7-amazing trekking programs in Patagonia

Trekking to the Fitz Roy in El chalten

Patagonia is undoubtedly a paradise for nature lovers. This vast region located at the southernmost tip, or at least without reaching Antarctica, is wonderful for various activities. And undoubtedly, one of the most interesting and sought-after activities to do in Patagonia is trekking. Perhaps the star of adventure activities in this remote region of our fascinating planet.

Trekking in Patagonia: Why Patagonia is an amazing place to enjoy trekking activities?

Trekking in Patagonia is amazing. The vast region offers some of the most stunning landscapes on Earth.  Patagonia is renowned for its dramatic landscapes, including rugged mountains, towering glaciers, pristine lakes, and ancient forests. Trekking here means immersing yourself in breathtaking scenery at every turn.

The trekking trails in Patagonia can vary widely in difficulty, from gentle walks suitable for beginners to challenging multi-day hikes for experienced trekkers. Expect rugged and diverse terrain, including rocky paths, steep ascents, and river crossings.
Some of the most famous trekking routes in Patagonia include the Torres del Paine Circuit and the W Trek in Torres del Paine National Park, the Los Glaciares National Park in Argentina, and the Fitz Roy Trek near El Chaltén.

The weather in Patagonia can be unpredictable, with conditions changing rapidly from sunshine to rain, wind, and even snow, especially in the mountainous regions. Trekkers should be prepared for all types of weather and dress in layers.
Patagonia is home to a diverse array of wildlife, including guanacos, foxes, condors, and pumas. While trekking, you may have the opportunity to spot some of these iconic species in their natural habitat.

Much of Patagonia remains remote and untouched, offering trekkers the chance to explore pristine wilderness areas far from civilization. It’s an opportunity to disconnect from the modern world and connect with nature on a deeper level.

Planning a trek in Patagonia requires careful logistical planning, including choosing the right route, obtaining permits where necessary, arranging transportation to and from trailheads, and ensuring you have the appropriate gear and supplies.

Multi Adventure Tour in Torres del Paine
What is the best season to enjoy trekking in Patagonia?

Well, definitely, our summer. And by “our summer” I mean the warmer months, including also the spring and part of the autumn. The best season to enjoy trekking in Patagonia is generally during the Southern Hemisphere’s summer months, which correspond to the Northern Hemisphere’s winter, from late November to early March. There are several reasons why this season is ideal for trekking

Patagonia experiences milder temperatures during the summer months, making trekking more comfortable and enjoyable. Daytime temperatures are typically warmer, and there is more daylight for hiking.  The summer season in Patagonia generally sees less rainfall compared to other times of the year. While some rain is still possible, there tends to be fewer storms, reducing the likelihood of encountering inclement weather while trekking.

Many trekking trails and national parks in Patagonia are only open to visitors during the summer months. Snow and ice may obstruct paths and trails during the winter, making them inaccessible or more hazardous for trekking.

Patagonia’s wildlife is more active during the summer months, providing trekkers with better opportunities for wildlife sightings. This includes iconic species such as guanacos, foxes, condors, and even pumas.

Patagonia’s landscapes are at their most vibrant and colorful during the summer months. Glaciers are more active, rivers flow freely, and alpine meadows are filled with blooming wildflowers, creating stunning scenery for trekkers to enjoy.
For that reasons, the summer season offers the most favorable conditions for trekking in Patagonia, allowing visitors to experience the region’s natural beauty while enjoying comfortable temperatures and relatively stable weather. However, it’s essential to be prepared for variable weather conditions even during the summer months, as Patagonia’s climate can be unpredictable!

Expedition to Cagliero Glacier

What´s the best place to enjoy trekking in Patagonia?

Oh, well, that’s an interesting question. I believe I have the answer, although there are also other very interesting places where you can do the activity. The most obvious answer, however, is that the most important places for trekking in Patagonia are El Chaltén and the Fitz Roy area, and Torres del Paine National Park. The former in Argentina, and the latter in Chile. Now, there are also many interesting hikes from El Calafate, such as the minitrekking on the ice of the Perito Moreno Glacier, or the Big Ice, an even more demanding activity, trekkings in remote ranches, and interesting trekkings from Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world. But undoubtedly, we have to talk about El Chaltén and Torres del Paine as the most suitable places for this activity.

Let me suggest some good articles to learn more about trekking activities in El Chaltén and the Fitz Roy Massif:

Trekking in El Chaltén: Different trails and options available

The Fitz Roy Mount: The Trekking Mecca


Fitz roy and El Chaltén, 40 national route


And for Torres del Paine, you can read some interesting information here:

Torres del Paine National Park: General Facts and Trekking Activities

Trekking in Torres del Paine National Park


Now, let me make a list of the seven most interesting treks you can find and do in Patagonia. There’s no order of importance, it’s just a list for you to consider when organizing your trip.


