:

  • International flights ;
  • Entrances to  Glaciers National Park and Torres del Paine Park (about €25 p.p.); ;
  • Navigation on Lake Pehoe ;
  • The single occupancy supplement : € 220 ( no single room available with the host family);
  • Drinks and personal expenses ;
  • The comprehensive insurance and repatriation assistance.

... and more generally all that is not mentioned in « the price includes » section.

Some important facts

  • National flights are included ;
  • Transfers to/from airport/hotel/airport are included ;
  • Accommodation is included and selected based on quality and hygiene ;
  • Local partners are fairly compensated ;
  • 3% of the price of your trip goes directly to support a local educational project for cultural and environmental development .

Practical Information

PRACTICAL INFORMATION

Accompanying English and Spanish speaking guides
The day of your arrival, you will be received by an English speaking member of our staff. He/she will hand you a road book and a mobile phone, allowing you to be in contact with us 24/7 if needed. If specified in your program, he/she will also accompany you around the capital, giving you the basic practical information about the country or countries you are visiting.
During excursions you will be accompanied by a local Spanish speaking guide often also speaking English.

When to travel to Patagonia 
The best season for visiting this part of Argentina and Chile is from November to late April (summer and springtime in the southern hemisphere). Temperatures are pleasant and rainfall less abundant, making this period ideal for trekking and other outdoor activities. The climate can be capricious in Patagonia, with fierce winds, rain and clouds scurrying across the sky at a fast pace, constantly displaying the extraordinary scenery in a new light. It is not uncommon to have sunshine, wind, rain and even snow on a single day, even during summertime. The key is to layer for cold weather, take off layers when the day gets warmer and wear waterproof clothing. 

Besides this season, two recommendable months are July and August. These are very cold months in Patagonia but the weather normally stabilize in this period with many beautiful sunny days and little wind! . 

Local Transportation

Travelling by bus is the most popular and cheapest way to discover the country. Classes range from Semi-Cama to Cama Suite with wider seats which are reclining to a horizontal position almost like being in bed. Distances are long and it takes more than 40 hours bus ride from El Calafate to Buenos Aires. Bus lines connect major cities together. The buses run at an average speed of 80 km/h. For long distances, the plane remains the most convenient mean of transportation.

NOTE : TransHumans offers the option of booking for you the international flight ticket; we will seek and book for you the best deals. Price may vary depending on the time of purchase but can vary between $1000 and $1,600 insurance included.

Formalities

PASSPORT & VISA : A valid passport is sufficient for most European and US citizens; a tourist visa will be issued at entry to the territory. If the stay exceeds the three months, it will be necessary to apply for a visa at the Embassy in your country. Contact your local embassy, or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements. IT'S YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO HAVE THE CORRECT TRAVEL DOCUMENTATION.
REMINDER : Make copies of all your important documents (passport, flight tickets, insurance, and credit card). Leave one copy of each at home and pack one with you.


EQUIPMENT

GOOD GEAR WILL ALLOW YOU TO BETTER ENJOY YOUR TRIP…

Clothing : 
Given the relatively wet weather prevailing in the region, it is essential to have waterproof trousers and jacket with you in your bag. Also bring warm clothes since evenings and nights are often chilly. Wearing layers of clothes can be a good idea to easily adapt to the weather conditions. Typical layers include: t-shirt, sweater, fleece, wind/water proof layer. We highly recommend lightweight, quick-drying technical clothing. Avoid rain capes as they easily get stuck to branches with the wind. 
Remember to take with you gloves, waterproof hiking shoes, hat and sunglasses (minimum lens category 3)!

Miscellaneous
-Toiletry bag (biodegradable products are preferred) 
-Small quick-drying towel 
-Sunscreen lotion
-Insect repellent DEET (+ 40% for good protection). Also useful against fleas which can be a nuisance for people with sensitive skin.
-Head torch (with spare batteries and bulbs) 
-Bottle and/or camel bag  
-Pocket knife (checked luggage) 
-Money belt or pouch to safely store your passport, currency, credit cards, personal papers, insurance papers. 
-A copy of your passport. 
-Power sockets in Chile are those commonly find in Europe type C and Italy type L; Voltage: 220 V. Power sockets in Argentina are type C and I; Voltage: 220 V

Medical Kit : 
-Antidiarrheal medication (i.e.smecta and imodium)
-Antihistamine 
-Plasters, sterile dressings and antiseptics 
-Medicine for pain or fever (such as acetaminophen, aspirin, or ibuprofen) 
-Elastic adhesive bandage 
-Anti-inflammatory ointment or cream
-Water purification tablets 
NOTE : Most of these products are also available in local pharmacies.

Luggage : Please arrange your belongings in two bags : 
-Small backpack (capacity 25/40 litres).This is your hand luggage you will take with you on the plane as well as every day during hikes, excursions and transfers. 
-Large waterproof backpack to check-in (capacity 60 to 90 litres). 
-Large plastic bag to protect from moisture your belongings in your backpacks.


HEALTH
Vaccines
The country does not present any health risks, and the water is potable almost everywhere. No vaccine is mandatory for Chile, but some are recommended:
-Tetanus-diphtheria
-Polio
-Pertussis
-Hepatitis B
For children and those born before 1980: measles, mumps - rubella.

Other risks

In recent years shelters and hotels in Patagonia have seen the proliferation of small bed fleas, despite regular cleaning being carried out. These bugs tend to be a nuisance for sensitive skin. Regular insect repellent is also effective against fleas. 

Medical Assistance
Medical care is excellent in most tourist areasboth in Argentina and Chile. For more remote areas, in case of urgent medical assistance, contact your local Embassy. We highly recommend you to contact your insurance as soon as possible..

Responsible Tourism

RESPONSIBLE TOURISM

Our Vision & Commitment

Cultural awareness is very important to us. Sensible to the local cultural traditions and beliefs, the beauty of the landscapes and the biodiversity of the ecosystems, we choose to limit the negative impact of our activities on the local environment. In addition to designing trips that aim at preserving the natural, cultural and social resources of the territories in the long term, we also include the concept of “Territorial Compensation”. The idea of Territorial Compensation is to help local people protect and conserve their ecosystem, enhance their cultural heritage and develop sustainable projects for their territory.

Based on this concept of Territorial Compensation, TransHumans donates 3% of the total price of each trip to this cause. The money goes directly into a solidarity fund that finances our ERECA program (Education Relative à l'Environnement et aux Cultures Aborigènes), an environmental and cultural program. Since 2007, we have supported various projects aimed at training and awareness-raising for the local communities.

If you want to know more about this+ : http://www.transhumans.fr/en/solidarity-project-transhumans