Mt. Fitzroy, Argentina.

Classic Patagonia Treks Trip Notes

Ways to Travel:
Guided Group, Tailor Made Adventures
Destinations:
Argentina, Chile
Programmes:
Walking & Trekking
Trip Code:
TAF
Activity Rating - Challenging
Challenging

You have a good level of fitness and are looking for a physically challenging holiday.  Previous experience is essential for activity based trips.

15 Days Flight Inclusive
11 Days Land only
Min age: 18

Trip Overview

Experience breathtaking landscapes within two classic Patagonian trekking regions on both sides of the Chile/Argentina border. Challenging walks are rewarded with majestic views of lagoons, mountains and glaciers. See guanacos grazing and Andean condors soaring overhead, visit the spectacular Perito Moreno Glacier, and find sheer tranquillity in the beautiful wilderness of Torres del Paine National Park. An essential trip for trekking enthusiasts that reveals the stunning glory of nature’s southern American wonderland.

At a Glance

  • 8 nights hotels (6 for land only bookings) and 4 nights refugios (dormitories)
  • 6 days walking
  • Light backpacking necessary
  • Good fitness required
  • Altitude maximum 1,000m, average 200m
  • Group normally 4 to 16, plus leader. Min age 18yrs
  • Countries visited: Argentina, Chile

Trip Highlights

  • Stunning treks amongst the granite peaks of Torres del Paine National Park and the Fitzroy Massif
  • Visit Perito Moreno Glacier and watch huge icebergs calving from the glacier into Lake Argentino
  • Optional glacier trek on the Perito Moreno Glacier
  • Spend 4 nights inside Torres Del Paine National Park

Is This Trip for You?

Activity Level: 5 (Challenging)

This is a trek where it is preferable to have experience of long walks in varied and irregular terrain. The walking is not dangerous or technically difficult, but you must be a confident walker with a good level of fitness in order to manage the sections of ascent and long duration of the treks, combined with carrying your backpack on most days. Due to the unpredictability of the climate in southern Patagonia, you will need to be prepared for walking in all conditions, as the weather can change extremely rapidly, making clothing and footwear choices important. There is a rest day scheduled in the itinerary for the day in El Calafate. The regions we visit on the trip are very remote and you should be prepared to spend time in areas where facilities and services are limited. Roads are mostly unpaved and although well-maintained they can be bumpy and dusty. Walking hours stated are given as approximates only. Timings stated include lunch and photo stops and will vary depending on the pace of your group. There are several days where you have to carry all of your belongings with you on the trek (see 'What to Take' section, and daily itinerary text for details) so it is recommended that you pack lightly and are happy walking with a bag.  You may find our Fitness Training Guide a useful reference: http://www.exodus.co.uk/assets/pdf/Exodus_WT_Fitness_Training_Guide.pdf

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Adult min age:
18
Min group size:
4
Max group size:
16

Itinerary

Land Only

Start City:
El Calafate
End City:
El Calafate

Flight Inclusive

Start City:
London
End City:
London

Land Only Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start El Calafate; visit Perito Moreno Glacier.

    Flight inclusive bookings will have arrived into Buenos Aires on the previous day and been taken to the centrally located hotel by the tour leader before having a short city tour and opportunity for an evening out exploring the city. Flight inclusive bookings include internal flights from Buenos Aires down to El Calafate today.

    Those booking ‘Land Only’ will make their own way to El Calafate and meet up with the group at the hotel in El Calafate. If agreed with Exodus in advance then it will be possible to meet the group flight at the airport and join the transfer in to town if this is preferable.

    Today we'll drive the short distance out of El Calafate to visit the breathtaking Perito Moreno Glacier. One of the most famous geological sights in the world, the Perito Moreno glacier is one of only a few glaciers that grows and shrinks with seasonal fluctuations. It calves into Lake Argentino and sometimes part of the lake becomes land-locked depending upon the position of the ice. Every so often it is possible to see (and hear) huge lumps of ice break off and fall into the lake and then float away as icebergs.

