Hiking Patagonia on a Budget
Hiking Patagonia on a Budget

Hiking Patagonia on a Budget

11 days

Chalten stunning mountain peak road Exploring patagoniaGlaciar Perito Moreno exploring Chile patagoniaFitz Roy exploring Chile patagoniaCerro Torre exploring Chile patagoniaTorres del Paine exploring Chile patagoniaGlaciar Grey exploring Chile patagoniaNavigation front of Grey Glacier exploring Chile patagoniaLos Cuernos exploring Chile patagoniaHiking foothills Los Cuernos exploring Chile patagoniaLas Torres hikers exploring Chile patagoniaCalafate exploring Chile patagonia

Hike the best of Patagonia on a more budget-friendly tour

The incredible Hiking Patagonia on a Budget adventure lets you experience the best of Patagonia's jaw-dropping beauty and must-see hiking routes. By utilizing great budget options, you can do more and see more for less! From the jagged peaks of Mt. Fitz Roy and Cerro Torre to the wide-open expanse of the pampas, you'll be able to check all the boxes on this Patagonian adventure without spending a fortune.

The most unforgettable part of your journey will no doubt be the five nights you'll spend camping in the world-famous Torres del Paine National Park, one of the gems of Patagonia. After a thrilling day of hiking, you'll fall asleep under some of the darkest skies you'll ever see in your life and wake up surrounded by snow-capped peaks and jagged granite needles. Patagonia is one of the best hiking destinations on the planet and the Hiking Patagonia on a Budget tour helps you experience it in a more accessible way.

Highlights of the Hiking Patagonia on a Budget

Camp and trek in the untouched beauty of Torres del Paine National Park.
Get up close to the massive blue walls of the Perito Moreno and Gray Glaciers.
Climb to the foot of Mt. Fitz Roy and Cerro Torre in El Chalten, two of Patagonia’s most renowned features.
Hike the famous W trek the other way around – from west to east!

Prices

From $1,375USD
11 days
Difficulty
Self-Guided
Hotels, guesthouses, campsites
  • No Booking or Credit Card Fees
  • Save Money
  • Happiness Guaranteed
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Hiking Patagonia on a Budget

Hiking Patagonia on a Budget Itinerary

Day 1 Arrival in El Calafate

Upon your arrival at El Calafate Airport in Argentina, a private driver will be waiting for you. You'll be transferred to your hotel where you'll rest before your hiking journey gets into full swing.
Overnight Location: Hotel in El Calafate
Distance: None
Meals: None

Day 2 Los Glaciares Park and Ruta 40 to El Chalten

After breakfast, you'll take a bus along Lake Argentino to Los Glaciares National Park, where a local guide will take you to the imposing Perito Moreno Glacier. Be sure to ask about the additional option to explore the southern part of the ice front.

In the late afternoon, you'll continue by bus on the incredibly scenic Ruta 40 towards El Chalten, where you spend the night and rest up before the next day's hiking.
Overnight Location: Guesthouse in El Chalten
Distance: 374 km driving
Meals: Breakfast

Day 3 Hike to the Foot of Mt. Fitz Roy

Travellers come from all over the world to see El Chalten's iconic peaks and crags. Today you hike above the Rio las Vueltas to see the huge tongue of the Piedras Blancas Glacier.

Once you reach the Poincenot campsite, it's a steady one-hour climb to the foot of the jagged stone giant Mt. Fitz Roy. The sight of the adjacent crags of Mermoz, Guillaumet and Saint Exupéry reflected in the Laguna de los Tres is a view you'll never forget!
Overnight Location: Guesthouse in El Chalten
Distance: 8-9 hours, 24km, 800m of ascent
Meals: Breakfast

Day 4 Hike to Cerro Torre

Today's hike winds its way through the scenic valley of the Cerro Torre Mountain Range and along the Rio Fitz Roy, crossing several rock sills.

After three hours you reach Lago Torre at the foot of Cerro Torre, an impressive granite crag covered with a giant snow mushroom. After you take the same route back, you'll catch the bus to El Calafate where you spend the night in a cozy guesthouse.
Overnight Location: Guesthouse in El Calafate
Distance: 5-6 hours, 20km, 200m of ascent
Meals: Breakfast

Day 5 Torres del Paine and Paine Grande

You’ll depart early today to Chile and Torres del Paine National Park. The bus heads south through the vast pampas (plains) towards the border crossing towns of Cancha Carrera and Cerro Castillo.

