Chile; Land of Natural Diversity

12 Days / 11 Nights

Chile; Land of Natural Diversity Chile; Land of Natural Diversity

A journey by Private Car & Guide

Featuring: Santiago, Atacama Desert, Northern and Southern Patagonia

Suggested Wednesday arrivals in Santiago

With a 2,700 miles-long coastline, the driest desert in the world, more than 2,000 volcanoes (50 are still active), ice fields, glaciers, fjords, lakes, forests, wild rivers, thundering waterfalls and remote exotic islands; Chile is probably the most naturally diverse country in the world. Spiced Destinations takes you on an awe-inspiring journey to a land of extremities and natural wonders.

Journey's Highlights »

  • Santiago City tour including “underground art” at Santiago’s Metro stations
  • Explore the Moon Valley and Salt Flats at the Atacama Desert
  • Sunrise tour to the spectacular Tatio Geysers
  • Visit the Open Air Museum of Frutillar in Chile’s Lake District
  • Photograph the Petrohue Falls with the perfectly cone shaped Osorno Volcano at the background
  • Cross by ferry to the Chiloe Island for a “Time Travel“ experience
  • Visit the Penguins Sanctuary in Chiloe Island
  • Sail the Southern Patagonian Fjords to view the Balmaceda & Serrano Glaciers
  • Hike the trails of the Torres del Paine National Park

Included in Your Journey »

Luxury Accommodation:

  • 2 nights in Santiago, at the Ritz Carlton or the Santiago W Hotel
  • 3 nights in San Pedro de Atacama, at the Awasi Lodge, Tierra Atacama Lodge or the Explora Atacama Lodge
  • 3 nights in Puerto Varas at the Cumbers Patagonicas Hotel
  • 3 nights in Puerto Natales at the Remota Lodge
  • All taxes at the hotel

Sightseeing, visits and transportation:

  • All entrance fees for sites mentioned in the itinerary
  • Transfers, sightseeing and touring as per the attached itinerary locally hosted by English Speaking guide

Fine dining:

  • Daily breakfast at the hotel, plus additional gourmet meals as indicated in the itinerary (b= breakfast, l = lunch, d = dinner)
     

Itinerary

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  • Wednesday - Day 1 - Arrival in Santiago

    Upon arrival to Santiago, transfer to your hotel. Afternoon city tour of the Old & New of this vibrant city. Tonight dinner in a gourmet restaurant. (d)
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    Welcome to Chile! Upon arrival to Santiago meet your Spiced Destinations Representative and transfer to the Hotel. In the afternoon tour Santiago, visiting the city’s most outstanding attractions, including a walking tour downtown to the “Plaza de Armas”, the Cathedral, Ahumada Boulevard and the Government Palace “La Moneda”(outside). Then, by vehicle, visit the main avenues of old Santiago, crossing the bohemian neighborhood of Bellavista and drive up San Cristobal Hill, for a magnificent panoramic view of the city and the Andes Mountain Range. We then drive to the modern part of Santiago, including its chic neighborhoods, shopping and financial centers. Our tour includes a brief Metro ride, to view two important murals in the underground train stations. Tonight dinner at one of Santiago’s award winning restaurants (d)

  • Thursday - Day 2 - Santiago / Calama / San Pedro de Atacama & the Moon Valley

    Morning transfer to the airport for your flight to Calama. Upon arrival, transfer to the San Pedro de Atacama Village. Afternoon tour of the Death Valley as well as the Moon Valley for a spectacular desert sunset (b,d)
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    Breakfast in the hotel and transfer to the airport in time to board flight to Calama. Reception at Calama airport and transfer to the village of San Pedro de Atacama through the Domekyo Mountain Range and the Salt Mountain Range. In the afternoon, visit the Salt Mountain, Marte Valley (also called Death Valley) and Moon Valley to admire the spectacular sunset over the Atacama Desert, the driest desert in the world. Return to the hotel for dinner and overnight at your Lodge. (b,d)

  • Friday - Day 3 - Atacama Salt Flat, the Toconao & Altiplanic Lagoons (San Pedro de Atacama)

    Entire day of desert adventure, visiting Chiles’ largest Salt Flat, a local village and high altitude lagoons, at the Flamingo National Reserve. (b,l,d)
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    Our full day tours begin with a drive to the Atacama Salt Flat, Chiles biggest Salt Flat and among one of the largest in the world. Here we encounter three different species of flamingos, that live and breed at the Laguna Chaxa. We continue to the picturesque village of Toconao with its beautiful Bell Tower, a fine example of classical Atacamenian Architecture. Will also visit the village of Socaire, and then the Altiplanic lagoons of Meñique and Miscanti. Located at 4.500 meters above sea level (14,850 feet), the lagoons are the “heart” of Flamingos National Reserve. The lagoons are surrounded by imposing volcanoes that were formed when the Andes Mountain Range rose from the sea through millions of years of evolution. (b,l,d)

  • Saturday - Day 4 - Geysers del Tatio (San Pedro de Atacama)

    Early morning departure from your lodge for a sunrise visit to the Tatio Geysers. We return to your lodge for an afternoon of leisure to enjoy the amenities offered by your lodge. (b,l,d)
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    This morning bundle up with your warmest clothes! Early departure from the hotel (4.00 AM) to the Geysers del Tatio. Breakfast box in provided. Enjoy a guided walk around the geothermal field to observe the dramatic hundreds of columns of steam, best viewed as the sun rises over the Andes Mountains. Return to San Pedro with spectacular views of the Torcopuri y Sairecabur volcanoes. The rest of the day is spent at leisure. We recommend a visit to the market in San Pedro or just to enjoy the superb facilities at your lodge. (b,l,d)

