Torres del Paine W Trek
- World famous national park
- Towering granite spires
- Comfortable backcountry lodges
- Amazing natural & cultural history
- Ice hike across an ancient glacier
- Kayak on a glacial lake
Torres del Paine National Park is one of the most pristine and remote wilderness areas the world. The W-Trek is the most iconic trekking route in the Park, and it is for great reason! The dramatic granite towers and spires will draw you in, and in you shall go! The W-trek will take you along the shores of stunning glacial lakes encompassing electric blue icebergs. You will experience sheer rock spires as tall as the sky and the magnificent, southern Patagonian ice cap. Additionally, you have the opportunity to walk on prehistoric glaciers AND kayak around icebergs in a glacial lake!
The beauty of this raw and dramatic landscape will help you understand why the park is designated a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve. Wildland International is an active partner of the Torres del Paine Legacy Fund, which helps educate local children, is creating a local recycling program, conducts W-trail restoration and much more. Keep your cameras ready and get ready for an unforgettable adventure with Wildland International.
(This trip is operated by Wildland International, a partner company of Wildland Trekking with shared ownership, management teams, guides, and other resources.)
Trip Dates & Booking
You can also click here to request new dates or book through customer service.
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On this Patagonia hiking tour, we will pick you up at either the International airport in Punta Arenas or the airport in Puerto Natales, Chile. If you arrive in Punta Arenas, we will shuttle you to Puerto Natales. Once we have everyone in Puerto Natales, we will check into our accommodation, have our orientation meeting and become acquainted with our itinerary. After our meeting, we will have our first Patagonian dinner!
(If you arrive in Punta Arenas after noon on the first day of the trip, you will be responsible for securing your own transportation to Puerto Natales or paying an extra shuttle fee. If you are arriving the day before the trip starts, let your guides know which hotel you are staying at and they will pick you up at your hotel this morning.)
Please Note: When you enter Chile, you will be issued a document called a PDI (tourism card). Please do NOT throw this away. You will need it to exit the country and nearly every lodge we stay in also asks for a copy.
- Hiking Mileage: 11.8 miles
- Elevation Gain/Loss: 2430 feet
- Trekking Duration: 7 hours
This morning we will wake up early and drive to Torres Del Paine National Park. After breakfast, your guides will brief you on effective trekking techniques as well as an overview of the natural and cultural history of the area. We will begin trekking up the Ascencio valley while having views of the the Ascencio river. We will come to refugio Chileno and have a break for water and snacks. We then continue through a beautiful forest of native Lenga (Beech) trees and then keep hiking until we reach a glacial moraine (a ridge made from earth pushed by the glacier). From the moraine, we trek 1 more hour until we reach the most amazing view of the Torres del Paine rock towers! The views of the granite towers and glacial lake are simply breathtaking. We will then head back to our Refugio for dinner and accommodation for the night. Our guides will deliver the plan for the next day.
- Hiking Mileage: 8.1 miles
- Elevation Gain: 750 feet
- Elevation Loss: 900 feet
- Trekking Duration: 5-6 hours
After breakfast, we will pack our gear and begin our trek along Lake Nordenskjold (named after a Swedish geologist who contributed significantly to the study of Glaciology). Additionally, we will have great views of the hanging glaciers above on Mt. Almirante Nieto. We will have lunch and continue to trek until we reach our refugio. Upon arrival at our refugio, we will freshen up and have free time until dinner is served. Our guides will provide the plan for the next day.
- Hiking Mileage: 13-15 miles
- Elevation Gain: up to 2200 feet
- Elevation Loss: up to 2350 feet
- Trekking Duration: 8 hours
This morning we begin our trek to the French Valley. The French Valley is one of the most picturesque valleys in Torres del Paine National Park. It is unique because of the hanging glaciers and amazing granite walls and spires. People often witness the glaciers calving (dropping giant ice bergs) and hear this natural symphony in the granite amphitheater. We continue to get closer to the granite spires and glacial lake and on the return journey we can see the turquoise color of glacial lake Pehoe. Pehoe means ‘Hidden Lake’ in the Tehuelche Indian Language. We continue trekking until we reach Lodge Paine Grande, where we have incredible views of the Paine Grande and Los Cuernos. We have free time until dinner is served. Our guides will deliver the plan for the next day.
