- Cruise through untouched and remote glaciers and fjords in southern Patagonia
- Discover mythical places like Magellan Strait, Beagle Channel and Cape Horn
- Visit one of the most beautiful landscapes of the world, Torres del Paine National Park
- Explore the beauty of metropolitan Santiago
- Admire the incredible landscapes of San Pedro de Atacama
- Wander through the hills of Valparaiso and explore its unique culture.
- Transport in air-conditioned coaches as per the above itinerary
- Airport arrival and departure transfers
- Internal flights within Chile
- 11 nights accommodation in specified hotels or similar
- 4 nights cruise accommodation on MV Ventus Australis or MV Stella Australis
- Breakfast daily, 1 lunch, 3 dinners
- All inclusive rate 11 nights /12 days, on cruise, at Torres Del Paine and at San Pedro De Atacama (All inclusive – includes all meals, alcohol and day touring)
- Sightseeing and entrance fees as indicated in the above itinerary
- English-speaking guide escorting the group for the duration of the tour.
Grand Tour of Chile
Day 1: Santiago
Private transfer from Santiago Airport to Cumbres Vitacura hotel in Santiago with an English speaking tour guide. Rest of the day is free, and in the evening there is a group welcome dinner. Overnight: Cumbres Vitacura. *Dinner included.
Day 2: Santiago - Ushuaia
Enjoy a private group transfer from our Santiago hotel to the airport for a flight from Santiago to Ushuaia, where upon arrival into Ushuaia you will take a group transfer downtown. The rest of day is at leisure to explore Ushuaia, before we board the Australis Cruise at 18:00 (6pm). After a welcoming toast and introduction from the captain and crew, the ship departs for one of the most remote corners of planet Earth. During the night, we traverse the Beagle Channel and cross from Argentina into Chilean territorial waters. The lights of Ushuaia disappear as we turn into the narrow Murray Channel between Navarino and Hoste islands. Overnight: Ventus Australis or Stella Australis. Breakfast and dinner included.
Day 3: Ushuaia – Cape Horn & Wulaia Bay
By early morning, Ventus Australis is cruising across Nassau Bay into the remote archipelago that includes Cape Horn National Park. Weather and sea conditions permitting, we shall go ashore on the windswept island that harbours legendary Cape Horn. Cape Horn is a sheer 425m (1,394 ft) high rocky promontory overlooking the turbulent waters of the Drake Passage. For many years it was the only navigation route between the Pacific and Atlantic and was often referred to as the “End of the Earth”. The park was declared a World Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO in 2005. The Chilean navy maintains a permanent lighthouse on the island, staffed by a lightkeeper and his family, as well as the tiny Stella Maris Chapel and modern Cape Horn Monument. Sailing back across Nassau Bay, we anchor at fabled Wulaia Bay, one of the few places in the archipelago where the human history is just as compelling as the natural environment. Originally the site of one of the region’s largest Yámana aboriginal settlements, the bay was described by Charles Darwin and sketched by Captain FitzRoy in the 1830s during their voyages on the HMS Beagle. This area is also renowned for its mesmerizing beauty and dramatic geography. After a visit to the Australis-sponsored museum in the old radio station – which is especially strong on the Yámana people and European missionaries in the area – passengers have a choice of three hikes (of increasing degrees of difficulty) that ascend the heavily wooden mountain behind the bay. On all of these you will be strolling through an enchanted Magellan forest of lengas, coigües, canelos, ferns, and other endemic flora to reach a panoramic viewpoint overlooking the bay. Before leaving Wulaia Bay, drop something into the wooden mail barrel inside the museum – letters or postcards meant to be hand delivered by future travellers – an ancient mariner tradition revived by Australis. Overnight: Ventus Australis or Stella Australis. All inclusive.
Day 4: Pia Glacier – Garibaldi Glacier
Casting off from Wulaia Bay, we retrace our route to the Beagle Channel and sail westward along the southern edge of Tierra del Fuego into a section of Alberto de Agostini National Park called Glacier Alley (or Avenue of the Glaciers). Flowing down from the Darwin Mountains and Darwin Ice Sheet are a number of impressive tidewater glaciers, most of them named after European countries – Holland, Italy, Germany, Spain and France. Amongst this frozen league of nations we enter the narrow Pia Fjord and board the Zodiacs for a shore excursion to Pia Glacier. No one knows for certain how the hulking glacier got its feminine moniker, but one theory says it was named for princess Maria Pia of Savoy (1847–1911), daughter of the Italian king. After disembarking, we take a short hike to gain a panoramic view of the spectacular glacier, which extends from the mountaintops down to the sea, or a longer, much more difficult walk up a lateral moraine of the old Pia Glacier.
