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Cycling the Lake District of Chile & Argentina

Discover the beauty of the Andean Lake District on two wheels.



At a glance

* 12 nights hotels all en suite
* 9 days cycling with full vehicle support 
* 75% tarmac, 25% unpaved tracks
* Routes mainly follow quiet roads
* Group normally 5 to 16 plus local staff. Min age 16 yrs

Discover the beauty of the Andean Lake District on two wheels.

Discover a beautiful and fertile land at the northern gateway to Patagonia –
a magical landscape filled with active volcanoes, turquoise rivers, gigantic
lakes and ancient native forests. See Andean condors swooping down from the
foothills of the cordillera as we cycle on some of the most scenic paved
routes that South America has to offer. We’ll gain a cultural insight into
both Chile and Argentina, including the European influences and indigenous
customs that have shaped the region. Cross the Andes twice in spectacular
fashion on two wheels as part of an incredible ‘once in a lifetime’ journey!

https://www.exodustravels.com/sites/exod/files/node/itinerary/images/map_1.jpg?t=1DSvFf

Type: Land Only

Flight prices available from NeenanCycling. Contact us for details

What’s included

* All breakfasts, 9 lunches and 1 dinner included
* 13 nights hotels all en suite (12 for Land Only bookings)
* Tour leader throughout
* Airport transfers (if booking incl. flights)
* Local bike hire

Food:
All breakfasts, 9 lunches and 1 dinner included.

Hotel breakfasts are normally buffet-style, and lunches will either be at
convenient restaurant stops during our rides or packed lunches. There is a
variety of good quality food on offer in the hotels and local restaurants for
the evening meals that are not included in the price of the trip. Chile and
Argentina traditionally have a lot of meat dishes in their cuisine, however
vegetarians can be catered for throughout the trip. Please ensure that you
advise us of any dietary requirements before you travel so that we can make
the necessary arrangements on your behalf.

Start destination: Puerto Varas

End destination: Temuco

Cycling profile

Day 1

Travellers on our group flights will arrive to Puerto Montt airport today
after connecting in Santiago de Chile. There will be a group transfer from
the airport to our start hotel in the nearby town of Puerto Varas. For those
people who have booked Land Only and made their own travel arrangements, you
are welcome to meet the group transfer should you wish (and have informed us
in advance) otherwise the meeting point is at the start hotel in Puerto Varas
anytime in the afternoon/evening.

*Standard Hotel*

Day 2

Our Lake District cycling adventure starts off today in scenic fashion as we
navigate clockwise around the shore of Lago Llanquihue (the third biggest
lake in South America) and stretch our legs for the more challenging days
ahead. From the lakeside road we will enjoy spectacular views of the
volcanoes and the Andean mountain range that lie just to the east. Volcanoes
Osorno (2652m), Puntiagudo (2190m), Tronador (3451m), Puyehue (2240m) and
Calbuco (2015m) are all visible on a clear day. We’ll cycle to the
picturesque lakeside village of Frutillar, a German influenced settlement
which is home to the modern ‘Teatro del Lago’ theatre. The ride ends here and
after lunch we’ll transfer back to Puerto Varas. There will be the option
to cycle back via a different route for anyone that wants to clock a few more
miles today.

Today there is an opportunity to cycle an optional 32km.

*Standard Hotel*

Day 3

We follow the shoreline of Lago Llanquihue once more today but in an easterly
direction past Puerto Chico and Ensenada, straight towards the imposing
Calbuco and Osorno volcanoes. Gateway to the Andean Lakes, our journey from
here across the mountain range takes us in to more remote and spectacular
environments. We cycle onwards, following the banks of the emerald coloured
Rio Petrohue towards the ‘Saltos de Petrohue’ waterfalls. Upon reaching ‘Lago
Todos los Santos’ we are greeted by a beautiful setting and we’ll swap our
mode of transport in order to board a catamaran ferry. Cruising across the
lake is a wonderful and peaceful experience as we keep our eyes peeled for
Andean condors flying overhead (journey time approx. 1.5/2 hours). 

