Huemul-Watching in Patagonia

chile national animal

One highlight of any expedition cruise to Patagonia is wildlife-watching. South America’s best-known beast is probably the camel-like llama, but that’s a domestic animal most common in the central Andean countries of Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia. In Patagonia, though, the rangy wild guanaco – a close relative to the llama – is a common sight […]

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Puerto Bories Historical Museum

  Long before the city of Puerto Natales became a gateway for Patagonia vacations and a ferry terminal for Chile’s northern fjords, tiny Puerto Bories was one of the region’s economic powerhouses. A century ago, when the granite needles of Torres del Paine symbolized little more than the presence of pasture to graze sheep, Bories […]

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Architectural Chiloé

When you’re planning a Patagonia vacation, architecture is probably not one of the first ideas that comes to mind. Without the grandeur of its mountains, forests, fjords and waterways, the region wouldn’t have the worldwide reputation it does, but its cities, towns and countryside display a wealth of memorable vernacular constructions. To see the richness […]

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Penguins at the Lighthouse

Almost everybody who takes a Patagonia expedition hopes to see penguins, and there are many places to do so. Passengers sailing Cape Horn from Punta Arenas to Ushuaia, though, sometimes miss one of the top penguin-watching destinations, on Isla Magdalena in the Strait of Magellan. Still, that doesn’t preclude a trip to the island – […]

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El Chaltén: Argentina’s Trekking Capital

Some travelers who are visiting Patagonia confine themselves to either Argentina or Chile, but many if not most see both countries, which offer similar but often complementary attractions. In 1979, when I first saw the startling granite needles of Torres del Paine, it was hard to imagine anything more exhilarating than the time I spent […]

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Patagonian Fauna as Art

Some two decades ago, Argentina toyed with the idea of moving its capital from Buenos Aires to the city of Viedma, in its northern Patagonian province of Río Negro. In the end, Porteño politicians preferred visiting Patagonia to permanent residence there, but Buenos Aires still offers reminders of the far south – one of my […]

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My Patagonian Diet

Food is an important part of any Patagonia excursion, as I recently wrote in describing the one such dining option in Buenos Aires. It’s worth noting that, before or after heading to Patagonia, Chile’s capital of Santiago has similar options, as I found in one recent lunch in the city’s increasingly fashionable Barrio Lastarria neighborhood. […]

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Whaling Stories in Patagonia

  On the Patagonia cruise tours between Punta Arenas and Ushuaia, there’s plenty of wildlife, including elephant seals, sea lions and penguins, but whales are relatively uncommon. Chile has enacted legislation declaring the country a whale sanctuary, and populations are increasing, but in the eastern Strait of Magellan and the Beagle Channel they’re usually vagrants […]

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What to do in Punta Arenas: Patagonia’s Outdoor Museum

Recently, in Punta Arenas, I paid my first visit to the Instituto de la Patagonia in several years. It’s actually an academic research institute, founded by local historian Mateo Martinic in the 1970s and affiliated with the Universidad by Magallanes, but it also features the Museo del Recuerdo, a mostly open-air museum that makes an […]

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Chile 2 weeks Itinerary: Deserts and fjords

This is our proposal for a 2 weeks Itinerary around Chile.

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