Once you enter Torres del Paine National Park you'll walk to Salto Grande waterfall and cross Lake Pehoe by catamaran to arrive at Paine Grande.
Overnight Location: Campsite at Paine Grande
Distance: 255km of driving
Meals: Breakfast

Day 6 Hike and Camp at Gray Glacier

Leaving the turquoise waters of Lake Pehoe behind you, start your hike to the Gray Glacier, one of Torres del Paine's most incredible sights. About halfway there, you'll reach the immense Gray Lake and catch a glimpse of the grayish-blue glacier sitting silently in the distance.

Tonight you'll camp near the glacier surrounded by a picture-perfect landscape full of icebergs and snow-capped mountains.
Overnight Location: Campsite at Gray Glacier
Distance: 4 hours, 11 km, 400m ascent
Meals: Breakfast

Day 7 Front navigation of Gray Glacier

At midday, you'll hop on a boat catamaran to see the Gray Glacier up close from the water, discover its seracs and its icy blue depths, sipping “whiskey on the rocks”. Afterwards, you’ll navigate to the southern part of the Gray Lake. After landing on the black sands of Gray Beach enjoy a short walk through ancient lenga forests to meet the private transportation that will bring you back to lake Pehoe for a second Catamaran crossing of Lake Pehoe.

In case of bad weather conditions, instead of this navigation and transfer, you will have to walk the same way back to lake Pehoe and camping Paine Grande.
Overnight Location: Campsite at Paine Grande
Distance: 1.5 hours
Meals: Breakfast

Day 8 Hike to the Cuernos and Paine Grande

You won't believe your eyes when you unzip your tent and find the incredible views of Los Cuernos before you! And it only gets better when you hike to the black-tipped needles of the Cuernos, one of Torres del Paine's most iconic landmarks. The route takes you to Skottsberg Lake and continues to the foot of Paine Grande, which at 3050 metres is the highest peak of the Paine Massif.

From here you can continue up the valley or begin the long descent to a campsite perched right at the water's edge.
Overnight Location: Campsite at the Cuernos
Distance: 7 hours, 13 km, 500m ascent
Meals: Breakfast

Day 9 Lake Nordenskjold and the Cuernos

Today's section of the W Trek takes you along Lake Nordenskjold revealing great views of the jagged peaks of the black-tipped Cuernos. Keep an eye out for the native condor swirling in the winds above your head and the area's amazing forests. Soon you enter the Ascencio Valley and cross the river to reach the next campsite where you stay for the night.
Overnight Location: Campsite in Camping Central
Distance: 4 hours, 13 km, 550 m ascent
Meals: Breakfast

Day 10 Trek to Mirador las Torres Viewpoint

All too soon, it's your final day of hiking in Torres del Paine. The last part of the “W” leads you up the Ascencio River to the foot of the moraine and then onward to the park's most famous viewpoint, the Mirador los Torres. Standing at the foot of the north, central and south towers you get breathtaking views of the glacier and 1000-metre high vertical granite walls.

After a quick lunch break, head back down and catch the bus to Puerto Natales for the night.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Puerto Natales
Distance: 8 hours, 22 km, 900m ascent
Meals: Breakfast

Day 11 Departure from Puerto Natales

It's time to head home, unfortunately. A private transfer will pick you up from your hotel and take you to Puerto Natales Airport for your outbound flight. Have a safe journey home!
Overnight Location: None
Distance: None
Meals: Breakfast

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Hiking Patagonia on a Budget Price and Dates

This hiking tour of Patagonia is run as a custom tour for your group and the price depends on the number of participants.

The best time to travel to Patagonia for this hiking tour is during the months of January, February, March, November, and December when the weather tends to be warmer.

Private Self-guided Hiking Patagonia on a Budget Tour

Have your own private tour with just your group! Please note, that standard rooms are double/twin and groups of odd numbers can opt out to stay in a triple room and save $46 USD per person or add a single supplement of $260 USD to use one single room instead. Prices below are per person:

  • Self-guided solo travellers: $1,875 USD
  • Self-guided groups of 2: $1,450 USD per person
  • Self-guided groups of 3: $1,395 USD per person
  • Self-guided groups of 4: $1,425 USD per person
  • Self-guided groups of 5: $1,400 USD per person
  • Self-guided groups of 6+: $1,375 USD per person
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Accommodation on Hiking Patagonia on a Budget

During this tour, you'll spend five nights in standard hotels and guesthouses and five nights at campsites. The hotels and guesthouses in the tour provide standard rooms with double occupancy and private bathrooms. At the campsites, all camping equipment is included, except for sleeping bags which can be rented on-site if necessary.