    As there is an early morning start tomorrow we suggest sorting your luggage tonight and preparing a smaller bag that you will carry throughout the next 4 days of trekking in Chile. We have an agreement with the hotel in El Calafate that means excess luggage can be left securely until your return - the tour leader will give further details and assistance. Everything that you bring with you to Chile you will need to carry yourself on the treks.

    Standard Hotel

  • Day 2

    Travel to Torres del Paine N.P in Chile; transfer to first refugio.

    This morning we start early with a long but scenic journey crossing the Andean border that starts out on the Argentine plateau and emerges in the stunning Chilean landscapes of Torres del Paine National Park.  Once we arrive at the Lago Amarga entrance to the park we will meet our local guide who will join us for the next 4 days to provide expert guidance and insight. From here we will be transferred to our first refugio. This afternoon we will have the opportunity to enjoy some short treks around the area.

    Refugio

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 3

    Trek to the base of Las Torres viewpoint.

    Onwards and upwards we trek to one of the most impressive highlights of the park - the 'base of the towers'. A lakeside viewpoint from where you will look upon Torre Sur (2,850m), Torre Central (2,800m), Torre Norte (2,600m) and Cerro Nido de Cóndor. We descend back down the valley and return to our refuge to enjoy a hot meal and a well earned drink.

    Trekking time: Approximately 9 hours.

    Note: To and from the refugio to the base of the towers is an 18 km round-trip (8/9 hours) whereby you can leave your bag at the refugio. There will be lockers available to leave your things, but please make sure to bring your own lock as these are not provided.

    Refugio

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
    Distance covered: 18 km / 11 miles
  • Day 4

    Trek to Los Cuernos.

    We will walk down the valley towards the shore of Lake Nordenskjold and then follow the edge of the lake on a much flatter and easier terrain to reach Los Cuernos. This is considered by many to be one of the most charming sites in the whole park, a perfect spot to rest in our refuge for the night.  

    Trekking time: Approximately 4/5 hours. 

    Refugio

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
    Distance covered: 11 km / 6 miles
  • Day 5

    Trek to Valle Frances and on to Paine Grande.

    Another long day of trekking lies ahead as we venture into the French Valley. The first 2 hours involve some ascents and descents with views of Nordenskjöld Lake accompanying us until reaching 'Campamento Italiano'. Here you can leave your backpack (unattended) at the campsite if you wish, enabling you to walk the next part of the trek empty handed (keep valuables with you). The slight ascent lasts for about 1 and a half hours until French Glacier lookout, where we’ll be able to observe an impressive hanging glacier and listen out for the rumbling noises of small avalanches as great chunks of ice and snow fall off. The trail does continue until 'Campamento Británico' and on to another lookout point 'Mirador Britanico', but note that how far the group will walk up into the valley is dependent upon weather conditions, timings, and the condition of the group - the decision will be taken by the local guide who will walk with us whilst in the National Park. 

    We return back down along the valley to Campamento Italiano and continue our walk onwards past the shore of the smaller Lake Skottsberg and into the Pehoé sector of the park. We arrive in the late afternoon to the inviting and idyllic site of 'Paine Grande' refugio and can spend the evening gazing upon the clear night skies or relaxing in the on-site bar.

    Occasionally some groups may have full-service camping tonight instead of staying in the refugio dormitories - see accommodation section.

    Trekking time: Approximately 10 hours. 

    Note: This is the trek distance if reaching the very end of Valle Frances, often we only go as far as one particular viewpoint due to the weather and/or group condition. The total walking distance for today therefore becomes 17 km.

    Refugio/Camping

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
    Distance covered: 24 km / 14 miles
  • Day 6

    Trek to Glacier Grey viewpoint; catamaran and bus transfer to El Calafate.

    Today we will start early in order to see the third and final of the 'W-Trek' highlights - the Grey Glacier. This is a round trip to a lookout over Lake Grey that will end back at Refugio Paine Grande, so we can leave our bags and just carry any essentials with us. The trail goes along the western side of the Paine Massif with views to Lake Grey and various mountains. After about one and a half hours we will reach the lookout point and enjoy views of the Grey Glacier in the distance. We return by the same route back to Pehoé Lake from where we will take the Catamaran across the Lake to Pudeto sector. A bus will take us from here on the short drive to the park entry point at Laguna Amarga, and here we will board our transfer vehicle to Calafate (approx. 5/6 hours). After driving through beautiful scenery on our way out of the park (keep an eye out of the window for pumas!) we cross the border once more into Argentina and arrive late evening into the town of Calafate.

