Category Archives: El Calafate

Kayaking into the Perito Moreno

We invite you to have a glimpse of a brand new glacial adventure in El Calafate. Paddling a kayak, get as close as you can get to the striking Perito Moreno Glacier.


It’s well known that UNESCO remarks the outstanding universal value of Los Glaciares National Park, including it on the World Heritage list to protect it. On its own words, “an area of exceptional natural beauty”. We couldn’t agree more. Milky grey glacial lakes, imposing mountains, glaciers and icebergs in many hues of blue frame this unique and breathtaking environment, where the cracking of ice is everything you’ll hear.   

The most astonishing sight is – of course – the world famous Perito Moreno Glacier, which calves into the icy waters of the Lake Argentino. Both of these natural attractions are the protagonists of this new kayaking experience, recently launched.

After picking you up from your hotel in El Calafate, we’ll arrive to the National Park around 10 am. You’ll meet the expert team at the base dome, where they’ll explain how the activity will develop.

At the dome you’ll also get dressed for the occasion: you’ll be provided of a Gore-Tex drysuit, thermal suit, boots and gloves, and a life vest. After getting ready, at the lake shore the guides will provide an instructional and safety talk. Don’t worry if you have never been on a kayak before, they’ll explain the basics to paddle on these glacial waters.

Then, you’ll board the kayak at Los Témpanos beach and paddle towards the northern face of the Perito Moreno, located just in front of us. On this quiet realm, at water level,  you will appreciate the magnificence of nature at first hand, a unique perspective of this fascinating and millenary ice wall. Also, the guide that joins you will tell you more about it and the surroundings. And don’t forget about the pictures!

After paddling between rests for an hour and a half, we will return to the dome for some hot beverages and snacks. But the day is not over yet! You will have time until 5 pm to enjoy a lunch box, rest and explore the National Park and contemplate once more the Perito Moreno from the walkway. Then, you will be taken back to your hotel in El Calafate.

This is a one in a lifetime, brand new experience. Never before was it possible to navigate on a kayak across these protected waters and so close to the glacier. You’ll certainly feel lucky to experience it for yourself.


GENERAL INFORMATION

  • Full day service. Pick up from hotel starting at 8 am. Drop off at 6 pm approx.
  • Operates everyday except on June and July.
  • Included: Round-trip transfers from hotels in El Calafate – Kayak equipment and clothing – 1.5 hs of kayaking activity – Lunch box, beverages and snacks – An USB flash drive with pictures of the day.
  • Not included: Entrance fee to the National Park.
  • Min. 2 pax required to book this experience. Max. 20 pax.
  • Min. age required: 14 years old. Children between 14 and 18 years old must be joined by their parents or guardians.
  • No previous kayaking experience required.
  • Medium degree of difficulty.
  • Activity subject to weather conditions.

This experience is also available as a kayaking excursion, without transfers and lunch box. Operates at 10 am and 2 pm. Please, contact your Kallpa Executive for more information and price of this option.

Kayak & Trekking Experience Río La Leona

A 14 km full day adventure to discover the delightful La Leona River and take a hike through Los Hornos Mount. Explore a glacial river surrounded by the Patagonian steppe and learn about geology!


In the Santa Cruz province it is said that Río La Leona is one of the most beautiful rivers in the Patagonian steppe. With a 70 km flow of turquoise waters, this glacial river is born at the Viedma Lake and discharges at the Argentino Lake.

An interesting fact: its name was given due to a female puma attack (colloquially called “leona”, which means lioness) that suffered Francisco Pascasio Moreno, the famous Perito Moreno, on an expedition towards the Santa Cruz River in the summer of 1877.

Surrounded by the most arid steppe, with no trees and framed by a wide tiered valley, La Leona provides the scenery for today’s adventure.

After an early pick up from the hotel in El Calafate, we are driven towards Luz Divina, a rural inn. On the way the guide tells us about this faraway place and the river we are about to navigate. Glaciers, flora and fauna complete a very interesting informative talk.

Once at Luz Divina, we get familiar with the kayak equipment and pay attention to the technical brief to know the paddling basics. Even if you don’t have any previous experience kayaking, this activity can be easily done by anyone!

All equipped and instructed, we finally go down to La Leona River. The first paddling stretch takes about an hour and a half. Until we get used to this activity, which for some is the first time ever to get into a kayak, it’s impossible not to be captivated by this outstanding landscape of natural beauty and geological history; to take in this vast environment where the sound of silence is so overwhelming. An untouched scenery that many years ago astonished explorers such as Darwin or Moreno with the contrast of the ocher steppe and the turquoise glacial waters.

The next stop is at Los Hornos Mount, one of the oldest formations in the world. At this mount we take a 2 hs hike discovering the beginnings of Patagonian geography. Petrified trees and dinosaur fossils are witnesses of ancient times where the Earth’s conditions and weather were very different than nowadays.

At this place we will also have a brief lunch (not included) and a hot tea to regain energies for the next paddling stretch.

Back again on our kayaks, after 45 minutes more navigating through La Leona, we reach the final stop of the adventure at Arroyo Turbio. We are welcomed at Estancia La Irene and after settling in and putting away the kayak gear, the team bids farewell with a delicious cold beer before returning to El Calafate.


