Prefer to rehydrate with rosé? Enjoy finishing a trek with Tempranillo? Or conclude a tough ride with Riesling?
If you answered yes to any of the above, our Chile: Active Santiago, Atacama, and Patagonia tour may be your cup of petit chablis. The hybrid active-culture adventure features tenacious treks and rigorous rides but rewards your efforts with tours of lush vineyards and meals at the country’s finest restaurants.
Below we uncork the active portion of the tour, detailing each bike and hike to help you determine if this is the right trip for you.
Colchagua Valley Ride
Our first ride begins in the heart of Colchagua Valley, Chile’s famed wine region known for juicy reds such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Carménère, Merlot and Malbec. While difficulty always depends on the biker’s personal fitness, most travellers will find this flat and fast track quite easy. We’ll be using primarily paved roads with only a few stretches of gravel en route to a family-run winery. After dismounting, we’ll enjoy a wine tasting and lunch before a short afternoon cycle.
Terrain: Mostly paved roads, some gravel paths and only slight hills.
Atacama Desert Ride
Pack your swimsuit as we kick off towards the Atacama Saltpan and nearby lagoons. The morning ride maxes at 4000m/13,100ft, which may cause light altitude sickness in some. That said, we’ll take it very easy with stops along the way. To top off an invigorating day, we’ll float in Laguna Piedra, known for its high-density salt waters. Finally, we’ll hike 10 minutes further to the famed Cejar Lagoon to enjoy a boxed lunch.
Terrain: Entirely flat. Dirt roads.
Atacama Desert Hike
Beginning in the Atacameñan village, Guatin, we’ll trek along a surprisingly fertile riverbed towards Tatio Geysers. Along the way, our guide will take time to point out and discuss the lush flora, including the famous Cardon cactus, whose tentacle-like trunks reach heights of 7.5 meters. After visiting the geysers, our experience culminates at nearby Puritama natural hot springs, where we’ll enjoy a dip in its steaming pools. Flocks of local finches will serenade us as we simmer.
Distance: 2-hour trek
Terrain: Uphill canyon with some rocks along the trail. The path can get narrow.
Interested in Chile? Step this way.