Perfect for even the littlest of explorers, this weeklong trip to Chilean Patagonia introduces you to the region's highlights with a relaxed pace and plenty of fun, accessible excursions. After a kid-friendly tour of Santiago, it's off to Punta Arenas, where youngsters will love spotting adorable Magellanic penguins and playful dolphins by boat, roaming the decks of historic ships in a nautical museum, and letting their imaginations run wild in the grounds of a scenic 19th-century fort.


  • Learn about the city of Santiago on an engaging family-friendly tour
  • Encounter cute Magellanic penguins and other wildlife on Isla Magdalena
  • Spot playful dolphins on a boat trip through Agua Fresca Bay
  • Enjoy downtime before you travel at a play café in Santiago
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Santiago, Relax in Bicentenario Park Santiago
Day 2 Family-Friendly Santiago City Tour Santiago
Day 3 Fly to Punta Arenas, Historic Ships of Chile at the Nao Victoria Museum Punta Arenas
Day 4 Isla Magdalena Penguin Encounter Punta Arenas
Day 5 Dolphin-Watching Adventure Punta Arenas
Day 6 Center of Chile Monument & Fort Bulnes Punta Arenas
Day 7  Fly to Santiago, Relax at a Play Café & Depart  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Santiago, Relax in Bicentenario Park

Bicentenario Park
Feed the flamingoes and tire out the little ones after your flight in Santiago's Bicentenario Park

Welcome to Santiago, the capital city of Chile! Upon arrival at Arturo Merino Benitez International Airport, your driver will meet you and take you to your hotel in the city center. The journey will take around half an hour. After checking out your room, you can relax and settle in or grab a snack and head out to let the kids burn off some energy.

After traveling, a park is likely to be a hit with the family. Head to Bicentenario Park, located along the shores of the Río Mapocho, for impressive play areas, gardens, and plenty of space to run around. The kids will love spotting black-necked swans and flamingoes in the park's artificial lagoons—look out for the bird food dispensers so you can interact with the birds up close! Afterward, older children may enjoy a trip to the upmarket Casacostanera shopping mall, which is also in the Vitacura neighborhood, where they'll find international brands, restaurants, and coffee shops.

Day 2: Family-Friendly Santiago City Tour

Climb to the top of Cerro Santa Lucía for panoramic views across Santiago

Get a comprehensive introduction to Santiago today with a tour designed with families in mind. You'll be picked up from your hotel first thing and head to La Moneda Palace, where older children can learn about the 1973 military coup that took place here. You'll also visit the Plaza de Armas, a stone plaza located in Santiago's historic center where there's often live music. Linger here for some kid-friendly street food such as sopaipillas (fried dough with sweet or savory toppings) and mote con huesillo (a drink made with dried peaches, wheat berries, water, and cinnamon).

After you've refueled with snacks, take a climb up the stone staircase to Cerro Santa Lucía and look out over the city from its scenic viewpoint (there's an elevator part-way for those with smaller children). Then it's on to Cerro San Cristóbal, Santiago's largest green space. Admire its Castillo Hidalgo and imagine all of the adventures that took place within the castle's walls before making it to the Virgen de la Inmaculada Concepción statue at the summit. There's also the option to visit Santiago Zoo or, in the summer months, to spend some time at a swimming pool with amazing views of the city below.

Then, it's on to the neighborhood of Providencia, where you'll visit the largest mall in South America at the Costanera Center and scale South America's tallest building, the Costanera Tower. If your family all have a head for heights, you'll be able to visit the Sky Costanera on its 62nd floor for a 360-degree view of the city and the Andes mountains beyond. End the day by relaxing in Araucano Park, where the kids can play while you sit and watch with a coffee. If you still have the energy, there's a good selection of restaurants and other attractions nearby before you whisk the kids back to your hotel for bedtime.

