Skip to Content

The Best El Chalten Hikes (Complete Overview for Every Trail)

The Best El Chalten Hikes (Complete Overview for Every Trail)

Located in Los Glaciares National Park of Argentina, El Chalten is known to be the hiking center of Patagonia. There are plenty of El Chalten hikes to choose from during a visit. Everything from easy 2-hour hikes to longer multi day treks, El Chalten offers it all and more.

The purpose of this guide is to go through all of the various hiking opportunities that El Chalten has to offer. In addition to the hikes themselves, you will find plenty of helpful information about logistics, weather, gear, and more.

Hope you enjoy reading through and learning more about what El Chalten trekking is all about.

Affiliate Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission if you make a purchase through the links provided, at no additional cost to you. Thanks for supporting the work I put into TripTins!

1) El Chalten Summary

When I visited Patagonia, I knew I wanted to spend ample time in El Chalten to take advantage of its various hiking opportunities.

I ended up staying 10 days in El Chalten, with around 7 of those days spent hiking (and the remainder being affected by weather – more on that later).

Since El Chalten was essentially built to cater to hikers, everything about the town made it super convenient when it came to hitting the trails. Gear shops, hotels, restaurants, & more, are just minutes away from some of the best trailheads in Patagonia.

There are many highlights to list out about the mountains & hikes around El Chalten (which I will be talking all about in this guide). However, just some of these highlights include:

  • The Fitz Roy mountain range, which can be seen from town & on numerous hikes
  • Cerro Torre & its surrounding needle peaks
  • Stunning lakes such as Laguna de Los Tres, Laguna Torre, and Laguna Capri
  • Views of the Rio De Las Vueltas river flowing next to town
  • The opportunity to see the Southern Patagonian Ice Fields
  • Plus, plenty more beautiful rivers, glaciers, lakes, valleys & landscape

Note: while there are some truly iconic peaks around El Chalten, most of these summits are for professional climbers. This is a hiking guide geared towards the everyday hiking trails, not the mountaineering/climbing routes. So, while you will certainly enjoy seeing these mountains throughout your hikes, you will not actually be summiting them.

The remainder of this guide will talk through many important topics you will want to consider when it comes to hiking in El Chalten.

El Chalten Trekking

2) Hiking Map

Now that you have some solid background about El Chalten & Patagonia in general, let’s dive into the hiking trails of the area. To start off, I included a map that shows the routes of all the main trails in El Chalten.

Main Hiking Trails

This is a list of the main hiking trails in El Chalten that are shown on the map. You can find each one highlighted with a different color to better understand where each one is located.

Laguna de Los Tres (Fitz Roy)
Laguna Torre (Cerro Torre)
Loma del Pliegue Tumbado
Mirador de Los Condores & Mirador Las Aguilas
Chorillo del Salto
Huemul Circuit

Additional Hikes (part of trails mentioned above)

The below hikes can be completed by those that don’t want to take part of the full trails mentioned above. Instead, trekkers have the option to just hike a portion of those trails and still enjoy some great highlights.

Laguna Capri (Laguna de Los Tres)
Mirador Cascada Margarita & Mirador Cerro Torre (Laguna Torre)
Paso del Viento (Huemul Circuit)

Note: there are additional trails I will mention that are further outside of El Chalten, and not shown on the map below.

3) El Chalten Day Hikes

The first section of hikes I will talk through are your standard day hikes around El Chalten. In the following sections, I will talk about shorter hikes and multi day hiking opportunities as well.

Laguna de Los Tres (Fitz Roy)

Trailhead Coordinates: 49°19’17.9″S 72°53’39.6″W
Distance: 21 km / 13 miles
Elevation Gain: +1,103 meters / +3,620 feet
Duration: 7-10 Hours
Learn More: Laguna de Los Tres Hike

We may as well start with the most well known hike in El Chalten – Laguna de Los Tres. The Laguna de Los Tres trail begins at the far end of town, and heads up to a beautiful lake at the base of the Fitz Roy mountain range.

