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Hidden Patagonia Family Adventure

Incredible activities, wonderful people and nature on an epic scale. That's why we've taken our families to Patagonia, and why we'd love to help you take yours.

All your questions answered

Helping you find the right holiday for you is important to us, so here's a few common questions about this trip to help. If there's anything you'd like to know that's not covered here, send us over a message or you can also give us a call on +44 1273 676 712 and we'd be only too pleased to help.

What flexibility will I get with any Covid-19 restrictions?

First thing to say is that throughout the pandemic we have frequently been praised by Which? as a tour operator to trust, so you're in good hands. Your safety is always our top priority and we want you to be able to fully look forward to and enjoy your holiday with peace of mind.

Even as restrictuons ease, our policy remains as it always has - we view quarantines as a travel restriction on a par with lockdown, in-country restrictions at your destination or FCDO advice against travel, and we will offer the same flexibility as in those situations; defer to new dates or a full refund at the point at which your trip is imminent. In these cases, we define imminent travel as a month prior to departure.

Read more: Covid-19 FAQs

What is the payment process and is my money completely safe?

We take a 15% deposit to secure your holiday, with the remainder due four weeks before your departure, rather than the usual eight weeks.

Your money is 100% protected through our ATOL licence if your trip includes a flight booked through us, or through our ABTOT bond if it does not. Either way, this protection provides a cast iron financial guarantee and helps you book with complete peace of mind. Because the contract between us exists here in the UK, you get this protection regardless of where you live

When is the best time to go?

Any time between October and April as it moves from late spring through summer and into autumn. As a family holiday, this would fit snugly into a Christmas or Easter break.

What will the weather be like?

On paper, the weather here will be better in January than in October or April. In practice, the best weather we've ever had was in early October and very late April so don't sweat the weather in Patagonia, bring the right clothing and embrace it.

For the bulk of your time, you are to the east of the Andes - the only place in Chile where this is possible, a country defined by being the land to the west of the Andes. Because the dominant weather comes in from the Pacific Ocean, being in what is effectively the shadow of the mountains means that Aysen, more than any other part of Patagonia, tends to have more stable weather.

How far ahead should I book?

This somewhat depends on when you want to travel but relatively small hotels and lodges in popular destinations mean that 12 months is sensible, assuming you want to travel on specific dates. This is compounded by the fact that we space out our departures to avoid your overlapping, in any significant way, with other clients.

Out of season, we have managed to put trips together with a month's notice but it's not our first choice! It's always worth asking us about space as we know which places represent the 'pinch points' so we can quickly tell if the holiday is going to be deliverable.

How much carbon is produced on this trip and how is it mitigated?

Total carbon generated on this trip: 3,863kg per person
Carbon mitigated by us:
6,181kg per person

As Yvon Chouinard, of Patagonia, Inc. rightly declared: “To do good, you actually have to do something.”

Therefore, for every kilometre travelled by road, air and sea on your Pura Aventura holiday, we carbon balance it by a mile - i.e. by 160% of your trip's carbon, from your front door and back again, irrespective of whether we book your international travel or not.

This is one of the travel industry's most ambitious and innovative schemes and has recently been praised by Wanderlust, Condé Nast Traveller and The Independent.

How active is this trip?

The itinerary described includes a mix of guided activities: kayaking, mountain biking, guided hikes, glacier hikes and horse riding. These can all be adapted to suit your particular family depending on the age of the children and what activities you enjoy.

There is also much of this trip where it is up to you to set the pace. Essentially we can tailor this trip to be as active as you want it to be.

What is the driving like?

This is not a holiday dedicated to driving, it is about your spending time out and about in the great outdoors.

Patagonia, the Carretera Austral particularly, is a place where to rush is to waste time. We suggest an average speed of just 40kmph, which gives you plenty of opportunity to stop and enjoy the views along the way.

We always include a 4x4 vehicle with high clearance. The four wheel drive is rarely necessary but it does make for a more sure-footed driving experience. High clearance is really the most important thing on the Carretera. Engines tend to be of a generous size, no whirring and whining along.

We only use reputable, well maintained vehicles in order to minimise the chances of any mechanical failures.

Will altitude be a problem?

Not in Patagonia, no, you are at or around sea level. The steppe around Coyhaique, the highest part of your trip, is under 1,000m above sea level.

How comfortable will I be?

This holiday is comfortable throughout. For specific hotels we use on this trip, please ask us for full trip detais.

The hotels and lodges in Aysén (Patagonia) have reached a great moment whereby we have a wonderful selection of very high quality small hotels for you to stay in. These are not luxury properties but rather very clean and comfortable owner run places where the welcome is as warm as you’ll find anywhere in the world. You should expect 3-4* standard, but given how remote all of these places are, that generally feels very comfortable indeed.

Will I meet the locals?

Absolutely. You may find that communicating takes a little patience on both sides as English isn't widely spoken outside of the hotels you stay in. Your guides speak good English.

When eating out in restaurants you will likely have to rely on whatever Spanish you have, or on a translation app but it is rarely an issue if you are happy with a bit of sign language too.

When driving, you need to be careful because cows quite often wander into the road. Gauchos ride their horses along the road, usually with their dog behind. Hitchhiking is common here, locals getting from one village to another will wait patiently for a bus to pass but if you stop, they’ll be delighted. They may offer you money, that’s normal etiquette – you don’t have to take it!

All in all, this is Patagonia. It is unvarnished but for those of us who like our travels to ignite the exploring spirit in us – there can be few better places in the world.

What might I not have thought of?

The colours! You will have days which are cloudy and rainy but that can make the waters of Lago Carrera, or the Baker River, seem even more of a crazy shade of turquoise. In autumn, the southern beech trees turn yellow, red and orange in great stripes across the flanks of the mountains. In spring, the flowers are everywhere.

Can I make changes to this trip?

Absolutely. We can tailor your holiday in any number of ways.

If you have more time, there is more of the Carretera to the north - the cool rainforests of Queulat and Pumalín - or there is more of Patagonia to explore to the south - along the Argentine side of the frontier or into Torres del Painem which sits beyond the icefields to the south.

Can't find what you're looking for?

Travel with Pura Aventura

Exceptional Holidays

Best in class holidays, service, characterful hotels, lovely locals, food and beautiful walks - that's what our clients tell us they love about our holidays, as noted in the highest possible 5* Feefo Platinum Award.

ATOL and ABTOT protected.

Certified B Corp

We are one of the first UK travel companies to be certified B Corp – regarded by The Independent as the premier sustainability certification, and described by Which? as "meeting the highest standards of social and environmental performance".

Award-winning Travel Positive

We are proud to have been recipients of awards from both Wanderlust and LUXLife for our sustainable Travel Positive initiative, that includes balancing carbon by 160%, and providing 1% of our profit to the planet.