*Standard Hotel*

Day 4

After breakfast we start cycling towards the Argentinian border which
involves riding 20km with a steady incline before taking on a challenging
climb (approx. 700m over 7.5km) to reach the frontier. There is then a short
descent into Puerto Frias. Depending upon how the weather has been in the
proceeding days, the unpaved mountain roads can either be well compacted or
sometimes loose and dusty. The final leg of today’s iconic journey across
the Andes is a short ferry crossing on Lago Frias followed by a 3km ride to
your hotel in Puerto Blest.

*Standard Hotel*

Day 5

Puerto Blest is situated on the westernmost point of Lago Nahuel Huapi and
from here we board a catamaran to take us to Puerto Pañuelo. Instead of
cycling directly towards Bariloche, we will take a scenic route on a paved
road that loops around via Punto Panoramico to enjoy an awe-inspiring view of
the Argentinian Lake District. Linking up with the lakeside main road,
we’ll arrive to San Carlos de Bariloche, which will be our base for the
next two nights.

*Comfortable Hotel*

Day 6

After several days of travelling, today is a free day allowing a well-earned
chance to relax and take in the beautiful surroundings of the Lake District.
You may wish to take a look around the centre of Bariloche, a ski and
adventure sports hub with numerous chocolate shops. There are plenty of
adventurous activities available should you wish to indulge, such as guided
‘stand up rafting’ on Rio Limay, or the opportunity to independently trek
up to Refugio Frey and back again on the slopes of Cerro Catedral.

*Comfortable Hotel*

Day 7

After breakfast we’ll transfer for approx. 1.5 hours around the northern
edge of Lago Nahuel Huapi to bypass the busy Bariloche traffic and reach the
starting point for another spectacular cycling route. The ‘Camino de los
Siete Lagos’ (Seven Lakes Road) is an incredibly scenic route that winds its
way northwards past lakes and forests connecting the alpine towns of San
Carlos de Bariloche and San Martin de los Andes. Depending upon the exact
start point, today involves us riding a total distance of around 52km through
spectacular and rewarding landscapes. We will break the ride up with a
lunchtime picnic stop and should therefore arrive in San Martin de los Andes
in the afternoon. Entering in to the picturesque small town of San Martin
involves a wonderful approach along the shore of Lago Lacar. 

*Standard Hotel*

Day 8

After breakfast we will say goodbye to Argentina and cross back in to Chile
via the Huahum Pass. We start cycling up to Pirihueico Port, crossing the
Huilo Huilo Biological Reserve. We will make a stop for coffee and lunch at
the port. From here we will take a barge (boat) that will sail us to Port
Fuy, (approx 1.5hours). From here we will cycle to the village of Choshuenco.

*Standard Hotel*

Day 9

Today we start the day by cycling to Panguipulli Village. Here we wil have
lunch before a transfer Pucón Town (approx. 1 hour). We will stay in a
dowtown hotel, located by the feet of Villarrica Volcano (2840 m). 

*Standard Hotel*

Day 10

Today is at leisure for you to choose from doing organised activities or
having some time out. There are numerous nearby hot springs (termas) and spas
in this part of Chile meaning Pucon is the perfect place to soothe away any
bike-induced aches and pains! Your tour leader will be able to advise which
local agencies to use depending upon what you would like to do. There is also
a nice beach in Pucon just a short walk from the hotel, and there are lots of
restaurants and bars to choose from.

Should the local conditions permit then today is the perfect opportunity to
climb to the crater of a live volcano! Villarrica Volcano (2840m) is situated
just outside of the town and most recently erupted in March 2015. Obviously
this activity comes with its risks and so the local tour company will only
take groups if the conditions are totally safe. All equipment can be rented,
meaning that you only need to bring your own waterproof walking trousers. The
early morning ascent takes around 4 hours and involves wearing crampons to
cross a glacier before a memorable and unique descent after reaching the
crater (this isn’t for the faint hearted!). Depending upon the amount of
snow at the summit, the normal way of getting down the volcano is to sledge
down a specially crafted series of compacted snow and ice channels. This is a
special experience from start to finish, but should only be undertaken if
aware of the challenges.

If you wish to cycle today then of course you can take your bike out and the
tour leader will recommend some routes.