7-amazing trekking activities in Patagonia

Fitz Roy Massif in Patagonia


1- Trekking to Laguna de los Tres (Fitz Roy Massif, El Chalten, Argentina)

The first suggested trekking is the famous trek to Laguna de los Tres, in El Chaltén. It’s a marvelous route. The trek to Laguna de los Tres is one of the most iconic hikes in Patagonia, located near the town of El Chaltén in Argentina. This challenging yet rewarding trail offers stunning views of the towering peaks of Mount Fitz Roy and its surrounding glaciers.

The trek typically starts from El Chaltén and follows well-marked trails through beautiful landscapes of forests, rivers, and alpine meadows. Hikers gradually ascend through rocky terrain, gaining elevation as they approach Laguna de los Tres.

One of the highlights of the trek is reaching the viewpoint overlooking Laguna de los Tres, where hikers are treated to breathtaking vistas of the turquoise lake surrounded by jagged peaks, including the iconic Mount Fitz Roy. The sight of the mountain reflecting in the glacial waters is truly unforgettable, especially during sunrise or sunset when the colors of the sky paint the landscape with hues of orange and pink.

While the trek can be challenging, with steep ascents and variable weather conditions, the stunning scenery and sense of accomplishment make it a must-do experience for outdoor enthusiasts visiting Patagonia. It’s recommended to be well-prepared with appropriate gear, including sturdy hiking boots, warm clothing layers, plenty of water, and snacks for energy. Additionally, checking weather conditions and trail updates before embarking on the trek is essential for a safe and enjoyable experience.


Book a trekking to Laguna de los Tres

Book a trekking to Laguna de los Tres



2 – W Trekking in Torres del Paine National Park

Another famous (and amazing) trekking is the W Trekking in Torres del Paine National Park, in Chile. No doublt, the W trek in Torres del Paine National Park is one of the most famous hiking routes in Patagonia, offering adventurers the opportunity to explore some of the park’s most iconic landmarks and breathtaking landscapes. The trek is named after the shape of the route, which forms a “W” as it winds its way through the park, passing by glaciers, turquoise lakes, towering mountains, and lush valleys.

The typical W trek itinerary covers approximately 50 to 70 kilometers (31 to 43 miles) over four to five days, although it can be customized based on hikers’ preferences and fitness levels. The trek usually starts and ends at the main entrance of the park, near the town of Puerto Natales.

Check some details about the W Trekking in Torres del Paine:

Base Torres (Base of the Towers): This section of the trek takes hikers to the base of the iconic granite towers of Torres del Paine. The trail ascends steeply through forests and rocky terrain before reaching the viewpoint overlooking the towers and the glacial lake below.

Valle del Francés (French Valley): The trek continues through the picturesque French Valley, surrounded by towering peaks and glaciers. Hikers can enjoy stunning panoramic views of the valley and its rugged landscapes.

Glaciar Grey (Grey Glacier): This section of the trek leads to the impressive Grey Glacier, one of the largest glaciers in the Southern Patagonian Ice Field. Hikers can walk along the shores of Lake Grey and marvel at the icy blue hues of the glacier as it flows into the lake.
Throughout the trek, hikers will encounter diverse ecosystems, including ancient forests, alpine meadows, and dramatic mountain landscapes. Wildlife sightings are also common, with opportunities to spot guanacos, foxes, condors, and other native species.

While the W trek is challenging, it’s suitable for moderately fit hikers with some hiking experience. The park offers basic amenities such as campsites, refugios (mountain huts), and ranger stations along the route, providing options for accommodation and supplies. However, hikers should be prepared for variable weather conditions, including strong winds, rain, and even snow, especially during the shoulder seasons.

Book a W Trekking in Torres del Paine

We have different options. Check some interesting programs below:




3 – Perito Moreno Glacier Ice Trekking (Minitrekking and Big Ice)

There are two of my favourites. The Minitrekking and Big Ice trekking activities offer unparalleled opportunities to explore the awe-inspiring landscapes of the Perito Moreno Glacier in the Los Glaciares National Park near El Calafate, Argentina. The Minitrekking excursion provides a moderate hike on the glacier’s surface, allowing participants to navigate through a mesmerizing maze of ice formations while learning about the glacier’s fascinating features. Meanwhile, the Big Ice trekking adventure delves deeper into the glacier, offering a more challenging and extensive exploration of its remote areas, including towering ice walls and crystal-clear formations. Both experiences promise unforgettable encounters with Patagonia’s natural wonders, making them must-do activities for visitors seeking adventure in this remarkable region.

Check more about differences between Minitrekking and Big Ice here


Book an Ice Trekking over Perito Moreno Glacier


4- “O” Trekking in Torres del Paine National Park

The “O” trekking route in Torres del Paine National Park is one of the most iconic and challenging multi-day hikes in Patagonia. This trek encircles the Paine Massif, offering hikers breathtaking views of towering granite peaks, pristine lakes, and expansive glaciers. The route typically takes around 7 to 9 days to complete and covers approximately 110 kilometers (68 miles) of rugged terrain.

