Northern Patagonia Travel Adventure

9 - 12 Days
TYPOLOGIES

AUTO

DIFFICULTY

Medium

MIN. AGE

21 Years

2197

Ready your explorer boots people, we’re going on an exploratory travel adventure to Northern Patagonia!

Are you a huge fan of jigged peaks, pristine lakes, icy glaciers, hiking, and all kinds of outdoor activities including a drive in a bouncing 4×4 pickup truck? Then, this trip to Northern Patagonia is the exact travel adventure for your rugged soul! Prepare to be impressed by Northern Patagonia's stunning scenery as you journey through 8 active volcanoes, national parks and reserves, 48 pristine lakes, and the breathtaking Andes Mountains of Chile and Argentina.

Want to partake in our rugged 4×4 travel adventure hunt? Just show up with your explorer boots, an adventurous spirit, and enough wits for this flurry travel adventure. You’ll solve quirky puzzles, find surprising clues and wander through dusty plains to reveal the hidden gems of this dazzling city. And there is more! Complete your treasure hunts to become our first place, second place, or third place winners – and stand a chance to get a 100%, 50%, or 25% refund of your participatory fees.

Come meet us in Northern Patagonia, a 4×4 truck is waiting to give you the rides of your life!

Day by day

Welcome to Chile and the Andes Mountains! Whether you’re taking extra time to explore the capital city of Santiago or just flying through, travelers need to arrive in Pucón on or before this date, as you’ll be departing early the next morning. (Package can be adjusted if you want more time in Pucón.)

After a one-hour shuttle ride from Temuco, you’ll reach Pucón, a charming mountain town nestled at the foot of Volcano Villarrica in the breathtaking Chilean Lakes District. Your hotel is included with this "Fly & Drive " package, so get checked in to your room, and make sure you're in contact with our Fleet Manager about getting set up with your 4x4 either today or first thing the next morning.

Once you're set up on your 4x4 rental and all questions have been answered, it's time to head out into Patagonia! Leaving the active Volcano Villarrica and National Park Villarrica to the right, the climb into the Andes Mountains begins along the border of Chile/Argentina.

Later, driving right through National Park Huerquehue to Playa Negra, your camera should be ready to go at this point. Enjoy Lago Caburgua in front, Volcano Villarica in the background, and all the gorgeous forestry around. After lunch in Conco, enter National Park Conquillo where 3 beautiful lagoons await.

Driving along old lava flows of Volcano Llaima and through forests that are home to 1000 year old Araucanía Trees, this is a fantastic first day of traveling on challenging gravel roads with many photo stops. Settling into the night near Curacautin, the hotel and dinner options await.

Yesterday was a fantastic day of challenging driving and stunning landscape, but today it gets even better.

The drive goes up along the base of the active Volcano Lonquimay and Crater Navidad where we’ll follow its latest lava flow from 1988. As if the black-lava landscape isn’t surreal enough, crossing the Cordillera Lonquimay produces more incredible views. Along the Sierra Nevada, follow three beautiful lagunas, and reach Paso Icalma for crossing from Chile into Argentina!

A short drive then leads to the destination of Villa Pehuenia at the shore of Lago Alumine, hopefully in time to catch a beautiful sunset over the lake.

Leaving Lago Aluminé, the scenery changes dramatically on the drive to the Swiss style town of San Martin de los Andes. Now you’ll get a feel for the vast emptiness of the Argentina pampas region seeing see Volcano Lanín (3728m) from a distance and probably deal with some of the typically forceful winds on the Argentine side of the Andes Mountains.

After lunch, enjoy the famous “Seven Lakes Route“ through National Park Nahuel Huapi, and many photo stops later we reach the ski resort town of Bariloche for the night and the first chance for an Argentine “asado” (barbeque) in this lively town.

Even the most conditioned adventure travelers need to rest now and then, so it’s important to have some down time. For those who still want to remain active though, the charming ski resort town of Bariloche offers plenty of local culture, shopping and restaurants with great views of Llao Llao and Lago Nahuel Huapi.