  • Sunday - Day 5 - San Pedro / Calama / Santiago / Puerto Montt / Puerto Varas

    Transfer to the airport for your flight to Puerto Montt (via Santiago), upon arrival meet your local transfer for the short 40 minute drive to Puerto Varas, also dubbed as the “City of Roses”. (b)
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    Breakfast in the hotel, then transfer to the airport in Calama for your flight to Santiago with connection to Puerto Montt. Upon arrival, reception and transfer to the hotel in Puerto Varas. The city is also dubbed as the “City of Roses” and it is well known for its German traditions, its cuisine (featuring exquisite seafood), its casinos and the breathtaking vistas of the lake and volcanoes. Evening at leisure (b)

  • Monday - Day 6 - Puerto Montt – Frutillar – Petrohue (Puerto Varas)

    An entire day packed with culture and nature. Visit the lovely Puerto Varas; The Port City of Puerto Montt with its famous arts & craft market, and Frutillar with its open-air museum. Our tour end at the Petrohue River Falls and All Saints Lake. (b,l)
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    This morning we drive through the streets of Puerto Varas, dotted with colorful Rose Bushes. We ascend to the Philippi Hill for a wonderful view of Lake Llanquihue and the Osorno Volcano. Continue to Puerto Montt and the fishermen village of Angelmó with its great selection of arts and crafts; a perfect spot for your souvenir shopping. We drive to the little town of Frutillar, where we see some typical constructions of the German Settlers. Continue to the “picture perfect” Petrohue River Fllas, and on to the small port village of Petrohue on the shores of All Saint’s Lake. In the afternoon, return to Puerto Varas. (b,l)

  • Tuesday - Day 7 - Chiloe Island (Puerto Varas)

    Our day is dedicated to the exploration of the Chiloe Island, featuring unique architecture, landscapes, cultures, and a small yet busy, Penguin’s Sanctuary. (b,l)
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    Departure from Puerto Varas southwards towards Pargua, where we embark the ferry with our vehicle for a scenic 40-minute cruise across the channel to Chiloe Island. Chiloé Island (8,394 km², 3241 sq mi), is the second largest island in Chile and the fifth largest in South America, it is slightly smaller than the land surface of Puerto Rico. While disembarking at the port of Chacao we can already spot the first signs of the unique island architecture called “Chilota”. We will visit the village of Quemchi and the area of Aucar where a pedestrian bridge of almost 560 meters (1700 feet) long, constructed of wood, connects the town to a picturesque cemetery located on a small island. We continue to Colo where we will visit the most traditional church of the island; declared together with all the churches in Chiloe as a World Heritage, by UNSECO. Drive along scenic roads via deserted beaches, picturesque farms and coastal forests to the Penguin Sanctuary of Puñihuíl, (visit from Nov-Mar), the only known place where Humbolt and Magellanic penguins nest side-by-side. (b,l)

  • Wednesday - Day 8 - Puerto Varas / Puerto Montt / Punta Arenas / Puerto Natales

    Transfer to the airport in Puerto Montt for your flight to Punta Arenas, in the very Southern tip of Chile. Upon arrival, transfer to the charming town of Puerto Natales, the gateway to Torres del Paine National Park. (b)
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    Breakfast at the hotel before departing to the airport of Puerto Montt to board the flight to Punta Arenas, the most prominent settlement on the Strait of Magellan, and the departure point of most of the expeditions to Antarctica. Upon arrival, reception at the airport and transfer to Puerto Natales, located 247 Km (153 miles) northwest of Punta Arenas. (b)

  • Thursday - Day 9 - Balmaceda & Serrano Glaciers (Puerto Natales)

    Today we sail by Catamaran through the Ultima Esperanza Fjord to view the Balmaceda and the Serrano Glaciers. A visit to a local Esntancia with a typical lunch is included. (b,l,d)
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    Early in the morning depart by Catamaran for a 3-hour navigation through the beautiful Ultima Esperanza Fjord to the thousand-year-old glacier of Mount Balmaceda, habitat of cormorants and sea lions. We disembark for a 1 km (3/4 mile) along a trail through the native forest, till we reach the foot of the Serrano Glacier. We sail back to Puerto Natales. En route, we visit the Estancia Perales for a typical lunch. (b,l,d)

  • Friday - Day 10 - Torres de Paine National Park (Puerto Natales)

    Today's full day excursion, takes us to the Jewel in The Patagonian Crown; the Torres del Paine National Park. Explore the park's unique flora and fauna as well as its imposing scenery. (b,l,d)
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    We travel north for a full day excursion of the Torres del Paine National Park.The 1.5-hour drive winds through the steppes and Patagonia scrub, with an abundance of wild life and herds of sheep. We arrive at the Torres del Paine National Park, declared world heritage by UNESCO. In the park, we observe a large variety of native fauna especially the large herds of the wild Guanacos. Visit the Salto Grande of the Pehoe River, with the impressive massif of Torres del Paine in its background. Then visit Lake Pehoe and Lake Grey, where can see the Grey Glacier in the distance. Return to Puerto Natales in the evening. (b,l,d)

  • Saturday - Day 11 - Puerto Natales / Punta Arenas / Santiago

    We depart Puerto Natales towards Puerto Arenas’ Airport for your flight to Santiago. Upon arrival transfer to your hotel (b)
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    Farewell Patagonia.. After breakfast at the hotel we transfer to the airport for our flight to Santiago. Upon arrival meet our representative and transfer to your hotel. (b)

  • Sunday - Day 12 - Depart Santiago

    Day at leisure, then transfer to the airport for your homebound flight (b)
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    Entire day at leisure to relax, or for optional tours to the wine country or Port City of Valparaiso, and other UNSECO World Heritage Site.

    Later in the day, transfer to the airport for your home-bound flight. (b)

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