Throughout the hike and at the lake itself, you will be able to enjoy some beautiful views of this world famous mountain range.

After leaving the trailhead behind, the trail gains elevation through the forest before arriving at a vast viewpoint overlooking the Rio de Las Vueltas. Here you can see the blue glacier river winding its way through the valley.

Continuing further along the trail, you will soon be welcomed to the Fitz Roy mountain range (most famously at the Mirador del Fitz Roy).

While the hike continues in and out of the forest, you should consistently get beautiful views of Fitz Roy as you get closer and closer to the lake itself.

After making it past the camping area, the trail then begins to gain elevation at a steep rate along some tricky terrain. This is by far the toughest part of the hike, and it will take you around an hour or so to complete it.

However, once you are up and over this section, you will then be welcomed to the lake itself. Enjoy your time by the lakeside and along the elevated ridge.

Be sure to also check out a secondary viewpoint on the left hand side of the lake. Here you will also get a view of Laguna Sucia, another beautiful lake.

On the way down from Laguna de Los Tres, be sure to take the trail to Laguna Capri, where you can enjoy one last relaxation area before heading back down to the trailhead.

Fitz Roy and Laguna de Los Tres
Laguna de Los Tres Fitz Roy
Laguna de Los Tres View

Hiking Notes

→ You can add on the Piedras Blancas Glacier viewpoint viewpoint to the trail as well. This will be an additional +4 km / +2.5 miles out and back route.

→ Instead of starting in El Chalten and having an out and back route, you can also make this a one way route. If you take transport to El Pilar (30 minute drive), you can start the hike from there, visit the Piedras Blancas Glacier viewpoint along the way, head to Laguna de Los Tres, and then back down to the El Chalten trailhead.

Piedras Blancas Glacier View

Laguna Torre (Cerro Torre)

Trailhead Coordinates: 49°19’52.1″S 72°53’42.8″W
Distance: 17.7 km / 11.0 miles
Elevation Gain: +480 meters / +1,580 feet
Duration: 6 – 8 hours
Learn More: Laguna Torre Hike

The other famous lake hike in El Chalten is the one that heads to Laguna Torre. Now, instead of seeing Fitz Roy throughout this hike, you will get to see the Cerro Torre mountain range (although you will see Fitz Roy too at times).

This hike is a much easier hike than Laguna de Los Tres as it doesn’t have those steep incline sections and is shorter in general.

The trailhead is right behind the town center, as it gains some elevation towards a couple different viewpoint areas – Mirador Cascada Margarita & Mirador Cerro Torre.

After enjoying those views, continue along the trail, where Cerro Torre and its surrounding peaks will consistently be in view. the route heads in and out of the forest at times, where you can enjoy some shade and the surrounding greenery.

Soon enough you will reach the De Agostini campsite, before one last push up to Laguna Torre. Enjoy the lakeside with the icebergs floating in the water and the glaciers and mountains out in the distance.

Laguna Torre Route
Cerro Torre Views
Laguna Torre Lake

If you are up for it, head on the moraine wall on the right hand side of the lake towards the Mirador Maestri .

While this will add +4.2 km / +2.6 miles | +170 meters / +560 feet elevation gain, you will get some great elevated views of the lake, the mountain range and the Torre Glacier.

It is then right back around to where you came from to end your time on the Laguna Torre trail.

Mirador Maestri

Loma del Pliegue Tumbado

Trailhead Coordinates: El Chalten APN Visitor Center
Distance: 17.1 km / 10.6 miles
Elevation Gain: 905 meters / 2,970 feet
Duration: 6 – 8 Hours
Learn More: Loma del Pliegue Tumbado

The third main longer day hike in El Chalten is Loma del Pliegue Tumbado. While the previous two hikes take you to lakes at the base of the mountain ranges, this hike takes you up to a viewpoint overlooking the region.

When it comes to viewpoints in El Chalten, it wont get much better than what Loma del Pliegue Tumbado has to offer.