    Trekking time: Approximately 4 hours. 

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch
    Distance covered: 11 km / 6 miles
  • Day 7

    Free day at leisure to take part in optional excursions in and around El Calafate.

    This is a free day to either have a rest or you can also book optional tours in Calafate. We recommend the Perito Moreno Ice Trek or the half day tour to Estancia Nibepo Aike where you will have the chance to enjoy a typical Patagonian barbecue and see how a typical estancia works in Patagonia. Please ask your tour leader, and they will help you to arrange it.

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 8

    Transfer to El Chalten; free afternoon.

    In the morning we will transfer approx 3 hours to the small mountain town of El Chalten that will be our base for walking in the Fitzroy region. After arriving, the rest of the day is free to relax. Alternatively, for those who wish, there are many short treks around town, which your tour leader will help you to arrange. We spend the night in El Chalten at a simple and friendly hosteria.

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 9

    To Los Glaciares National Park; trek in Fitzroy Massif up to Laguna de Los Tres.

    This morning we start with a short 30 minute bus journey on the edge of Los Glaciares National Park to our start point at El Pilar from where we will commence our trekking in the stunning Fitz Roy region. We follow the trail leading to Poincenot Camp, along the way enjoying views of Piedras Blancas Glacier and Fitz Roy if the weather conditions are clear. From Poincenot we then continue onwards to reach 'Laguna de los Tres', involving a steep ascent to reach a wonderfully scenic spot from which to relax and take photos of the Fitzroy Massif. We descend back down from the viewpoint and walk back down from the mountains to eventually reach the town of El Chalten on foot.

    Trekking Time: Approximately 8/9 hours. 

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch
    Distance covered: 18 km / 11 miles
  • Day 10

    Trek to Torres Glacier and Cerro Torre viewpoint; return on foot to El Chalten.

    Today we will trek into a beautiful valley and make our way toward the stunning Torre glacier viewpoint. If time permits, we might be able to continue on to the Maestri Lookout at Laguna Torre (this 4km section of the walk can get very windy) before walking back to El Chalten.

    Trekking time: Approximately 7/8 hours. 

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch
    Distance covered: 15 km / 9 miles
  • Day 11

    Transfer to El Calafate; fly back home.

    After breakfast we will transfer by road down to El Calafate airport. This is quite a long journey and we allow approx. 3/4 hours in order to arrive on time for the midday or afternoon flight to Buenos Aires.

    For Land Only bookings – the trip ends at El Calafate airport and the internal flights are not included in the price of the trip.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast

All ascents, descents and distances listed above have been measured by our local partners or tour leaders. Please note that different GPS measuring devices can give differing results dependent on the barometric pressures at the time. Measurements stated throughout these trips notes are given to help you understand the types of terrain and distances you will encounter.

Extend Your Trip

Iguazu Falls Extension

To the far North East of Argentina, boarding Brazil lies the magnificent falls of Iguazu (or Iguassu).  Add four additional days to your trip to experience this awe-inspiring sight. Staying on the Argentinian side you will have the opportunity to wander around this UNESCO World Heritage National Park packed full of flora and fauna. In the heart of the park you will find the cascading waters. This spectacular waterfall is not to be missed. You can also get up close to the falls by taking a boat trip as an optional extra.

The detailed itinerary can be found here.

Please ask your sales consultant for more details.

It is possible to upgrade to premium accommodation- please call for details. 

Accommodation

Hotels & Refugios

8 nights hotels (6 for land only bookings) and 4 nights refugios (dormitories).

We use comfortable and welcoming small hotels when staying in towns in the south of Argentina. Within Torres del Paine in Chile we will stay in ‘Refugios’ located within the national park along the trails. They are sociable places, and have all the amenities we will need; including hot showers, food, drink, and comfortable bunk beds with bedding provided in dormitory style rooms.

