Bicycling Patagonia's Lakes District

Bicycling Patagonia's Lakes District

Join us on our 7-day Bicycling Patagonia's Lakes District from Argentina to Chile tour where we will cycle paved roads across the Continental Divide in the Andes, from Argentina into Chile. At this latitude, the mountains are much gentler than the severe Peruvian and Ecuadoran landscapes that come to mind when you think of the Andes. Our route winds from the high plateau setting of San Carlos de Bariloche along Andean lakes, down through the valleys of the border region and into Chile's Lake District. Cycle past conical volcanoes and snow capped Andean peaks, and one of Chile's famous rushing rivers, and relax in the tranquil settings of our lovely hotels.

***Extend this bicycle tour by 3 days. Visit our Bicycling Patagonia's Lakes District Plus! the Island of Chiloé bicycle tour.***

Is cycling in South America for you? Check out our What to expect when Cycling in South America page.

Tour Dates & Prices

Date
Price
Private Room Fee
Note
Dec 12-18, 2020
USD$3695
USD$600
Solar Eclipse - Experience the "path of totality". Book Now and Save $200 per person
Feb 20-26, 2021
USD$3695
USD$600
Book Now and Save $200 per person

* We are happy to match solo travelers who would like to share a room with someone of the same gender. If no match exists, due to hotel pricing, we will charge 50% of the private room charge. This charge will be collected at the time of the final payment. If a roommate assignment is available it will be refunded at the conclusion of the tour.

Tour Style: Classic Book This Trip Now Hold-A-Space/Questions Request Custom Date Download Itinerary Tour Map
  • Trip At-A-Glance
  • Tour Summary
  • Daily Itinerary
  • Travel Information
  • Map
  • Reviews
Trip At-A-Glance

Trip At-A-Glance

  • Length / 7 Days
  • Total Distance / 302 km (188 miles)
  • Avg. Distance / 76 km (47 miles) per riding day
  • Tour Level & Tour Style / 3.5 Classic
  • Countries / Argentina, Chile
  • Begin/End / San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina / Puerto Varas, Chile
  • Price / From USD$3695
More Photos
Tour Summary

Tour Summary

  • Highlights
    Argentina and Chile's Lake District, Views of Osorno and Calbuco Volcanoes, Waterfalls on the Petrohué River, thermal pools, San Carlos de Bariloche. Puerto Varas

    Keep in Mind: We work hard to maintain consistency across all of our tours, but some trips have unique differences. Here are some things to keep in mind about this tour.

    Our bikes in Chile and Argentina feature aluminum frames. We do shuttle a number of times on this ride to avoid traffic or sections of rough roads. A/C or fans may not always be available since they haven't traditionally been needed.
  • Includes
    7 days, 6 nights accommodation; meals as noted in itinerary.

    Learn more about what is included and what to expect on your Classic tour at the Classic Tour Style page.
  • Arrive / Depart
    San Carlos de Bariloche (BRC) / Puerto Montt, Chile (PMC). San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina / Puerto Montt, Chile (PMC). There may be a reciprocity entry fee for entering Argentina through an international airport
  • Overall Tour Level
    3.5 difficulty level 3.5
  • Daily Ride Summary

    Day

    Distance/Gain
    mi/ftkm/m

    Terrain

    Day Level

    Notes

    1
    Other activity
    See Daily Itinerary for details
    2
    33km / 575m
    Hilly
    difficulty level 2.5
    3
    Hike day
    13km
    4
    87km / 1319m
    Mountainous
    difficulty level 5.0
    5
    123km / 982m
    Rolling hills
    difficulty level 4.0
    6
    61km / 328m
    Mostly flat
    difficulty level 1.5
    7
    Last day

Terrain Legend

Gentle Gentle

Rolling hills Rolling hills

Hilly Hilly

Very hilly Very hilly

Mountainous Mountainous

Daily Itinerary
Download Itinerary

DAY 1: Welcome to South America!

Highlights: Fit Bicycles, Welcome Dinner

We meet this afternoon at our hotel in San Carlos de Bariloche. We'll offer a transfer from the Bariloche Airport at 4:00 p.m. for those arriving today. This bustling mountain town is a year-round destination for outdoor enthusiast. We'll meet late this afternoon to fit bicycles. After the fitting we will go on a guided walk through Bariloche, and enjoy a welcome dinner together this evening.

