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GO Puerto Natales Chile +56 (61) 2411 800
The classic Circuit Hike Detailed Itinerary
Day 0 / Arrive into Puerto Natales in the far south of Chilean Patagonia.
*The preferred arrival airport is Puerto Natales with direct flights offered from Santiago with LATAM and Sky Airlines, for travel advice please contact us.

We can collect you from the airport or bus station as required. Tonight’s hotel is not included but we can book something suitable on request.

For groups we can also book a night an an authentic Estancia tonight for a welcome dinner and briefing before starting hiking the following day.

Guide’s briefing will take place in our office today.

*There are strict luggage allowances during the Circuit and these need to be adhered to to ensure the comfort and safety of the porters carrying the gear*

Day 1 / Private transfer to Torres del Paine. Start hiking at Las Torres. Camp Seron
After a leisurely breakfast you will take a short drive to the start of today’s hiking at Las Torres.

On reaching the trail head close to the base at Las Torres you will pack your day packs and start walking on a moderate trail through the valley as you make your way around the north east face of the Cerro Paine through the Valle Encantado (Enchanted Valley).

As the mountain scenery unfolds around you, you can find your walking feet on this moderate first day’s hike.

Arrive at Camping Seron where your camp will be waiting for you.

Night Camping Seron with sleeping bags and mats provided

*Note for small groups of 2-3 clients, meals will be taken in the Domo. For groups of 4+ clients, we will provide a BlueGreen cook and a dome for eating

Patagonia Hiking Details: 8 miles/14 km; gentle with some undulation around 250 ft elevation gain. Approximately 4 hours walking.

Meal basis: all meals included with wine included (groups of 4+).

Camping Seron
Located on the eastern side of the Park this smallish site has space for 100 tents with bathrooms and showers available. There is no accommodation here but there is a restaurant (the Puesto) in a dome tent on site. For larger groups we will provide a Bluegreen cook to prepare meals and a separate eating dome

Day 2 / Hike from Seron to Dickson Valley. Camp Dickson.
After packing up camp and eating breakfast we will pack our day packs once again and continue hiking along the valley of the Paine River with views of the beautiful Lago Paine to our right. Our horizon will be dominated by the Cerro Oggioni and the Cabeza del Indio off to our left as we follow a very pretty trail through the the valley, Vega de la Paloma.

We will enjoy a moderate trail with some undulation and gentle elevation gain.

After a few more hours hiking we will enter an ancient southern beech forest which takes us into the beautiful Dickson Valley where we will see the Paine River and lake and the towering mountains that surround this remote valley and the campsite which will be our home for the night.

Relax and sample Chilean wine and snacks while enjoying the fantastic Patagonia vistas.

Night Camping Dickson with sleeping bags and mats provided, meals taken in the Refugio

UPGRADE to Refugio, price on request.

Dickson Refugio/Campsite:
Dickson Refugio and campsite are located close to the lakeshore of Dickson Lake and the site is the farthest point from the trail head for those hiking the full Circuit trail. It also has some of the most amazing views. The refugio consists of 27 beds in dormitory rooms on the ground and first floors with shared bathrooms which are equipped with wash basins, toilets and showers with hot water (usually, not guaranteed). There are separate bathrooms for men and women but the dorms are mixed. The restaurant offers American breakfast and daily menus for lunch and dinner. Coffee, sandwiches and lunch boxes are also available as are wine and beer which can be bought in the refugio’s bar. There is a small shop here for buying souvenirs, clothes, food and drinks. You either camp or sleep in the Refugio here (no private accommodation is available). If you prefer your privacy then we would recommend camping. All groups will eat in the Refugio. Patagonia Hiking Details: 9 miles/14.4 km; gentle with roughly 250 ft elevation gain. Approximately 5-6 hours hiking.

Meal Basis: All meals included (meals in the Refugio, wine and drinks available at extra cost).