GENERAL INFORMATION

  • Daily departures. Full day excursion.
  • Operates from October to April.
  • Requires Min. 1 pax – Max. 8 pax.
  • Min. age required is 12 years old.
  • Very active excursion. Implies moderate physical effort. No previous trekking or kayaking experience needed.
  • Pax should wear trekking shoes, comfortable clothes for paddling (thermal t-shirt, polar jacket or sweater, etc.), thermal or lycra leggins, additional underwear (in case it gets wet while kayaking), sunglasses and sunscreen, backpack or bag to keep personal items in the vehicle.

SERVICES INCLUDED

  • Calafate Hotels pick up (starts at 7:30 am) & drop off (4:30 pm). Can be arranged to and from airport depending on flight schedule.
  • Double Kayak and paddles.
  • Safety briefing & Technical equipment: neoprene suit and boots, semi-dry jacket, cockpit cover, helmet, mittens, life jacket, waterproof bag.
  • Bilingual guides (Spanish-English)
  • Snack (hot drinks, cookies or brownies, nuts).
  • Insurance pack for tourism activities.

SERVICES NOT INCLUDED

  • Box lunch.
  • Transfers from/to El Chaltén.

 

Stay Overnight With the Spirit of the Glaciers

A new exclusive and shorter adventure that takes the most out of the Los Glaciares National Park in El Calafate. Navigate on a luxurious vessel, taste gourmet meals and spend the night on board at this magical natural environment.


Much has been said and written about the imposing glaciers in the south of Argentina, specially about the world famous Perito Moreno. But there are no words that can describe the unique feeling you get if you ever have the chance to visit this absolutely gorgeous natural place.

Santa Cruz_Marpatag

The vastness of these deep blue ice giants, cold turquoise waters, a lush green forest, the occasional chilled wind, starry nights and the sound of silence…a spectacle of nature that leaves you breathless and a memory that will be a part of you forever. Los Glaciares National Park can be considered as a wild sanctuary where visitors are lucky to pass by, if only for a day.      

For those who wish to experiment this icy encounter in a more intimate and exclusive way, The Spirit of the Glaciers is the perfect expedition. An that used to offer a 2 night program but that now has incorporated a 1 night option, if the passing through El Calafate is a bit shorter.

Sail and rest on board the elegant Santa Cruz, a three deck vessel specially designed for this activity including high end and comfortable commodities and a gourmet cuisine restaurant.

Lounge_Santa Cruz_Marpatag

The new 1 night program begins at 9 am embarking at La Soledad, a private deck in Bahía Tranquila. After checking in, the navigation towards the Perito Moreno Glacier begins sailing pleasantly through the Canal de los Témpanos until the northern front. At around 10.30 am we will disembark to walk on the balconies and contemplate this impressive ice wall. Lunch is back on board in the restaurant and still enjoying the view of the glacier from the wide windows.

Lounge view_Santa Cruz_Marpatag

In the afternoon the navigation continues first to the Upsala Glacier, through the Brazo Norte and then towards the historical Puesto de Las Vacas in Bahía Alemana, where we will disembark again for an easy hike to an old port. At this spot we will also taste our first dinner and spend the night on board. Be ready to be dazzled by a sunset that provides a show of contrasting colours against the blue waters and ice floes; and then by a deep dark night sky that reflects the milky way on the Argentino Lake.

The next morning, after an ensured rest and a tasty gourmet breakfast, another relaxed hike in Puesto de Las Vacas awaits. We will be back on board at around 11.30 am to keep on sailing towards Canal Spegazzini, where lunch will be served facing the Upsala Glacier and where we will also watch icebergs.

Bed_Santa Cruz_Marpatag

The expedition will come to an end sailing back gently to Bahía Tranquila in the afternoon, contemplating this unique natural scenario and wonder of nature until the very last minute.

To take part on The Spirit of the Glaciers between September and December 2017 (except during holidays), ask your Kallpa Account Executive for a special promotion for early bookings before July 31st, available for 1 or 2 nights program.

Santa Cruz03_Marpatag


GENERAL INFORMATION
    • Feasible from September 2017 to April 2018.
    • Departures are always from La Soledad private deck in bahía Tranquila (Paraje Punta Bandera).
    • 1 Night Program will depart on Wednesdays and return on Thursdays at 4 pm.
    SERVICES INCLUDED FOR 1 NIGHT PROGRAM:
    • One night on board in a cabin with private room and external view.
    • Full board service with alcoholic beverages at meals.
    • Service of soft beverages and infusions during navigation.
    • On board activities conducted by a bilingual guide (English/Spanish).
    • Transfers from and to Hotel in El Calafate.
    • Entrance fee to Los Glaciares National Park,
    M/V SANTA CRUZ COMFORT & TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS
    • 20 en-suite cabins with outside view distributed in two levels.
    • Ample deck space above the main lounge as well as the stern and bow deck Restaurant, library, lounge and bar
    • Full board service including alcoholic drinks with meals
    • Hot beverages and soft drinks while sailing
    • All activities with bilingual guide (Spanish-English)
    • Fully equipped kitchen
    • Length: 40.5 metres Beam: 10 metres
    • Pontoon Beam: 2.1 metres Draught: 1.2 metres
    • Hull and Superstructure built in Aluminium Engines: 2 x 1000 HP Caterpillar
    • Cruise speed: 19 knots
    • Maximum capacity: 40 passengers