The fjords of Patagonia are incredibly scenic. You must see the Fitz Roy glacier to truly appreciate the beauty of this region. The Perito Moreno Glacier and Canyon are also breathtaking and must-see attractions. And if you’re looking for a great hiking trail, try out Peninsula Valdes! You’ll be glad you did! Read on to learn about the best epic things to experience in Patagonia.
1. Fitz Roy
One of the most beautiful hiking experiences in Patagonia is a hike up Mount Fitz Roy. You’ll be rewarded with breathtaking vistas and a sense of accomplishment after you finish the hike. The views are nothing short of amazing, and the mountain’s summit is picture-perfect. Taking the time to hike up Fitz Roy offers a sense of detachment from the world and an incredible view of this pristine landscape.
The Mount Fitz Roy trek is a safe adventure. It’s recommended to bring a first aid kit and be prepared for tough terrain. Make sure to keep an eye on the weather forecast and stay alert during your hike. The area is filled with wildlife, though most species are very shy. If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to spot woodpeckers and condors flying overhead. There are also rabbits and foxes that can be seen along the trail.
2. Perito Moreno Glacier
To see the Perito Moreno Glacier is a bucket-list activity that will take you across the continent. It is a comparatively cold climate and is best experienced in the early morning when the ice is still cold. If you are looking for a complete adventure, you can also book a full-day guided tour of the Perito Moreno walkways.
If you are not a climber, you can also take a boat ride on the lake below the glacier. The tours last about 90 minutes and offer a unique opportunity to see icebergs up close. You can enjoy a drink and snack while cruising along the ice. For an added dose of adventure, you can kayak across the lake that is surrounded by the glacier.
3. Perito Moreno Canyon
If you love icebergs, a visit to the Perito Moreno Glacier is a must. Located in Chile, the glacier has five kilometers of balconies where you can admire the ice peaks and lagoons. If you’re not in the mood to climb, you can take a boat tour to the Perito Moreno Glacier. You can paddle to it from either end, and it’s a great way to get a completely different perspective.
There are plenty of hiking and trekking trails through this park, including the famous Perito Moreno Glacier. This glacier is the third largest water reserve in the world, spanning 97 square kilometers. Located 50 miles south of El Calafate, the Perito Moreno Glacier is easy to reach. You can even hike on it, and there are boat rides that will take you in front of the glacier.
4. Peninsula Valdes
Whether you’re a nature lover or you’re simply looking for a truly unforgettable vacation, Peninsula Valdes is a must-visit. This beautiful peninsula is home to some amazing wildlife, depending on the season you visit. The big stars of this region are whales, which you can see from June through mid-December. You can take a boat tour to view these incredible creatures or enjoy a picnic at a cozy estancia.
Visitors should spend at least one day exploring the peninsula. Although the town is tiny and touristy, it has a laid-back and unpretentious vibe. You can also take a minivan tour through the area, which is a great way to see more of this spectacular region. This peninsula is filled with fossils, and during whale watching season, you can see them up close.
There are plenty of options for accommodation in the area. There are hotels, hostels, and campsites in the town, and you can rent a car to get around on your own. If you’re traveling by car, keep in mind that it’s best to book ahead of time as the town fills up quickly. While the town is charming, make sure to check on availability before your trip to avoid disappointment.
5. Laguna de Los Tres
One of the best things to do in Patagonia is to hike to the Laguna de Los Tres. This hike is mostly downhill and starts with a forest walk. Once you are done with the forest walk, you will reach the beautiful Laguna de Los Tres. The hike is free and can be done from El Chalten or Hostaria el Pilar. The whole trek takes about 8 hours.
A 20-kilometer hike from El Chalten, Argentina, takes you to the picturesque Laguna de Los Tres. On the way, you can also visit the nearby Mt. Fitz Roy and the iconic Laguna de Los Tres. The hikes to Laguna de Los Tres are perfect for those who want to take in the scenery, which includes the spectacular Mount Fitz Roy.
6. Patagonia’s ice fields
The Patagonian Ice Fields are giants of nature that have carved out some of the most breathtaking landscapes on earth. Hiking on them is possible with the right equipment and guide. The Perito Moreno Glacier is one of the most iconic glaciers in South America, and it is the third-largest in the world. It is one of the few glaciers in the world that is still growing, and it’s a must-see attraction.
