Tag Archives: el chalten

EXPLORA HOTEL IN EL CHALTÉN OPENING SEPTEMBER 2020

With views to the Electric Valley and the Marconi Glacier, explora El Chaltén will open its doors in September 2020. 


17 km away from El Chaltén and within the heart of Los Huemules private reserve, the lodge will be a headquarters from which to explore a world-renowned destination for those who love nature and trekking.

All the programs that the lodge will offer will include accommodation, transfers to and from the airport, meals and beverages, and a selection of exploration routes designed by their own outdoors team.

 

There will be Standard and Suite rooms with the typical design of the ancient Argentinean Patagonia estancias. Comfortable, luminous and spacious they promise to ensure the travelers’ deep rest. 

The hotel will offer more than 30 activities for every level of difficulty and skills, including overlands, trekking, ice hikes and rock climbing, all as diverse as the El Chaltén surroundings.

One of the places to be explored will be Los Glaciares National Park, with vast ice fields and the world-renowned Perito Moreno Glacier. Also, the Southern Patagonia Mountain Range, Mount Fitz-Roy, the towering heights of the area, and the surroundings of the Los Huemules Natural Reserve, in addition to the Patagonia forest and its rich wildlife.

The explorations may cover a full day or half a day, in groups of no more than eight travelers accompanied by a bilingual guide trained at explora’s Guide School. 

To complete and improve even more the guests’ experience, the hotel will provide a full spa service with hydromassages, sauna, and a massage room especially designed to enjoy the views; a gastronomic experience that has the Argentinean Patagonia as inspiration for the menu, offering different lunch and dinner options that fully renew on a daily basis; bars to enjoy a drink after an active day and a shop with local crafts and literature.

To be able to deeply discover this environment and fully enjoy the activities, it’s recommended a stay between four and six nights. Bookings are available now!


 

KAYAKING IN THE RIO DE LAS VUELTAS IN EL CHALTÉN

This is a unique and unforgettable experience, sailing on Patagonian lakes and rivers by kayak for an enriching visit of the El Chaltén area.


The Rio de las Vueltas is born in the Lago del Desierto lake and, as the name implies (literally, river of turns) descends towards Lago Viedma lake, making numerous curves through leafy forests of lenga trees and vertical walls. It is one of the most important rivers in the area as it transports the meltwater from glaciers in the region.

This experience provides a privileged position aboard a sit on top kayak, for about  20 kilometers enjoying the best views of Mount Fitz Roy and its satellite needles, with a totally different point of view from the one that you get from a trail. This is an excellent complement to the traditional trekking trip to El Chaltén!

In the morning, the adventure begins at a local tourism office in town, where we take a transfer to Laguna Cóndor. After a 17 km drive, we arrive at the mountain refuge where we meet Loli, our expert guide for the day. While we drink a hot cup of coffee or tea, he introduces us to the activity; a full briefing including the itinerary, paddling instructions and safety techniques to keep in mind during our kayaking excursion. 

We try out the equipment and put on the full outfit (neoprene wetsuit, boots and gloves, safety vest and helmet) and we’re ready to rehearse the paddling movements before boarding the river.  

Finally, we get on the kayaks and properly practice our recently acquired paddling skills in the Laguna Cóndor (Condor Lagoon). If you never paddled before, it might take a couple of minutes to get used to, but overall it’s an easy task.

We follow a unique descend through the river and, if the weather allows it, we’ll get breathtaking views from the Fitz Roy Massif along the sail. Nature all around and the subtle sound of our gentle paddling is all we hear and observe, feeling really small at this environment surrounded by giants. 

Wind may blow and make the adventure more fun trying to keep the kayak on track. Don’t worry, Loli is there at all times to help and guide you! The kayaking route is 20 km but the paddling is really easy going. There’s no time pressure as the activity’s duration is adapted on the way according to the group’s size and skills.

The descent and paddling end at El Chaltén, where after a short walk we reach the office where we change our clothes, enjoy a deserved snack to recharge our energy and continue our friendly chat, joking around and remembering the experience that now has become a trip anecdote of an amazing day. 

GENERAL INFORMATION

  • Included services: Transfers El Chaltén – Laguna Cóndor mountain refuge. Enabled expert kayak guide with basic technical English. Full neoprene-suit, gloves and boots. Jacket. Personal safety gear (life vest and helmet). Snacks, tea and coffee  in El Chalten. Radio contact with El Chaltén.
  • Not included: Transfers not detailed specifically. Tips. Box lunch (travelers have to take their own box lunch or book it through Kallpa in advance!). Services not specified in the program.
  • Please make sure to bring: Small backpack 20 lts. Extra clothes and shoes. Sunglasses. Sunscreen. Cap or hat. Jacket. Waterproof camera or protection. Box Lunch.
  • Level of difficulty: Moderate. Activity for people with good physical condition but not necessarily with rowing experience. Both beginners and experienced rowers can enjoy it. Requirement: ability to Swim.

 


 

A Mountain Refuge in El Chlatén

Imagine yourself in the middle of the Patagonian nature with amazing mountain views, the sound of silence and time at your expense to connect with this surreal environment.


Laguna Cóndor Mountain Refuge provides this experience to anyone willing to unplug from everyday life and technology.

This exclusive refuge is located on the west bank of the Río de las Vueltas, 17 km north of El Chaltén. Surrounded by an imposing scenery, this new lodging alternative combines the wild beauty of a nearly explored place with the facilities of a luxury camp.