- Hiking Mileage: 7 miles
- Elevation Gain/Loss: 670 feet
- Trekking Duration: 4 hours
This morning we have breakfast and depart for our trek along the enchanting Grey Lake. Around Lake Grey we have views of electric blue icebergs and the magnificent Grey glacier. We hike to the Northeast coast of Lake Grey from where our adventure really starts! Our guides will introduce us to kayaking equipment and provide a safety talk for our paddle through the floating Icebergs of Lake Grey. We then kayak near Grey glacier to get an amazing view of the river of ice. After our kayak adventure, we hike to the new Grey lodge, where we will stay for the night. We have free time until dinner is served.
Due to occasionally harsh weather conditions, the kayaking and glacier hiking are not always possible and will be substituted by a fantastic day of hiking if not possible.
- Hiking Mileage: 2-4 miles
- Elevation Gain/Loss: ~400 feet
- Trekking Duration: 3 hours
After breakfast, our guides will brief us on todays route and extra gear needed. We then take a zodiac boat for 15 minutes across the lake until we reach the west side of Grey glacier. Upon arrival at Grey glacier, we will disembark on the land in between the Ice (nunatak) and walk on it until we reach the Ice. Our guides will brief the group on safety aspects and teach the group the proper techniques and correct use of equipment. After the brief, we will begin our exploration of Grey glacier which last approximately 3 hours. We will be able to observe crevasses, rivers, lagoons and tunnels in different tones of blue. We then return to the zodiac boat and ride back to the docking point, where we will have lunch. After lunch, we board a larger and more comfortable boat and peruse the perimeter of Lake Grey to get up close with the icebergs. We then head to Grey Lodge, pack our gear and depart for Puerto Natales. Upon arrival in Puerto Natales, we check into our lodge and have free time before going to dinner. This is our last dinner together; we will make it a good one!
This morning, after breakfast our shuttle driver will deliver you back to the airport in Punta Arenas or Puerto Natales. If you are remaining in either city, please let us know. We can help you arrange extra activities in Patagonia. Thanks for choosing Wildland Trekking.
Please Note: We always do everything in our power to follow the set itinerary, however occasionally trips are subject to itinerary changes based on a variety of circumstances, including but not limited to: extreme weather, availability of refugios, political or bureacratic obstacles, earthquakes, fires, flooding and more. Also, the kayaking and glacier hiking days on this trip are weather-dependent and not guaranteed; we will substitute alternate activities in the case kayaking and/or glacier hiking are not possible.
- A detailed trip packet that takes the guesswork out of your travel, training, packing, and preparing for the trip
- Access to our Adventure Consultant team 7 days a week
- Transportation for the duration of the tour starting on Day 1 and ending on the day you depart
- Lodging in Puerto Natales and refugio accommodations (or camping in some instances) in Torres del Paine National Park (Lodging Details)
- Meals beginning with dinner on Day 1 through breakfast on the final day
- Use of a backpack, sleeping bag, sleeping pad, tent & trekking poles
- Professional, certified Wildland Patagonia hiking guides
- Kayak equipment and local kayak guides for one day (weather permitting, not guaranteed)
- Glacier hiking equipment and glacier hiking guides for one day (weather permitting, not guaranteed)
- Glacier hiking equipment and glacier hiking guides for one day (weather permitting, not guaranteed)
- Emergency equipment including a company-issued first-aid kit and satellite phone
- You will receive a Lifetime Hiking Membership entitling you, your spouse and kids to a lifetime discount of 10% off any Wildland Trekking hiking trip after your first one!
