The Patagonia region is the southern portion of South America and is shared between the two countries of Chile and Argentina. The best way to get to Patagonia is to fly to Buenos Aires (BUE) or Santiago de Chile (SCL).
Note: Check the difference in taxes charged to travelers flying into Argentina or Chile. This could help you decide whether it is more affordable to fly to BUE or SCL. Taxes are not always the same when you are driving or riding a bus between the two countries as when you are flying in.
To Southern Patagonia, you will fly to El Calafate or Ushuaia. To Northern Patagonia you fly to San Carlos de Bariloche.
To Southern Patagonia you will fly to Punta Arenas.
To Central Patagonia you will fly to Balmaceda, Coihayque.
To Northern Patagonia and the Lake District, you fly to Temuco or Puerto Montt according to your destination.
We strongly recommend www.lan.com, very good service in general.
Bus transportation between cities is very good also. There are many destinations with frequent trips between them. Buses are much larger and more comfortable than standard buses in North America. A “Coche Cama” seat is comparable to a “First Class” seat on a nice airline, and it is cheaper domestic flights if you are not in a rush there are many reliable bus lines.
One we recommend is www. viabariloche .com.ar
Our local agency is www.dannemann.com.ar
The local Argentinian currency is the Argentinian Peso and Chilean currency is Chilean Peso. Check current rate of exchange at www.xe.com currency converter
Credit cards and Debit cards are commonly accepted though many establishments will only except cash or charge more for their product when a customer pays with a card. It is good to always have some cash with you. There are ATMs all over Bariloche and Patagonia, including El Chalten.
Many towns have places to exchange currency as well. The more remote the town you are visiting, the more likely that the exchange rate will not be as good and ATMs may not be filled as regularly.
To stay in Argentina people from Canada, United States, and any country of the (CEE) (EEC) European Economic Community will have 90 days as a “tourist” to stay without requiring a special Visa. There is currently no fee to enter Argentina as a tourist. For extra and current information check the embassy’s website.
The people of Patagonia speak Spanish! Many people know some English, especially in destination towns and businesses that service travelers. Carry a Spanish- English Dictionary or phrase book with you so you can communicate better.
Internet access with WIFI is available in many coffee shops or restaurants in Bariloche and El Calafate. Many times it is free. “Locutorios” are shops which offer computers with internet services, for 1-2 USD per hour on average, and have public phones to make international calls.
If you plan on making many international phone calls, using a calling card is much more affordable. We recommend www.tarjetastelefonicas.com With this service, you can get different access numbers so that people can call you, and you can make calls using the same credit.
Lake District of Northern Patagonia in the Bariloche area and Nahuel Huapi National Park because of their system of Mountain Huts and logical access. This also offers a good, reasonable distance to the Volcanoes and Ring of Fire for more variety.
Las Lenas in Mendoza has World class free-ride steep skiing terrain as Alaska, unfortunately snow is not as great, but is totally worth it to be skiing in August!
Bariloche is the best area for this activity. With the magic Valle Encantado (“ Enchanted Valley”) and eight other local small crags which can entertain you for at least a month or more regardless of the weather.
Frey Hut, near Bariloche in the Nahuel Huapi National Park, is one of the best options. Climbs range from one to eight pitches in pure, golden granite. Good cracks, not polished… just beautiful climbing in a great setting.
Southern Patagonia is famous for the massifs of Torres del Paine, Fitz Roy and Cerro Torre and their surrounding satellites.
www.cochamo.com) My friend Daniel Seelinger runs the hut there, and he is totally a good soul full of great information who will give you a hand for sure! (Enjoy an excellent pizza after a long day of climbing!)Visit Cochamo (
Also visit Arenales in Mendoza and Torres del Brujo near Santiago, close to San Fernando (has few small glaciers…)
Torres del Paine and Glacier National Park in El Chalten (Fitz Roy and Cerro Torre area) are the best known. There are great hikes on trails and alpine treks as well.
Nahuel Huapi National Park near Bariloche offers a system of Mountain Huts and some wild treks with tent logistic. This area has warmer weather than Southern Patagonia and has lots of beautiful mountain lakes.
Cerro Catedral - The most modern ski resort in South America, located 20km from the town of Bariloche.
Cerro Bayo - Small resort with great backcountry terrain on the north shore of the Nahuel Huapi lake. Located 10 km from Villa La Angostura and 90km from Bariloche.
La Hoya Ski Area - Tiny resort with the best backcountry ever. Located near Esquel, 350 km south of Bariloche.
Chapelco - A good medium-sized resort with a nice little town 20 km from San Martin de los Andes.
Las Lenas - 1500 km north of Northern Patagonia, worldwide first-class Freeride terrain. Could be tricky due to weather, but when it is good, it is awesome! Excellent backcountry access!
Click the image or go to www.snow-forecast.com,
Place Cerro Catedral and you will have forecast for Bariloche ski resort, Catedral Alta Patagonia
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