Anyone wishing to take a short drive can enjoy the “Circuito Chico,” a one-hour loop through the famous Llao Llao Resort with many great viewpoints. Or, look ahead to the town of Futaleufú if you prefer to enjoy your Rest Day in a town that's world famous for whitewater rafting and fly fishing, if you wish! (Tell us at the time of booking where you want your rest day to be.)

Leaving Bariloche, first follow the legendary Ruta 40 as winding roads take you through rural Argentina. Later, enjoy a detour through “Parque National los Alerces” where sweeping sandy turns through “Fitzroya” trees (cousin to the Redwoods found in California) make for more scenic driving. Beautiful lakes and mountains show the path through the National Park, then through the Andes again, we cross the border back into Chile for the night in the famous whitewater-rafting, kayaking, and fly fishing town of Futaleufú.

Today the gravel road follows the whitewaters of Rio Futaleufu and the Sierra la Ventana. Just past Lago Yelcho, you’ll reach the world famous “Carretera Austral,” and some of the most picturesque scenery in the world.

Driving through Parque Pumalin, owned and preserved by the late Doug Tompkins, founder of the North Face clothing company, more interesting history and status of Patagonia will be revealed. After stopping in Chaiten, the town that was destroyed in the 2008 volcano eruption, take the ferry to Hornopiren where suddenly you’re on the seawater of the Pacific Ocean! Two scenic ferry rides will take us through the Reñihué and Coman Leprepu Fjords, a major center point of Chilean salmon farming.

Today's drive passes through National Park Hornopiren and follows the shoreline of these Pacific inlets to start things out. Across the fjord can be seen Parque Nacional Alerces/Andino near the Cochamo Valley, which many people call it the “Yosemite Valley” of Chile. Pressing on to Ensenada on Lago Llanquihue on your way to Lago Todos los Santos, stop at Petrohue waterfalls and then a fantastic asphalt road takes you up Volcano Osorno.

At the base of the ski resort there, you can enjoy a beautiful view over Lago Llanquihue before descending to the touristy town of Puerto Varas on the lake shore of Lago Llanquihue for the night.

Wake up with a fantastic view of Volcano Osorno across Lago Llanquihue! Following the lake through Frutillar (where many Germans settled in the late 1800's) and Puerto Octay, finally some moments can be spent on the Panamerican Highway.

On your way back to Pucón, follow the shoreline of Lago Panguipulli, Lago Neptune, Lago Calafquen and Lago Villarrica, where the Chilean Lake District holds such a simple and pleasant beauty. The drive down into Pucón might bring on a case of mixed emotions as you look back at the amazing trip through Northern Patagonia. Just think: there's still more of Patagonia to be uncovered!

If you absolutely must leave, we do understand you’ll be fighting the temptation to skip the flight. Chile has so much more to offer and we have so much more to help show you, so we hope you enjoyed your adventure and will return for other Patagonia trips because there's still plenty more to experience!

What's included

  • 4x4 rental based on availability
  • 9 nights stay in 3 to 5 Star accommodations, ranging from simple, nice, clean & safe hosterias/cabanas to top-end hotels
  • Road Book & Map to follow the Itinerary through major sites & highlights, fueling points, meal options, directly to the Pre-Paid hotel each day
  • 9 breakfasts
  • Basic tool & tire repair kits
  • 3rd party liability insurance for vehicle rental
  • Required International Papers for Border Crossings

Not included

  • GPS units (not needed, map & notes included)
  • Fuel for vehicle
  • Optional Damage/Theft Liability Reduction Waiver
  • Vehicle security deposit (based on waiver being chosen)
  • Flights to or within Chile
  • Visas or personal documentation
  • Special activities (rafting, fishing, etc.)
  • Cost of, or ability/option to make changes to itinerary once the reservation is made
  • Any non-mentioned item or service as "included"