Antarctica & Chile including remote Patagonia

Explore dramatic ecosystems: Patagonia's remote Aysén Region and the Antarctic.

Country Information

Chile

Antarctica & Chile including remote Patagonia New Reality

(Countries Visited)

Chile


(Interest Type(s))

Sustainable Travel

,

Adventure Travel


(Tour Length)

16 Days


Tour Highlights

Starting at: $16,663
  • Discover Chile’s charming and historic capital city, Santiago, founded in the mid-16th century and beautifully set amid a circle of mountains
  • Savor a 5-night cruise in the Antarctic, cruising between the South Shetland Islands and the western coast of the Antarctic Peninsula, sailing along ice-filled fjords and among spectacular icebergs
  • Take in the startling landscapes of the White Continent on a series of daily excursions by Zodiac with expert polar guides
  • Take in Patagonia’s famed Torres del Paine Park, a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve of remarkable landscapes of mountains, forests, pampas, glaciers, lakes, rivers and waterfalls
  • Experience the largely undiscovered Aysén Region in Chilean Patagonia, where the remarkable effects of tectonic movements, volcanism and glaciations can be seen in the islands, channels, fjords, ice fields, thermal waters and mountain ranges

Day 1: Arrive Santiago, Chile
Welcome to Chile.  Upon arrival this morning, you are met by your Big Five Chile representative and transferred to your hotel.  Santiago, the capital of Chile, is a focal point of Latin American commerce.  The city is clean and modern and sits in a basin between the Coast Range to the west and the Andes to the east.  Excellent ski areas in the central Andes lie only 45 minutes away, up steep switchbacks that climb over 7500 feet in twenty-six miles.  Distinguished vineyards surround the capital, and along with hot springs and heritage cities in the Coast Range, make easy day trips.  At night, visitors may choose from a selection of restaurants serving a variety of regional and ethnic cuisines.  Arrive at your stunning residence.  Built in 1927 in the heart of what is today Santiago´s most bohemian borough, Lastarria has been renovated and converted into a superb boutique hotel with unrivalled personal service to insure guests enjoy the comfort of a genuine home away from home.  Lastarria Boutique Hotel

Day 2: Santiago / Punta Arenas
This morning, transfer to the airport for your flight to Punta Arenas. On arrival, you are welcomed and transferred to your hotel.  In the afternoon, you attend a briefing that provides important information about your voyage and reviews the essential guidelines for Antarctic visitors. Later, gather for a welcome dinner and meet your fellow adventurers while enjoying a typical regional menu. Please note, arrival into Punta Arenas must be before 3:00pm.  Hotel Rey Don Felipe or similar (B,D)

Day 3: Punta Arenas / Antarctic Peninsula
Your Antarctic adventure begins with a two-hour flight from Punta Arenas to King George Island, in the South Shetland Islands aboard a BAE-146 custom designed for landings in Antarctica.  Explore the area surrounding Chile’s Frei Station and Russia’s Bellingshausen Polar Station, with its tiny Russian Orthodox Church, before boarding a Zodiac to embark your expedition vessel.  The Ocean Nova is a modern and comfortable vessel built in Denmark in 1992 to sail the ice-choked waters of Greenland.  The ice-strengthened hull is ideally suited for expedition travel in Antarctica.  The ship has capacity for 68 passengers accommodated in comfortable outside cabins, all with private facilities, including dedicated single, twin and triple cabins.  M/V Ocean Nova – Cabin (B,L,D)

Days 4 - 7: Antarctic Peninsula
Cruise between the South Shetland Islands and the western coast of the Antarctic Peninsula, sailing along ice-filled fjords and among spectacular icebergs, while enjoying the company of sea birds, penguins, seals and whales.  Each day, disembark by Zodiac to explore the landscape together with expert polar guides.  On board the ship, attend an engaging program of lectures and presentations, and enjoy spectacular vistas from the glass-enclosed lounge.  No two journeys are ever the same.  Flexibility is the key to success in Antarctica.  The expedition team sets the voyage route to take advantage of the ever-changing opportunities provided by nature, which means that your adventure is a unique and extraordinary experience.  While the exact itinerary changes with each expedition, you will explore several spots that offer the best possible overview of the varied Antarctic environments. Your voyage may include visits to sites such as Paulet Island, Hope Bay, Port Lockroy, Petermann Island, Paradise Bay, Deception Island, the Lemaire Channel, or many other magnificent places.  M/V Ocean Nova – Cabin (B,L,D)