Day 3 / Hike to Los Perros. Night Camp Los Perros.
After breakfast in the refugio you will be leaving this magical setting and heading out on the more challenging part of the trail as you make your way out of the valley and start the ascent to the higher back country.

The trail starts with a walk through the forest before you start an ascent. This is a fairly short but punchy hike that wakes up your muscles and gets the blood running as you head out of the valley along the Los Perros River crossing a number of bridges as you weave your way through a lovely old-growth forest in the shadow of Indian Head Mountain. As you make your ascent there are some spectacular vantage points giving you picture perfect views of the immense Dickson Lake with its impressive glacier and icebergs floating down river.

Continuing on you will meet a moraine field that ascends to a promontory overlooking the wonderful Los Perros Glacier with its meltwater lake in front often home to a number of icebergs. Here while admiring this remote, dramatic scenery you will start to feel the remoteness of Patagonia as you enjoy the views and take some photos before trekking on past the glacier and making your way your way to the campsite in the woods that will be your home for the night.

Night Camping Los Perros with sleeping bags and mats provided.

Los Perros Campsite
This campsite is located just beneath the famous El Paso, the John Gardner Pass at 550 metres above sea level. Reached only by hiking the Circuit trail it is also the jumping off point for the Punta Puma Glacier. The campsite offers basic toilets and cold showers. There is a grocery store for snacks and basic supplies and a public shelter in case of bad weather.

*We provide a cook here to prepare meals as there is no restaurant (a dining tent is provided for larger groups, smaller groups eat in the shelter). **There is no accommodation here so you need to camp.

Patagonia Hiking Details: 6.8 mi/11km; with 2,132 ft elevation gain. Approximately 5 hours hiking.

Meal basis: all meals included with wine included at dinner.

Day 4 / Hike over the John Garner Pass to Refugio Grey
Today is our most challenging hike and it is a long day so we will be having an early breakfast and making an early start. After packing day packs we will head out from Los Perros and almost immediately we will be starting our ascent that will continue for the greater part of the morning.

The trail starts as we work our way up out of the forest before passing the tree line and catching our first glimpse of the winding trail ahead of us to the John Gardner Pass. It is a gruelling ascent with some rocky areas and it is steep in parts but the guide will set a steady pace that works for the group with plenty of rest stops as required.

As you venture higher and higher you start to feel you are on top of the world as you look back at the trail below and take in the magnitude of the landscapes all around you. Eventually you will reach the famous El Paso, the John Gardner Pass and with luck you will see the southern Patagonia Ice Cap laid out in front of us with endless glaciers, mountains and waterfalls in every direction.

Your efforts are rewarded; this is a truly special place in Patagonia that sees very few visitors. Plenty of time for photos and to enjoy the magnificent landscapes and have a snack before heading over the pass and starting the afternoon’s descent with the ocean of ice in front of you that is Grey Glacier.

The trail first takes you around the mountain but as you reach the tree line it becomes more challenging as you make your way down the muddy and sometimes slippery path holding on to various ropes and trees and using your poles to take the weight as you tackle this challenging descent.

Once down to the woods you can rest your weary muscles and have lunch before tackling the next section of the trail as you climb some more steep inclines known locally as the Ascent of the Tears located high above the Glacier before navigating more steep, rocky areas, some metal ladders and two suspension bridges, all with awe inspiring and dramatic views.

After a long day hiking you will be pleased to see the signs informing you that you have arrived at Refugio Grey. A celebratory beer can be enjoyed in the refuge’s lively bar before being shown your accommodation.

Our base for the next two nights is the Refugio Grey situated in the forest close to the glacier (sleeping bags provided)

Refugio Grey
This refugio is located a few minutes walk from look-outs of Grey Glacier reached either by hiking over the Pass from Los Perros, hiking up from Paine Grande (Pehoe) or by taking the Grey III launch close to the glacier. The refugio has a restaurant and comfortable bar area and 30 bunk beds arranged in dormitory style rooms on the ground and first floors. There are shared bathrooms on both floors with separate facilities for men and women. Dorms are mixed. Toilets and hot showers are available.

