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Plunging glaciers, towering mountain peaks and luminous icebergs – Patagonia is redolent of a Walt Disney faraway land. But this wild South American frontier is real. Our adventure takes us to the prized twin regions of southern Patagonia – Torres del Paine National Park in Chile and El Calafate in Argentina. Ride with gauchos to explore hidden canyons, hike amid soaring granite peaks and aquamarine lakes, and cruise through a frozen wonderland of glaciers and icebergs to a historic ranch in Argentina’s glacier capital.

Day 1

Santiago

Arrive in Santiago and stay overnight in the airport hotel.

Day 2

Santiago - Torres del Paine

Fly to Puerto Natales in southern Patagonia and transfer to Hotel Las Torres, close to Torres del Paine National Park. Nestled in the foothills of snow-capped mountain peaks, the hotel is a former cattle ranch and our luxurious base for exploring Patagonia.

Day 3

Torres del Paine National Park, Chile

Wake to the ambience of the Andes and get set for a free day of adventure to explore the national park at your own pace. The hotel has an itinerary for every fitness level and fancy – whether it be exploring the park by foot, vehicle, boat or on horseback. Hike sections of the famous W Trail – one of the world’s most scenic treks, trot through lenga forest enclosed by breathtaking granite peaks, or cruise across an alpine lake to Grey Glacier, a 6km-wide, 30m-high ice sheet that tumbles off the Southern Patagonia Ice Field.

 

Day 4

Torres del Paine National Park, Chile

Enjoy a second free day to explore the national Park. The Torres del Pain is a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve comprising more than 220,000 hectares of forests, tundra, mountains, ice fields, rivers and lakes.

Why not befriend a gaucho on a horse ride to the precipice of Ascencio Canyon, hike to the raging aquamarine falls of Salto Grande, or keep your eyes peeled for the elusive king of Patagonia while rock climbing Puma Cave.

Day 5

Torres del Paine to El Calafate, Argentina

Travel overland to El Calafate, Argentina’s glacier capital (about five hours). Check in to the Mirador del Lago Hotel perched on the shores of Argentino Lake and enjoy a free evening to explore the town. Poke around small boutiques boasting fine leather goods and local handicrafts, sample delicious caramel cookies (alfajores) and don a furry cape to down a vodka in the ice bar at Glaciarium.

Day 6

El Calafate, Argentina

You’ve seen it through your bedroom window, now explore Lake Argentino up close as we cruise to Estancia Cristina, a century-old ranch tucked in a remote corner of the Los Glaciares National Park. Built on a glacial valley by the Masters family, the historic ranch is shoehorned between snow-capped mountains, alpine lakes, rivers and hanging glaciers. Hold on tight in the 4WD as we venture deep into the Feruglio Mountains, stopping to walk to a lookout for spectacular views of Upsala Glacier, Lake Guillermo and the Southern Patagonian Ice Field. After lunch, tour the estate and museum to learn more about the family’s pioneering legacy.

Day 7

El Calafate-Ushuaia

Transfer to the airport and fly to Ushuaia to join the main conference.

Dr Gary Kilov (1:42)
Dr Asha Nair (1:31)
Dr Ralph Audehm (1:11)
Dr Diana Hart & Dr Roger Scurr (1:39)