Dramatic landscapes supplied us a constant Kodak minute during. It’s late spring in the area and the weather has been cooperative with a great deal of sunlight. This is a land where the unexpected is the standard, so we came prepared for occasional rain and wind.
Following a break at the beautiful Hotel Neruda and a city tour in Santiago, we flew south to Punta Arenas. There we moved 2 hours by coach to Puerto Natales in the Patagonia steppe. We welcomed an overnight in the spartan but comfy Charles Darwin Hotel along with a fantastic dinner of king crab and salmon.
The next day we sailed a few hours onto the cutter boat”21 de Mayo” up the fjord of Ultima Esperanza. We stopped for a hike around the fantastic Serano Glacier along with a lunch on Saturdays in a remote cattle ranch. Afterwards we boarded zodiac boats for a thrilling trip to our lodge situated inside Torres del Paine National Park. Hosteria Pehoe is pastoral to get a rate of 200 per area but it is determined by the edge of a turquoise glacial lake with an indescribably lovely view. The background of this spiny tall rocky mountains capped with ice hockey was as vibrant as a postcard.
Three days were spent traveling the park. We managed to photograph the wildlife such as guanaco’s of the llama family, foxes, flamingo, sea lions, black neck swans, condors, cormorants and more. Many in our group organized a nocturnal increase to look at the elusive puma but none have been seen. Spare time was supplied for horse riding and boating to magnificent Grey Glacier that was a joy. Some people opted to get a tough 8 hour hike up the famous towering peaks called The Torres.
We flew to Puerto Montt and checked to the first class Resort Gran Pacifica for four glorious nights to explore Chile’s lake area. It started in Puyehue National Park using the background of two magnificent and incredibly active volcanos called Osorno and Calbuco. The day was spent in the hot springs area of Aguas Calientes for a soak in the 110º crystal clear water. Here we engaged in a optional duplex cable swing experience through the treetops that was more fun than a barrel of monkeys. Enroute back into our resort, we seen a handicraft marketplace with superior purchases on alpaca sweaters and blue lapis stoned jewelry.
The following day we rafted the strong Petrohue River on course 4 and 3 white water rapids. Four individuals fell from an overturned raft but moist suites provided protection against the freezing water and specialist guides in kayaks had the ability to rapidly recover all. This trip for me was the highlight of this trip.
On day 8 we appreciated a catamaran cruise along the beaches of Saints Lake also called Emerald Lake for it’s lively colour in Peulla. The lush green woods is place in the Andes foothills and covers 220,000 acres. We photographed a series of beautiful and powerful waterfalls cascading over volcanic boulders of this ice capped Osorno.
Our holiday encounter ushered back in Santiago with a farewell feast of fish in a deluxe neighborhood restaurant. Prior to airport departure, we toured the Cavas del Maipo Winery. We enjoyed a lunch of excellent BBQ beef and imbibed on unlimited wine, such as many vintages which rank among the countries most prestigious exports.
Ten days was adequate here to find an eyeful. I have had my fill of salmon and lamb for a life and reflect back onto a trip well done. We had an excellent set of 35 participants, many who met strangers and returned as lifelong buddies. The price of the excursion was $2397 and taxes that comprised roundtrip air from Miami and all internal flights. The 100 Chilean entrance visa was additional. It was a fantastic value and the guides throughout were superb.
I’ve toured over 30 nations. The beauty here lies only from the remoteness; immaculate and unscarred character in her best glory. In Patagonia God created a perfect juxtaposition of all New Zealand’s fjords, Switzerland’s Alps along with British Columbia’s lakes and forests. Chile is a misnomer with no link to peppers. It had been the word for”land far away.” I felt much removed within this narrow territory that extends to the end of the world nevertheless managed to experience all of the conveniences of home. It certainly surpassed my expectations and I recommend it for any intrepid travellers record of must-see destinations of a lifetime.