Pre-Conference stay - Torres del Paine National Park
Our pre-conference tour is to the Puerto Natales area, home to Torres del Paine National Park in Chile's Patagonia region. It is known for its soaring mountains, bright blue icebergs that cleave from glaciers & golden pampas (grasslands) that shelter rare wildlife such as llama-like guanacos. Some of its most iconic sights are the 3 granite towers from which the park takes its name.
You'll spend 3 nights at The Singular, a uniquely renovated property which was once a cold storage plant built in the early 20th century. A 5 star luxury hotel, The Singular has been transformed into a hotel unlike any other & has been recognized as one of the finest hotels in South America (in addition to being a piece of living history). Your stay is fully inclusive with sumptuous meals & alcoholic beverages (except Premium list).
Depart Sydney for Chile, arriving into Santiago in the afternoon. Overnight at an airport hotel
Fly to Punta Arenas viewing incredible scenery along the way. You'll be met & transferred to a hotel for the night
This morning we transfer to The Singular Hotel, a 2.5 hour journey by coach. There's the chance to see pink flamingoes & rheas (a smaller version of the emu). On arrival, a fabulous lunch will be served & the rest of the afternoon is free to enjoy the hotel & its facilities - take a free historical tour of the hotel, relax in the pool with the best view, enjoy a spa treatment or wander out to the lake & jetty
The Torres del Paine National Park is part of the National System of the Protected Wildlife Areas of Chile. We'll head north reaching Villa Cerro Castillo, a village surrounding an old estancia that belonged to the Sociedad Explotadora Tierra del Fuego, devoted to sheep farming. Then our journey continues to Lake Sarmiento, where you'll be able to observe the typical fauna of this area: ñandúes & herds of guanacos (Chilean llamas). We'll enter the Torres del Paine National Park at Portería Laguna Amarga. Once inside the park, you'll visit different viewpoints with unique perspectives of the Macizo Paine. We will take a 30 min walk to visit the Salto Grande waterfall, where we will be able to see the famous Paine Horns. Finally, we will reach Grey Lake, where we will start a one-hour trek, with a view of Glacier Grey & icebergs. On our return, there will be panoramic views of the Macizo Paine
Today's tour is to Serrano & Balmaceda Glaciers by small boats. This will be an adventure navigating through the amazing Patagonian fjords towards Bernardo O’Higgins National Park, Chile’s largest park with an area over 6,000,000 acres. After 90 mins, we'll arrive at Monte Balmaceda (4,070 feet high) where you'll see the hanging glacier. Then we will disembark in Puerto Toro and start a 45 minute walk (round trip) towards Serrano Glacier. After viewing the the glaciers we'll continue to a typical Estancia where lunch will be waiting for you. After savouring the local gastronomy & seeing the sheep rounded up, we'll head back to the hotel and the rest of the afternoon is free to relax
It's a relaxing start today, before travelling back to Punta Arenas for our welcome conference dinner
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