DAY 2: Bariloche to Circuito Chico

Highlights: Bariloche, Cerro Campanario ski lift for panoramic view of the Andes, hotel spa

After a brief shuttle out of town we'll do a short test ride to make any necessary adjustments to your bike before heading out on our longer route. Tiny back roads lead us through forests and offer stunning views of Lago Nahuel Huapi and the Lago Perito Moreno. Our ride ends at the base of Cerro Campanario. Freshen up at the hotel and then take a short walk to the base of the ski area where we'll take the chairlifts up the mountain to enjoy a panoramic view of Bariloche - this is often called one of the top ten views in the world.

  • Distance: 33km (21mi)
  • Gain: 575m (1886ft)
  • Terrain: Hilly
  • Day Level: difficulty level 2.5
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
  • Lodging:

DAY 3: Villa La Angostura

Highlights: Hiking day, Lake Nahuel Huapi, Arrayanes National Park. December Departure: Eclipse day - path of totality!

Your day begins with a shuttle to Lake Nahuel Huapi. From there, you'll set sail on a ferry and view Bariloche's surrounding area from a different perspective as you float towards the Quetrihué Peninsula. Upon docking we'll walk a wooded path through Arrayanes National Park and some of the most pristine myrtle in South America. In the 1970's, this 300-year-old myrtle stand was awarded special protection under the Argentine government. Local legend has it that Walt Disney walked through this forest in the late 1930's and it inspired his choice for Bambi's cinnamon color as well as the film's setting. Our hike will take between 3 and 4 hours.

***December Departure: Your day begins with a shuttle (3.5-4 hours depending on traffic) to get into position for the total solar eclipse! After the eclipse we will shuttle (2 hrs) to Villa Angostura, on the shores of stunning Lake Nahuel Huapi.

DAY 4: Crossing into Chile

Highlights: Crossing the Andes, Cardenal Samore Pass, thermal spas

Today's ride is all about crossing the Andes! While Argentina and Chile share the same latitude, Argentina's dense and diverse vegetation is distinctly different from the lush green forests and farmlands of Chile. Prepare to be awestruck as you enjoy the incredible shift in landscape while pedaling from Lake Espejo over the Cardenal Samore Pass (4,311 feet) to our thermal resort at the Termas de Puyehue. We'll have a picnic lunch together before enjoying the downhill into Chile! Be sure to take advantage of the hotel's wonderful thermal pools before dinner together this evening.

  • Distance: 87km (54mi)
  • Gain: 1319m (4326ft)
  • Terrain: Mountainous
  • Day Level: difficulty level 5.0
  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 5: Termas de Puyehue to Petrohue

Highlights: Lake Llanquihue, views of Osorno and Calbuco volcanoes

You'll pedal around the east side of Lake Llanquihue today with stunning views of the snow-capped Osorno and Calbuco volcanoes. We'll stop for a picnic lunch and enjoy the tranquility as we pass quiet farmlands and small forests. Take the shuttle or bike the last 6 km of gravel to the hotel before relaxing at the edge one of Patagonia's beautiful lakes. Tonight we'll feast on a delicious home-cooked dinner together.

  • Distance: 123km (76mi)
  • Gain: 982m (3221ft)
  • Terrain: Rolling hills
  • Day Level: difficulty level 4.0
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 6: Puerto Varas

Highlights: Puerto Varas

Just after leaving our hotel, plan to visit the famous "Saltos de Petrohue," waterfalls. Continuing our ride around Lake Llanquihue we'll enjoy more great views of Osorno Volcano on our way to Puerto Varas, a small but bustling town with numerous craft stores and great walks along the lake. We have the inside scoop on Puerto Varas' best restaurant for dinner together this evening.

  • Distance: 61km (38mi)
  • Gain: 328m (1076ft)
  • Terrain: Mostly flat
  • Day Level: difficulty level 1.5
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 7: Puerto Varas

Highlights: Tour ends

Our tour ends after breakfast this morning. We'll offer a shuttle, or you can take a taxi to the airport in Puerto Montt which is less than a half-hour away for those who are flying home. If you need to return to Bariloche, we recommend transferring across Todos los Santos Lake. This trip has daily departures and the bus leaves just one hundred meters from our hotel! It is a beautiful and relaxing boat and bus trip and you'll arrive in Bariloche in time for a late dinner. Whatever your plans, buen viaje..

***Extend this bicycle tour by 3 days. Visit our Bicycling Patagonia's Lakes District Plus! the Island of Chilo? bicycle tour.***

  • Meals: Breakfast
Travel Information

Travel Information

Day 1: Arrival Information

Welcome to South America!

Meet your Tour Leaders and fellow travelers in the afternoon of Day 1 at the Day 1 hotel. Keep an eye out for a note at the front desk with more details.

Note: As you are planning, remember that the hotels listed in our itineraries are our primary hotels and are - in rare cases - subject to change. Before you make arrangements, check with us if your tour departure is guaranteed. If your tour departure is out further than 6 months, please also check with us as there might be slight changes to the itinerary.

