Posted on October 13th, 2009 No comments
I really wanted to see South America and this tour itinerary sounded very interesting. All the excursions were first rate, especially the Argentine glaciers and Iguazu Falls. Rapa Nui: what an experience! The Chileans went out of their way to ensure our comfort and the meals were all good value.
-Betty Swindelehurst Tour AR9: Argentina & Chile (South American Treasures – featuring arid Atacama, Indescribable Iguazu and exhilarating Easter Island)
With the mighty Andes mountain range towering over one side and the big blue of the South Pacific Ocean lapping at the other, Chile lies snugly amid two extremes and its interior topography covers every degree in between. A tour to northern Chile would reveal one of the driest locations in the world, where, in some places, there has never been record of any rainfall-the arid Atacama desert. Though even the most avid of sun-worshippers may think twice before touring this sparsely-inhabited region, they may yet be lured by the fact that it is also the location of several important archaeological sites, of impressive geological spectacle and of intriguing remnants of lost civilisations. The features of Chile’s southern regions lie in stark contrast to the characteristics of the north. Aridness gives ways to fertile and lush forests and grazing lands, and, complementing the quaint scenery of the intricate myriad of lakes, canals, inlets and fjords, the south is perforated by a string of volcanoes.
The highlights for us were Puerto Madryn (very good local guide), Ushuaia, Calafate, Santiago (again, an outstanding local guide), Hacienda Los Lingues, Torres del Paine, Puerto Varas and Atacama. -Elizabeth Huss Tour AR7: Argentina & Chile (South American Treasures – featuring arid Atacama & Indescribable Iguazu)
The vast majority of Chile’s over 2,000 volcanoes are now dormant, with only 55 remaining active and of the 12 great lakes situated in the country’s south, one holds the title as the continent’s fourth largest-Lago Llanquihue. One of the world’s great national parks, the Torres del Paine National Park, though only accessible by boat, plane or a scenic trip through Argentina, is a popular tour destination and one that promises a wealth of memories. The south is the perfect tour destination for those looking to experience Chile’s memorable sites, diverse landscape or more energetic activities in more temperate climes.
My interest in Chile and Argentina and a friend’s recommendation of the company made me sign up for this tour. There were some truly unforgettable highlights: Patagonia, Chile’s wine region and some of the hotels and restaurants in Punta Arenas. I would’ve liked more time in Santiago, but the transportation, meals and local guides were generally very good.
-Dennis Huss Tour AR7: Argentina & Chile (South American Treasures – featuring arid Atacama & Indescribable Iguazu)
From some points on the extensive and serene sandy beaches of the east coast, it is possible to see the gargantuan peaks of the Andes dominating the skyline to the west, and in theory, travellers can take to the piste high in the mountains, then bask in the sun on the beach all in the same day. Chile’s offshore territories-the Juan Fernandez Archipelago, which was once the refuge of marooned Scotsman Alexander Selkirk, the man who inspired the classic Daniel Defoe novel ‘Robinson Crusoe,’ and the world-renowned Easter Island-are equally as impressive as its mainland regions. Where the Juan Fernandez Archipelago is a national park and its plethora of plant species have warranted the island’s designation as a World Biosphere Reserve, Easter Island is home to Rapa Nui National Park, a park that exhibits relics of an ancient desert-dwelling civilisation, and to Ahu Tongariki, where 15 of the country’s famous moai statues stand at attention on their rock platform. With so great climatic and geographic distinctions between all its poles, and a culture as unique and welcoming as its people, a tour to Chile, the longest country in the world, guarantees a holiday that will stretch the imagination.
Straddling the border between Chile and Argentina, Patagonia is the definitive destination for the outdoorsperson. Our Patagonia tours whisk travellers away to one of the world’s last great wildernesses to take in its mountains, glaciers, hotsprings, wildlife and eclectic European-based culture. To experience a region of South America unlike the rest of the continent, yet one that is easily equally as rewarding, try our Patagonia tours.