WHY THIS TRIP
The EcoCamp Patagonia Wildlife Safari is perfect for the person who wants to see the best scenery and wildlife in Torres del Paine National Park, but doesn’t want to commit to a challenging trek or to staying in remote refugios. Depart each morning from your room at the EcoCamp Patagonia for your choice of daily excursions to visit different parts of the park, while returning again to the comfort of the EcoCamp each night. Each day you choose your own adventure, selecting between options for easy nature walks, demanding treks, or moderate bike rides, all designed to enjoy the scenic wonders of Torres del Paine.
The EcoCamp Patagonia, the Patagonia region’s first fully sustainable accommodations option, is a series of comfortable hotel rooms in geodesic domes, and travelers have the option of staying in Standard Domes or Suite Domes (additional cost). The domes were designed to withstand the strong Patagonian winds while allowing guests to enjoy the Patagonian night sky through the windows in the ceiling.
Standard Domes are 108 square feet each and have two single beds (double beds are available on request) with fleece blankets and feather quilts. Standard Domes have shared bathrooms that are large, comfortable, and have hot water and composting toilets.
Suite Domes are 300 square feet and have either twin or double beds, a highly efficient wood burning stove, and a private bathroom with composting toilet.
On the Wildlife Safari different excursions are offered each day to allow flexibility for the guests, but there are always options for easy nature walks, challenging hikes, and several days a week there are easy to moderate bike rides. Create your own itinerary by choosing the daily options you prefer most.
Nature walks include visits to Lago Sarmiento, the Grey Glacier (including a boat ride to see the face of the glacier up close), Salto Grande and the Los Cuernos viewpoint, and into the Seron Woods on the eastern side of the Park.
Hiking options including the strenuous but highly scenic hike to the base of the Torres del Paine, a hike along Lago Pehoe and on the Pingo Trail, a trek up the Valle Frances, and another hike along the Los Cuernos Trail.
The biking option, offered two days a week, is to ride bikes on the road back to the EcoCamp from Lago Sarmiento after a barbecue on the shores of the lake.
Transportation for the trip begins and ends in Punta Arenas, Puerto Natales, or El Calafate, Argentina.
LOCAL OPERATOR: CASCADA EXPEDICIONES
Since 1991 Cascada Expediciones has been offering eco-friendly opportunities for travelers to let go of normal life and refresh with energizing connections to nature. With a strong focus on providing innovative, high-quality experiences — trips in which each traveler enjoys every moment of a trip — Cascada has refreshed nearly 30,000 people. Headquartered in Santiago, a trip of a lifetime with Cascada can include activities ranging from trekking, mountaineering, horseback riding, biking, rafting, fly fishing, kayaking, skiing, wildlife safari and photography, multisport itineraries to winery tours. In engaging the outdoors Cascada-style, every traveler is made to feel relaxed and energized by each activity; nourished rather than weary.
More good feeling comes in knowing the money spent on a Cascada trip stays in the Chilean economy. Moreover, the money stays with a company and people who have a deep respect for the environment. The staff and guides live an eco-friendly life, sharing the environmentally sustainable philosophy put into practice over the life of the company. So firm in its understanding of nature’s importance, Cascada became a carbon neutral company in 2008 and, between June 2009 and 2010, offset more than 183 tons of CO2 emissions. With a goal of becoming entirely CO2-free, Cascada encourages its travelers, suppliers and shareholders to help by standing by its philosophy.
Jeannette D –
If you’re thinking of going to Cascada’s Patagonian EcoCamp – DO IT!!
When I read a review titled “If you’re thinking of going to Cascada’s Ecocamp, don’t!”, I had some initial misgivings about booking. January may not have been a good time for that person, but our recent November visit was really enjoyable. Despite unheated tents, our beds were snug & warm, with temperatures about 3-15 degrees. The meals were of a good standard, & the service heartfelt & enthusiastic. Our guides were really friendly & helpful. We had a tough hike to French Valley in rain, sleet, snow & super strong winds, & they were very patient with the slower trekkers. The location is ideal with a superb view of The Towers from our window. Given it’s an ecocamp in Patagonia, the weather can impact some facilities like hot water. Booked this with low expectations and they were more than exceeded – pleasantly surprised. Overall a wonderful experience.
I loved the Ecocamp adventure! Torres del Paine is spectacular, of course, and the Ecocamp really made the trip even better. I stayed in a suite dome and found the dome very comfortable, and the dining and lounge areas were really nice. I expected something pretty basic and this was great with excellent food and service. The trip options were perfect and I felt I really got to see and experience the Park.