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Outdoor Activities: Argentina & Chile

Patagonia hiking, fishing and climbing is some of the best in the world - but there's plenty of outdoor options for a Patagonia vacation.

A trip to Patagonia should have a certain amount of kicking back and enjoying the views - but if you're going to travel all the way down here, get outside and get into it! Here's a rundown of the most popular outdoor activities Argentina and Chile have to offer, such as fishing and climbing. If Patagonia hiking sounds like you, have a look at our 14-day Patagonia adventure 'Condor' trip for our picks of the best places to bike, kayak and trek in Patagonia.

Hiking Patagonia

Patagonia Hiking and Trekking

Patagonia hiking is unparalleled in terms of grandeur and unspoilt beauty and there are numerous tracks to choose from. Cloud piercing peaks, lush forests, barren plains, mirrored lakes, massive glaciers - well, you get the idea. There are some quite well-known walks, such as the 4-day "W" trek in Torres del Paine National Park, but also numerous spectacular day hikes to really get into the landscape. Don't miss Los Glaciares National Park.

Hiking and trekking in Patagonia is also a great way to encounter some of the unique wildlife in the region, such as penguins, wild horses, elephant seals, sea lions, guanacos (a relative of the llama), and much more. For a slightly less extreme experience with great Mediterranean style weather and more creature comforts, head to the Lakes District in northern Patagonia.

Patagonia Hiking

Ice-Hiking

A popular option on our 'Condor' trip is to strap on crampons, pick up an ice axe and hike on the Grey Glacier. Led by specialist glacier guides you’ll take a private boat across to Nunatak Island where you can safely access the glacier. You’ll hike through these amazing ice formations checking out the crevasses, seracs tunnels and pools of glacial meltwater - no previous experience is required! The constant movement of the glacier means every day is different, so your guides will cut steps in the ice and make sure you make the most of the conditions. At the end of your hike on the ice you’ll return by boat again to your group. 

Ice hiking in Patagonia on Grey Glacier

Patagonia Fishing

Patagonia fishing is something many fly fisherman all over the world only dream about. Fishing aficionados seek trout, salmon and native species like trahira in the rivers and streams of the Andean foothills from November through May. Hot spots include the waterways around Punta Arenas, Puerto Natales, Torres del Paine and Tierra del Fuego, where you will find experienced local guides.

Climbing Patagonia

There are several famous peaks in Patagonia that mere mortals wouldn't dare even dream of, but there are also plenty of opportunities for more moderate rock climbing in Patagonia. There's no shortage of rock, especially in the western part of Argentina, and much of it still unexplored.

There are hundreds of big established routes on the more well known peaks, such as Monte Fitz Roy, Cerro Torre, Fortaleza, the Torres del Paine, Escudo and Cuernos del Paine, but often extreme weather conditions and ice can make these climbs appropriate for more experienced climbers.

Cerro Torre Patagonia

Patagonia Biking

Lots of varied terrain makes it easy and enjoyable to bike in Patagonia. Rent bikes in El Calafate to explore Los Glaciares National Park on 2 wheels or there are popular circuits in Bariloche, Los Alerces National Park, San Martin de los Andes and Ushuaia. In the Lakes District, there are plenty of old farm roads to take you from town to town.

Patagonia Biking

Kayak in Patagonia

There are so many waterways and bodies of water in the region, it's only natural to take a break from terra firma and kayak in Patagonia. Popular options include the Strait of Magellan from Punta Arenas and Grey Lake or the Serrano River in Torres del Paine National Park for glacier watching.

kayaking Patagonia

Trip Reviews

  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 938 reviews)

    Latitude 53 degrees and Loving It,

    What a privilege it was to travel to Patagonia with three generations of our family. It is such a beautiful part of the world but also, so removed from the anxieties and pressures of the modern, social media/plugged-in world, and the Trump nastiness. The trekking was especially beautiful with the wild flowers in bloom and sunshine on our shoulders.

    Active Adventures organized us perfectly in the sense that our transportation, refugios, and food were efficiently and tastefully selected. Arturo was so, so nice to our grandkids. Chem was delightful and so kind. What brilliant new friends we made and how kind and inclusive they were with the teenagers we had in tow.

    We loved the ACTIVE in Adventures. We earned our good meals and good beds by stretching our limits over our two week trek. My husband and I were by far the oldest pair on the trail, but we loved it and who knows, maybe we will be back for our 60th anniversary.
    Carolyn Johnson Review Image
    – Florida, United States
    Condor, January 2017
  •   4.55 out of 5 (from 1341 reviews)

    Best trip ever!

    Wonderful 30th anniversary trip to the Galapagos -- so glad we were able to explore these amazing islands. A true adventure for two biology majors! We really got a sense of the strong environmental preservation efforts underway there, and were in awe of the amazing land and sea creatures we encountered. Plus a terrific local guide and fun group of co-travelers made this a trip of a lifetime!
    Shirley Kring Review Image
    – Massachusetts, United States
    Tortuga, March 2017
  •   4.50 out of 5 (from 1973 reviews)

    Awesome Jaguar

    This trip was flat-out amazing! Peru is incredibly beautiful and its climate diverse, and we saw so much and we did so much. Our traveling companions were terrific and we laughed a lot. Our guides were so capable and so knowledgeable that we felt immersed in the culture. We could really feel the magic of the Incas and the reverence for Pacha Mama which continues to this day.
    Jackie Olson Review Image
    – Minnesota, United States
    Jaguar 2017, February 2017
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 938 reviews)

    Amazing trip, well run operation by people who love what they do

    Overall, a great trip! Patagonia is everything imagined and more. No picture represent the feeling of being there with eyes closed. Treks little harder on two days of the trip: First day (Torres Del Paine) and Mount Fitz Roy trek (25kms), but rewards outweigh the effort.
    All guides, Cynthia, Gem, Paula were outstanding.
    Vijay Sharma Review Image
    – Ohio, United States
    Condor, March 2017
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 938 reviews)

    Nov. 2017 Condor trip with Cynthia

    What an awesome trip with one of the best guides ever. I would highly recommend this to all. The scenery was amazing, the activities were sweet, and the places stayed were top notch especially the one in El Calafate. The Refugio's were nicer than expected with ok food.
    Jim Gray Review Image
    – Colorado, United States
    Condor, December 2017

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Why travel with Active Adventures?

Above all, we aim to be amazing hosts. We're proud of our kiwi roots, and our professional, warm and relaxed style of running trips around the world is unforgettable.

We're VERY picky about who we select to work in our team, and we have people from all over the world lining up to guide our trips. So we get to hire the absolute BEST in the business.

As soon as you get off the plane, we've got all the details of your vacation covered – top notch meals, comfortable transport & accommodation, amazing guides and INCREDIBLE service.

Whether you’re new to adventure travel, or you’ve never travelled in a group before, you’ll find yourself arriving home positively different from when you left.

With our small groups (no more than 14), you'll get to know our team, your fellow travellers, and have the flexibility and freedom to do as much (or as little!) as you like.

It's all about getting there under your own steam – on foot, in a sea kayak, or by bike. What better way is there to experience mind blowing scenery? If it's your first time, no worries – our expert guides have got you covered.

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