For the 4 nights staying in refugios within Torres del Paine National Park, it has become increasingly common for these properties overbook themselves and inform us at late notice that our groups will be camping as opposed to staying in the dormitories. In these instances, they each have adjoining campsites and tents are pre-erected for us, with all equipment (including sleeping bags) included. Anyone who has paid a single supplement is able to have a single tent, and others will be on a twin share basis as per the hotel rooming on the rest of the trip. Meals are all still included in the refugios, and sleeping under the stars certainly has its perks in this part of the world. We may not necessarily be able to tell you in advance of travel whether or not your group will be camping. If you have any concerns about this then do get in touch with us.

For those booking Flight Inclusive, this includes 2 nights in Buenos Aires (at the start and end of the trip) where we use an international style hotel in a central and safe area of Buenos Aires. Single accommodation can be booked for the hotel nights but doesn't apply to the 3 nights in refugios.

Please note single accommodation can be booked for the hotel nights but it doesn't apply to the 4 nights in refugios.

Where a single supplement is available, paying for a single only guarantees a room for single use. It does not always mean a twin or double room will be provided for sole occupancy.

Single supplement from CHF 481.00

Food & Transport

Eating & Drinking

Hotel breakfasts are normally buffet-style and are included. The accommodation in Torres del Paine will arrange packed lunches for days when we are trekking. There is a variety of good quality food on offer in local restaurants and cafes usually for relatively low prices (although the refuge that we stay in for the standard itinerary in Torres del Paine is the exception as facilities here are limited).  Please advise us at the time of booking if you have any special dietary requirements. Vegetarians are catered for throughout the trip, but gluten free diets can be hard to cater for in this part of the world - you may wish to bring supplementary food items. 

Transportation

We use minibuses which are comfortable and have excellent visibility, and sometimes larger tourist coaches. We also use internal flights between Buenos Aires and El Calafate that are generally on medium-sized comfortable commercial jets. Please note that internal flights are not included in the price of the trip for land only bookings, as the tour starts and ends in El Calafate.

Weather & Seasonality

Weather Information

Since Argentina is in the southern hemisphere, the seasons are the reverse of those which we experience in Europe. Trips to Patagonia are organised between October and April to take advantage of the longer, warmer days. During these months the summer temperatures in Buenos Aires reach a maximum of 35ºC, in Calafate around 22ºC and in the extreme south around 19ºC. These are maximum figures, and the average can be taken as being somewhat lower; night time temperatures in Patagonia and the south will certainly be very much colder than this, and in some cases freezing. It can be extremely windy and it can rain at any time of year. The chart below for Punta Arenas is fairly representative of standard conditions for the areas visited on the trip. There are two distinct seasons at the Iguazu Falls - the summer is hot and humid with average temperatures in the mid-20s, but in winter it can be surprisingly cool, with an average daily temperature of 15ºC. It is mostly sunny, but rains are quite common in spring and summer.

Weather Charts

Buenos Aires

Joining Instructions

Travelling flight inclusive

15 days, normally depart London Sat, return Sat

Itinerary Start

The group flight from London is an overnight flight departing the day before Day 1 of the itinerary.

Travelling land only

11 days, normally start El Calafate Mon, end El Calafate Thu

The tour starts and ends in El Calafate (day 3 to day 13). You will therefore have to make your own travel arrangements to get to and from El Calafate. We can book pre/post nights in either El Calafate or Buenos Aires for anyone who wants them.

If arriving in to El Calafate airport at the same time as the group internal flights from Buenos Aires (AEP or EZE airports), then you can join the group transfer for the short distance in to the town. Just ask us for the group flight times, but be advised that schedule changes with Aerolineas Argentinas are commonplace. Otherwise, you'll meet up with the group at the hotel in El Calafate and an arrival letter will give you the specific meeting time instructions. Please let us know your arrival details and joining arrangements before travelling.

Regional Flights

The Flight Inclusive price is based on a London departure, but we are happy to tailor this to your local or regional airport. Please ask about flights from local or regional airports.

