Experience the splendor of Torres del Paine National Park—plus the colorful capital city of Santiago and a working Patagonian ranch—on this outdoorsy eight-day itinerary. Start with a day of sightseeing in Santiago, then travel to the quaint port town of Puerto Natales. Get an early start to enter the national park and spend four days hiking the famed "W" Trek. Then wrap up the adventure with a day trip to a traditional sheep ranch on the remote Antonio Veras Peninsula, only accessible by boat.


  • Hike to the emerald and turquoise waters of two glacial lakes 
  • Boat to the spectacular Glacier Grey in Torres del Paine
  • Spend three nights in Puerto Natales enjoying great restaurants and sunset strolls
  • Take a day trip to a traditional Patagonian ranch

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Santiago, Explore Santiago
Day 2 Transfer to Puerto Natales via Punta Arenas Puerto Natales
Day 3 Enter Torres del Paine & Begin W Trek Torres del Paine
Day 4 Hike Along Lago Nordenskjöld to Refugio Cuernos Torres del Paine
Day 5 Visit the French Valley & Continue to Refugio Paine Grande Torres del Paine
Day 6 Admire Grey Glacier, Return to Puerto Natales Puerto Natales
Day 7 Explore Estancia La Peninsula Puerto Natales
Day 8 Depart Puerto Natales  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Santiago, Explore

Hike or take a gondola up to the top of Cerro San Cristóbal
A view of Santiago from the cable car leading to Cerro San Cristóbal

Welcome to Chile! Upon arrival at Santiago International Airport, a driver will meet you and transfer you to your hotel. The rest of the day is yours to explore the city. Snap photos of the Palacio de la Moneda, Chile's opulent presidential palace, a short stroll from the Plaza de Armas. Next, stroll the cobblestone streets of Barrio Bellavista to see colorful houses, vibrant street art, and an eclectic array of eateries and bars that are great for people-watching.

For dinner, enjoy a culinary adventure in the city. In recent years, Santiago has emerged as a global foodie destination as Chilean chefs reinvent traditional dishes, like empanadas and cazuelas (stews), with ingredients sourced from the Atacama Desert and the southern Patagonian region. You'll find great restaurants and wine bars in the Bellavista neighborhood and the revitalized historic districts of Yungay and Italia. Head back to your hotel to get some rest before tomorrow's trip to Patagonia.

Day 2: Transfer to Puerto Natales via Punta Arenas

Puerto Natales' colorful waterfront
Puerto Natales' colorful waterfront

Today, you'll travel to the small port city of Puerto Natales, formerly a fishing port and now the main base for excursions into Torres del Paine National Park. The town is set on the Seno Última Esperanza (Last Hope Sound), offering scenic views across the water to the mountains beyond. Facing north from here, you'll see the peaks of Cerro Benitez and Cerro Toro, and the sight is especially phenomenal at sunset.

Depending on your arrival time, you might take a stroll around town and stop for a drink at one of the town's many bars and cafés. Try a traditional seafood stew in a family-run restaurant before you get some rest at your hotel. Adventures in Patagonia's landscapes await tomorrow!

Day 3: Enter Torres del Paine & Begin W Trek

The spectacular view from Mirador Base Torres
The spectacular view from Mirador Base Torres

Transfer from Puerto Natales to Torres del Paine National Park this morning. The drive takes about two hours, and you'll get your first glimpses of Torres del Paine's massive peaks as you approach the park. You'll arrive at the Laguna Amarga main entrance and register with the park office, then take a quick shuttle ride to the Las Torres sector. From here, you'll begin the W Trek, hiking up Mount Almirante Nieto with views of the Asencio Valley and Lago Nordenskjöld. After two hours of hiking, you'll reach Refugio & Camping Chileno and have lunch.