You can also take a guided tour through the ice fields to see animals, including pumas, elephant seals, and Orca whales. You’ll also be able to see rare birds, such as rheas and Magellanic woodpeckers. A day tour through the ice fields is an unforgettable way to experience Patagonia’s ice fields.
7. Torres del Paine National Park
One of the most iconic sights of Torres del Paine National Park is the towering granite peaks that rise from the turquoise water. Many hikers take an early morning trek to this stunning park. The park is also home to guanaco, which was nearly extinct in the past. You can also experience this natural wonder on a guided trek, which EcoCamp offers.
The windy climate of Torres del Paine is a defining feature of this park, with gusts of up to 150km/h. This park is best experienced by those who enjoy hiking and wildlife photography, or by those who want to get away from the crowds and enjoy the views without having to endure a long day of sightseeing. While you should plan to take a hike to the peaks of the national park, it’s best to choose a time when the weather is not too hot or cold.
8. Lago del Desierto
If you’re looking for something different from your usual backpacking trip, the Lago del Desierto is one great destination. This lake is less known than the more popular Lake Viedma but is no less spectacular. A road trip across this glacial lake offers great views of the mountains in the background. There are also excellent hikes and some great fly fishing, which makes this a must-do while traveling through Patagonia.
The region is renowned for its abundant aquatic life and magnificent scenery. You can also see a variety of birds, including cormorants, zorros, and sea lions. A walk along the beach in Puerto Varas is also a fantastic way to spend the day. The vistas are so beautiful that even the most adventurous traveler won’t be disappointed!
9. Marble Caves
The Marble Caves are one of the most epic things to do in Patagonia, and they are also one of the most beautiful. These caves are surrounded by a lake with crystals bigger than multiple skyscrapers. They have blue water reflecting the surrounding landscape, and the colors of the crystals vary from time to time. The water’s level varies throughout the year, causing the color to change.
The Marble Caves are best visited early in the morning, as the water level changes throughout the day. The caves are more accessible early in the morning when the wind is light and the air is calmer. Also, the caves are less crowded in the mornings, making them ideal for snorkeling. However, you should check the weather before booking a tour because they are affected by strong winds.
10. Torres del Paine International Marathon
The Patagonian International Marathon is an annual running event that takes place in the stunning scenery of Torres del Paine National Park. The race includes three distances, ranging from 10 km to 42 km. This unique event draws elite athletes from over 28 countries to compete in this challenging race. One of the most epic things to do in Patagonia is to take part in the marathon. There are several options available, and each one offers unique challenges.
In addition to trail running, this event helps you maintain a healthy body. It improves blood oxygen levels, pumps more oxygen to the muscles, and regulates sleep. The Torres del Paine International Marathon is one of the most popular trails running events in the world, and the participants come from all over the world to compete. You can also try the Ultra Fiord trail running race, which skirts the fjords in Chile.
11. Horseback riding
There are plenty of options for horseback riding in Patagonia. If you’re a confident rider, you can opt for a multi-day ride in the steppe or the fjords. These tours can last anywhere from three to fourteen days and cater to different levels of riding experience. Expect to spend two to seven hours per day in the saddle. The riding takes place on traditional Patagonian ranches called estancias. These ranches are often quite remote, and some are still run by local families.
The region is a true outdoor lover’s paradise. There are hundreds of hiking trails in the area. Some of the best-hiking destinations in the Americas are in this region. The Torres del Paine National Park in Chile and El Chalten in Argentina are just a few of the highlights of Patagonia. If you don’t feel like hiking, you can try other activities such as kayaking and mountain biking.
12. Glacier hikes
If you love the outdoors, Patagonia has the perfect place for you. With hundreds of hiking trails, Patagonia is considered one of the best places to go hiking in the Americas. Two of the most popular places for hiking in Patagonia include El Chalten in Argentina and Torres del Paine National Park in Chile. Not only are the hiking trails epic, but there are also other ways to experience Patagonia, such as mountain biking or rafting.
If you’re a bit more adventurous, you can join a glacier cruise on Lago Argentino. The experience is truly breathtaking, as the boats pass oddly-shaped icebergs. The highlight of your Patagonia glacier tour is the 10-kilometer wide Upsala Glacier, the largest glacier in South America. Boats usually don’t approach the glacier too close, as the face of the glacier can calve at once, causing a dangerous surge.