If booking regional flights other than with Exodus, you must allow a minimum connecting time (in addition to the international check-in time) of 1 hour at Gatwick, and 1.5 hours at Heathrow; this is longer than the official minimum, but baggage handling is known to be subject to delays.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers will be sent to you as part of our Final Joining Instructions. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

Transfers Details

Airport transfers are included for those on the group flights. Please note that transfers are not included for clients arriving on any other flight, even if Exodus has booked it. 

If you require airport transfers, you may (by prior arrangement only) be able to join the group transfer. Transfers are arranged to coincide with the arrival time of the group flight ‐ please check the group flight details 2 weeks before departure. If you do not take this transfer, or miss it, you must make your own way to the joining point at your own expense.

 

Location start:
El Calafate
Location end:
El Calafate

What to Take

Essential Equipment

  • Main rucksack (comfortable to carry whilst walking)
  • Smaller rucksack
  • Lock to leave valuables in a locker in Torres del Paine (Day 3)
  • Warm jacket
  • Good waterproof jacket and trousers
  • Good walking boots with ankle support
  • Warm gloves
  • Sun hat
  • Strong UV protection sunglasses
  • Hand sanitiser Important

Most people split their luggage in El Calafate and just bring a smaller rucksack to cover the 4 days in Torres del Paine. We have an agreement with the hotel in El Calafate that means excess luggage can be left securely until we return to Argentina and spend another night in the same hotel - the tour leader will give further details and assistance on this. With this in mind, it is a good idea to bring a couple of extra smaller bags which you can leave items in. Everything that you bring with you to Chile you will need to carry yourself on the treks, and 3 of the 4 treks are of a point-to-point nature. This shouldn't pose a difficulty if you pack appropriately with a weight that you can manage and are happy to carry for extended periods. Anyone booking Flight Inclusive can also leave items/clothes at the hotel in Buenos Aires and collect them at the end of the trip. We are based in a hosteria in El Chalten for the trekking in Fitzroy, so there is no need to carry your luggage during any of the treks in Argentina. These walks are all round-trips with the same start and end points.

Internal flights in the destination country are subject to a weight limit of 15kg.

If the luggage weighs between 16-23kg, the extra charge per flight is 650 Argentine pesos (Approx. £30GBP).

Please note this cannot be organised prior to check in.

Optional Equipment

In addition to packing as lightly and sensibly as possible - we highly recommend that you bring a supply of plastic bags (such as black plastic bin-liners). These are useful to keep your clothes and belongings dry and clean.

We also recommend: gaiters; thermal underwear; head-torch, moisture wicking t-shirt; ear plugs. Walking poles are useful if you generally use them and find them to be supportive.

Forbidden items to import through Chilean Customs:

In Chile, the import of crop and animal products is strictly regulated in order to avoid vermin, plagues, and the diffusion of non-native plants and animals. Fresh fruits and vegetables cannot be imported. If you happen to be carrying such products they must be thrown away before getting to customs or declared and then handed over to be destroyed. You will be required to complete a declaration on arrival into Chile and luggage will be checked. Failure to comply with this legislation will result in large fines and time consuming difficulties with the border authorities. Please ensure you are not carrying these goods on arrival to avoid this problem.

We believe in reducing our negative environmental impacts wherever possible, this goes for when you need to spend a penny in the great outdoors! If no facilities are available there may come a time when you need to go to the loo behind a tree/bush/rock. To avoid leaving toilet paper behind we recommend taking biodegradable dog poo/sandwich bags with you. Once you have done your business you can pop the used toilet roll in here and take it off the mountain or trail at the end of the day and dispose of it when there are appropriate facilities available.

Reading List

In Patagonia Bruce Chatwin (Penguin) A classic account by the great travel writer of his experiences in Patagonia.
Natural Patagonia Marcelo D. Beccaceci (Pangaea Publishing) A bilingual guide to flora and fauna in the region, with great illustrations.
Trekking in the Patagonian Andes Clem Lindenmayer (Lonely Planet) A detailed guide featuring treks from the Chilean Lake District down to Tierra del Fuego.

MAPS

Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego (Automapa) A good map of the whole Patagonian region of Chile & Argentina, including separate national park maps.

