Torres del Paine
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Torres del Paine is an amazing national park on the border with Argentina. It is possible to walk here along craters, high-rising mountain ridges, over glaciers and through vast tundra. The 2,800 meter high peaks of Torres del Paine stand out above the gray steppe and cause a breathtaking view.
In Torres del Paine it can be cold and rough. Hardly any people live there, but you can find plenty of hikers everywhere. It is located on the edge of the southern Patagonian ice sheet, just above the Magellanes province, on the border with Argentina. The closest place is Puerto Natales.
Best time to visit
We recommend visiting Torres del Paine National Park from September til April. The best months are November or April. You will have to bring a thick sleeping bag, but you have the park mostly to yourself. Especially if you do not walk the standard W-route, which takes you to all viewpoints in one day, but take an alternative route. Click here for the climate in Torres Del Paine.
Where to stay
Positioned in a remote spot just outside Torres del Paine National Park we found Tierra Patagonia which is a sustainable lodge. It is known worldwide for its innovative architecture, which blends naturally into the landscape. The hotel does a lot of conservation efforts and focus on minimizing their footprint.
Tierra Patagonia uses LED lighting and controls its thermal efficiency to reduce the cost of energy. They are also evaluating future renewable energy projects and plan to incorporate a kitchen-garden to help stock the kitchen. Additionally, Tierra Patagonia actively supports an ambitious reforestation project which aims to plant one million trees across Chilean Patagonia’s national parks.
Since its conception, Tierra Patagonia was put in the hands of Chilean architect Cazú Zegers, whose expressive design approach is closely linked with Chile, its land, scenery and traditions. The silhouette of the building appears as if drawn by the wind itself; a force of nature that is characteristic of Patagonia. It’s anchored to the ground with stone slopes and covered entirely with washed lenga wood, taking on a silvery, weather-beaten finish often seen on typical buildings found throughout the region. The aim of all this, is to provide a feeling of both shelter and intimacy with the land.
During the construction of Tierra Patagonia, to manage any environmental impact, landscape artists Catalina Phillips and Gerardo Ariztía, removed all the on-site vegetation, temporarily nurturing it in a greenhouse before replanting it around the hotel once the building work was complete.
Patagonian culture also features in the hotel’s interior design, through handicrafts and artefacts from across the region. This hotel is up there in terms of it's unique appeal, overall unique design, view of the mountains, service, and amenities. Tierra Patagonia is very remote, but is incredible with unreal views. It's worth the 4 hour drive from Punta Arenas. On booking.com they get an exceptional rating of 9.7 and you can book it here.