best hike out of Ushuaia, Argentina

trip report by BestHike editor Rick McCharles

Zoe Agasi and Olivier Van Herck from Netherlands spent 2 months in Ushuaia. For them the best local day hike (of many) was Laguna de los Tempanos and Glacier Vinciguerra.

That was good enough for me.

I walked from my hostel to the trailhead.

Like the north of North America, everyone here has big dogs. Most roam loose. This one probably needed to be chained up.

What I hadn’t realized that morning is that it was 7.3km to the start. I should have taken a taxi.

From there it’s only a steep 5.6km up to Laguna de los Tempanos below the glacier. The sign says 6km.

Up there’s where I was headed.

The weather was atypically reasonable today. Very little wind.

Once at the trailhead, navigation is not difficult.

Your feet do get wet on this hike — I wore neoprene booties rather than socks — but at least you don’t have to wade the largest river.

Next is a long, steep section through the trees.

It’s muddy and you need to be agile as a gymnast to negotiate fallen trees. There doesn’t seem to be much trail maintenance.

Near the top you reach an alpine meadow. Then a short climb up a waterfall to the Laguna.

Carlos from Colombia and I walked up together. He’s a Master’s student studying in Argentina currently on his summer holiday.


The glacial lagoon is gorgeous.

It’s not often the weather is this good. One woman went for a swim!

Like most in the world, this glacier is rapidly receding. ☹️

Looking back at the Beagle Channel.

I highly recommend Laguna de los Tempanos and Glacier Vinciguerra. But only in good weather. It’s tough, as well. I fell once into the mud on the way down.

And organize transport to and from the trailhead. The Los Humedales cafe at the trailhead will call you a cab if you don’t have phone that works in Argentina.

Rick at Laguna de los Tempanos, Ushuaia, Argentina

P.S. There are two side trails that I didn’t have time to do:

Laguna Encantada
Laguna del Caminante

3 Replies to “best hike out of Ushuaia, Argentina”

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