Southern Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego Coast to Coast (Zagier & Urruty) Lots of relief detail, with glaciers, forest & mountains shown very clearly.

Practical Information

Passport

Argentina

All nationalities require a full passport that must be valid for 6 months beyond the intended length of stay. It is your responsibility to have the correct personal documents and to obtain your own visa, if one is necessary, in accordance with the regulations of the country you are to visit. The information below is primarily for UK passport holders, and other nationalities should check with their travel agent or the relevant embassies. We are not responsible for the actions of local immigration and customs officials, whether at points of entry or otherwise, and any subsequent effects.

Chile

All nationalities require a full passport that must be valid for 6 months beyond the intended length of stay. It is your responsibility to have the correct personal documents and to obtain your own visa, if one is necessary, in accordance with the regulations of the country you are to visit. The information below is primarily for UK passport holders, and other nationalities should check with their travel agent or the relevant embassies. We are not responsible for the actions of local immigration and customs officials, whether at points of entry or otherwise, and any subsequent effects.

Visa

Argentina

All nationalities require a full passport that must be valid for 6 months beyond the intended length of stay.

No visa required for holders of British passport.

If you are crossing the border into Argentina from Chile on your trip, we will need to know your profession in order to provide when entering Argentina.

The Argentine government charges a reciprocity fee which applies to Australian citizens. The amounts is as follows: Australians - US$100 (multiple entry). This fee must be paid before you enter Argentina. For full details, and to make the payment, please visit: https://virtual.provinciapagos.com.ar/ArgentineTaxes

Chile

British, most European and most other nationalities, including Canadians, Australians and New Zealanders, do not require visas. All other nationalities should contact the nearest Chilean Embassy if in doubt. Citizens of Australia pay a fee on first entry into Chile by air (cash US Dollars only, no credit cards or cheques) $95 - valid for only 90 days). There is no fee for other nationalities at the time of writing. The one-time charge is valid for the life of your passport so keep the stub stapled in.

Visa regulations can change without notice: please check the current regulations in good time to obtain a visa if one is required.

If you are travelling via the USA and are eligible to transit under the Visa Waiver Programme (most British and western European citizens with a machine readable passport are), you are now required to register in advance for an Electronic Travel Authority (ESTA). There is a US$14 charge for the ESTA, which is only payable online with a credit card. Please see our website www.exodus.co.uk/usvisa for further information. All other nonresidents passing through the US must get a visa in advance. Check with your local embassy or consulate for more details on how to obtain a visa.

Vaccination

Argentina

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has updated the travel advice for Argentina with an update to the Health section – an outbreak of Hantavirus has been reported in Epuyén, Province of Chubut in southern Argentina; for more information and advice, visit the website of the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC).

Bilharzia is known to occur in some of the lakes or rivers in Argentina, we therefore advise all to take advice from your guide or leader locally before venturing for a swim.

Dengue fever is also a known risk in Argentina. It is a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for Dengue, and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. We recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites.

Due to a recent outbreak of Yellow Fever in the Misiones province of Argentina, vaccinations are strongly recommended if you intend to visit the Iguazu Falls.

Zika fever is a mosquito‐borne viral disease and a known risk in places visited on this trip. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available, we therefore strongly recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites. 

Chile

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Tetanus, Typhoid, Hepatitis A. Dengue fever is a known risk in places visited. It is a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for Dengue, and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. We recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites.

Travel health can often be something people forget about before going away, but a little preparation and knowledge can go a long way to help you stay fit and healthy while abroad.

The above information can change at short notice; as we are not qualified to answer all your questions about travel health we strongly recommend you contact your Medical Professional or a Travel Health Clinic at least 8 weeks prior to departure for up-to-date information. Please note: vaccinations that are routinely recommended to residents of the UK, North America or Australasia are not considered to form part of the travel health advice, and you should ensure these are kept up to date where necessary.

For additional information please visit: https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries

We are advised that there is no risk of malaria on this trip.

Zika fever is a mosquito‐borne viral disease and a known risk in places visited on this trip. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available, we therefore strongly recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites. 

Insurance - are you adequately covered?