The below information will help you plan your arrival. For more tips or other routes, you might like Rome2Rio. The fare and timing information listed below is approximate.

We recommend flying into the Bariloche Airport (BRC).

A Note on Flights: For this trip, we recommend booking international flights into Buenos Aires’ International Airport (EZE) and out of Santiago, Chile (SCL). This means that you’ll also need to purchase domestic tickets from Buenos Aires Domestic Airport (AEP) to Bariloche (BRC). For information on transferring between Buenos Aires’ international and domestic airports see our information here.

How to arrive at the Day 1 Hotel from Bariloche Airport:

  • Taxi, available just outside the airport exit (30-40 min, 450 to 560 pesos/US$12-15)
  • Pre-arranged private transfer, contact us for arrangements  (costs vary).

Day 7: Departure Information

Puerto Varas

The below information will help you plan your departure. For more tips or other routes, you might like Rome2Rio. The fare and timing information listed below is approximate.

We recommend flying out of the Puerto Montt Airport (PMC):

  • If you are departing the day the tour ends, join our complimentary ExperiencePlus! shuttle. You can book this with Tour Leaders while on tour. The transfer takes about 30 minutes and the shuttle arrives around 10:00 a.m.
  • If you are departing on your own, a taxi from the ending hotel to the Puerto Montt Airport costs around 30,000 pesos and takes around 30 minutes.

Puerto Montt Airport (PMC) has connections to Santiago, Chile (SCL), Buenos Aires International Airport (EZE), and Buenos Aires Domestic Airport (AEP) see LATAM

  • Connecting in Santiago, Chile: LATAM offers several 1.5 hour direct flights to Santiago.
  • Connecting in Buenos Aires: LATAM offers several flights daily to both Buenos Aires Airports - you may have to connect through Santiago). It is a 4.5 to 5.5 hour flight.
  • Most international flights from South America leave in the late evening, so it is possible to connect with an international flight the day the tour ends.

If you plan to travel some more and fly out of Bariloche, you can opt for a scenic day-long boat and bus ride. The boat departs Puerto Varas between 8 and 9 a.m. and arrives in Bariloche between 8:30 and 9:30 p.m. on the same day. Email us for arrangements.

  1. Free hotel shuttle from the hotel to the dock (10 min, complimentary)
  2. Boat and Bus connets through Puerto Varas to Bariloche (12 hours, USD 230-300/person)

Keep in Mind

We work hard to maintain consistency across all of our tours, but some trips have unique differences. Here are some things to keep in mind about this tour.

Our bikes in Chile and Argentina feature aluminum frames. We do shuttle a number of times on this ride to avoid traffic or sections of rough roads. A/C or fans may not always be available since they haven't traditionally been needed.

Pre-Trip Planning Checklist

To Do Today!

3–6 Months Prior to Departure

  • Reserve your flights after you know you have a confirmed tour departure. Please check with our office if you do not know if your trip is confirmed. As you make your plans refer to the Getting To and Away sent to you in your booking confirmation email it provides meeting times and the starting and ending hotels and shuttle information when applicable.
  • Book your pre and post-tour hotel nights. Please refer to the Getting To and Away sheet you received in your Reservation Confirmation Email.
  • 12 weeks before your tour begin your training program www.experienceplus.com/training.
  • Final payment is due 90 days prior to the tour start. Please refer to your Deposit Payment Invoice and the Final Payment Reminder e-mail you have received for detailed instructions.

6 Weeks–2 Weeks Prior to Departure

Day of Your Flight

Get as much sleep on the plane as you can. Pack your Getting To and Away information and one day of cycling gear in your carry-on. See you soon!

What to Expect on Tour

Classic Tour Style

Learn more about what is included and what to expect on your Classic tour at the Classic page.

Map

Map

Reviews

Reviews

  • How would you describe this tour to a friend? Beautiful views of mountains, lakes and volcanoes. Exposure to indigenous plants in national parks. Although daily distances are not long, the terrain is not flat.

    Carolyn H., Portland, OR - December 2018
  • Beautiful and challenging ride. Very amazing guides who worked well together. Most hotels were great and delicious food.

    Lynn H., University Place, WA
  • Amazing scenery, great food, great wines, very knowledgeable and helpful guides.

    Michael S., New York, NY
  • Exquisite.

    David H., Littleton, CO
  • The scenery was amazing. Hotels and meals were also amazing and our tour leaders were the best!!!

