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How to approach Patagonia from Santiago?

Copenhagen, Denmark
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How to approach Patagonia from Santiago?

I am a Dane, having bypassed to 70's of age, however, still in a rather good physical condition, have travelled in a lot of countries, and have now booked a trip to Santiago, where I shall arrive (solo traveler) one of the last days in October this year. A visit to the Atacama dessert with a 4-5 days stay have already been booked. So far so good. I must travel back to Denmark again from Santiago on November 29th. Meanwhile I would like to see the Patagionian "icons", but I have no knowledge whatsoever about how to spend the 3 weeks, what to see there, and how to come to the most attractive places, preferably to AIRPORTS rather close to them. I am not traveling as a backpacker/tent etc - have done that sufficiently years ago, but I have no problems walking in general.

My trip to Patagonia has first and foremost a photographic scope, however, I have not been able to trace specific photo-tours to Patagonia in the month of November this year. So it seems as if I will have to travel alone, and it's also alright for me.

The places mentioned below are such which I would like to see - amongst others, which you, dear readers, might suggest:

Palena/Aysén (a.o. Volcan Michinmahuida)

Lago Carrera (The Marble Caverns etc)

Chacabuco Valley

Torres de Paine (Perito Moreno)

However, I am given to understand that some of these may be very difficult to access by public transportation means? Again, I seem to have got an opinion that there may NOT be flying possibility BETWEEN" these places. Does that mean that one will always have to return back to Santiago in order to go to the "next" place? Or could you suggest an ideal "Hub"/"platform" enabling me to reach these places without having to return back to Santiago. I am not so fond of traveling more days and nights by busses. Again I must end up in Santiago on the 28th November, the day before my departure to Denmark.

I would be most grateful for any good advice enabling me to proceed with my detailed planning.

Santiago, Chile
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1. Re: How to approach Patagonia from Santiago?

You want two separate areas: Torres del Paine, and the Carretera Austral. You would not have to return to Santiago but could fly from the Balmaceda airport (Coyhaique) to Puerto Montt and then from there to Punta Arenas for Torres del Paine.

You are quite close to your dates which can mean fares may be a bit higher. You also need to know where you are going to stay in Torres del Paine to book that. Bus schedules on the Carretera Austral can be infrequent and Patagonia is always unpredictable. Hiring a car would help with this portion of the trip.

For Torres del Paine you would fly to Punta Arenas and take a three hour bus ride to Puerto Natales. Another bus to the park will take about 2 hours, depending on where you are staying. You can put together your own package of lodging etc using the Fantastco Sur website

http://www.fantasticosur.com

or get someone to put it together for you:

erraticrock.com/expeditions/…

www.bluegreenadventures.com/Patagonia_w.html

https:/…Torres-del-Paine

....and many others.

Copenhagen, Denmark
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2. Re: How to approach Patagonia from Santiago?

Dear Dancingmolly, thanks a lot for your fine info, I am most grateful for your having taken the time to help me...now things will most likely be easier for me.

I am looking so much forward to visit Chile!!!

Santiago, Chile
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3. Re: How to approach Patagonia from Santiago?

You are very welcome! I forgot to mention that there are also hotels in the park. Hotel Las Torres can be done as an all inclusive with day trips arranged or independent of them. You could arrange your flights and leave the rest to them.

http://www.lastorres.com

Copenhagen, Denmark
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4. Re: How to approach Patagonia from Santiago?

Again, thanks a lot for your kind advice. After having read a few articles about the Carretera Austral and it's very isolated character, I am seriously considering to drop this adventure, maybe in favour of f.inst. "Puerto Lussich"' however, it may be on the Argentinian side? Have you any knowledge about this place. Certainly I will still arrange for a visit at Torres del Paine and this area, maybe furthermore focusing on a visit to Antarctic (in replacement of the Carretera Austral....what do you mean about this disposition? Still grateful for your willingness to help....

Santiago, Chile
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5. Re: How to approach Patagonia from Santiago?

If you fly to Coyhaique (Balmaceda airport) you can do excursions from there. It is a bit early in the season but it is one of the loveliest parts of Chile. Fernando46 is the expert on the area and hopefully he will have some ideas.

Puerto Lussich is in Argentina. I don't know it.

Copenhagen, Denmark
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6. Re: How to approach Patagonia from Santiago?

Thanks again dancingMolly, have you possibly got an idea how I can trace "Fernando46", as mentioned in your thread?

Copenhagen, Denmark
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7. Re: How to approach Patagonia from Santiago?

....I would very much like to visit the famous "Marble Caverns"....do you think they are located within reasonable distance from an airport ?

Santiago, Chile
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8. Re: How to approach Patagonia from Santiago?

Your closest airport is Balmaceda. From there you would travel by road for about 3 hours to Puerto Tranquilo where you get a boat to go out and see the Capillas de Marmol. There are places to stay in PT.

9. Re: How to approach Patagonia from Santiago?

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