Patagonia is massive and bleak. Yet we love the Patagonian Andes, 2000km (1243mi) in length, but averaging less than 100km (62mi) in width. You could take years exploring just the eastward (drier) side of the mountains.
Towering granite peaks, untouched lakes, massive glaciers, huge volcano trekking peaks. This land is phenomenal.
Trekkers target five areas:
The Araucania Lakes District Central Patagonia Southern Patagonia Tierra del Fuego
Start in Mendoza, Argentina and visit the highest mountain outside Asia, Aconcagua. Next bus to the Switzerland of South America (Lake District). Some of the highest volcanoes of the world are here. Finally, work your way south by air and ferry to the granite spires at the south tip of the continent.
Trekking season here is Nov-Apr. (Feb-Mar often the best weather) That said, the wind and weather in Patagonia is notorious. Independent hikers need be prepared for anything and everything.
Conversational Spanish highly recommended for those travelling independently.
More information on our new Patagonia information page.
Our favourite hike in the Patagonian Andes is the Paine Circuit in Chile.
John Grey Pass, Paine Circuit – flickr – Patagonia set – Michael Bollino
See our Paine Circuit Information page.
The bible is Lonely Planet Trekking in the Patagonian Andes:
3 Replies to “#6 best hiking region in the world is the …”
Actually, Aconcagua is near Mendoza, Argentina, roughly 24 hours by bus from Bariloche! Not that you shouldn’t visit both… Bariloche is beautiful, too!
Thanks Jim. I made the correction.
… Just yesterday I was talking with a mountaineer about a trip to Aconcagua in the near future.
I love this area for hiking. I’ve done two trips to Patagonia the first far too short so went back for a excellent 3 month trip. The full Torres de Paine circuit must be one of the finest hikes in the world. Really enjoyed trekking on Tierra de Fuego too which is far quieter and feels very remote. The Fitzroy area is very wild and full of mountaineering history.
The Chilean lake district around Osorno shouldn’t be overlooked either. Very different from the far south but beautiful and again remote – it’s easy to get top from either Puerto Mont or Bariloche.
Enjoy your hiking in Patagonia!