    Walter S., Westmeadows, Australia
  • This was my first cycle tour and it has set a very high benchmark. Beautiful scenery, informative and attentive tour guides, challenging but very rewarding rides. The luxury of not having to worry about a maps, directions when cycling is excellent (loved the chalk arrows) and it was lovely to arrive at each of the accommodations and our luggage was waiting for us in the room.

    Trina M., Gwellup, Australia
  • Spectacular scenery, excellent leaders, wonderful hotels. Most of the rides were truly breathtaking

    Samuel S., Asheville, NC
  • The guides were excellant--always available and helpful. It was a great biking as well as cultural experience!

    Diane W., Boulder, CO
  • Another fine ExperiencePlus! trip!

    Robin D., Oakland, CA
  • I would recommend the tour until I am blue in the face. We loved the cycling, we enjoyed the people we met, and we had such fun at the stops...

    Gillian Q., Vancouver, Canada
  • I have described this as the best vacation of my life.

    Toni H., Steamboat Springs
  • I had such a fantastic time on this tour. I think I can speak for my whole family when I say that this was my most favorite vacation of all time. I absolutely LOVED the hotels including the range and variety we got to stay in. Food was good, especially breakfast. Loved the empanadas as well. I felt like I really got to experience a great part of Patagonia and even the volcano was a good story. All pre-trip correspondence was so informational and very much helped me to prepare for the trip.

    Tiana E., Steamboat Springs, CO
  • An awesome tour. Best bike I have had on a tour (besides my own). I'll be back

    Patricia S., Alexandria, VA
  • Great bike, great guides, great people, great scenery, great experience.

    Justin L., San Francisco, CA
  • What was your favorite experience on this trip? The breathtaking scenery, the camaraderie of the folks in the group, the challenge of daily riding, the food and wine, the chance to see how another culture lives.

    Kathleen L., Springfield, VA
  • I have to say that this was the best vacation of my life! I loved the guides, the places we stayed, the people, the challenges of our first bike trip, and of course the family together (without any disagreements!)

    Toni H. Steamboat Springs, CO
  • What was your favorite experience on this trip? Hard to choose...stunning scenery, challenging climbs, helpful, supportive tour leaders. I also loved the garden luncheon, and enjoyed the farm tour.

    Julia V., Nottingham, NH
  • I enjoyed listening to our guides' regional stories, the scenery was magnificent crossing the Andes and the food was terrific in Chile.

    Lisa N., Pottersville, NJ
  • Thanks for a great ExperiencePlus!

    Jeff W., Fort Collins, CO
  • The trip was well organized: the guides were attentive, informative, helpful and fun to hang out with; the hotels were great; restaurants that were included or recommended by the guides were fabulous; bikes were in "new" condition; the other people on the trip were great travel companions. I would definitely recommend your company to anyone looking for a bike touring company and I hope to make it on another one of your trips some time.

    Jeff F., Cottekill, NY
  • Thanks so much for everything, I feel really blessed in having such nice tour leader all the time. And I'm in love with the Hotel Puelche in Puente Varras, archecturally it was interesting, the porportions and lay out, plus the food was goood.

    Barbara H.
    Lexington, MA
  • We just returned from the Argentina - Chile trip and wanted to let you know what a wonderful time we had. The tour leader did an outstanding job leading this inaugural journey and along with our Argentine guides made our ride fun and interesting. The Chiloé extension only added icing to the cake. What a beautiful island filled with very special people and gorgeous scenery. I would highly recommend to anyone going on the bicycle trip to not miss this added bonus. It is well worth the time and money.

    Larry and Corky B.
    Herkimer, NY
  • [What I liked most was] The biking and the treatment we received from the tour leaders. Especially the birthday cake they provided at the day-three dinner for my 61st birthday.

    James M.
    HI
  • [What I liked most was] the ride to Fruitallar. It was so beautiful and not much traffic.

    Whitney R,
    Fresno, CA
  • The tour leader was outstanding. She was most attentive to our needs and helped us have the best experiences ...

    William D.
    Goshin, CT
  • I've taken numerous bike tours with various companies and will say that ExperiencePlus! offers the best value for the money. Also, I find my fellow bikers in the ExperiencePlus! groups to be the easiest to get along with and among the nicest I've ever met while traveling - no whiners! Some of the more expensive bike tour companies tend to attract more high-maintenance travelers (who care more about the hotel and dressing up for dinner than the biking), meaning the focus of their trips will often stray from the biking and cultural experience. I like the fact that ExperiencePlus! will choose/recommend restaurants where the locals themselves dine.

    Charlene L.
    Jersey City, NJ
  • The guides were very good. Great trip.

    Thomas E.
    Houston, TX

Awards, Memberships and Reviews