Santiago de Chile to Ushuaia 3 weeks. What you think?

Travel Forums Central/South America & The Caribbean Santiago de Chile to Ushuaia 3 weeks. What you think?

Last Post This thread is marked as being about Chile
1. Posted by splig (Budding Member 6 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

Hi everybody!

We are wondering if a trip from Santiago to Ushuaia by road (public bus mainly but some rental as well) in three weeks is an insane journey or is it factible?? What do you think?? We could take some boat if any as well and cross to Argentina if needed. Then, we think about to take a plane back either to Santiago or Buenos Aires...

Any point of view will be fantastic!


2. Posted by vagamundo (Budding Member 14 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

Hi there,

My first question is if you plan to travel South on the Chilean or the Argentine side of the Andes? If Chile, its all mountain terrain - and water.

Carretera Austral? Ruta 40? I spent several years travelling the Chilean Fjords from Puerto Montt South, so know more about the villages (Coihayque, Puerto Chacabuco/Aisen, Puerto Eden, Punta Arenas, Puerto Williams) than their road systems.

A trip I wanted to make but had to cancel it on short notice, is visit the Pukon Lake region (Chile) and then cross over to Bariloche (Arg.) by boat. So that would have been a combination of bus, boat and then rental car (Villa Angostura, Junin y San Martin de los Andes, Bolson).

Have you checked on international flights USH-SCL vs USH-BUE? Lan Chile is often cheaper and has better service (if not boykotted by statal staff to support Aerolineas Arg.). USH-BUE is a long distance and such not a cheap flight, even within one country.

Cant tell you about the driving (and also it depends on the way you travel, how much time you like to spend in how many places on the way). I just know places, as I travelled by ship. I know Ushuaia pretty well too, as I was there about 50 times. But then, I am not a local ;).

3. Posted by splig (Budding Member 6 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

Thanks for answering vagamundo.

We'll, to be honest there is not much plan by now... We get the book guides this last weekend and we will start to plan something more seriously.

The only thing for sure (or almost sure) is we will just travel from Santiago to South, leaving the northern part. It's a pitty but it's so large country and so hot on December on the northern part that I think we'll focus on the south.

By now we are planning to do the chilean part of the Andes, although crossing to Argentina may be considered if needed.

How slow and expensive is moving by boat from Puerto Montt to sourth? Is it better (o possible) arriving to Punta Arenas just by land? Would you recommend some specific boat trip through those areas??

Ans the question again... Do you think it makes sense planning this kind of trip for about 20 days or will we miss half chile behind us??


4. Posted by vagamundo (Budding Member 14 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

Not sure about the travelling time as I never did any of those roads by car/bus, and if so (further North), than just for transfer, and not for sightseeing along the way. And it really depends on your travel speed and curiousity too. I make hundreds of stops and take many photos, always, so tht is pretty time consuming. And I love to go to shops and bars where I meet locals, so travel slow anyway.

Travelling from the Pucon area to the Bariloche area I only heard about (and googled it, but long time ago) being very nice by bus and boat.
Further South, through the Chilean Fjords, there is the Navimag ferry. Not expensive but everythinge else than comfortable. And you loose much of your precious time. I would not do that in your case, it is a special trip by itself (landscape like in Norwegian Fjords, but with much less villages). ChiloƩ island is nice, but Puerto Montt was not for me at all. Puerto Varas and the area is nice too. Punta Arenas I would not consider too interesting, but then of course once there, it is worth visiting.

If you like to, you can send me your tentative routing, once you have worked something out, and I make my comments and let you know what I think may not be feasable or what to add.

You can see a lot in 3 weeks, dont worry. It will involve a lot of kilometers, but the route is the voyage too :)

5. Posted by vagamundo (Budding Member 14 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

I was just thinking... you probably want to visit the Torres del Paine Park, and maybe also the glacier? If you want to do everything by driving, you may have to decide if the Northern area of Patagonia or the Southern...