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Patagonia Estancia to Estancia Horseride

offered by supplier M09984 (read about supplier)

Key Information:
Tour Duration: 10 day(s)
Group Size: 2 - 12 people
Destination(s): Chile  
Specialty Categories: Horse Riding  
Season: November - April
Airfare Included: No
Tour Customizable: Yes
Minimum Per Person Price: 3750 US Dollar (USD)
Maximum Per Person Price: 4375 US Dollar (USD)

A wonderful 10 day trip which would suit those who wish to combine some local flavor with their outdoor riding adventure and is designed for those who prefer not to camp. Riders will experience a first hand view of Patagonia estancia life and the joys, threats and difficulties posed by farming cattle and sheep in this area.

The majority of the ride takes place within the park itself and offers plenty of diversity with rides across open pampas, rides to wild glaciers and iceberg-filled lakes and peaceful rides through valleys and ancient southern beech forests. Accommodation throughout is clean, comfortable and welcoming – all of it having been chosen for its beautiful location and unsurpassable views.

Tour Itinerary:

Day 1: Morning collection from client’s hotel in Punta Arenas. Continue in comfortable transfer vehicle across the Patagonian Steppe where you will have your first opportunity to see some of the unusual plant and animal life that exists in this area. After a short lunch stop in Puerto Natales we will continue on to our hotel on the shores of Laguna Verde situated on the southern perimeters of the park.

This property offers stunning views across this lake to the peaks of Paine. The lake is usually inhabited by a multitude of birds, ducks and geese and this is a fantastic place to enjoy lakeside walks and view the wildlife. Tonight we will be staying in a beautiful hotel which forms part of a large working estancia (ranch). It offers comfortable accommodation, cozy fireside dining and ensuite accommodation. Dinner in restaurant offering an excellent variety of local foods and wine. Includes: (B), (D).

Day 2: Today we will be meeting our horses and the dedicated baqueanos who care for them. After assigning horses to riders, we will have a safety check and short familiarization with western riding before packing our saddle bags with cameras, waterproofs, and our picnic lunch and setting off around the shores of this pretty lake through ancient southern beech forests towards the Sierra del Toro.

We will then make a steep ascent through forests to climb right up on top of this mountain. The last section of the ride will often be through snow as we stop to marvel at the views of the entire Park below us. We will then wind down to a pretty authentic ‘puesto’ manned by one of the cattle ranchers from Estancia Lazo to take our lunch. Afternoon return to our comfortable accommodation on the Lazo Ranch. Includes: (B), (L), (D)

Day 3: After a wholesome breakfast and packing up we will be starting our ride eastwards towards the heart of the Park. The morning ride is fairly relaxing as we wind our way through this pretty valley passing a number of lakes and mountain views. Plenty of time to take photographs before we ascend to a lookout with fabulous views of the pampas and lakes below. After stopping to let the horses rest and take a few photographs we will start our steep descent of the Sierra del Toro to the pampas below.

Lunch will be taken in the valley and we will have a chance to visit the Park Headquarters to look at their relief map of the park. We will then check-in to our accommodation before an afternoon drive to Lago Grey to see the fabulous Glacier Grey. After crossing the swinging footbridge, we will take a walk down to Grey Beach for a memorable view of the Glacier and huge icebergs floating in the grey waters of this lake. The night will be spent in the Posada Serrano, once the shearers’ quarters of Estancia Paine. En suite accommodation, cozy fireside bar and dinner in restaurant (wine/drinks not included). Includes: (B), (L), (D).

Day 4: Today we will be setting off on one of the longest rides of the trip initially started as an experiment but now one of our most popular rides which none of our itineraries would be complete without. The Paine Massif will unfold in front of us as we cross widely diverse scenery on our journey across the heart of the park. Mountain peaks dominate the horizon and we pass numerous lakes of startling colors and rivers tumbling through tranquil green valleys. Herds of guanacos will be seen and flocks of birds accompany us on our rides through the forests. Wild flowers and orchids are nestled amongst the trees and line the trails. Truly a fantastic and memorable ride.

Finally, our trail will take us eastwards to cross the Rio de las Chinas on our route out to the land belonging to Estancia Tercera Barranca situated on the eastern perimeters of the park. On arrival we will be greeted by the local baquianos and settle into our comfortable ‘homestay’ accommodation. Time to enjoy pre-dinner drinks and snacks whilst our evening meal is prepared. Includes: (B), (L), (D).

Day 5: After enjoying some fine home baked bread and cakes for breakfast we will set off on an exciting and unique adventure through the forests and hills of the Sierra Contreras to the Cascada Zamora (waterfall). We will also visit a working estancia and may even an sight an elusive puma (frequently seen in these parts). The scenery in this area is amazingly wild and we will ride along winding trails crossing rivers and beech forests as, in the distance we see the sun rise over the Towers giving them their classic morning glow. A lovely day’s ride. Evening asado (traditional gaucho lamb barbeque) under the stars. Includes: (B), (L), (D).

