Don't kid yourself, it's a heck of a journey to get to Torres del Paine whichever way you do it, but goodness is it worth it.
We were pleasantly surprised with the hotel when we arrived - the location in a loop of the Rio Serrano is really pretty, and the view of the mountains themselves is second to none.
Initially we were allocated a room in the main building, which seemed to have a fair amount of noise from the bar area, so we asked if a cabin was free. The staff were really helpful and moved us immediately. The room was a good size with all essentials in place, and pretty clean and tidy. What made it for us was the spectacular view out of the window. Wow - it could not have been more amazing. We were lucky with the weather, so some amazing views from the chairs positioned in the large window.
The cabins are really well insulated - the wind howled for the three days we were there (although we were told this wasn't 'windy' for locals, it drove us crazy in the end!) and yet no whistling at all from inside, so very good glazing in the rooms.
We did two trips organised by the hotel - the first was along the Rio Serrano to Lago O'Higgins. Although pricey, I really recommend this trip - it really was excellent.
Our second trip didn't go quite to plan, as the excursion organiser had the day off - we waited and waited for our lift into the park to go on a hike, but no one appeared. Eventually the receptionist asked if we were okay and we explained. Well - they couldn't have been more helpful. In the end, the charming waiter was commandeered to drive us into the park. The journey was pretty long, and he spoke no English, but was super friendly and very kind about my A-level Spanish, so we learned a lot and chatted as best we could.
The hike we'd planned seemed a bit tricky without a guide, so we decided on a linear route, finishing where we started, and this worked well - so we were on time for our pick up. On the way back, he went out of his way to stop off and show us some amazing viewpoints high above the road, insisting on taking pictures of us. He really was superb.
Others have moaned about the food, and I'd agree that it wasn't gourmet, but once you've journeyed for a minimum of 2 hours along unmade roads into the park, you must realise that your dinner has to come the same way, making the options pretty limited! The wine was great and good choice, and they did an excellent pisco sour. The food was a mix, but all edible and most pretty tasty, if a bit 'cafeteria'. Let's face it, though - you don't travel to somewhere like this for gourmet food - it's all about the place, and Cabanas del Paine delivers on that front!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel "Cabanas del Paine" is located near to "Serrano" River at 11 km away from Administration Point and 79 km north from "Puerto Natales". It has an excellent panoramic view of the "Paine" Range. Enjoying this scene, our hotel offers a typical gastronomy, including a variety of grilled meats, fresh vegetables, fish and Chilean wines. We have 44 rooms with private bathroom, permanent electricity, central heating and laundry service. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel Del Paine Aisen Region/Torres Del Paine National Park, Chile