Patagonia Hiking Details: 11.6 mi/17km; with 3,503 ft elevation gain. Approximately 10 hours hiking. Very long day walking with a challenging ascent followed by a challenging descent with various hazards including tree roots and slippery sections.

Meal basis: all meals included with dinner in the refugio (wine/drinks available at extra cost).

Day 5 / Ice Hike or Kayak at Grey Glacier. Second night Refugio Grey
After yesterday’s challenging hike we will benefit from an easier day as we enjoy a second night in this beautiful area.

We can choose from either an ice hike on Grey Glacier or a paddle out in front of this magnificent wall of ice in Kayaks. Both excursions include instruction and all gear and you can choose whether you would like to join the morning or afternoon session.

The other half of the day can be spent relaxing and enjoying the comfortable living room and decks at the Refugio or taking short walks in the area to look for birds or take photos of the amazing landscapes and views of the Glacier.

Second night Refugio Grey.
Patagonian Hiking Details: No hiking, short walks and ice hike or kayak (excursions take 2-3 hours)

Meal basis: all meals included in the Refugio (wine/drinks available at extra cost).

Day 6 / Hike past Paine Grande to the foothills of the French Valley. Night Domos
After breakfast you will be setting out on a moderate trail that takes you out of the valley with some rocky and steep sections as you continue along the pristine lake fed by the magnificent Grey glacier with a myriad of amazing glacial views.

This is a classic Patagonian trail, with the majestic glacier beside you throughout the morning.

As the trail evens out through a pretty valley and we start to leave Grey Glacier behind us we will catch glimpses of the magnificent blue waters of Lake Pehoe as we approach this famous lake on an easy trail enjoying the forests and birdlife and some pretty smaller lakes. On arrival we will have a chance to enjoy the scenery including the magnificent southern face of the Paine Massif.

After lunch we will continue along the shores of Lake Pehoe before we ascend on a trail passing Lake Skottsberg as we head through the forests towards the magnificent French Valley.

The scenery starts to change with the trails becoming wetter and more boggy and the forests getting richer as we hike in front of the magnificent wall of granite that forms the Paine mountain range.

We will be walking a little past the trail to the French Valley to our accommodation in the Domos Frances.

First of two nights at the Refugio Domos Frances with accommodation in well designed, spacious domes each with a bathroom attached. Sleeping bags provided.

Refugio Domos Frances is generally less busy than Paine Grande and in a great location between the foothills of the French Valley and the lakes below. The Refugio here offers four domes each with 8 beds. Each dome offers a certain amount of privacy in the way the bunks are laid out and each dome has a bathroom attached for added convenience. This Refugio offers an excellent quality of meals so we will be taking our meals in the refugio.

Patagonia Hiking Details: 11 miles/18 km with 1,519 ft elevation gain. Approximately 6-7 hours hiking.

Meal basis: all meals included in the Refugio (wine/drinks available at extra cost).

Day 7 / Full day exploring the French Valley. Second night Domos
Today you will have a full day to explore the dramatic and beautiful French Valley which will increase your chances of reaching the furthest look-out points of Campamento Britanico.

Throughout the day you will witness magnificent views of this natural amphitheatre of the enclosed valley comprised of towering granite peaks with breathtaking waterscapes below, including lakes Pehoe, Skottsberg, Toro, and Nordenskjold.

The trail itself can be boggy and wet as you make your way up a dry river bed through the forests with moraine and other natural hazards along the way.

After a full day hiking and exploring your many privileged vantage points you will return to the Refugio Domos Frances for a second night.

Patagonia Hiking Details: 9 mi/15km. From the French valley floor to French glacier is 750 ft elevation gain with another 1,000 ft elevation gain to camp Britannica.