- Transportation to Puntas Arenas or Puerto Natales, Chile
- Clothes, raingear, and footwear
- Sunscreen, toiletries and personal items
- Water bottles and a headlamp or flashlight
- Trip insurance that includes medical coverage and at least $200,000 in evacuation and repatriation coverage (strongly encouraged)
- Bar bills, drink bills, extra snacks, telephone bills , wifi bills and other personal expenses (shopping/ laundry)
- All expenses due to unavoidable events e.g. flight cancellation, personal illness, strikes, etc. (we recommend trip insurance coverage for these variables)
- Gratuity for guide(s) and crew (industry recommendation is 10-20% of total trip cost; please tip your lead guide and they will distribute responsibly to the crew. USD is recommended.), Gratuities for kayak and ice hike guides (recommended $25-$50 per kayak guide, $25-$50 per ice hike guide)
This Patagonia trek utilizes the Torres del Paine Refugios (backcountry huts). Each refugio is unique, with dorm style accommodations where guests share coed bunk rooms, typically 4-8 guests per room. Men's and women's restrooms/showers are down the hall. You'll have great local cuisine, served in a communal eating area with shared tables and drinks available for purchase.
Also, occasionally we are not able to reserve one or more nights in the Refugios, in which case accommodations will be in tents that are carried in and set up by porters. In these cases, we will still have access to the Refugios for meals, relaxation and showers. The price of the trip remains the same.
This Patagonia hiking tour features a combination of in-town meals and meals prepared by your guides. We'll have dinners at carefully selected, wonderful restaurants in Puerto Natales and in some of the backcountry lodges as well as meals prepared on the trail by your guides and/or support staff.
For optimal taste and energy, we supplement all our meals with spices, herbs, oils, cheeses, butter, sugar, and fruits and vegetables. In addition, we provide you with with an assortment of trail mix, snacks, and dried fruits to eat at your own discretion.
We can often accommodate vegan, vegetarian, kosher and non-gluten diets and make adjustments for food allergies. These and other special dietary requests may require an additional fee, and in some countries may be more difficult to accommodate than others. Please inquire with us for more information about the specific trip you're interested in.
We provide all group gear which includes the following:
- Trekking poles
- Tents, sleeping bags, sleeping pads
- Company-issued first-aid kit
- Satellite phone
We ask that you supply a couple of gear items on your hiking tour. These items are two 1-liter water bottles per person and basic items like sunscreen, bug repellent (where and when applicable), lip balm, and toiletries are also important. All of these items are available online at Wildland Trekking Outfitters.
Please refer to the trip packet for a recommended clothing list (we email you a detailed trip packet when you inquire and when you register). All trips require a sturdy pair of hiking shoes or hiking boots (reliable brands include Montrail, Lowa, Merrell, Vasque, and Salomon), rain gear, and non-cotton and cotton clothing layers. A minimum of three pairs of wool or synthetic hiking socks are also required. All of these items are available online at Wildland Trekking Outfitters.
NOTE: See the Packing Lists page for more detailed information on what clothes and gear to bring on your hiking tour. The trip packet you receive when you contact us will have the most accurate clothing and gear list for the tour you're interested in.
Ready to hike? In the Dates section of this trip page, the green dates are bookable online by simply clicking on the date, and blue dates must be booked through our customer service team for a variety of possible reasons. To email our customer service team, you can click here to get the ball rolling. Our adventure consultants will confirm availability, and if you're ready to register we'll email you a link to a registration profile. You'll have 72 hours to complete your profile (and that of any dependents) and pay the deposit ($500).
Feel free to call us for more info - we're here 7 days a week!
We will meet you at the airport in Punta Arenas or Puerto Natales on Day 1 and transport you to the first night's hotel (included), where we'll conduct an orientation meeting at 5:00 PM the first evening (your flight should arrive before 12PM if flying into Punta Arenas, and before 3PM if you're flying into Puerto Natales). Your guide will be in contact approximately 4 weeks before your trip to coordinate your rendezvous and answer any last-minute questions you have.
