01 Front Cover final.qxd:Audley brochure ... - Audley Travel
Guanaco, Torres del Paine National Park Lago Gray, Torres del Paine National Park LODGE CERRO GUIDO, TORRES DEL PAINE This is a perfect place for keen horse riders to experience Patagonia and see parts of the national park that very few people are likely to experience. Located close to the Argentine border, and indeed feeling like something of an outpost, the lodge has seven comfortable rooms and a restaurant with stunning views across the park. OTHER ACCOMMODATION OPTIONS, TORRES DEL PAINE Aside from the accommodation mentioned above, which we have chosen for either the uniqueness of their setting or service, there are other choices that offer comfortable and cosy accommodation and are good bases from which to explore the area. Our recommendations include Hotel Las Torres, Hosteria Lago Grey (with its spectacular views over the lake and glacier of the same name), the small and welcoming Cabañas del Paine and Rio Serrano. Easter Island Out in the Pacific Ocean, a five hour flight west from the Chilean mainland, lies a tiny speck of volcanic rock. This is Easter Island, or Rapa Nui as it is known to the locals, a place that has fascinated traveller and scholars alike for centuries. This is due to the squat bodies and brooding Moai, Easter Island faces of hundreds of stone statues or ‘moai’ that gaze from all corners of the island. A three or four night trip to this intriguing destination means coming face to face with these moai, admiring their form and size and pondering the mysteries of why and how they were erected. The population centres on the small town of Hanga Roa in the southwest of the island, from where you can explore the island with a guide, or independently, and by hire car, foot or on horseback, depending on your preferences and budget. ACCOMMODATION ON EASTER ISLAND There are a range of accommodation options on Easter Island. The most luxurious choice is the youngest of the Explora properties, Explora Rapa Nui. Set on a hill that faces the sea in the south west of the island, five kilometres from the town of Hanga Roa. Volcanic rock from the island and wood from the mainland have been used in the construction of the property, which has 30 guest rooms branching off from the living and dining areas. There’s also a bar, massage salon and an open-air pool. The Hanga Roa Eco Village & Spa is another luxurious option, whilst cheaper properties include the Iorana, Otai and Gomero. These hotels are without luxurious trimmings, but are friendly and relaxed properties, all located in and around Hanga Roa. Explora Rapa Nui Isla Navarino The island of Isla Navarino lies at the far southern tip of Chile, a place that throughout history has been a safe haven for countless ships, limping in to gather strength for, or recover from, sailing around Cape Horn. Today’s visitors are more likely to be adventurous travellers looking for somewhere utterly remote to trek and spot wildlife, and have a drink in the world’s most southerly pub in Puerto Williams, the world’s most southerly permanent settlement (outside of Antarctica). Isla Navarino is reached by a short flight (or long ferry trip) from Punta Arenas, and accommodation is at Lakutaia, a rustic but comfortable lodge from where you can explore the very end of the world. www.audleytravel.com/chile ● 01993 838 640 ● Chile 113
Calama Santiago CHILE ARGENTINA Puerto Montt Torres del Paine Punta Arenas Lago Gray, Torres del Paine National Park Tailoring your trip The itineraries shown are designed to give you a flavour of what is possible, and are routes that work particularly well. We can use these as a basis to plan your trip or can design a completely different itinerary to suit your tastes and interests. Please call one of our Chile specialists to start planning your itinerary. Telephone: 01993 838 640 Getting around Travel around such an unusually-shaped country does present some challenges with regard to distances and logistics. We will advise you on the ideal sequence in which to organise your trip, according to internal flight schedules, climate, departure days of cruises or entry days of hotels, if applicable. The flight network is extensive and keeps to a good timetable. Trips from Chile The mysterious stone statues of Easter Island lie a five hour flight from Chile. We can organise three or four night trips here (depending on the flight schedules) from Santiago, where the flights depart from. Once you are on the island we can arrange excursions with specialist guides, or car hire if you wish to explore under your own steam. The fascinating Falkland Islands lie in the South Atlantic, an hour’s flight from Punta Arenas in southern Chile. At present there is one flight a week to and from Chile and Mount Pleasant, the international airport in the Falkland Islands. They make a wonderful extension to any trip to Chile, as they are teeming with wildlife including penguins, sea lions, elephant seals and a wide variety of marine birds (see pages 116-119). 114 When to go Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec ✓✓ ✓✓ ✓✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓✓ ✓✓ ✓✓ ✓✓ The best time to travel. ✓ A good time to travel, but there may be some factors to be aware of. ~ Travel is possible, but this is not the best time of year. ✕ Travel is not recommended. As befits a country that spans a range of latitudes, Chile has many different climatic regions. The Atacama and sub-tropical Easter Island are warm and dry throughout the year. From Santiago down to the Lake District and on down through Patagonia the seasons are the reverse of our own, with the peak travel season from October to April, although the area can also be visited all year round. Time difference: GMT-4 hours Flight time from UK: 16 hours Prices We offer trips to cater for a wide range of budgets. You can find up-to-date guideline prices for your trip to Chile on our website, alternatively please call our specialists to discuss your plans. Cowboys, southern Patagonia Classic Chile This itinerary takes in the country’s most famous highlights in two weeks. A treat for those with a love of the great outdoors, this trip takes you to the Atacama Desert for a chance to see volcanoes, salt flats and geysers before flying south to the contrasting landscape of the Lake District with its rolling hills and snow-capped mountains. Finally venture into Chilean Patagonia with a stay in the unique Torres del Paine National Park. Day 1 Day 2 Day 3 Days 4-5 Day 6 Day 7 Days 8-9 Day 10 Fly from the UK to Chile. Arrive in Santiago. Optional afternoon city tour. Fly north to Calama, and transfer to the oasis village of San Pedro de Atacama. Excursions around the stark but beautiful Atacama Desert. Fly south to Puerto Montt in Chile’s Lake District. Transfer to your hotel in the lakeside town of Puerto Varas. A full day excursion to visit Peulla and the waterfalls at Petrohue. At leisure to explore the Lake District. Fly south to Punta Arenas from where you’ll begin your journey into Torres del Paine National Park. Days 11-12 Excursions into Torres del Paine, by foot, horse or vehicle. Day 13 Day 14 Day 15 Stay longer Fly from Punta Arenas back to Santiago. Spend your last night in Chile in the city. Begin your journey home. Arrive in the UK. After a busy trip like this you may wish to have some rest and relaxation on a beach, for this we recommend stopping in Brazil on the way home. Fly to São Paulo and then transfer to one of the small hotels dotted along the golden sands of the Green Coast (see page 62).