The proposal is to enjoy the peace and quiet of the surroundings without the interference of technology, Hence, there is no mobile phone signal, Wi-Fi or TV available. Although there is permanent electricity provided by a hydroelectric turbine that uses the natural river torrent, reducing any impact or pollution that may be produced by a power generator.

Wood is the main element of the refuge. There is a main cabin that works as a common living room with a fireplace where you can sit and read a book, a breakfast room and a restaurant; all with beautiful views of the northern face of the mythical Mt. Fitz Roy.

Laguna Cóndor has eight small cabins located in the best spots of the property. Each one has two beds, a salamander and a deck; offering a complete privacy and comfort experience, an intermediate between a campsite and a hotel. There are also spacious locker rooms with toilets and hot showers; a multipurpose room with a fireplace and view to the mythical Fitz Roy.

The refuge offers different activities and excursions with the objective of providing and intimate contact with nature and the possibility to enjoy the peace of the place. There are many hiking trails and places to go over, from classic full day treks (such as Laguna Torre) to longer and more difficult options.

One of the preferred treks is the ascent to Loma del Diablo; a demanding but rewarding one, given the spectacular view from above of Mt. Fitz Roy. Its top is at 1800 meters, providing a great panoramic view of the whole area.

It is also possible to kayak across the waters of the Laguna Cóndor itself or to ride a mountain bike along the paths crossing the andean patagonian forest and lakes on a self-guided circuit that borders the Río de las Vueltas, including a few stops to contemplate cascades and the local flora and fauna that may come across.

Overall, Laguna Cóndor grants an unusual and reserved experience deep in the patagonian forest, where nature and relax are the protagonists.

Please, do not hesitate to contact our Kallpa Executives to learn more about this lodging option in El Chaltén.


 

Trekking into the woods in El Chalten

A full day experience that combines driving, navigating and trekking at one of the wildest and outermost corners in the Patagonia.


There is no doubt that anyone who visits El Chaltén looks for nature, adventure and hiking. Many trails within this trekking national capital take you through and towards breathtaking landscapes and views, such as the mighty Mt. Fitz Roy.

This time, we want to tell you about a full day adventure from El Chaltén to the northern area of Los Glaciares National Park and the Lago del Desierto reserve.

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A different tour option that allows not only many pictures and memories but also flora and fauna observation and interpretation, sailing across the Lago del Desierto, hiking through one of the prettiest forests of the region and reaching lookouts with unique views of the Vespignani glacier.

Departing from El Chaltén, we travel 36 km by bus across a panoramic road through the woods and along the Río de las Vueltas. On the way, you can’t miss the view of giant glaciers.

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After arriving in Punta Sur, we go aboard a boat and sail on the Lago del Desierto for about 50 minutes, spotting the Crestón and Huemul glaciers.

We disembark for 15 minutes in Punta Norte to enjoy a unique distant view of Mt. Fitz Roy’s northern face and breath in the Patagonian fresh forest air.

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We continue to navigate towards the Vespignani glacier, right in the middle of the lake. Once at the reserve, we disembark and get into the forest walking towards a dome where you can leave any personal belongings that you don’t want to take with you.

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Then, a person responsible for the trekking activity takes you to the starting point of the hikes and gives information about the three different trails. All of them are self-guided and imply different levels of difficulty and effort. There’re about 2 hours for the trekking activity before the boat returns.

The more demanding hike trail begins right after crossing the bridge over the river. It takes about 40-50 minutes at a slow pace and it goes through the forest on a slight and constant slope. This path takes you first to the nearest viewpoint of the Vespignani glacier and then to an outlook of the north face of Mt. Fitz Roy.

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The moderate trail is softer and takes about 20 minutes. Hiking through the native woods of lenga and coihue trees and by the stream line on the right, we reach a different viewpoint from where Mt. Vespignani with its hanging glacier and a part of the Lago del Desierto can be seen, frames by the forest. Picture perfect!

Vespignani´s hanging glacier

Last but not least, the easiest and more relaxed path reaches a river’s mouth where you may also spot the glacier. Walking by the lake’s coastline, you get back to the dome. There’s almost no slopes on this trail and it takes about 30 minutes.

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After the hiking experience of your choice, we have a snack at this magical place. Then we go on board again to sail back on the Lago del Desierto towards Punta Sur, where the bus awaits to take us back again to El Chaltén, where the adventure comes to an end.

Contact you Kallpa Executive for more information about this experience.

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GENERAL INFORMATION

  • Operates from October to April.
  • Full day regular excursion.
  • Daily departure in the morning and in the afternoon.
  • Morning departure by bus from El Chalten at 8 am, leaving from Punta Sur at 10 am. Return to Punta Sur at 1.30 pm and ending in El Chaltén at 4 pm.
  • Afternoon departure by bus from El Chalten at 12.30 pm, leaving from Punta Sur at 2.30 pm. Return to Punta Sur at 6 pm and ending in El Chaltén at 8 pm.
  • Includes bilingual Spanish/English guide, roundtrip transfers from El Chaltén (can be excluded), navigation and a snack (hot chocolate, tea or coffee and sweet and salty biscuits).
  • A Box Lunch can be included with extra charge and upon request. It includes two empanadas, an individual chard pie or similar, one cereal bar, one alfajor, an apple, candies, a small bottle of mineral water and a box of fruit juice.