Day 6: After once again enjoying a traditional Chilean ‘campo’ breakfast we will be setting off on another long ride to the Dickson Valley. Starting with a ride to some natural mineral water springs we will head west towards Laguna Azul, a beautiful azure lake with the spectacular Towers standing watch behind it. There will be many excellent photo opportunities on this route as we ride around the shores of this beautiful lake to Lago Paine, our lunch stop.

We will pass through flower filled woods and beautiful valleys with the horizon being constantly dominated by the northerly slopes of the Paine chain. After lunch we will enjoy more fabulous riding through valleys and rivers before arriving at some woods beside the Rio de Los Perros. After riding through the woods we will reach this fast flowing glacial river before whistling for the boatman to bring our dinghy across. Sometimes icebergs are present in these frigid waters and with luck on our side we will see the horses swim the waters to reach the grazing on the other side (weather/current dependent). With the lead horse being led from the dinghy used to cross passengers, the other horses follow along behind snorting in chorus – an amazing sight.

Tonight we will be spending the first of two nights in Dickson Refugio or ‘mountain lodge’ situated in this beautiful and remote valley where the only access is by foot or horseback. During our stay here we will be eating in the refugio and will no doubt enjoy the company of some hikers who have also made this pretty place home for a short while. Accommodation basic but comfortable and possibly shared. Showers available. Includes: (B), (L), (D).

Day 7: Today we will ride north past the beautiful Lago Quemado to our lunch spot overlooking Glacier Dickson. Perched high above this beautiful iceberg filled lake and glacier which seems to go on forever, we will sit and admire the miracles of nature. This is a high point of everybody’s trip and a place which rarely receives visitors owing to its inaccessibility. We will enjoy a leisurely lunch on our solitary perch before heading back to the refugio for a second night. Showers available. Includes: (B), (L), (D).

Day 8: After crossing the Rio de los Perros for the last time, we will today set off early for our ride to Laguna Azul and onwards to our ‘home’ at La Tercera. Once again we will pass the northerly peaks of the Paine chain. One of the peaks is topped by a black, craggy rock in the shape of a Tuhuelche Indian Face where the ‘headband’ is decorated with snowdrifts even in summer.

From here we will see Laguna Azul coming into view as we pass through flower filled meadows and southern beech forests. Having passed the lake we will continue on to cross the Zamora River before arriving at La Tercera once again. There will be a chance to relax, shower or take a hot bath whilst dinner is prepared. Includes: (B), (L), (D).

Day 9: Today we will riding out of the park to the small outpost town of Cerro Castillo situated 40km from the entrance to the park and 60km from Puerto Natales. A fantastic ride across farmland and open pampas with some unique and interesting stops on the way. Rivers will be crossed and there will be plenty of opportunity for long exhilarating canters on this prairie land just made for riding! Our lunch stop will be at one of the many estancias whose land we cross on the way to our destination. Hospitality is legendary in these parts and it is rare for passing riders not be offered some form of hospitality by the estancieros.

Hopefully we will find some local baquianos willing to share their traditional mate session with us. During late afternoon we will see a small hotel surrounded by the customary layer of trees offering protection from the wind. This villa built by settlers to Tierra del Fuego at the beginning of the century will be our home for the night.

Once home to one of the most important and influential estancieros in the region it offers comfortable accommodation and an excellent restaurant offering a variety of typical local foods and international cuisine. The fireside bar is an excellent place to enjoy a fireside pisco sour whilst recounting the previous days adventures. Comfortable ensuite accommodation. Dinner in the comfortable restaurant (meal included, except wine/drinks).

Day 10: After breakfast of coffee and home made cakes and bread we will transfer to Punta Arenas via Puerto Natales and the fascinating Magellanic Penguin colony where we will have a chance to watch and photograph these cute burrowing penguins. Arrival in Punta Arenas during late afternoon. Includes: (B), (L), (D).

Airfare is not included in the tour price.

2 clients: $4375.00
3 clients: $4,250.00
4-6 clients: $3,900.00

Price Includes:
- 11 nights accommodation based on twin share (in hotels, hosterias and estancias)
- Eight days horseback riding
- Transfers to/from Punta Arenas and whilst in Park (see designated flight info)
- Breakfast and lunch every day
- Dinner (excluding drinks)
- Lamb asado
- English speaking and local guides
- Baqueanos who care for the horses
- Waterproof stuff sacks for trip, use of saddle bags, entrance fees to Torres del Paine and the penguin colony.

Price Excludes:
- Flights, airport taxes, airport transfers and meals in Punta Arenas
- Lunch on Day 2 and Day 11 in Natales
- Local gratuities (recommend $50).

About This Supplier
Location: Chile
Joined InfoHub: Sep 2003

M09984 is a tour operator based in southern Patagonia's quaint waterside town of Puerto Natales. Run by the original founders, it is a small Anglo-Chilean company which has been organizing wilderness adventure travel in and around Southern Patagonia for nearly 20 years. We offer three services depending on the...

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