Starting from the trailhead at the APN Visitor Center, the trail is essentially a continuous incline until the final viewpoint area.

You will gain elevation with Fitz Roy and its surrounding peaks in view as you head into and out of some forested areas.

During the second half of the hike, the trail becomes more open as you continuously head further up the mountain and have better and better views on the way up.

Slowly but surely, you will then reach the lookout area, where you will have views of Fitz Roy, Cerro Torre, Laguna Torre, and plenty more of the surrounding Patagonia peaks.

Loma del Pliegue Tumbado Fitz Roy
Loma del Pliegue Tumbado Terrain
Loma del Pliegue Tumbado Panorama

Optional Add On: although the final viewpoint is quite special, there is an option to ascend another 0.8 km / 0.5 miles & +230 meters / +750 feet to the top of the mountain. From up top you will get even vaster views including views in the opposite direction.

After finishing up at the viewpoints, it is right back down the trail the same way you came up.

Loma del Pliegue Tumbado Summit Views

4) Short Hikes

Next up are a few short hiking opportunities to take part of that can be completed in a half day or less.

These are great options for those that just want a taste of the El Chalten hikes or for those that want to gear up for those longer hikes.

Note: some of these hikes are part of the longer hikes mentioned above. So, if you don’t want to take part of those full day hikes, these can be great options for you.

Laguna Capri

Trailhead Coordinates: 49°19’17.9″S 72°53’39.6″W
Distance: 7.9 km / 4.9 miles
Elevation Gain: 400 meters / 1,325 feet
Duration: 3 – 4 Hours
Learn More: See “Laguna de Los Tres” above

First up is the hike up to Laguna Capri. This may sound familiar since I mentioned it earlier on when going through the Laguna de Los Tres hike.

Instead of taking part of the full route, you have the option to just hike 8 km / 5 miles round trip to Laguna Capri. While there is some elevation gain here, you will be avoiding the majority of the elevation that is part of the longer hike.

At Laguna Capri, you will find a campground, a beautiful lakeside, and views of the Fitz Roy mountain range.

Hiking Tip: instead of just going to Laguna Capri, you will be able to do a partial loop instead. The map above shows this, but first head up to the Mirador de Fitz Roy, where you will get vast views of the mountain range, before looping around to Laguna Capri on the way back.

Laguna Capri El Chalten

Mirador de Los Condores & Mirador Las Aguilas

Trailhead Coordinates: APN Visitor Center
Learn More: Mirador de Los Condores & Mirador Las Aguilas

Mirador de Los Condores Only

Hike Length: 2.6 km / 1.6 miles
Elevation Gain: 130 meters / 425 feet
Duration: 1 Hour
Trail Type: Out & Back

Mirador de Los Condores & Mirador Las Aguilas

Hike Length: 4.8 km / 3.0 miles
Elevation Gain: 220 meters / 725 feet
Duration: 2 Hours
Trail Type: Loop

The Mirador de Los Condores & Mirador Las Aguilas trail offers two viewpoints that will give hikers views of the El Chalten town with the Patagonian mountains as a backdrop.

There are two options here – you can either just head on the out and back route to Mirador de Los Condores, or you can do a loop trail that includes Mirador Las Aguilas as well.

The trail also starts at the APN Visitor Center, and is a comfortable stroll up alongside the hillside. While it does gain some elevation, it will only last around 30 minutes or so until you reach that first viewpoint area.

At Mirador de Los Condores, you can sit back and enjoy the views of El Chalten, the Rio de Las Vueltas river, and the mountains all around.

It is then up to you if you would like to continue the loop to the second viewpoint. From there you will get similar views in addition to views of Viedma Lake in the opposite direction.

This is a great hike for those that want to get out for sunrise or sunset as the sky changes colors over El Chalten. Since it is a shorter hike up to the viewpoints, you won’t need to spend that long in the dark hiking there or back.

