On our wildlife odyssey with Argentine naturalist and long-time WT Trip Leader Karen Lund Petersen, we'll make a four-day expedition cruise through Tierra del Fuego, entering a realm of soaring fjords, ice floes, glaciers, and marvelous Fuegian wildlife. We then explore a completely different environment in Chile's renowned Paine National Park, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve and a surreal landscape of iconic granite towers carved by ice. Here we'll track pumas, the “ghost of the Andes,” with expert local trackers (Paine holds a higher concentration of pumas than anywhere else on Earth) and keep an eye out for guanacos, armadillos, flamingos, soaring condors, and more. Join us for the natural history trip of a lifetime!
Arrive: Ushuaia, Argentina
Depart: Punta Arenas, Chile
Pricing below is per person and based on double occupancy. The earlier you book, the more choice you’ll have. WT also has the most generous cancellation and transfer policies in the industry, we make it easy if you change your mind. Have a small group of your own? Take over an existing date or choose your own. You’ll have your own private guide–and the adventure–all to yourselves!
$600 due at time of reservation
90 days prior to departure: Balance
Minimum fee (non-refundable boat deposit): $300 per person
61-90 days prior to departure: 25% of trip cost
46-60 days prior to departure: 50% of trip cost
45 days or less: 100% of trip cost
*Please note that this differs from our standard policy.
Scroll through our signature accommodations for this trip below. Although it is highly unlikely, we may make substitutions when necessary.
Days 1-2 (2 nights)
Tierra del Fuego, Chile
Days 3-6 (4 nights)
Paine National Park, Chile
Days 7-10 (4 nights)
Estancia Cerro Guido is a charming working estancia with more than 100 years of history behind its name. What started as part of the Sociedad Explotadora Tierra del Fuego, the largest cattle network in the history of Chilean Patagonia, is now also a comfortable lodge located at the edge...
Punta Arenas, Chile
Day 11 (1 night)
A hundred-year-old building converted into a boutique lodge, this charming 8-room hotel has a hilltop location with panoramic views over the Strait of Magellan. The décor reflects the gaucho and ranching history of Punta Arenas and each guest room is decorated in a different theme. The hotel is about...
The trip is rated Level 2, Easy to Moderate, according to our trip grading system, with vehicle-based exploration and day hikes, hotel and lodge accommodations plus four nights aboard an expedition cruise ship. While this is not a hiking trip, it is an active adventure, and the shape you're in is an important factor in your enjoyment of your trip Please note that your Trip Leader may make adjustments to the itinerary and hiking routes, depending on local weather and trail conditions.
We time our trips for Patagonia's ideal weather, which is from late November through March, when we can enjoy the mildest temperatures and 16 hours of daylight. November (spring) is blessed with wildflowers and March (fall) offers the start of spectacular fall foliage. With its deep southern latitude, you might expect Patagonia's weather to be more "polar" than it really is. In fact, the austral summer temperatures are relatively moderate. During Patagonia's summer months (November through March in the Southern Hemisphere), the thermometer rarely drops below 40°F and will usually reach into the high 60s°F and even low 70s°F during the day. Nevertheless, the weather is radically changeable. Rain, sleet, and snow can occur at any time—perhaps just a few hours before or after sunny skies and 70°F temperatures.
The enormous, unbroken stretches of ocean to the west and south of the tip of South America leave the Patagonian Andes exposed to strong and persistent winds. Winds circling the globe between latitudes of 40s°F and 60s°F have little obstruction when they reach the tip of South America. Experiencing these winds is almost inevitable on any Patagonian journey. For most part, you can expect winds of 9 to 13 miles per hour, but they can occasionally gust much higher, quickly "cooling down" an otherwise pleasant day.
There's a saying that in Patagonia that you can experience all four seasons in one day, so be prepared for quickly changing weather. The best defense is proper clothing and layering, and our Pre-Departure Booklet has a detailed list of recommendations for layering.
"The puma sightings were the supreme highlight for me and the two puma trackers we had were absolute pros at getting us to see them. And seeing so many penguins and glaciers and walking on Cape Horn was another highlight of the trip for me. The design of the trip, having some days on the ship and others near the park, was a very good combination."
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Tierra del Fuego Cruise, Punta Arenas to Ushuaia
Small Group Adventure
Our Area Specialists know every detail about our tours. They will be happy to answer any questions and help you choose the journey that’s right for you. Contact us to learn more or book your trip today!
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With more than 200 different adventures to choose from, we want to help you find the trip that’s right for you. Our Trip Level system ranks each trip in two ways: a number rating from 1 to 6 according to the activity, and general travel rigors. 1 is the easiest and 6+ the most difficult—see descriptions below for explanations of each number. A plus (+) sign means the trip is a bit more strenuous than other trips of that level. The detailed explanation of each trip—below the bar with the number rating—is perhaps more important, specifying activities, altitudes, hiking, and travel conditions. The Detailed Itinerary, available by download or mail, gives further information. Our Area Managers can also answer questions and guide you to the trip that best suits your interests.
Level 1 – Easiest
Non-camping journeys, optional walks, little elevation gain or loss.
Level 3 – Moderate
Half- to full-day hikes (3-6 hours) over rolling countryside on most days, occasional steep trails. Many of our hotel-based walking tours are in this category, as are our snorkeling adventures.
Level 5 – Strenuous
Full-day hikes (4-8 hours), mountainous, steep terrain (hiking up or down as much as 3,500 feet) on many days. Trips with hiking at average altitudes of 10,000 to 12,000 feet are in this category.