It is a condition of joining any of our holidays that you must be fully insured against medical and personal accident risks (to include repatriation costs and air ambulance or helicopter rescue services where appropriate). On arrival in destination for your trip, you will be asked to present details to your leader or local representative of your policy.

If you are resident in the UK we strongly recommend the Exodus travel insurance policy, this is specifically designed to cover all activities on your trip. If arranging your own policy please ensure that you are covered for all activities that are part of the trip, optional activities that you intend to take part in and/or on high altitude itineraries, that you are covered up to the maximum altitude of the trip.

Local Time

Argentina's Timezone:
America/Argentina/Buenos_Aires -03 (GMT -03:00)
Chile's Timezone:
America/Santiago -03 (GMT -03:00)

Electricity

Argentina's Electricity:

220 volts

Chile's Electricity:

220 volts

In Argentina and Chile electricity is 220 volts and it is easy to buy an adaptor at the airport or in Buenos Aires if needed. Batteries can be recharged in the hotels, and some plug sockets are available within the Torres del Paine refugios.

Money

Argentina's Currency

The Argentine Peso is the currency of Argentina with an exchange rate at the time of publication of approximately 46 to the UK£ and 35 to the US$.

Chile's Currency

The national currency of Chile is the Chilean Peso (CLP), with an exchange rate at the time of publication (August 2018) of approximately 856 to the GBP, 664 to the USD, 510 to the CAD, 770 to the EUR, 488 to the AUD and 445 to the NZD.

ATM Availability

Travellers cheques are only accepted in a limited number of places and so for this reason it isn't the most recommendable approach, plus they attract a commission %. Of course they do however offer security and can usually be replaced quickly if lost or stolen. The most straight forward method of obtaining travel money these days is simply to use your credit or debit card to withdraw cash directly from an cash machine at a local bank. ATMs supporting major credit cards are easily accessible in Buenos Aires, El Calafate and Puerto Natales. They will generally not be available in other more rural places visited on the itinerary. There is an ATM in El Chalten but it isn't always reliably functioning. If you intend on using your bank card then first inform your bank of your travel plans and destinations that you'll be visiting, and check that your card will indeed function outside of your home country.

Extra Expenses & Spending Money

We recommend that you take most of your spending money in US Dollars cash, since sterling and euros are less commonly exchanged and the rates of exchange are likely to be poor. We also recommend keeping the money in US Dollars, changing as and when necessary into Argentine Pesos. It is always wise to have some local currency for buying meals, snacks, incidentals etc. There are exchange facilities at Buenos Aires airport so you have the option of changing some money upon arrival if you wish. Your tour leader will give you more information on exchanging currency as you go along. Torn, damaged or marked bills can be refused so please make sure all your notes are clean and not too old.

Optional Excursions

  • Full day Estancia Cristina Discovery

USD 156.- (does not include lunch and entrance fees to National Park). Entrance Fees USD 35.- per person

  • Full day Glacier Cruise (Upsala/Onelli bay/Spegazzini)

USD 181.- (does not include lunch and entrance fees to National Park). Entrance Fees USD 35.- per person

  • Half day Cerro Frias with lunch/dinner 

USD 113. - (Departs daily at 9.30am or 5pm (approx 5 hours)

  • Half day Estancia Nibepo Aike with lunch or dinner

USD 95.- (Departs daily at 8.30am or 4.30pm (approx 6 hours). + Horse ride USD 30 extra

  • Mini ice trekking in Perito Moreno glacier

USD 182 up to 65 years old

  • Big ice trekking on Perito Moreno glacier

USD 290 up to 50 years old

Tipping

Our local staff are paid well and fairly for their work with Exodus, however we do recommend tipping the tour leader at the end of the trip if you have been happy with their service. Gratuities are not something we can include in the tour cost, and are of course totally at your discretion. We recommend approximately USD 50 per person as an amount that will be appropriate to tip your tour leader. There will also be local guides on the trekking days so you should budget USD 3-5 per day for their tips as well. Tour leaders will often collect an optional kitty at the start of the tour to cover tips for the local guides things plus things like hotel and restaurant staff etc.

