I’m no local to Patagonia, but my wife and I traveled a fair bit in that region during the months of January and February two years back. We’re actually Canadian and we live in Nova Scotia but we wanted to explore Patagonia. You hear so much about it and the descriptions of its natural beauty made us very keen to travel there and see it for ourselves. We didn’t really rough it out during our trip – we’re not too used to camping it out in the rough for long stretches of time – call me spoilt, but I love a hot shower in the morning to start my day.
We flew to the main airport in Chile which is Santiago de Chile and then rented a car there. Things can get pricy if you don’t do your research on the best deals and also the best place to get it from. If you are travelling to Argentinean Patagonia, you may get stiffed with your prices. They seem to hike up the rates over there.
Both of us love driving and we loved the freedom of being able to travel wherever we wanted and could change our itinerary anytime. Having your own transportation makes a world of a difference because the buses run only on certain days and have certain timings which would not have worked out for us.
A good tip that I found out was to contact the owner of the car rental company in advance and ask him for a better rate than what was advertised online if I paid in cash. When you pay with your credit card, you may be charged a higher amount due to the transaction fees and more. I got a better deal than what was mentioned on their website and my wife and I were happy campers.
We visited the Strait of Magellan and the Tierra del Fuego because those were recommended by many travelers before us. I have to confess, the view is something else and the knowledge that you are on the water, looking back to the edge of the world as we know it is an exhilarating experience. We would love to visit Antarctica, but I think my creaking bones may not be able to handle the freezing sub zero temperatures.
Another experience worth sharing is the view of the Penguins. Seeing them in their natural habitat is a sight to see. As much as I appreciate Aquariums and Zoos, there’s something different about seeing an animal in their natural habitat – quite magical really. For the adventure seekers, you could do the hikes. We just did a few – walking about. There’s so much to see and do, that even though we were there for three weeks, by the time we left we felt we had barely scratched the surface on what the region had to offer. I can see the charm and attraction of Patagonia. Even though we’re thousands of miles away, I can still feel the call of the natural beauty there that tells me to come back soon.