*Standard Hotel*

Day 11

Departing Pucon, we transfer northwards after breakfast to the town of Cunco.
From here the cycling starts with a 33km stretch of paved road towards
Conguillio National Park, stopping for lunch in Melipeuco. Shortly afterwards
is the turn off to enter the national park where the road eventually becomes
unpaved and dusty in places. From the entrance we will take a short walk to
the Truful Truful waterfall. Afterwards we will carry on cycling for 7km
until we reach our accommodation for the night.

The scenes that we encounter today are vastly different from the rest of the
tour. Clouds rise up from surrounding valleys and quickly change form whilst
passing over the volcanic lava. Llaima Volcano (3125m) dominates the skyline
and we spend the night in a remote and charming eco-lodge. The property
restricts energy use as part of its self-sufficiency, meaning that
electricity and hot water are not available during the night.

*Standard Hotel*

Day 12

It is our last day of cycling today as we continue riding further within
Conguillio N.P. and see several beautiful lagoons (Laguna Arco Iris, Laguna
Verde) and Conguillo Lake. We will also visit the parks interpretation centre
in order to find out about how the park was formed. (Please note that this
may not be possible as sometimes the centre is closed during our visit). We
will then walk for an hour through the native forest to see ancient
monkey-puzzle trees. Tonight will be the last evening all together with group
and staff, so it is the perfect opportunity for a last meal and drinks to
look back on what will have surely been a fantastic journey.

*Standard Hotel*

Day 13

Please note that today is a free day before your evening flight. After
breakfast you can enjoy a leisurely walk and enjoy the breath-taking views of
the Llaima Volcano. There is also many optional excursions you can book.
Please ask your tour leader, and they will help you arrange it. In the
afternoon you will be transferred to the Temuco airport for your evening
flight. Flight Inclusive bookings will fly to Santiago and spend tonight in a
hotel near the airport before departing on international flights tomorrow.
Land only bookings please note that the accommodation inside Conguillo
National Park is in a very remote location and not close to Temuco. Any post
tour arrangements should be made for the afternoon of this last day.

Prices & Dates

Date: 2017-12-172017-12-29

Trip code: MAP171217

Availability: Available

Trip status: Fully guaranteed

Price: €2705

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Date: 2018-01-142018-01-26

Trip code: MAP180114

Availability: Available

Trip status: Fully guaranteed

Price: €2725

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Date: 2018-02-042018-02-16

Trip code: MAP180204

Availability: Available

Trip status: Fully guaranteed

Price: €2835

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Date: 2018-02-252018-03-09

Trip code: MAP180225

Availability: Available

Trip status: Fully guaranteed

Price: €2835

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Date: 2018-03-182018-03-30

Trip code: MAP180318

Availability: Available

Trip status: Fully guaranteed

Price: €2835

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Date: 2018-10-212018-11-02

Trip code: MAP181021

Availability: Available

Price: €2835

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Date: 2018-11-042018-11-16

Trip code: MAP181104

Availability: Available

Trip status: Fully guaranteed

Price: €2855

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Date: 2018-11-182018-11-30

Trip code: MAP181118

Availability: Available

Price: €2855

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Date: 2018-12-162018-12-28

Trip code: MAP181216

Availability: Available

Trip status: Fully guaranteed

Price: €2855

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Date: 2019-01-132019-01-25

Trip code: MAP190113

Availability: Available

Price: €2915

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Date: 2019-02-032019-02-15

Trip code: MAP190203

Availability: Available

Price: €2915

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Date: 2019-02-242019-03-08

Trip code: MAP190224

Availability: Available

Price: €2915

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Date: 2019-03-172019-03-29

Trip code: MAP190317

Availability: Available

Price: €2915

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Date: 2019-10-062019-10-18

Trip code: MAP191006

Availability: Available

Price: €2915

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Date: 2019-10-202019-11-01

Trip code: MAP191020

Availability: Available

Price: €2915

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Date: 2019-11-032019-11-15

Trip code: MAP191103

Availability: Available

Price: €2915

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Date: 2019-11-172019-11-29

Trip code: MAP191117

Availability: Available

Price: €2915

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Date: 2019-12-222020-01-03

Trip code: MAP191222

Availability: Available

Price: €2915

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Customer Feedback

It would be hard to top this trip.

