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Torres del Paine
Torres del Paine is one of the great national parks in South America, covering over 180,000 hectares and including mountains, glaciers, lakes, rivers and waterfalls. It is home to much wildlife, including pumas (rarely seen), foxes, guanacos (a type of llama), condors and rhea.
The park is a beautiful place to explore, either by road or on foot: the trekking is exceptional. Mountain biking, horse riding and boat rides on the lakes are also possible. The centerpiece of the park is the granite massif of the Horns or Paine and the Towers of Paine. Visible from throughout the park, there are 15 peaks over 2,000 metres. The highest mountain, Paine Grande, is 3,050 metres high.
The Torres del Paine national park is wonderful for more active pursuits. The trekking is some of the best in South America, and there are many good day hikes in the area. Some of these are very challenging, and the weather can change quickly. There is also excellent horse-riding, cycling and fishing.
There is a good road network in the Torres del Paine, although there is virtually no public transport around the park. Guided tours included transport, and it is possible to walk or cycle around the park, although to get to some areas the distances can be quite far.
The Las Torres trek is one of the most iconic day hikes in all of South America. Read our blog for a personal experience of the trek.
- Population: 20,000 (Puerto Natales)
- Altitude: Sea level (Puerto Natales)
- Climate: Daytime highs in Torres del Paine from October to April are around 12°C – 20°C and night-time temperatures can drop to 2°C or 3°C. Although rain is usually not heavy, it can get very windy, and wind chill can make the temperatures feel 7 or 8 degrees cooler. Temperatures can drop to freezing in July or August.