Mirador de Los Condores & Mirador Las Aguilas Trail
El Chalten Town Mirador de Los Condores
Fitz Roy Mirador de Los Condores & Mirador Las Aguilas

Chorillo del Salto

Trailhead Coordinates: 49°19’17.9″S 72°53’39.6″W
Distance: 7.4 km / 4.6 miles
Elevation Gain: 140 meters / 460 feet
Duration: 2 Hours

Instead of heading to a lake or to a viewpoint, the Chorillo del Salto hike will take you to a waterfall along the Rio del Vueltas river.

If you are looking for an easy hike with limited elevation gain, this is going to be your best bet.

Sharing the same initial trailhead (and trail for a bit) of Laguna de Los Tres, the route will soon veer off to the right as you hike along Route 41.

After walking the path for a little while, the trail will meet up at the more official Chorillo del Salto trailhead that is located on Route 41. From there it is just another 15 minutes or so until you reach the waterfall.

You could cut out some hiking time if you had a car or got a ride from town to the secondary trailhead. However, even from the El Chalten trailhead, it is a pretty easy hike all said and done.

Mirador Cascada Margarita & Mirador Cerro Torre

Trailhead Coordinates: 49°19’52.1″S 72°53’42.8″W
Distance: 5.5 km / 3.4 miles 
Elevation Gain: 240 meters / 800 feet
Duration: 2 Hours
Learn More: See “Laguna Torre” above

The last short hike I will mention here is the trail up to the Mirador Cascada Margarita and Mirador Cerro Torre viewpoints that are part of the Laguna Torre hike.

While there is a bit of elevation gain to get to these viewpoints, they are the most accessible viewpoints to get a great view of the Cerro Torre and Fitz Roy mountain ranges.

So, whether you are short on time or just want a shorter hiking opportunity, this could be a great option for your time in El Chalten.

Mirador Cerro Torre

5) Multi Day Hikes

Spending a day out on the trail is not your only option when it comes to El Chalten hikes. You also have trails that can last anywhere 2-4 days (or even more!).

Below are some of the top options out there when it comes to accessible multi day hiking.

Huemul Circuit

Trailhead Coordinates: APN Visitor Center
Distance: 38.1 miles /  61.3 km
Elevation Gain: 7,885 feet /  2,403 meters
Duration: 4 days / 3 nights
Learn More: Huemul Circuit

The Huemul Circuit may very well be the best multi day hike in Patagonia (yes, even better the the W or O treks of Torres del Paine).

The circuit is a 4 day / 3 night route that takes you south of El Chalten as you circle Cerro Huemul.

Along the way you will head over two mountain passes (Paso del Viento & Paso Huemul), cross the Rio Tunel river by zipline (twice!), wake up to a glacier lagoon sunrise at Lago Viedma, glacier hike along Glaciar Rio Tunel Inferior, and get views of the Southern Patagonian Ice Fields.

It really wont get much better than this when it comes to multi day hiking experiences in El Chalten (and the rest of the world for that matter).

Since this a multi day, off the beaten path type of trail, you will need to come adequately prepared. This means you will need to have the appropriate experience and all the essential Humuel Circuit gear on your back.

The hiking guide linked above goes through every detail about this experience. Feel free to read it through to gain a much better understanding of what it is all about.

Huemul Circuit Packing List Overview
Huemul Circuit Gear Rental
Toro Valley Huemul

Paso del Viento

Trailhead Coordinates: APN Visitor Center
Distance: 45 km / 28 Miles
Elevation Gain: 2,160 meters / 7,100 feet
Duration: 2 days / 1 night
Learn More: See “Huemul Circuit” above

Paso del Viento is the mountain pass on day 2 of the Huemul Circuit. From here you will get those views of the Southern Patagonian Ice Fields.

For those people who don’t have time for a 4 day hike, you can alternatively take part of a 2 day hike instead. Although it is just 2 days, you will have a pretty substantial hike back on day 2 (~10 hours altogether).

Day 1 will take you to the Laguna Toro campsite (same as day 1 on the normal route). Now, instead of packing up and continuing the loop, you can simply take a daypack with you and make the hike up to Paso del Viento on day 2.