Leave your backpack at Refugio el Chileno. It's another hour of hiking past ancient forests until you arrive at a moraine. The next part is a challenging steep ascent for 45 minutes until you reach the top, known as Mirador Base Torres. This section of the mountain, with the Torres del Paine (torre is "tower" in Spanish) looming over a green lagoon, is the best view in the park. You can also marvel at the towering peaks of nearby Torre Sur, Torre Central, Torre Norte, Condor's Nest, and Glacier Torre, all set amid the sweeping backdrop of the Patagonian highlands. Return to Refugio & Camping Chileno for the evening. 

Day 4: Hike Along Lago Nordenskjöld to Refugio Cuernos

Blue skies over Lake Nordenskjöld
Blue skies over Lake Nordenskjöld
This morning, you'll have breakfast and prepare to continue hiking along the W Trek. You'll walk for about four hours toward Refugio Cuernos, located on Lago Nordenskjöld and at the foot of the Cuernos. Along the way, you'll skirt Mount Almirante Nieto and the lake, crossing over rivers as you go. See glimpses of glaciers and the mountaintops before you arrive at the Refugio to relax for the evening. 

Day 5: Visit the French Valley & Continue to Refugio Paine Grande

The French Glacier
The cliffs of the French Glacier come into view on day three of the trek
Plan your trip to Patagonia
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.

Your third day of hiking the W Trek begins just after breakfast. Hit the trail toward Campamento Italiano, a camp about 2.5 hours away. You'll walk across a windy beach and into the valley, where the wind is slightly calmer. Once you arrive at Campamento Italiano, leave your large pack and continue into the French Valley with a small daypack.

You'll hike across a moraine and through a forest until you come to a clearing, where you'll be blown away by both the wind and the spectacular views of three lakes: Nordenskjöld, Skottsberg, and Pehoe. You'll see the hanging French Glacier just ahead of you, plus several other peaks. After leaving the lookout, return to gather your larger backpack and continue another 2.5 hours to Refugio Paine Grande on the shore of the beautiful Lake Pehoe.

Day 6: Admire Grey Glacier, Return to Puerto Natales

Admire Glacier Grey, Refugio Paine Grande to Refugio Grey [W Trek Day 4]
See Grey Glacier from the lakeside trail today

After a restful night and an energizing breakfast, begin a four-hour hike through a small forest along Lago Grey. This is the fourth and final day of the W Trek. Most days, this section of the park is very windy due to the open landscapes around Lago Grey, Grey Glacier, and the Southern Ice Field.

Finish your Torres del Paine adventure by hopping aboard the Grey III catamaran, taking a tour of the lake, and getting up close to the glacier. The catamaran will then leave you at the shore in the Pudeto sector of the park, where a vehicle awaits to transport you back to Puerto Natales. In the evening, you can relax in your hotel and rest after a long day.

Day 7: Explore Estancia La Peninsula

Horseback ride through a sprawling southern Chilean estancia

After breakfast at your hotel, you'll set off on a day trip to the beautiful Estancia La Peninsula on the Antonio Veras Peninsula. This sprawling sheep and cattle ranch is surrounded by glaciers, mountains, beech forests, and the Seno Última Esperanza—a body of water you'll have to cross by boat to arrive. The scenic 40-minute ride is part of the fun! 

When you arrive at this working wool farm, you'll get an overview of the grounds and have the chance to go horseback riding, hiking, or bird-watching. In the afternoon, enjoy a traditional Patagonian asado (barbecue) prepared by the staff and attend the daily sheep-shearing demonstration. You'll boat back to Puerto Natales late in the afternoon.

Day 8: Depart Puerto Natales

Farewell, Chile!
Sunset over Puerto Natales

The adventure has come to an end. After breakfast, your driver will pick you up at your hotel and take you to the airport to catch your flight to Santiago. From there, fly home or continue your journey. Safe travels!

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Map of Active Chilean Patagonia Adventure in Torres del Paine National Park - 8 Days
Map of Active Chilean Patagonia Adventure in Torres del Paine National Park - 8 Days