The trek begins and ends at the park’s main entrance, passing through various landscapes, including dense forests, alpine meadows, and rocky moraines. Hikers navigate through valleys, ascend mountain passes, and cross suspension bridges while encountering diverse wildlife, such as guanacos, foxes, and condors along the way.

Highlights of the “O” trek include iconic landmarks like the Base Torres viewpoint, the stunning French Valley with its hanging glaciers, and the serene shores of Lake Pehoé. Hikers also have the opportunity to witness the massive Grey Glacier up close and marvel at its blue-hued icebergs.

While the “O” trek is physically demanding, with steep ascents and descents, the reward of experiencing the untamed beauty of Torres del Paine makes it a bucket-list adventure for outdoor enthusiasts from around the world.

Book the “O” Trekking in Torres del Paine National Park


5- Trekking to Los Baguales from Estancia Nibepo Aike, Los Glaciares National Park

On foot through the vastness of Patagonia, you can explore the corners of Estancia Nibepo Aike, surrounded by the wild beauty of the Sierra Baguales range, until you reach the hidden glaciers.

A 3-day, 2-night trekking experience, with overnight stays at an outpost of the estate serving as a refuge where you can experience authentic rural Patagonian life, concluding the journey with the Glaciar Sur Adventure excursion.

The Baguales are domestic animals that have escaped from humans to return to nature. This hill is named after them because some wild horses and cows still roam that remote area.

Book the Trekking to Los Baguales from Estancia Nibepo Aike



6 – Trekking to Base de las Torres, Torres del Paine

Another very famous trekking is the trekking to Base de las Torres. The trek to the Base of the Towers (Base de las Torres) in Torres del Paine National Park is one of the park’s most iconic and rewarding hikes. This trail leads hikers to the foot of the three granite towers that give the park its name, offering spectacular views of these towering peaks and the glacial lake below.

The trek typically begins from the Las Torres sector of the park, where hikers follow a well-marked trail that winds through lush forests and crosses over streams. As the trail ascends, it becomes steeper and more challenging, eventually leading to the base of the towers.

The final stretch of the hike involves navigating a rocky moraine, which can be challenging but is well worth the effort. As hikers emerge from the moraine, they are greeted by the awe-inspiring sight of the three towering granite peaks rising majestically above the glacial lake.

The Base de las Torres hike is approximately 18 kilometers (11 miles) round trip and usually takes around 7 to 9 hours to complete, depending on individual hiking speeds and weather conditions. It’s important for hikers to be prepared with appropriate gear, including sturdy hiking boots, layers for changing weather conditions, plenty of water, and snacks.

The trek to the Base de las Torres offers a truly unforgettable experience, allowing hikers to immerse themselves in the pristine wilderness of Torres del Paine and witness some of the most breathtaking scenery Patagonia has to offer.

Book a trekking to Base de las Torres



7 – Two-day expedition to Cagliero Glacier from El Chaltén

The two-day expedition to Cagliero Glacier is an exhilarating adventure that takes hikers deep into the heart of the pristine wilderness surrounding El Chaltén in Argentine Patagonia. This expedition offers a unique opportunity to explore one of the region’s most spectacular glaciers and experience the rugged beauty of the Andean landscape up close.

The journey begins with a scenic drive from El Chaltén to Estancia Gorra Blanca, where hikers are greeted by their expert mountain guide. From there, the trekking adventure begins, with participants hiking through breathtaking landscapes of forests, lakes, and towering peaks.

After a few hours of trekking, the group arrives at the base camp near Laguna del Diablo, where they set up camp for the night. Here, hikers can enjoy a well-deserved rest and take in the stunning views of the surrounding mountains.

On the second day of the expedition, hikers embark on a challenging trek to the Cagliero Glacier. The route involves traversing rocky terrain and navigating glacial moraines as they make their way towards the glacier’s towering ice walls.

Upon reaching the glacier, hikers are equipped with crampons and harnesses and receive a safety briefing from their guide before venturing onto the ice. Walking on the glacier’s surface, they have the opportunity to explore crevasses, ice caves, and towering ice formations while marveling at the glacier’s otherworldly beauty.

After spending several hours exploring the glacier, the group begins the journey back to Estancia Gorra Blanca, where a transfer awaits to take them back to El Chaltén. Along the way, hikers can reflect on their incredible adventure and take in the stunning scenery of the Patagonian wilderness one last time.

This two-day expedition to Cagliero Glacier offers an unforgettable experience for outdoor enthusiasts seeking to immerse themselves in the natural wonders of Argentine Patagonia. From challenging trekking to awe-inspiring glacier exploration, this adventure promises memories that will last a lifetime.


Book a 2-day trekking expedition to Cagliero Glacier



Picture of Ramiro Rodriguez

Ramiro Rodriguez

25 years working in travel market, as Sales & Marketing Manager in RipioTurismo, Marketing Manager in Nuevas Ideas Travel Consulting Group. Writer and travel lover.

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