Once you are all finished up top, head back down the campsite, pack up your things, and head back to the trailhead.

While it is a longer day, this will still give you some of the best experiences you can ask for when it comes to the Huemul Circuit.

Southern Pataognian Icefields

Laguna de Los Tres & Laguna Torre Combo

If you want to take part of both the Laguna de Los Tres & Laguna Torre trails, you do have the option to combine them into one hike.

This can be done either as a two day or three day route depending on how much hiking you want to do on a daily basis.

Below are two different options to choose from that could work:

2 Day Option – Laguna de Los Tres & Laguna Torre

Day 1: Hike from Laguna de Los Tres trailhead to Laguna de Los Tres, and stay overnight at Poincenot campsite
Day 2: Hike to Laguna Torre and return to Laguna Torre trailhead
→ You can book this as a guided tour option as well

3 Day Option – Laguna de Los Tres & Laguna Torre

Day 1: Hike from Laguna de Los Tres trailhead to Poincenot campsite
Day 2: Hike to Laguna de Los Tres for sunrise & return to De Agostini campsite
Day 3: Hike to Laguna Torre and return to Laguna Torre trailhead

Those are just three of the options out there, but there are certainly other overnight possibilities to consider as well.

Mirador Fitz Roy

Souther Patagonian Ice Fields Hike

Here is where things can get very interesting. Instead of just viewing the Ice Fields from afar during the Huemul Circuit, you can instead actually partake on a hike that venture over the Ice Fields.

Due to the complexity and dangerous nature of this hike, a hired guide is essential. Expect to spend 5-6 days hiking to, on and around the Ice Fields as you head to some of the most remote trails in the region.

Viedma Glacier and Southern Patagonia Icefields

6) Hikes Outside of El Chalten

All of the hikes mentioned above have trailheads located within a ~15 minute walk from the town center of El Chalten.

However, there are hiking trails located outside of El Chalten as well (transport needed). While I did not take part of these trails, you may want to consider to switch things up a bit.

An hour north of El Chalten you will find Lago Del Desierto. Between El Chalten and the lake, you will find several more hiking opportunities to take part of. 

These trails are bound to be less frequented than most of the others on this list since they do require transport to get there. If you have more time, or you just want to get off the beaten path, then feel free to check out some of the below options.

  • Piedra del Fraile: 8 hours
  • Laguna Azul & Verde: 2 hours
  • Laguna del Diablo: 6 hours
  • Loma del Diablo: 8 hours
  • Glaciar Huemul: 2 hours
El Chalten Hiking Map

7) How to Get to El Chalten

El Chalten is a small town within the Los Glaciares National Park of Patagonian Argentina.

Surrounding the town, you will find some of the most beautiful peaks, lakes & views in Patagonia. Since El Chalten was essentially built to cater to the surrounding landscape, you will be able to walk right from town to the various trailheads.

There are two main ways to get yourself to El Chalten – either by bus or by rental car.


Since El Chalten does not have an airport, you most likely will be coming in by bus from El Calafate (home to the closest airport and the famous Perito Moreno Glacier).

You can reach El Calafate by plane from major cities like Buenos Aires. The bus ride from El Calafate is relatively quick, taking around 3 hours between the two towns.

There are multiple busses a day, serviced by several companies. Feel free to look through Busbud to see options across many of the companies.

Some of these busses stop at both the bus terminal and the airport. You can take a look on the site for the latest schedules and fares for your journey,

A one way ticket will cost somewhere around $20-$25 USD. 

Rental Car

Renting a car in Patagonia is also a great option for those that want more flexibility. You can make more of a road trip out of it, visiting several places all along the way (such as heading to Torres del Paine or all the way down to Ushuaia).

Depending on where you plan on going, some of the drives may be quite long. However, you will be surrounded by some stunning natural landscapes all around, making the drive a highlight within itself.

Feel free to take a look at that has options across several different car rental companies.

