Winter in Patagonia holiday
Description of Winter in Patagonia holiday
The Torres del Paine National Park in Chilean Patagonia is beyond a shadow of a doubt one of the world’s finest trekking destinations, and as such, it has a tendency to get kinda busy. But visit in winter, when daytime temperatures range from 5°C to -3°C, and the park is blissfully quiet. If you can stand the cold then, a winter trekking holiday in Patagonia is the best way to experience this iconic location with almost no-one else around.
This week-long small group tour operates in the winter months between June and August. You’ll arrive into the gateway town of Puerto Natales, then spend the next six four days trekking around some of the park’s most famous and spectacular routes: the French Valley, to Paine Grande, the Grey Glacier – all on the itinerary, all breathtaking.
Daily hikes are challenging but suitable for anyone with a reasonable level of fitness and some experience. Expect to cover around 20km each day over seven or eight hours with the assistance of a professional guide. Walking poles are a good idea, and you should pack for heavy snow as well as cold.
Spot puma tracks in the snow as you approach the base of the towers; admire stunning views of Cerra Hoja and Cerra Mascara, and watch out for wildlife including foxes, condors and eagles. And of course, it’s always worth keeping an eye on those steep rock faces because winter is the best time of year to spot puma here. You will stay in basic but comfortable refugios, and be provided with three solids every day of locally sourced food.
The terrain can be demanding, the weather more-so, during winter in Patagonia. But the scenery, the thrill of exploring this magnificent park with so few other people around, and the camaraderie of your group, will motivate you to get going every day. If you’ve never been winter trekking before, this trip will make you a firm convert.
Check dates, prices & availability
PlanetWASTE: In Chile, we practice a Leave No Trace principle. This is important in preserving the Torres del Paine National Park. Reducing waste and reducing the environmental impact of tourism is a big priority of our company in all the place we operate. In Patagonia we incentivize environmental stewardship in the Andes mountain regions by assessing all partner lodges based on local ownership, energy-sourcing, and waste disposal. Our lodges in the Torres del Paine National Park go to great measures to reduce impact in this remote area by packing in and out supplies and waste. The Andes region of Chilean Patagonia is a precious resource and we must help to protect it. All meals are provided with food that is sourced locally to minimize packaging and waste. Our Chilean guides serve as environmental and waste reduction educators on the trail. They talk about the environmental issues that are challenging the Patagonia region and they demonstrate and educate best practices for responsible travel to our travelers.
WATER: In Chile, we encourage the use of reusable bottles instead of purchasing plastic bottled water. We actively educate clients on the impact of plastic products on the remote environments of the Torres del Paine National Park and all of Patagonia. Within the Torres del Paine National Park the water in most of the streams is drinkable without treatment. Our guides encourage our travelers to drink the stream water to really demonstrate the importance of the protection of the water supply and environment.. In areas of Chile where water must be treated, we utilize ultraviolet (UV) purification systems on the trail to avoid boiling water over flame or propane when possible. Having to build a fire or boil water, or carry propane into the mountains creates waste pollution. This ultraviolet (UV) purification systems practice eliminates tens of thousands of wasteful water bottles being purchased and discarded and that could potentially pollute the Chilean environment.
PeopleFRIENDS AND NEIGHBORS: With our company, we are committed to doing travel right. We see travel in Chile as one of the most effective means of investing in amazing people and places. We hire experienced local Chilean guides from the local communities in which we operate. Our guides either come from Punta Arenas and Puerto Natales or have spent most of their lives in this southern Patagonia region. This is not only the responsible thing to do but provides a better and more authentic travel experience. We invest 10% of our total revenue in the form of microcredit to small-scale entrepreneurs in the communities of Chile. We partner directly with FINAM and Banigualdad, microfinance institutions that provide low-interest capital to small businesses in the regions where we operate. This is our mission, our passion, and what makes our company very unique in the travel industry.
A FAIR DEAL: In Chile our company partners up with local lodge owners in Santiago, Puerto Natales, and in the Torres del Paine National Park. We partner with local drivers and transport companies that employ local Chilean residents. We focus on partnering with other local businesses in the areas and communities we operate, to maximize the local benefit from tourism. We practice a Leave No Trace principle on all our expeditions and we incentivize environmental best practices among our partners. Our teams are locally hired within Chile. We travel with respect and preservation of local Chilean customs and with that perspective in mind we educate those who travel with us in the importance of preserving these important factors that make Chile an amazing place to visit and protect.