Tierra del Fuego and the Mountain Splendor of Chile and Argentina


Patagonia’s epic landscapes—the granite-and-glacier realms of Paine and Fitzroy and remote Tierra del Fuego, the archipelago at the “uttermost ends of the earth”—are like no other in the world. On this insider’s adventure, exhilarating day hikes—many of them starting right from our lodges—grant spectacular panoramas of the great shark fin of Fitzroy and the needle-like spire of Cerro Torre, the crown jewels of Argentina’s Glacier National Park, and the soaring rock towers of Chile’s Paine National Park, while explorations in Tierra del Fuego reveal penguin colonies, secluded islands, and sweeping views of the Beagle Channel. Throughout our journey, you’ll enjoy the good life, Patagonia-style, at fine hotels and inns, some of them exclusive to our group, including historic Estancia Helsingfors, a former sheep ranch on the shores of glacier-fed Lago Viedma.

Itinerary at a Glance

Days 1-3
Buenos Aires / Ushuaia / Tierra del Fuego

After exploring Buenos Aires, we head to Ushuaia for hikes along the secluded bays of Tierra del Fuego, keeping an eye out for the abundant birdlife including the Magellanic woodpecker and the regal Andean condor. On the Beagle Channel, a Zodiac ride brings us to a remote island for a hike and lunch at a shepherd’s hut (complete with a locally produced red wine!) and a visit to a Magellanic and Adélie penguin colony.

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Days 4-7
Los Glaciares National Park

Up-close perspectives of Fitzroy (11,703') and the slender granite pinnacle of Cerro Torre (10,280') are the thrill of our adventures in this famed park. One hike brings us through a valley of native lenga trees to Laguna Torre, a serene glacial lake with the spire of Cerro Torre soaring directly above it. Another takes us off the beaten track to Lomo del Pliegue Tumbado, a chain of three hills (4,400’-5,000’) that lie between the Rio Fitzroy and the Rio Tunel, for an unconventional 360-degree panorama of Cerro Torre, the Fitzroy Massif, and Lake Viedma.

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Days 8-9
Estancia Helsingfors

From renowned Estancia Helsingfors, a former sheep ranch set on the shores of glacier-fed Lago Viedma, our trails bring us through beech forests to stunning Lago Azul, a pristine lake with magnificent Fitzroy views, and possible sightings of Patagonia’s exotic creatures, including guanacos and rheas.

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Day 10
Moreno Glacier / Lago Argentino / Calafate

Crossing rolling Patagonian steppes to turquoise Lago Argentino, we follow a boardwalk with phenomenal views of the spectacular 20-story-high icewall of the Moreno Glacier, with its icebergs calving right into the lake—the sounds are as amazing as the views.

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Days 11-16
Torres del Paine National Park, Chile

With its granite spires, azure lakes, and massive glaciers, Chile’s Torres del Paine National Park is one of the natural masterpieces of the planet. Our lodges give us great access to the best areas of the park, with hikes starting right outside our front door, including the trail through the Ascencio Valley to the base of the three giant monoliths of the Paine Towers, a landmark of the park. Depart on Day 16 via Punta Arenas.

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See the best of Patagonia, from Tierra del Fuego to its greatest national parks
Amazing views of Fitzroy and Paine; choice of hiking options on many days
Remote islands of Tierra del Fuego
Comfortable inns, including Estancia Helsingfors, a landmark Patagonian estate


Length: 16 days
Cost From: $8195  
Arrive: Buenos Aires, Argentina
Depart: Punta Arenas, Chile
Lodging: 15 nights hotels and lodges
Meals: All meals included except 1 lunch and 1 dinner
Activity: Hiking / Trekking, Wildlife & Natural History
Trip Level:

10 hiking days on moderate to steep trails, 5-7 hours a day, altitudes below 5,000 feet