Responsible Tourism

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Exodus Community

Join the Exodus online community

Don't forget to visit the Community area on our website. You can view the range of Exodus videos and podcasts, read trip write-ups which have featured in the national media and take advantage of some special deals on travel gear and equipment.

In the Community Travel Forum you'll find the Departure Lounge where you can discuss your trip with fellow travellers before you depart. When you get back from your holiday remember to upload your images to the relevant trip page on our website. This helps other people see what our holidays are really like and you'll be entered automatically into our monthly photo competition.

To make full use of the Community you'll need to join My Exodus. It's free, registration is simple and easy, so what are you waiting for?

Important Information

On all guided trips

Although our leaders are well trained to deal with different capabilities, if they have any concerns about someone’s ability to safely partake in an activity, or their impact on other people’s enjoyment, we authorise them to take necessary action which, in some circumstances, may involve asking someone to miss that activity.

Although rarely enforced, by booking this trip you agree to section 14 of our Booking Conditions which clearly states that our leaders have the authority to do this. In these circumstances we will ensure anyone sitting out is safely provided for and offered alternative options where possible. Refunds will not be provided for activities missed and customers may be liable for additional costs incurred.

On all trips

In booking this trip you should be confident in your ability to participate in all activities described in these Trip Notes. If you have any doubt about your suitability you should call the Exodus office and ask to speak to one of the experts on this itinerary.

In an emergency, please contact our 24 hour out of hours service on +44 (0) 844 326 7041.

Every time that you travel abroad you should take the time to read the warnings in the essential information in the brochure.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers, and details of how to reach the start point, will be sent to you approximately 2 to 3 weeks prior to departure. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

The information in these Trip Notes is given in good faith. Where differences exist between the Trip Notes and our current brochure or website, the Trip Notes supersede the brochure and website. All holidays can be subject to unexpected changes; in order to enjoy them you should be prepared to be flexible where necessary. Occasionally, as stated in our brochure, it may not be possible to follow the itinerary as planned. This may be for a variety of reasons - climatic, political, physical or other. In these circumstances we will make the best possible alternative arrangements that maintain the integrity of the original itinerary.

As fuel prices, airport taxes and exchange rates fluctuate, and airlines manage their rates to match demand, it is proving harder than ever to guarantee our Flight Inclusive prices. Although we endeavour to keep our website as accurate as possible, daily fluctuations mean that our Flight Inclusive price may be out of date. For accurate prices we recommend that you contact one of our Travel Experts, or your Travel Agent.

This trip includes time by a lake, river or sea, where there may be opportunities to swim. Swimming results in more tourists deaths than any other activity. All customers should always seek local advice before deciding whether to swim, and are requested to treat the sea with extreme caution if they choose to enter the water. Details on how to keep yourself safe while swimming are shown here.

TRAVEL AWARE –STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD

 

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office and the NHS have up-to-date advice on staying safe and healthy abroad. For more on security, local laws, plus passport and visa information, see https://travelaware.campaign.gov.uk/

Keep informed of current travel health news by visiting https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/

Advice can change so check regularly for updates.

For all latest travel information about your holiday, please visit our Travel Safety Advice page.

How to Book

1. Check availability

Go online to check availability, or contact us by phone or email.

2. Secure your place

You can provisionally hold a place on this trip, usually for between three and seven days.

3. Complete your booking and payment

When you're ready to book, go to www.exodus.co.uk for online booking, book over the phone or you can complete a booking form (available online or on request by calling us). We accept all major credit and debit cards, or you can pay be cheque. Book with confidence: Exodus is fully licensed and bonded as a tour operator. We hold Air Traffic Organisers Licence (ATOL) number 2582 issued and bonded with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). We are also bonded to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and we are members of the Federation of Tour Operators (FTO) and ABTA ‐ The Travel Association. This means you can book your Exodus holiday with confidence, as all monies paid to us for your trip are fully protected.

TRIP NOTE VALIDITY

These Trip Notes are valid from the "Current as" date on page one. They will occasionally be updated post booking and pre-departure; if there are any updates that significantly impact the inclusions or itinerary bookers will be written to separately. All customers will also receive a link to the most up-to-date version of the Trip Notes with their Final Joining Instructions pre-travel.