How Do You Get Around El Chalten

One of the best parts about El Chalten, is that you really don’t need transportation to get around. From one side of town to other, El Chalten stretches just 2 km / 1.2 miles in length.

So, odds are you really will be able to walk anywhere in between. Restaurant, gear stores, trailheads, and more will be right there for you.

I should note that there are some less frequented hiking trails outside of El Chalten as well. If you want to get further outside of the main area, then you will need transport to get you there. Taxis or tour companies should do the trick for those situations.

El Chalten Argentina

8) Where to Stay

El Chalten is home to many different hotels and lodges for visitors. These hotels will sell out during peak season, so be sure to book your accommodation as soon as you know your dates.

Below are some of my top recommendations based on budget for your trip to El Chalten:

Note: El Chalten receives its WiFi connection via a radio connection from El Calafate. This means that you should not expect strong WiFi for most of your visit. Phone signals did not work as well, so be prepared to have limited access to Internet during your time there (and be sure to download or another offline navigation app).

El Chalten Camping

If hotels are not for you, you also have the chance to camp in El Chalten. This can be done by camping in El Chalten itself or camping along one of the hiking trails. Below are some of the campsites to choose from:

In El Chalten

→ La Torcida
→ El Refugio
→ El Relincho

On the Trail

→ Poincenot Campsite (Laguna de Los Tres)
→ De Agostini Campsite (Laguna Torre)
→ Laguna Capri Campsite (Laguna de Los Tres)

For those campsites in town, you will need to reserve and pay for the sites. However, those campsites on the trail are free of charge and don’t require reservations.

Poincenot Camp

Learn More: Check out this Patagonia Itinerary that can better help you put together a complete trip to the region, including El Chalten.

9) When to Visit

In order to take advantage of the hiking opportunities around El Chalten, it is best to visit during the long summer days of the southern hemisphere. This would mean a visit during the December to March time period.

While the weather can always be unpredictable (yes, it can even snow in the summer), these months will give you the best chance of calmer weather & longer days to take part of hikes.

I ended up visiting in the end of January / beginning of February and had all sorts of weather. But at the end of the day, the times I did go out hiking, it was in very comfortable conditions.

Expect temperatures in the summer to peak in the high 50’s to low 60’s (15 – 20 C), with nighttime temperatures in the mid 40’s (7 – 10 C)

Having the longer days, will also gave you a chance to pick and choose when to go out on some hikes. While I usually headed up early in the morning, there were times, where I started in the early afternoon to avoid some poorer weather.

El Chalten Town

10) Patagonia Weather

When it comes to hiking in El Chalten, the main highlight is to get to see Fitz Roy & Cerro Torre and their surrounding peaks throughout your hikes.

Hiking with clear skies vs. having the mountain range covered with clouds & rain will be two completely different types of experiences. While it is always hard to count on the Patagonian weather, try and save your top hiking choices for better weather forecasted days of your trip.

Also note that the weather can change throughout your time on the trail. Clear skies can turn to clouds and rain, which can then turn back into clear skies. You sometimes just never know in Patagonia.

Weather forecasting is tough enough in mountainous regions, but even tougher in a place like Patagonia. The locals were keen on using Windguru as their best source of truth when it came to weather forecasts.

Here is a link to the free version of Windguru for Fitz Roy (the mountain itself). Upgrading to the paid version will give you more insight and features.

What you are looking for here is low wind speeds, low % of cloud cover, and no precipitation.

Mirador Cascada Margarita Clouds

Hiking Resources & Checklist

Before heading out for the trails, be sure to read up on some of the hiking resources up on the site. These are here to better prepare you for all types of outdoor adventure.

11) Patagonia Packing List

Hiking in Patagonia is all about layers and proper footwear. Since the weather can turn very quickly, you will want to be prepared for all types of conditions.