Summary:
This was my first Exodus bicycle trip and if the other are as good as this
one it will not be my last. The scenery was spectacular. Each day was a
different and new experience. This trip has it all; some moderately
challenging gravel, relaxing riding on tarmac winding between rugged peaks,
boat trips across beautiful lakes, good company, great food and drinks,
excellent well-maintained equipment, and helpful staff.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
There were so many inspirational moment on this trip is impossible to single
out one specifically. Cycling over the pass trough the Andes in the between
Peulla and Puerto Frias was an achievement for me with my limited mountain
biking experience. (I only fell off once!) Climbing the active Villarica
volcano was a once in a life time experience, particularly as there was a
small eruption while we looking into the crater.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
This trip covered a lot of territory through some fairly tough country. The
logistic for this trip were complex involving the coordination of boat and
bus transfer in two very separate countries. Yet the whole show ran like
clockwork. I was impressed. This was a very professionally run trip.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
IF you do not enjoy a salmon or fillet steak then this trip may change your
point of view. The Argentinian steal is sublime as is the Chilean salmon. I
recommend Tony’s Casa de Carne in Bariloche. I had the best steak I ever
tasted in my life at Tony’s steak house. (And I am an Australian!) Also, I
recommend the frappe at the Chocolate Museum in Bariloche as well. I suspect
my waste line would have expanded dramatically if I had stayed in Bariloche
longer than a couple of days!

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
You are exposed to the wild weather of the roaring forties from the Southern
Ocean in this region of the world. Be prepared for one or two days of solid
weather. (Wind and Rain).

Read full review

Absolutely wonderfull!!

Summary:
As Belgians it was our first experience with Exodus Travel but it was an
wonderfull experience. We absolutely loved the full trip, the magnificent
nature every day again, the nice atmosphere within the group, the local
guides who took good responsability.
The combination of both countries, lakes, volcanoes, mountains, vieuws all
over….the beauty just didn’t stop!
Very good bikes (as new!) with front suspension.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
Every day was a new and beautiful suprise.
The possibility of climbing an active volcano with some members of our group
was unique, very special!

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Thank you to all the guides and organisation.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Just enjoy!!

Read full review

Cycling the Lake District of Chile & Argentina

Summary:
A great tour around the lakes of Chile and Argentina. The itinerary over the
Andes and over the lakes via boats is fantastic. Great food and scenery.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
The day cycling over the Andes. It was a tough climb but very rewarding!!!
Cycling in Conguillio National Park was also fantastic and a contrasting
landscape to all other days – stunning!

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
The leader and his assistants were a great team, and worked well together.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Pack clothing for cool and wet weather. The first week was cold and wet, and
I wish I had packed more clothes suitable for cooler weather both on and off
the bike (think of what you’re wear when cycling in November in London). The
second week was warm and sunny, so save your shorts and t-shirts for that
week. Make full use of the local launderettes in Bariloche and Pucon…costs
only a few pounds for a bag of dirty clothes washed and dried in under 24
hours. Also, a number of people on the group flights missed their connecting
flights and had their baggage go missing which was understandably very
stressful. The main cause was due to short connections between flights (e.g.
2 hours in Madrid). Ensure you have lots of time for flight connections; we
booked our own flights and allowed 3.5 hours in Madrid which worked ok.
Packing some cycling gear in your hand luggage is also a good idea as the
cycle clothing options are limited in Puerto Varas and surrounding areas.

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
Enjoy the steaks and Malbec!

Read full review

Cycling in Chile and Argentina

Summary:
The trip was very well organised, the bikes were all brand new and the
guides, Taiel and Jeronimo, always did their utmost to ensure that the
holiday ran smoothly. The scenery was spectacular with some very impressive
views of snow capped volcanos and lakes. We had a bit of rain at the
beginning of the holiday but from day 3 onwards the weather was great. The
gravelly tracks provided me with an interesting challenge from time to time
and there was plenty of opportunity to enjoy the scenery along long stretches
of Tarmac. A fantastic and memorable holiday.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
I particularly enjoyed the Asado (Argentinian barbecue) at San Martin,
prepared by Jeronimo the Asador. It gave us a excellent opportunity to mix
with the other travellers and guides over some lovely food and wine.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
The group leaders, Taiel and Jeronimo, both did their utmost to ensure that
the holiday ran smoothly and that we all had a really good and memorable
experience. They always listened carefully to any comments and/or
recommendations and responded to them to ensure maximum satisfaction.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
It is worth learning a few words of Spanish as, unlike in Europe, relatively
few of the locals speak English. That said, usually Taiel of Jeronimo were
close at hand and able to assist.

