Adventure Tourism Destinations
In a ceremony which took place recently in Bogota, Colombia, Chile was recognized as Latin America’s leading destination for adventure tourism. This is the first prize, in this category, that Chile has received from the contest, during the 22 years that it’s been running. Once the nominations had been defined by experts, the votes were then received directly from the general public.
Since 1993, the World Travel Awards has been highlighting excellence across the industry and awarding the very best with prizes, which is one of the reasons why it’s known as “The Oscars of Tourism”. What’s more, for the first time in history, Chile hosted the “Adventure Travel World Summit”, managed by the Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA); the most important guild for adventure travel in the world. The event, which took place this October in the city of Puerto Varas –with more than 700 participants from 60 countries-, featured the promotion of sustainable tourism as one of its principal objectives.
Discover some of the activities and places that Chile offers for living the experience on adventure tourism:
Ice-hike across Glacier Grey. As the summer season approaches in Chile’s extreme south, the number of outdoor activities increases, particularly those that take place close to the glacial zones. This excursion offers incredible views of Glacier Grey in the Torres del Paine National Park in the extreme south of Chile. The activity allows you to appreciate the magnitude of this huge slab of ice that forms part of the Southern Ice Field.
Cactus Valley Treking (The Atacama Desert). Another great landscape is that which offers the trek through Guatín, more commonly known as Cardones Ravine, which unfolds out onto the land where the Purifica and Puritama rivers meet. As its pseudonym suggests, its land is filled with an abundance of cacti, or cardones, many of which are 100 years old and around seven meters high. Among the most interesting places to visit at this ravine is the Guatín Canyon, an area where water sources descend and a variety of cacti is born.
Kayak along the route of the glaciers. Chile is the country with the largest surface area of glaciers in South America; an area around 22.000 km2 distributed across little more than 1.700 snowdrifts.
Sailing across this area of the Chilean Patagonia in kayak is the closest you can get to bringing history to life. It’s your chance to experience what it was like for native communities who made these water crossings thousands of years ago.
In the middle of the fjords and canals that make up the irregular geography, various routes have been converted into expeditions and they’re becoming more and more frequent: expeditions to the Jorge Montt Glacier, the Steffens Glacier and the San Rafael Glacier.
World-class waves in Punta de Lobos. Pichilemu is the destination with the broadest touristic offer for surfers in Chile. Six kilometers further south from Pichilemu you’ll find Punta de Lobos, which has converted itself into one of the most “happening” beaches in Chile. It’s here where the waves of Punta de Lobos are born, where every day you’ll see surfers from all over the world skimming across tons of salty water.
Puma Lodge and the best heliski in Sudamérica. In the middle of The Andes Mountain Range, within the city of Rancagua, between Los Cipreses Reserve and the Tinguiririca River, lies this lodge where you can take part in heliski across a surface area of 5.000 km2, with incredible slopes, summits, glaciers and cliffs.
From here you can enjoy descents which average around 1.500 meters, with the greatest ramps measuring 3.200 meters high and 16 kilometers long. There’s also a vast stretch of land suitable for beginners and covered in fresh snow.
Snowboard and ski in the mountains. Every winter, Chile prepares itself to receive tourists and snow-sports fans along its more than 3.000 kilometer-long mountain range.