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When to Visit with Vacations Patagonia? – The very far south of this continent will be chilly most of the time, and sometimes very cold on both the Argentina and Chile sides of the border. Even in the height of summer (January to March) it can still be chilly, but the Lake District area of Pucon, Puerto Varas and the Bariloche area will be nice and warm at this time.
In a nutshell, as long as you don’t want to ski, try to come to Patagonia in the period from November to April for the best weather, and if pushed a month or so either side and you are still OK. Some excursions and tours may not be possible outside certain months as there will be less visitors so please consult us about this.
- Combine Argentina and Chile easily in one compact tour
- We take care of all the logistics, door-to-door service
- Hike on the glacier surface – treks open for all levels
- Sail lakes & fjords & cruise very close to the icebergs
- Visit El Chalten & Torres del Paine national parks
- Day hikes or full treks – take on the famous W circuit
- Gauchos, regional gastronomy and Patagonian wine
- White water rafting, mountain biking – all levels, plus horseback, kayak & wildlife expeditions
- Epic journeys – The isolated Southern highway, cargo ship journeys or cruises in Tierra del Fuego
- Countryside tours and authentic experiences at Patagonia ranches – meet the Gauchos
- Add the stylish Argentine capital Buenos Aires plus maybe wine & adventure in Northern Argentina
Vacations Patagonia – What to Visit?
This list of destinations is by no means all there is to see, but as time is limited for most visitors we focus on the main points of tourism interest.
Each of these places is quite different from one another and they have their own feel, culture, charm and natural beauty. The cultural and adventure activities in each place are very different also so its important that the staff at Vacations Patagonia advise you where best to visit to meet your interests.
The destinations in Patagonia are linked by air, road, lake or sea depending on which places you choose to visit. We will work with you to design the optimal route in order to travel less and enjoy more. Distances are often huge in a region that is very sparsely populated meaning you will feel closer to nature, far from the hubbub of everyday life back home.
The Geography of Patagonia
This is a huge region of some 1,000,000 square km (the size of Egypt) and is separated along the Argentine – Chilean border by the southern stretches of the Andes mountain range. The region has an average population density of 1.5 people per square km, some 400 times less dense than the state of New Jersey, or the countries of Holland, Israel and India to give some reference examples.
Argentina has the majority of the Patagonia surface area and is divided into three distinct regions. Andean Patagonia is of course the most mountainous region, Central Patagonia is home to the huge plains and steppes, and lastly the region of Atlantic Patagonia at the coast.
The Chilean side of the region is divided into Northern Patagonia, with its base in the province of Aisén, and Southern Patagonia, located in the province of Magallanes. Patagonia in Chile has a very different geography to that in Argentina as it is mainly forests, lakes, volcanoes and mountains with a very fractured coastline of thousands of channels, fjords and islands.
The Northern and Southern icefield are to be found in Patagonia, mainly located within Chile but with some icy branches and a number of glaciers extending into Argentina. The Northern Icefield runs for nearly 200 kilometers and covers a surface of 4,200 square kilometers and is centered on the Laguna San Rafael area, some 100 km south of the Southern Highway capital of Coyhaique.
The Southern Icefield is more extensive due to lower temperatures and stretches to 350 kilometers in length with a surface area of around 13,000 square kilometers. These ice fields are located along the Andes at an average altitude of 1,500 meters above sea level. This frozen mass gives rise to the many accessible glaciers that our clients can visit in the Torres del Paine, El Chalten and El Calafate regions.
As Patagonia is split between two countries the cuisine will vary somewhat and if reputations are anything to go by Chile has an inferior gastronomy to Argentina. This is not true, as our clients will discover!
Cuisine on the Argentine side of Patagonia is similar to most of the country in that grilled meats and pasta are the staples, very nice indeed if you are a carnivore. In Chile there is also a heavy reliance on meat, but as the country has large fish stocks there are many dishes based on Salmon and seafood.
Many restaurants in more tourist-oriented towns like Bariloche and Puerto Varas are experimenting more with unusual combinations, Salmon with various inventive sauces and toppings, or pastas filled with game, such as venison or rabbit. Your taste buds will get a work out, plus indulge your palate with the most southerly grown wine in the world and some beer produced locally in micro-breweries.
So you can see there are so many reasons to visit, just a short flight from Buenos Aires and you are in a totally different world, back in touch with the majesty of nature.