Day 8: Antarctic Peninsula / Punta Arenas
Return to King George Island and bid farewell to Antarctica before boarding your BAE-146 for your flight back to Punta Arenas. On arrival, you transfer to your hotel in Punta Arenas.  Rey Don Felipe (B)

Day 9: Punta Arenas / Patagonia
Travel to your hotel in Patagonia.  Drive through the Patagonian steppe, a wide-open, vast territory where you may catch sight of endemic birds such as the Darwin’s rhea and the Upland goose.  Arrive later this afternoon and begin your activities.  Located in the southernmost region of South America, extending over Chile and Argentina. At the center of the Chilean Patagonia region, your hotel is just steps away from the Torres del Paine National Park and just a few minutes from the small city of Puerto Natales.  Nearly a century ago, the Bories Cold Storage Plant was built here.  That plant has been transformed into a spectacular luxury hotel.  This is where your exploration of Patagonia begins, surrounded by ancient geological formations and abundant native flora and fauna.  The Singular (B,L,D)

Days 10/11: Patagonia
Today you have the opportunity to experience some of the amazing activities in the area such as mountain treks, horseback riding excursions, bicycle riding around Lake Sofia and kayaking in Obstruccion Sound.  Qualified, professional guides lead all activities.  Explore Torres del Paine National Park’s four glaciers within the park – Grey, Pingo, Frances and Dickson glaciers.  The lakes of the Torres del Paine National Park include Sarmiento, Pehoé, Nordenskjold, Pingo and Dickson, each possessing unique characteristics.  There are also numerous smaller lagoons to be discovered, including the tranquil Laguna Verde, Laguna Azul and Laguna Larga.  The Singular (B,L,D)

Day 12: Patagonia / Punta Arenas / Patagonia’s Aysén Region
Today, you travel to another region of Patagonia, and your lodge in the incomparable setting of the beautiful and solitary Aysén Region in Chilean Patagonia.  Aysén sits in the northwestern area of Patagonia.  To the north, is the Los Lagos region; to the east, Argentina; to the south, the Magallanes region and Chilean Antarctica; to the west, the Pacific Ocean.  The lodge and spa focus on understanding and harmonizing with the natural and pristine environment. Excursions are based on learning without excessive strain; and the cuisine is based on a varied diet and with a focus on Chilean Patagonia.  The spa offers guests the sensation of peace and well being.  Puyuhuapi Lodge & Spa (B,L,D)

Days 13/14: Patagonia’s Aysén Region
Your time here is planned according to your interests. You can opt for one of the hiking and trekking trails that range in degree of difficulty, low to high.  You can discover the extraordinary botanical variations along the trails of the forest on Queulat Pass; or choose to explore by sea kayak through the calm waters of the Puyuhuapi Fjord; or try your hand at fly fishing in the amazing rivers, lakes and channels.  Combine these activities with a opportunity to relax at one of the three thermal open air baths on the edge of the fjord.  Puyuhuapi Lodge & Spa (B,L,D)

Day 15: Patagonia’s Aysén Region / Punta Arenas / Santiago
Travel back to Punta Arenas, where you pick up you flight back to Santiago.  On arrival, you are met and transferred to your hotel.  Lastarria Boutique Hotel (B)

Day 16: Santiago / Depart
Transfer to the airport this morning for your onward flight (B)

Departure Dates: Dec 2 – Dec 23 2013 and Jan 17 – Feb 17 2014

Land price, per person, double occupancy:  Starting from $5,268 per person; Antarctica cruise price from $11,395 per person

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