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
A minor improvement to the schedule would be not to spend a complete day in
The working city of Temuco. We could possibly have had a extra day in Pucon
with the wide variety of activities on offer there or perhaps we could have
spent the night at Melipeuco before driving to the airport at Temuco the
following afternoon in plenty of time for the flight to Santiago.

Read full review

Cycle the Lake District of Chile and Argentina

Summary:
Having personally completed over 8 Exodus cycling trips, this one to the
Patagonia region of Chile and Argentina rates as one of the best – a fabulous
route through stunning scenery of snow capped mountains, volcanoes with lava
fields and vast lakes. Highly recommended

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
Cycling over the Andes mountain pass between Chile and Argentina, with the
later visit to the Conguillio National Park and the Eco-lodge

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
They were all great – thank you to the local team Marcello, Taiel & Jero

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Most days had good weather, but you should also pack proper rain proof gear,
as the weather can be erratic

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
All cycle days of this itinerary can be fully enjoyed by everybody who has a
basic level of biking skill and a reasonable average level of fitness – If
you like cycling holidays, great adventure and visiting fascinating places,
you must do this well organized trip

Read full review

John

Summary:
A fantastic cycling trip to the Lake District of Chile and Argentina. An
expertly organized adventure, with fantastic bike rides and breathtaking
scenery. A ‘must do’ trip – between my wife and I, we have done over 12
Exodus cycling holidays and this one rates as the best. A well thought out
route, professionally managed and a never to be forgotten experience. A
special thanks go to the local operator of BikeWay and Marcello, with guides
Taiel and Jero, who all made this tip so memorable

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
Cycling over the Andes, with the views of the snow capped volcanoes and lakes

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Knowable and professional, who always went beyond what was expected or
required

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Be prepared for the sometimes sudden changeable weather – check on the
weather conditions for the time of your trip and insure you take all the
clothing options with you, to enjoy every day of the cycling

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
A highly recommended trip – a definite add to the ‘bucket list’ of a must do
cycling holiday

Read full review


Activity Levels


Activity Levels range from Leisurely to Tough, the grading takes into account the daily cycling distances and terrain, as well as any technical riding skill required. We also consider the number of cycling days as there can be a cumulative affect from tiredness on a longer trip and the type of accommodation used, as this can also influence your day to day recovery.

If you are in any doubt, please give us a call on +353-1-607 9900 or email us.


Activity level 1 - Leisurely Activity level 1: Leisurely

If you can ride a bike and enjoy gentle exercise, these are an ideal introduction to a cycling holiday. No routes are entirely flat, so expect some short climbs and descents. Maximum daily height gain is approximately 250 metres and daily distances rarely exceed 50kms (32 miles), any longer days are often optional.


Activity level 3 - Moderate Activity level 3: Moderate

Most people who enjoy a weekend riding at home will enjoy a Moderate trip. You need to be in good health and reasonably fit. Ideal for occasional cyclists, or as a more relaxed trip for fitter riders. Moderate off-road trips require no previous experience. Distances rarely exceed 70kms (43 miles) per day.


Activity level 5 - Challenging Activity level 5: Challenging

For any ride at this level, fitness is important. Challenging trips require confidence in your ability and physical condition. They are equivalent to an extended period of cycling at home. Previous mountain biking experience is essential for Challenging off road trips as they will involve some technical riding.


Activity level 7 - Tough Activity level 7: Tough

Previous experience of the cycling style or surface is a must as these routes have long cycling days and tougher terrain on both road and off road trips. You need complete confidence in your fitness and technical ability to cope with difficult or steep terrain, rough surfaces and longer distances. Ideal for those seeking a challenge!


Split grades

In order to provide more accuracy, where a trip falls between two grades we use an intermediate or ‘split’ grade, for example 2: Leisurely/Moderate.


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