Meal basis: all meals included in the Refugio (wine/drinks available at extra cost).

Day 8 / Hike along the lake shores to Las Torres. Camp Las Torres.
After breakfast, set off once again along the shores of Lake Nordenskjold, stopping for an exhilarating swim in the frigid waters (optional, of course).

The scenic hike follows one of the park's classic trails, below the towering Horns of Paine across the Ascending valley to your camp at Las Torres.

Starting out you will hike through a number of forests on some boggy trails with dramatic views of the mountains to your left. You will then pass the Refugio Los Cuernos as you descend the narrow trail above the lake before making your way down to the lake beach, a good spot to rest your legs and enjoy a snack. Throughout the morning the trail skirts the beautiful blue waters of Lake Nordenskjold.

As you approach the valley you will see the the buildings of the hotel come into view, a good stopover for a celebratory cold beer and to rest on the comfortable sofas prior to making your way a little further to our campsite for the night.

Our night will be spent at Camping Las Torres with sleeping bags and mats provided.

Note for small groups of 2-3 clients, meals will be taken in the nearby Refugio. For groups of 4+ clients, we will provide a BlueGreen cook and a dome for eating

Camping Las Torres
A pretty campsite at the foot of the nearby mountains in a wooded valley with small creeks and protection from the wind. Facilities here include bathrooms, showers and fire pits. Smaller groups of 2-3 hikers will eat in the Refugio. Groups of 4+ will enjoy dinner prepared by a BlueGreen cook.

UPGRADE to Refugio Las Torres, price on request
There are two refugios situated at Las Torres, Refugio Torre Norte and Refugio Torre Central. The latter is the main newer building with 54 beds plus a restaurant, a bar, two lounge rooms, a souvenir shop and a small grocery store. This section of the lodge offers slightly better comfort and infrastructure than the older Refugio Torre Norte which is located close by with 64 beds, a bar and lounge room. All the meals are served at the Refugio Torre Central. Both offer dormitories with bunk beds, shared bathrooms (with toilets and hot showers) and separate bathrooms for men and women.

UPGRADE to Hosteria Las Torres, price on request.
This comfortable well located hotel was once the Cerro Paine ranch, an 8,000 acre ranch that breeds cattle. Now it is a comfortable hosteria with restaurant, bar, spa, stables, organic garden and gift shop. Standard, superior and suite rooms available.

Patagonia Hiking Details: 8 mi/14km; gentle hiking with some ascents but no significant altitude gain, Approximately 5-6 hours walking.
Meal basis: all meals included with wine at camping (groups of 4+ hikers).

Day 9 / Hike to the base of the Towers, return to Puerto Natales
After breakfast and a short drive, embark on another challenging hike of your Patagonia tour, all the way to the base of the famous Towers of Paine. Tackling this steep climb across mountain trails, winding rivers, deep valleys and glacial moraine will reward you with unimaginable views. Once the steep slopes have been conquered, enjoy your lunch in this dramatic setting, while watching icebergs drift slowly across glacial pools.

Truly an amazing sight, you will remember your time here as one of the highlights of your trip to southern Patagonia. After lunch in a spectacular setting, head back to the trail head to meet your waiting vehicle to take you back to Puerto Natales where the trip ends.

Patagonia Hiking Details: 11.8 mi/19km; roundtrip with 3,291 ft elevation gain. Challenging ascent at the start, final steep climb over glacial moraine. Long descent on return. Approximately 8-9 hours walking.

Meal basis: breakfast and lunch included.

Extra hotel nights before and or after the trip
We can arrange extra hotel nights in Puerto Natales on request. For example the beautiful waterside Hotel Weskar, reminiscent of an alpine chalet offering cosy rooms with views across the water and a soothing hot tub. Alternatively, we would recommend the contemporary Hotel Indigo Spa with its rooftop jacuzzi and sauna/pool. For something simple, cosy and economical the Hostel Amerindia is one of our favourites.