Your safety is our top priority. Our Global Destination trips are led by professional hiking guides along with additional support staff. All of our guides are wilderness-certified first responders or EMT's, each with years of guiding and wilderness experience. Finally, we've developed comprehensive risk management protocols that our guides adhere to in case of an emergency, and all tours carry a satellite phone. If you have any further questions about safety, please contact us at 1-888-966-TREK (8735) for more information.
In the interest of your safety, it's important to refer to the Center for Disease Control website for up-to-date recommendations on immunizations before your trip.
Your tour will be led by trained, experienced professionals with solid guiding backgrounds, years of personal wilderness and hiking experience, medical certifications, and a passion for leading people into breathtaking landscapes. Check out our Meet Our Team page for staff bios.
Guides are required to take 8 hours off each 24-hour period to sleep, recuperate, take personal/down time...etc. In addition, as part of the 8 hours off they must sleep/rest or be in their tents/rooms uninterrupted for a minimum of 5 hours each night. We ask guests to respect these requirements and to not interrupt guides' off time and sleep time unless there is a true emergency.
The standard group size on this hiking tour is 12 guests and 2 guides, with a minimum of 2 guests and 1 guide. If you have more questions about group size, please give us a call at 1-888-966-TREK (8735) and we'll answer all your questions.
Age restrictions are as follows:
- 12 and older to join scheduled tours (mixed groups)
- 5 and older to join private tours, with final approval and specific logistical requirements (such as porter or stock assist) determined on a case by case basis
For your protection, we strongly recommend the purchase of field evacuation, repatriation, and medical trip insurance. International travel is expensive, and the modest cost of trip insurance is a sound investment in an uncertain world.
If you wish to purchase trip insurance, we recommend IMG/iTravelinsured. They are one of the world’s leading providers of travel insurance.
For information on recommended IMG/iTravelinsured policies please click here.
For even greater information, or if you simply prefer communicating with a real, live person, feel free to contact our exclusive agent Michael Bennett. Michael will help you identify the best product for your needs, and there is no cost associated with his assistance. You may contact him at:
Email: WildLandTrekking@EasyToInsureME.comIf you already have insurance or wish to purchase from anyone other than IMG/iTravelinsured, we recommend careful consultation with the provider to ensure appropriate coverage. This is because many providers have a number of policy exclusions.
US by Phone: 877-305-9083
Direct/International by Phone: 702-448-3664
If you secure an insurance policy please bring a copy of it to provide to your guides at the orientation meeting.
Chile is a long, thin country extending North-South more than half the length of South America which gives it a tremendous diversity of climates. The Patagonia region of Chile, where we operate our trips, is at the far southern tip of South America, relatively far from the equator and close to the South Pole. It is a generally cool climate with potential for year round inclement weather including rain, snow, sleet, and very strong winds.
The average temperatures and precipitation in the Patagonia region are:
|October||51° F||37° F||5 in|
|November||55° F||40° F||5.6 in|
|December||57° F||42° F||7.2 in|
|January||59° F||44° F||5.1 in|
|February||58° F||43° F||3.8 in|
|March||55° F||41° F||4.9 in|
|April||50° F||38° F||5.8 in|
This modern, comfortable hotel, with architecture that evokes the form of Patagonia's natural landscapes, is a premier accommodation in the town of Puerto Natales. Just a couple years old, and with all the amenities, it is a fantastic place to prepare before, and rest after, our Patagonia trek.
Torres del Paine Refugios
Refugios are inviting backcountry huts/lodges with beds, kitchens, chefs and staff, dining rooms, and bathrooms/showers. The accommodations are dorm-style with communal, co-ed bedrooms that contain 6-8 beds per room. Bathrooms are gender-separated with hot water, showers and flush toilets.