Patagonia self drive vacation

“Take twenty days, and you can have a proper Patagonia road trip. Drive around the area’s most scenic national parks, flying in between to cover the immense distances.”

Highlights

Buenos Aires | Bariloche | Lake District | San Martín de los Andes | Villa la Angostura | El Calafate | Los Glaciares National Park | El Chaltén | Perito Moreno glacier | Torres del Paine National Park | Lago Grey | Punta Arenas | Santiago | Boat trip to Grey glacier | Optional activities include: horse riding, hiking

Travel Team

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Departure information

This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
Vouchers
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Responsible tourism

As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we screen every trip so you can travel knowing your vacation will help support conservation and local people.

Environment
We realise that travel and tourism can benefit as well as harm the environment, the economy and the social and cultural structures of communities. The concept of sustainable tourism - the travel trade’s principles of using tourism to benefit local communities, conserve natural resources, and bolster the survival of cultural heritage – lies close to our heart. Our love and passion for Latin America encourages us to do everything in our power to protect the destinations we take you to. As members of AITO, we are committed to AITO’s Sustainable Tourism Guidelines, which means that we ensure that environmental and cultural demands are kept as low as possible.
We carefully select our local partners, some we’ve worked with for over 25 years. They have a proven record in training guides to set a good example in their respect for the surroundings and the local communities. We will always encourage you to keep a few basic things in mind, including refilling your water bottle, disposing of rubbish in a responsible way and by staying on designated roads and trails. Furthermore, we’ve partnered up with Water to Go in hope to reduce plastic waste by offering clients 50% discount on filtered water bottles.
Moreover, we strive to use accommodation that reflects the area they are set in and respect their local surroundings and history, as well as the environment. Just below Las Torres themselves for example, you will stay at Hotel Las Torres. This remote lodge situated on a cattle ranch just below the vertical ‘towers’ of Torres del Paine massif respect their history as a cattle farm and features an organic garden, stables and horses. Guests can enjoy horseback riding sessions with the gauchos on the estancia lands surrounding the hotel. Moreover, the restaurant at the lodge aims to use as many local ingredients from their own estancias and organic garden for their dishes as possible. Finally, guests have the opportunity to buy handcrafts of regional artists at the gift shop.
During this vacation, we encourage you to explore Patagonia not only by car, but also on foot. There are countless of hiking trails in the Lake District, in Los Glaciares National Park and in Torres del Paine National Park. We can organise guides for certain treks who can explain all about the local flora and fauna – adding to the total experience.
Community

The Impacts of this Trip

We pride ourselves on delivering our clients truly authentic and unforgettable experiences in Latin America which connect travelers with the people whose country they visit. You can for example enjoy horseback riding sessions guided by gauchos in Torres del Paine National Park, or take a guided walking tour in Buenos Aires to learn more about different cultures that have left their mark on this cosmopolitan city. Our local guides are on hand to provide advice on the best way to communicate with the local community, what and what not to buy, as well as explaining the importance of giving gifts responsibly, and acting in a respectful way while taking photographs. Furthermore, as a company we promote the use of local establishments including restaurants, bars and shops and are always happy to recommend a few tried-and-tested options.
Additionally, for this vacation we have selected accommodation in the countryside at an unusual variety of rustic estancia-style properties. Whilst not luxurious, what they lack in contemporary comfort is repaid with regional flavour. At the Lake District for example you will stay at La Casa de Eugenia, a family-home-turned-guesthouse on the edge of a lake backed by forests. It was built in the 1920s and one of the first residences of the town. In 1997 the house was transformed into a hotel, while respecting and keeping the traditional features that still can be seen and experienced today.

Climate

1 Reviews of Patagonia self drive vacation

2 out of 5 stars
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Reviewed on 09 Dec 2019 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


Seeing Mt Fitzroy and the Torres de Paine massive

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


Check all the details provided to ensure your expectations are delivered before
you leave - especially rooms and what the grade of the room delivers for you

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes, it benefitted local people.
No, the environmental impact was not considered, we had long car journeys
which could have been avoided by using local flights
Yes, it supported conservation

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


Had a number of incidents that caused us unnecessary stress and disappointment, all of which should have been managed by the operator, who we contacted at the time. We assumed the point of using an agency to arrange the trip should have prevented these situations arising.

Read the operator's response here:

Thank you for your online feedback and emails. We are pleased you had a memorable trip overall though would again like to reiterate our sincere apologies for the confusion over the timing of one of one of your transfer pick-ups and the undue stress this caused. We work very hard to ensure professional arrangements are provided and we immediately ensured it was a one-off misunderstanding.

Likewise, we regret you were disappointed with the room allocation at one of the properties. We did seek to arrange an upgrade at that time though unfortunately the hotel was fully booked on the date of your stay and we could only provide a gift at a subsequent hotel in recognition. We have taken both issues onboard and will review how they were managed.

I would also like to assure you the environmental impact is considered and for that reason we would not use local flights as suggested unless absolutely necessary. We recognise there are a couple of long road journeys on the self-drive itinerary though believe the incredible scenery is well worth it and very rewarding.

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