Incredibly formed, towering pinnacles of granite, thick green Lenga forests, enormous glaciers easing into crystal coloured lakes peaks hung with hanging glaciers all make Torres del Paine one of the most spectacular, dramatic and unique landscapes to visit in the world. Trekking allows you to get in amongst this scenery and experience this wild and wonderful place.
There are trekking treats for everyone from the budget backpacker, to those looking to hike from a luxurious base, to those looking to bushwhack through the most remote and overlooked areas of the park.
Torres del Paine Trekking Options
W Trek, Torres del Paine
The 'W Circuit' of Torres del Paine is a 4 day hike that takes you up the two main valleys of the park to witness the Towers themselves and two glaciers. There are Refugios …
Torres del Paine Circuit
The Full Circuit is an 8 day hike all around Torres del Paine National Park. You'll witness the great sites of the shorter circuit but also take in the northern part of the park…
Torres del Paine, off the beaten track
Torres del Paine is one of the world's top trekking destinations so obviously the main routes and landmarks are popular. If you want to get to the peaks, views and landmarks …
Patagonia Trekking Tours
Patagonia is one of the world's top destinations for trekking. To find out about the different types of trekking on offer and the national parks you can visit, see our guide …
Day Hikes from a Comfortable Base
Whether it be from an Eco-Lodge, Hotel or a Luxury Lodge you can trek the W trek or get off the beaten track from the comfortable base. Each day you will travel to the trailhead by vehicle from where you and your guide can hike.
Not only will you be guaranteed a hot shower and good meal at the end of each day but you can pick the hikes or other excursions once you arrive in the park. This allows you to leave the best treks to good weather days and you can discuss with your local guide which trek to do the night before and they can help you decide which hike to do based on your ability.
You can hike the W trek over the course of 3 days, visit panoramas such as those from Ferrier hill, or explore the Pingo valley and Baguales range.
The W Trek
The W trek is Torres del Paine's iconic and most popular trek. You tread a W shaped pattern on the map dipping into 3 different valleys.
- The Ascensio Valley from where you get the best views of the mile high granite towers that give the National Park it's name.
- The French Valley from where you see hanging glaciers and an amphitheathre of pinnacles and peaks.
- The Grey Valley, dominated by Lago Grey and the Grey Glacier.
Cosy mountain huts allow you to stay right in amongst the mountains to complete the trek in 4 or 5 days with just a small rucksack.
This is a great trek for inexperienced trekkers on their first muti-day trek, those who want to see the highlights of the park in a limited amount of time and those on a budget.
You can make 3 day hikes into the Paine Range from a more comfortable base. This is the most popular trek in Torres del Paine so you should expect a high volume of visitors.
The Paine Circuit
For more experienced trekkers walking a Full Circuit of the Paine range promises that you to see the towers from the Ascensio Valley and the French Valley but also visit the Northern part of the park where far fewer visitors venture.Typically it's tackled anti-clockwise so that you can hike east to west through Paso John Garner and see the awe-inspiring view of the Grey Glacier and Southern Patagonian Ice Field reaching out to the horizon.
The 65-80mile (105-130km) circuit trek can be completed in between 7-9 days (depending on the route). You will need to camp at least 2 nights and the campsites in the north are so beautiful it is a pleasure to camp every night!
Consider whether you are happy to carry your camping equipment or if you would prefer to have porters to assist you.
Off the Beaten Track
For adventurous souls who want to see this popular park but avoid the crowds then there are areas within the Paine range itself where few feet fall and beautiful hikes in other ranges within the park.
You don't have to be uncomfortable to get off the beaten track. Many of the luxury lodges include trips into these more remote corners.
Nestled in the Paine Range amongst the more visited sights are the forbidden Bader and Silencio valleys where very few visit. The Silencio and Bader valleys can be woven into multi-day treks with the more common hiking trails.
The heavily glaciated Pingo valley with the Pingo and Zapata glaciers can be briefly visited in a day or you can camp out and explore the area in 3 or 4 days with a guide.
Alternatively the arid Baguales range is very different from its neighbouring Paine range, with rolling pampa interrupted by staggering geological formations. In Baguales its not just off the beaten trail but off the trail altogether!
Do you want to finish off your trek by kayaking the length of the Serrano river, biking into the Baguales range in search of fossils or horse riding from Estancia to Estancia across the Patagonian Steppe. Why not link a multi-day kayaking, horse riding or biking trip with a trekking trip?
Alternatively if you want to hike a little but also want to trek everyday then you can ice hike, kayak, bike, horse-ride and trek all in the same itinerary.
Map of Torres del Paine peaks, campsites and refugios:
Find trekking landmarks including mountain passes, lookout points and accommodation on our interactive Torres del Paine Google Map:
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About Swoop Patagonia
We've spent 15 years exploring Patagonia, and we've arranged holidays for over a thousand customers. We have a network of trusted guides, lodges, and local operators across the region and delight in helping people plan and arrange a great holiday.
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