Torres del Paine Circuit
- Guides Choice trip in Patagonia
- Circumnavigate Torres del Paine
- World famous national park
- Towering granite spires
- Cozy camps & backcountry lodges
- Amazing natural & cultural history
- Ice hike across an ancient glacier
- Kayak on a glacial lake
Torres del Paine National Park is pristine and remote – one of the most stunning wilderness areas in the world. The ‘Paine Circuit’ highlights the best features of the park, while including the famous W-Trek. The Paine Circuit circumnavigates the whole mountain massif and the dramatic granite towers and spires will draw you in, and in you shall go! The Paine circuit takes 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, as well as glaciers, turqouise lakes, wonderful backcountry huts ("refugios") and more!
The beauty of this raw and dramatic landscape will help you understand why the park is designated a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve. You have the opportunity to walk on prehistoric glaciers AND kayak around icebergs in a glacial lake. Wildland Trekking 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 Trekking.
(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
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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: 10 miles
- Elevation Gain: 900 feet
- Elevation Loss: 730 feet
- Trekking Duration: 5-6 hours
In the morning we load up our gear and head out across the ancient glacial moraines, as we begin our hike around the Paine Massif. We begin trekking through the Lenga (Beech) forest, where people often see Austral parakeets, several species of geese and the occasional Patagonian fox. Eventually, we arrive at our accommodation at camp Seron. We have free time until dinner is served. Our guides will provide the plan for the next day.
- Hiking Mileage: 11 miles
- Elevation Gain: 620 feet
- Elevation Loss: 520 feet
- Trekking Duration: 6-7 hours
This morning we wake for an early breakfast. We begin our hike to Dickson Lake, which sits on the edge of the southern Patagonian Ice Cap. We will be hiking past bright, blooming Notro bushes, endemic to the Patagonian region. Additionally, we cross a small stream besides Lake Dickson. We continue to trek until we reach our refugio (accommodation) for the night. Here you will be able to have a hot shower before dinner is served.
- Hiking Mileage: 7 miles
- Elevation Gain: 1180 feet
- Trekking Duration: 4-6 hours
Today we pack our gear and have breakfast before heading out on one of the best days of the trek. Today we travel through pristine, old growth beech forests, where the incredible red-headed magellanic woodpecker can be frequently seen. Additionally, we trek close to the Perros glacier lending us fantastic views of the nearby lake and the glacier itself. Eventually, we head to los Perros, where camp is set up waiting for us. We have free time until dinner is served. Our guides will provide the plan for the next day.
- Hiking Mileage: 13 miles
- Elevation Gain: 2070 feet
- Elevation Loss: 3800 feet
- Trekking Duration: 8-10 hours
Today is one of the longest and hardest days of the trek. We start out by climbing to a pass called ‘Paso John Garner. At the pass, we have amazing views of glaciated peaks and the Southern Patagonian Ice field, a view not to be missed! We then head down the pass through a thick forest, directly above the massive Grey glacier. Along the way, we will have lunch and then begin trekking down to Lake Grey. The Grey glacier stretches out below like a huge white highway. Upon arrival on the valley floor, we trek to the Grey refugio for the night, where we check in and have free time until dinner is served. Our guides will provide the plan for the next day.
- Hiking Mileage: 2-4 miles
- Elevation Gain/Loss: ~400 feet
- Trekking Duration: 4 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 with different tones of blue. We then return to the zodiac boat and ride back to the docking point. At the docking point, we return to the refugio for lunch. After lunch you have free time at your discretion. We meet for dinner and our guides deliver the plan for the next day.
Due to occasionally harsh weather conditions, the glacier hiking is not always possible and will be substituted by a different activity if not possible.
- Hiking Mileage: 7 miles
- Elevation Gain/Loss: 670 feet
- Trekking Duration: 4-5 hours
After breakfast we head to the Northeast side of Lake Grey for an amazing experience-becoming intimate with electric blue Icebergs and the Grey glacier by Kayak! Our guides will provide a thorough safety briefing and introduction to the gear and then we will be on our way. After the kayaking exploration, we will head back to the refugio, pack up our gear and begin our trek for the day. We will cross a high plateau overlooking Grey lake on our way to Lake Pehoe (Hidden Lake in Tehuelche language). We eventually come to our lodge and have the afternoon to relax until dinner is served. You may want to try the local Chilean drink, pisco sour while overlooking the Paine Grande and Los Cuernos mountains! After dinner our guides will deliver the plan for the next day.
Due to occasionally harsh weather conditions, the kayaking is not always possible and will be substituted by an alternative activity if not possible.
- Hiking Mileage: 13-15 miles
- Elevation Gain: 2350 feet
- Elevation Loss: 2200 feet
- Trekking Duration: 8 hours
After breakfast, we begin our trek to the French Valley. The French Valley is one of the most picturesque valleys in Torres del Paine National Park and it is unique because of the hanging glaciers and amazing granite walls and spires. Often times, people can witness the glaciers calving, dropping giant icebergs from the cliffs above. We then trek out of the valley and will continue walking to the extraordinary, turquoise lake Nordenskijold. At the lake we check into our refugio and have free time until dinner is served. Our guides will deliver the plan for the next day.
- Hiking Mileage: 8.1 miles
- Elevation Gain: 900 feet
- Elevation Loss: 750 feet
- Trekking Duration: 5 hours
Today is the last day of our trek so make sure to take in the surrounding environments of Torres del Paine. We begin trekking along Lake Nordenskjold, below the hanging glaciers of Mount Almirante Nieto. We will have lunch in route and eventually reach the Hosteria Las Torres, where we meet our van. Our driver will transport us to Puerto Natales, where we check into our lodges, have warm showers before meeting for dinner. It will be our last dinner together and we will make it a Great one!!!
After breakfast, our shuttle driver will come to our hotel and 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 and camping accommodations 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)
- 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 (Oboz hiking shoes and boots recommended)
- 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.