Day 3: Fly to Punta Arenas, Historic Ships of Chile at the Nao Victoria Museum

Nao Victoria, Ferdinand Magellan's ship replica
Learn about the first ship to circumnavigate the earth at the Nao Victoria Museum

It's time to strike out for the wilds of Patagonia today as you transfer to the airport and catch a two-hour flight south to Punta Arenas. Located on the famed Strait of Magellan, this southern Patagonian hub is known as the "Gateway to the Arctic" and serves as the perfect base for your adventures in the region. Upon arrival, you'll be picked up and driven to your hotel.

After you've all settled into your new room, ask the reception staff to book you a taxi for a 10-minute journey to the Nao Victoria Museum. Here, the kids can learn about the first ship to circumnavigate the earth, Ferdinand Magellan's The Victoria, plus other famous vessels such as the HMS Beagle, which you'll probably know because of Charles Darwin. Realistic replicas and life-size models of historic characters will help to bring history alive for younger members of your family, and the kids will love exploring the decks of some of the boats and posing for photographs.

Plan your trip to Patagonia
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.

Day 4: Magdalena Island Penguin Encounter

Magdalenda Island - Pinguins Encounteer Half Day Tour
Isla Magdalena is home to one of the largest Magellanic penguin colonies in South America
Today is sure to be a big hit with all of the family as you set off this morning to visit a colony of penguins on Isla Magdalena. Board a comfortable catamaran at Laredo Dock to sail to the island in the Strait of Magellan in around 90 minutes. You're likely to see plenty of cute and comical birds waddling around, as Isla Magdalena is home to one of the largest Magellanic penguin colonies in South America. There's also a lighthouse and other wildlife for you all to spot, including skuas, black-browed albatrosses, cormorants, and terns. Keep your eyes peeled for dolphins and sei whales as you travel too!

Day 5: Dolphin-Watching Adventure

Dolphins Watching - From Punta Arenas
You may spot Peale's dolphins today, which often live in small groups of around 20
It's another wildlife-themed day as you'll head out to spot dolphins this morning. You'll be picked up from your hotel and driven to Agua Fresca Bay, where you'll be kitted out with waterproof gear and life jackets and given instructions for the trip. Then it's time to go to the beach to board your inflatable boat. Look out for Peale's dolphins while you're on the water, which often live in small groups of around 20. You can see them not too far from the coast, which makes this an ideal excursion for children. They may even come close to your boat to play in the waves!

Day 6: Center of Chile Monument & Fort Bulnes

Fort Bulnes canons
Fort Bulnes was the first Chilean settlement in Patagonia

It's the penultimate day of your family tour today, and it starts as your driver picks you up first thing for the hour's drive south to the Strait of Magellan Park and Fort Bulnes. En route, you can stop at the monument showing the geographical center of Chile, considering the Antarctic territory. The fort was the first Chilean settlement in Patagonia, and in its visitor center, you'll all learn about both the area's Indigenous inhabitants and those who later settled here. The cannons at the fort are always a hit with smaller children!

After you've explored and taken some family snaps, it's time to return back to Punta Arenas to make the most of the last evening of your trip however you please.

Day 7: Fly to Santiago, Relax at a Play Café & Depart

Visit a Play Cafe in Santiago
If you have time before your flight home, head to one of Santiago's popular play cafés
It's the last day of your Chilean adventure today, and it starts as you say your goodbyes to Patagonia and transfer to the airport for the flight back to Santiago. If you have time before your flight home, head to one of Santiago's play cafés, where the kids will be kept entertained by a wide range of activities and toys, and you can enjoy some downtime over a hot drink before your flight.
Some cafés have full menus while others only offer snacks, so choose the best option for your family based on how much time you have. You'll then be picked up and taken to the airport feeling refreshed and ready for your flight to your onward destination. Safe travels!

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Map of Gentle Family Tour of Chilean Patagonia: Santiago & Punta Arenas - 7 Days
Map of Gentle Family Tour of Chilean Patagonia: Santiago & Punta Arenas - 7 Days