Making our way further west along the Beagle Channel, we enter another long fjord and drop anchor near Garibaldi Glacier for another shore excursion. Garibaldi is one of only three glaciers in Patagonia gaining mass rather than staying the same or slowly shrinking. This time we hike through virgin Magellanic forest to a glacial waterfall, a towering wall of ferns and moss, and spectacular viewpoints looking down on the glacier and fjord. The walk is demanding – very steep, negligible trail, rough footing – and not for everyone. For those who choose to stay onboard, our captain will point the bow towards the beautiful sky-blue Garibaldi Glacier, so everyone can enjoy the panoramic view from the upper decks. Overnight: Ventus Australis or Stella Australis. All inclusive.
Day 5: Agostini Sound – Aguila Glacier – Cóndor Glacier
Early in the morning, we will sail through the Cockburn Channel and enter Agostini Sound. From there it is possible to see the glaciers that descend from the middle of the Darwin Mountain Range – with some of them reaching the water. This morning, we will disembark and go for an easy walk around a lagoon, which was formed by the melting of the Águila Glacier. We will reach a spot right in front of that glacier with stunning views. And in the afternoon, we will approach the Condor Glacier via Zodiac – and hopefully see some of the abundant Andean Condors in the area. Overnight: Ventus Australis or Stella Australis. All inclusive.
Day 6: Magdalena Island – Punta Arenas – Torres Del Paine National Park
After an overnight cruise that takes us back into the Strait of Magellan, we anchor off Magdalena Island, which lies about halfway between Tierra del Fuego and the Chilean mainland. Crowned by a distinctive lighthouse, the island used to be an essential source of supplies for navigators and explorers and is inhabited by an immense colony of Magellanic penguins. At the break of dawn, weather permitting, we go ashore and hike a path that leads through thousands of penguins and many other bird species, to a small museum lodged inside the vintage 1902 lighthouse. After a short sail south along the strait, disembarkation at Punta Arenas is scheduled for around 11:30am. A private group Transfer from Punta Arenas pier to Las Torres Patagonia Resort in the heart of Torres del Paine National Park. The journey goes from Punta Arenas to Llanuras de Diana, taking in the vast Patagonian landscaper along the way. Overnight: Hotel Las Torres. All inclusive.
Day 7 - 9: Torres Del Paine National Park
For the following days you may choose from a variety full-day and half-day excursions to enjoy the incredible Patagonian scenery and wildlife of Torres del Paine National Park. Overnight: Hotel Las Torres. All inclusive.
Day 10: Torres Del Paine – San Pedro De Atacama
Take a private group transfer from Las Torres Patagonia to Punta Arenas (5 hours) to connect us with our ongoing flight from Punta Arenas to San Pedro (which is 2,440m above sea level). Upon arrival we have a private group transfer from Calama Airport to San Pedro De Atacama and our hotel. The rest of the day is yours, at leisure. Overnight: Hotel Cumbres San Pedro De Atacama. *Breakfast and dinner included.
Day 11 - 12: San Pedro de Atacama
For the following days you may choose from a variety of full-day and half-day excursions to enjoy the incredible Atacama Desert scenery. Overnight: Hotel Cumbres San Pedro De Atacama. All inclusive.
Day 13: San Pedro De Atacama – Valparaiso
After a leisurely breakfast we have a private group transfer from our resort to Calama airport, where we will fly to Santiago, and upon arrival we have a group transfer from the airport to Valparaiso, and our hotel. The rest of the day is yours, at leisure. Overnight: Casa Higueras Hotel. *Breakfast and dinner included.
Day 14: Valparaiso & Casablanca Valley – Santiago
This morning we have a private group tour of Valparaiso then lunch and wine tasting at the Matetic Vineyard, before departing to the countryside to be driven to Santiago in the afternoon. The evening is yours at leisure. Overnight: Cumbres Vitacura Hotel. Breakfast and lunch included.
Day 15: Santiago
Today’s city tour will commence with a visit to the San Francisco Church, which was built between 1572 and 1618. Then we will continue west passing the Palacio de la Moneda, current seat of government. Then we will visit the Plaza de Armas, where we will see important National Monuments, such as the Iglesia Catedral (The Cathedral Church), Correo Central (The Main Post Office) and the Municipalidad de Santiago (The City Hall). We will continue our trip going to the Cerro Santa Lucía (the Santa Lucia Hill), where the city was founded in 1541. We will then cross the Mapocho River and pass through different residential districts giving us an overview of the city. This evening we have a group Farewell Dinner at Aquí está Coco Restaurant. Overnight: Cumbres Vitacura Hotel. *Breakfast and dinner included.
Day 16: Santiago
After breakfast, transfer from hotel to airport for your forward journey. *Breakfast included.