There is also the option to sleep in mountain refuges rather than sleeping in a tent at the campsite depending on availability.

In some cases, the accommodation listed below may need to be substituted for other comparable accommodations.

Single Rooms and Solo Travellers
Rooms are double occupancy. You can pay a supplement of $260 USD to have a private room in a hotel where possible. There is also a triple room reduction (per person) of $46 USD. Solo travellers will pay a supplement.

Hotels on Standard Tour

Hosteria Koi Aiken in El Calafate ★★★

This charming B&B is perched atop a hill with lovely views, comfortable accommodations, and a quiet setting. Hosteria Koi Aiken is popular with people visiting the nearby glaciers.

Hosteria Vertical Lodge in El Chalten ★★★

A great spot for exploring El Chaltén, this lodge is known for its spacious rooms and incredible views of snow-capped peaks.

Hosteria Koi Aiken in El Calafate ★★★

This charming B&B is perched atop a hill with lovely views, comfortable accommodations, and a quiet setting. Hosteria Koi Aiken is popular with people visiting the nearby glaciers.

Night 5

Campsite at Paine Grande

This is considered the ultimate base camp for hikers, trekkers and climbers. Enjoy sleeping under a blanket of stars!

Night 6

Campsite at Gray Lake

Wake up surrounded by the beauty of Gray Lake and its glaciers, cozied up in your tent on one of the coolest places on earth.

Night 7

Campsite at Paine Grande

This is considered the ultimate base camp for hikers, trekkers and climbers. Enjoy sleeping under a blanket of stars!

Night 8

Campsite near the Cuernos

Sleep at the edge of the lake and wake up to incredible views of the Cuernos here.

Night 9

Campsite at Camping Central

This is one of the popular campsites in the Las Torres complex, complete with basic amenities to make your camping experience comfortable.

Hotel Vendaval in Puerto Natales ★★★

Consistently rated one of the best hotels in Puerto Natales, this hotel is right in the heart of town and a short stroll to the waterfront and main square.

What’s Included in the Hiking Patagonia on a Budget Tour?

Meals

10 breakfasts are included.

Accommodations

Accommodations for 10 nights are included. Accommodations before or after the tour are not included.

Transportation during the Tour

Private airport transfers are provided for your arrival and departure. Regular bus transport throughout the itinerary and two boat tickets for crossing Lake Pehoe are also included.

Also Included

  • Excursion to Perito Moreno Glacier including shared service with an English-speaking guide
  • Navigation front of the Gray Glacier with shared service
  • Tent and mat for camping at all the campsites in Torres del Paine National Park

Not included

  • Flights to Argentina or from Chile
  • Meals, drinks, or snacks not previously mentioned
  • Entrance fees to national parks
  • Guide (except on excursion to Perito Moreno)
  • Sleeping bags at campsites (available for rental if needed)

Optional Extras

  • Ice hiking on glaciers
  • Kayaking on glaciers
  • Single occupancy upgrades

Frequently Asked Questions about Hiking Patagonia on a Budget

Since 2004 Nunatak has been organizing trips all over Patagonia Chilena and Argentina for travellers. They are a locally owned group with a spirit of adventure and nature passionate about helping travellers get their best experience in wild Patagonia.
They are an Artisan Travel Agency, based in Puerto Natales, with a focus on immersive local experiences. Experts designing and operating group tours all over Patagonia Chilena and Argentina also craft and customize individual itineraries (FIT), offering the best travel according to their preferences. The itineraries include the best-known highlights and treks in Patagonia Argentina and Chilena. But also offer the other Patagonia. From the legendary Carretera Austral - Chile's Southern Highway - combining with Lake District in Argentina, through the mythical Route 40 to Tierra del Fuego, devising detours via little-trodden paths and routes.
For trekking lovers or simply Travel lovers.

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Is this tour for me?

We rate this tour as a 4/5. This tour includes hikes of up to 8 hours in duration, frequent elevation changes, and consecutive days of hiking and walking on challenging terrain. You will also camp in basic conditions for several nights. Fit hikers will be able to get the most out of this tour.

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