In general, I found layering to be the upmost important part of a trip. On all day hikes in Patagonia, I brought along the following layers:

→ Hiking Shorts
→ Hiking Pants
→ Short Sleeve Shirt
→ Long Sleeve Shirt / Sun Hoodie
→ Mid Layer Fleece
→ Puff Jacket
→ Packable Rain Jacket

While layers are important so will be your footwear. You want to be sure to bring appropriate waterproof hiking shoes along with solid hiking socks as well.

Additional day hike recommendations include:

→ Hiking Backpack & Rain cover
→ Water Bottle & Nutrition
→ Portable Charger
→ Hat & Sunglasses
→ Sunscreen & Bug Spray

Be sure to check out the Hiking Packing List guide I put together that will go through all of it and more.

Sendero al Fitz Roy Gear

12) Gear in El Chalten

El Chalten is suited towards hikers. So, no matter what type of outdoor gear you are looking for, you should find it in town. The main streets have several different gear shops to choose from including Viente Oesta, Camping Center, among others.

You have the chance to purchase gear outright from these outfitters or you can opt to rent gear instead. This is more likely for those that are headed on the Huemul Circuit or other overnight hikes.

Tip: if renting camping gear, do so at least a day or two prior to actually needing it. The last thing you want is to try and rent gear the day of, and then having it all sold out in town. So, even if you do need to rent gear for an extra day, I feel like it would be well worth it to remove any stress.

Note that the prices listed below will change drastically over time with the devaluation of the Argentinian Peso.

El Chalten Gear Rental

13) Hiking Permits

The nice thing about hiking in El Chalten, is that you do not need to worry about purchasing or reserving hiking permits.

Simply show up and hike when you want, and be on your way from there (at least on the standard hiking trails mentioned in this guide).

The one exception here is the Huemul Circuit. You will need to register ahead of time with the APN Visitor Center, so they know who is headed out on the trail.

This only entails a registration. You do not need to worry about spots filling up or applying for a permit. Simply head to their office prior to the hike and get registered with them.

Huemul Circuit Presentation Slide 44

14) Do You Need a Guide for El Chalten

So, now that you have a better idea of essentially all the different hikes in El Chalten, you may be wondering if you need a guide or not.

For those with hiking experience out there, I do not believe a guide is necessary in 99% of situations. All of the trails (besides the Huemul Circuit) are well marked and maintained paths.

As long as you are aware of your surroundings, and have basic navigational skills (leveraging is always highly recommended), you should be good to go.

Now for those that are newer to the hiking experience, it may feel overwhelming taking part of a full day hike out in the mountains.

Whether it is tips on the trail, removing worry about the route, understanding the weather, or just having someone by your side, a guide can certainly be helpful.

When it comes to any of those multi day hiking options, I can understand how a guide may beneficial in any situation (especially for those with limited camping experience). Guides will understand how to break out the days, help out with camp, cook food, and be a guiding hand all the way through.

And of course, if interested in the Ice Field expedition, then a guide is certainly going to be needed.

El Chalten Hiking Trails

15) How Many Days to Spend

As you can tell, there are many hiking options in El Chalten. Choosing how many days to spend in El Chalten will come down to how much hiking you want to do.

Since the Patagonian weather can really alter hiking plans, I would highly advise spending at least 1-2 additional days in El Chalten to account for days where hiking would not be possible.

So, for example if you are keen on two days of hiking both the Laguna de Los Tres trail and Laguna Torre trail, I would recommend spending 3-4 days in El Chalten.

In my case, I ended up spending 10 days in El Chalten, since I wanted to do several hikes and take part of the Huemul Circuit. I ended up hiking for 7 days, and having 3 days of poorer weather, where hiking was just not feasible.

I completely understand that most people won’t be spending 10 days in town. But I was taking part of an around the world trip, so I did have some extra time to spare.

Best El Chalten Hikes

That about wraps up a guide to the best El Chalten hikes. If you have any questions or comments about the hikes, feel free to add them in below.

Also don’t forget to check out the remaining Patagonia itineraries and guides up on the site like hiking the Perito Moreno Glacier.

Have fun out there and safe travels!

Hiking in El Chalten

Sharing is caring!