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Autumn in El Calafate, a dazzling explosion of colors

Los Glaciares National Park, in the southern Argentine Patagonia, gives many unforgettable experiences to its visitors. In this opportunity, our local expert Sebastián Southwell, traveled to this amazing destination and in this article he shares his unforgettable experience.

I had the opportunity to travel to one of the most beautiful places in the region of Patagonia: El Calafate. After flying for about 3 hours from the city of Buenos Aires, I arrived in the city of El Calafate, where most facilities are located, and therefore a very convenient place to settle while exploring the surrounding attractions:

Glaciarum Interpretive Centre. An interesting place to visit barely at arrival or just before leaving. Merely 15 minutes from the city center, Glaciarium is one of the few glaciological interpretative centers in the world, devoted to the Patagonian Icefield and its glaciers. Here visitors may also make a historical tour to learn about the history of the national park. And before leaving, a short stop at the GlacioBar for the amusing experience of having a delicious drink at a bar where everything is made of ice (glasses, tables, couches).

El Chaltén, the National Capital of Trekking. This small town located about two and a half hours away from El Calafate exhibits a beautiful and wide palette of reds during autumn. Driving by the Argentino and Viedma lakes, as we approached we began to glimpse the mountain peaks of curious shapes that distinguish the destination. At all times, landscapes invite visitors to make self-guided walks (available for different levels). Once at the destination, the rain seemed to make impossible the continuity of the journey, but after a stop at the national park information center, there was a twist on the scene: we followed by a few kilometers of gravel road and a short walk inside the colorful forest and we reached Chorrillo del Salto, an unforgettable waterfall. And after that, following the way for other 35 kilometers through the dense forest and waterfalls, I manage to fulfill one of my dreams: to know the mysterious Lago del Desierto.

Lago del Desierto Waterfall

Rivers of Ice. One of the unavoidable tours among the national park, turned out to be much more than incredible! A 5-hour navigation that sails along stunning turquoise waters visiting the most beautiful corners of Argentino Lake. It departs from Puerto Bandera, about 50 kilometers away from the city of El Calafate. During the navigation we enjoyed the view of incredible landscapes, from which two wonderful experiences came out: 1. the majesty of the Upsala Glacier that seemed to be guarded by bright and intense blue huge ice floes; 2. the Spegazzini Glacier, pulled apart in a corner of the lake, which we reached after navigating between mountains covered by dense forests and partialy hidden by mysterious low clouds. At Spegazzini, two condors crowned the greatness of the place by overflying our vessel.

Calafate

Perito Moreno Glacier. Leaving the most important attraction of the national park for the end was our greatest success. After riding for 80 kilometers by the yellowish plateau, the turquoise waters of the lake and the redish tones of the forest, the unforgettable natural wonder began flourishing among the curves of the road. The Perito Moreno Glacier is famous for being one of the few glaciers in the world that continues to advance, rather than retreat. A modern system of footbridges allows visitors to contemplate its greatness.from just a few meters away. Each step forward implies a different perspective and allows the visitor to get closer and closer. It is impossible not to stare and be surprised when huge blocks of ice rush into the water. My advice is that you close your eyes for a couple of minutes and enjoy of its trembling sound as well.

Perito Moreno

The major number of visitors arrive in El Calafate during the summer months, avoiding the cold and the rain, but you must know that each season offers amazing landscapes that is worth seeing. For all that I have shared in this article, my experience during autumn turned out really magical and unforgettable, reason why I definetly recommend it.

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