We GUARANTEE you won't find the same horse riding holiday at a lower price through any other source... and if you do, we promise to refund the difference!
from £5,339 or €6,268
Note: Rates are subject to daily exchange rate fluctuations, please refer to our Terms & Conditions for full details.
Included – All riding, guiding, accommodation, meals, drinks (except in Bariloche, El Bolson and Puerto Varas), wine with dinner during the ride, transfers, ferry crossing & camping equipment.
Excluded – Flights & tips.
Across The Andes : Getting There
The arrival airport is San Carlos de Bariloche and the departure airport is Puerto Montt.
They are included in the package at set times from San Carlos de Bariloche and Puerto Montt.
Across The Andes is a fascinating adventure from the virgin steppes in Argentina to the Valdivian forests in Chile. A unique eleven day expedition where Creole and Chilean horses will take you through estancias and fundos, crossing endless pampas, green forests, and clear rivers – a trip of a lifetime for sure!
This Across The Andes adventure starts near the popular ski town of Bariloche in Argentina journeying south and west to finish at Puerto Varas in Chile. During the first half of the ride to the Chilean border you will ford rivers and climb high mountain passes with panoramic views as you ascend ever higher into the Andes. Early settlers came to this area to find gold; others to establish estancias and you get a true feeling of how their lives must have been back in those pioneering days.
Leaving behind the Argentine Criollo horses, the border crossing into Chile is by boat across the vivid blue Lago Puelo, an unimaginable and wonderful sight.
Meeting fresh horses on the Chilean side, the landscape becomes much greener and the forests more dense. There are some exciting river crossings where you will travel by boat while your horses swims alongside! The ride continues for six days in Chile as far as Tagua Tagua Lake, famous for its floating islands of vegetation.
During Across the Andes (Grand Traverse) adventure you’ll stay in a good mix of accommodation, giving such a cultural insight into both countries, with camping and guest houses in Argentina and farmhouses in Chile, with the highlight a stay in your own guides home on a remote island called Las Bandurrias – a special and remarkable part of the adventure!
Across The Andes : Horses – A mix of the most sure footed and forward going Creole type horses. Argentinean Criolla horses and Chilean Creoles.
Level of Riding & Pace – Intermediate to advanced riders.
Tack – Western style.
Weight Restriction – 90kgs / 14 stone 2 lbs / 198lbs.
If you are over this weight, please let us know, we can provide another horse. The supplement is £110 (an additional horse is supplied)
Across The Andes : Group Size – Minimum 4 / Maximum 8
Your Across the Andes horse riding holiday trip has 13 nights accommodation including;
1 night in an early twentieth century fully refurbished traditional estancia.
4 nights camping.
2 nights at a fabulous retreat on the private Island Las Bandurrias. People will love this place! The living and dinning areas and great sundeck overlook the small beach next to the quay. Here you will get stunning views of Lago Las Rocas and the surrounding peaks. The cabaña offers accommodation for up to 6 people and the main house features two further guest rooms with original French country decor. It is a very cosy and warm place where we’ll share pre-dinner drinks and meals with Francoise Dutheil, our island host.
3 nights at local farmhouses (chez l’habitant), consisting of basic but clean rooms mostly in twin and triple or dorm rooms with shared facilities and hot showers.
And 3 nights in hotels, beginning, middle and end in Bariloche, El Bolsón and Puerto Varas. Single supplement is available only on these three nights at a cost of U$40 per night
Food is organically grown and sourced from farm orchards, while the meat will be cooked on a delicious Argentine and/ or Chilean Asado (bbq).
Great Argentine meat on the first night, in Bariloche and 6th at El Bolsón, great dinner! Delicious sea food at restaurant in Puerto Varas at the end of the trip.
Please Ask About
Day 1: Bariloche
On your arrival to the Bariloche International Airport, a driver will take you to your downtown hotel. The city of Bariloche, surrounded by lakes and mountains, is located in the very heart of the Patagonian Andes mountain range. We recommend that you arrive quite early to enjoy the city. At 6pm, you will have a meeting with your guide that will allow you to get to know the team and the following days’ activities. You will also receive some security instructions. Dinner will be at a traditional restaurant. (D)
Day 2: Bariloche / Pichileufú River
We will departure towards the Ñirihuau area, 30 km. from Bariloche, where we will find several family ranches. Their owners are mainly dedicated to the breeding of cattle, sheep and horses, as well as to forestation. Horses and equipment adjustments will be provided here.
We will continue to Las Buitreras hill with a panoramic view of the overall area can be appreciated. Our ride will lead us in the heart of the pre-cordillera between steep mountain ranges and infinite steppes. After a box lunch in front of the Pichileufú River, we will carry on our horses and continue our day through wide landscapes while we will start heading up the river to its source. Night camping. (B, LB, D, C)
Time: First day on horseback, 4 / 5 hrs.
Day 3: Pichileufú River / Alto Chubut
After having passed some hours riding through sweet hills and large valleys, we will start ascending on a path that is mainly used by local countrymen to move their cattle, until we reach Paso sin Nombre (unnamed Pass), 1.700 meters above sea level (ASL). Leaving this area surrounded by rocks, the view opens towards the immensity and a large valley in the middle of the mountains chain, called the “Alto Chubut”. The journey continues one more hour, to get to an idyllic place surrounded by an ancient native beech forest where we will camp. (B, LB, T, D)
Time: 5 / 7 hrs. of horseback riding
Day 4: Alto Chubut / El Sapucai
We will leave behind the forest and clear water streams to continue our ride along the Chubut River and then descend to the Patagonian Steppe, an area of dry vegetation where Coirón, Neneo, Calafate and some small Ñirres (local flora) still live. The river passes through rocky canyons and some farms. We will arrive on the afternoon at our special mountain refuge called El Sapucai. (B, LB, T, D)
Time: 5 / 6 hrs. of horseback riding
Day 5: El Sapucai / Las Lagunas / El Sapucai
During this day, we will climb up the cordillera to contemplate the scenic view on the Andes around us. You will appreciate the skills of the Criollo horse on various terrains like: wetlands, forest and rocky lands. When we will be at the top, you will be charmed by a 360° view of lagoons where we will have lunch in front of the snowy peaks. Then we will reach our refuge El Sapucai by another trail passing through Ñirre forests (a small beech tree), large trees and old growth beech forests. (B, LB, T, D)
Time: 5 / 6 hrs. of horseback riding
Day 6: El Sapucai / Puesto Viejo / Lago Puelo
This will be our last day with the Argentinean horses. We will follow the Chubut River stream up to Puesto Viejo. Then we will cross small cattle farms in the Alto Chubut area where people live the whole year round. These inhabitants are mostly descendants of the regional native people: the Mapuche, slightly forgotten today in the remote Patagonian lands. The abandoned school will be the meeting point with our transfer. We will leave the horses and share a last picnic with the Argentinian baqueanos (packhorse guides) before saying our farewell to the team.
A two-hour minibus trip and then, we will arrive to the small village of Lago Puelo. The area is surrounded by cypress (Austrocedrus Chilensis) and “maitenes” (Maytenus Boaria) woods with a micro-climate that fosters the production of berries such as raspberries and cherries, as well as hops for craft beer elaboration. Accommodation in a B&B and dinner in a local restaurant. (B, LB, D)
Time: 3 / 4 hrs. of horseback riding
Day 7: Lago Puelo / Las Bandurrias Island
Today, we will leave Argentina for Chile. Our last night’s accommodation is located 10 minutes from the Lago Puelo National Park where we will have to complete the customs procedure to get on the boat that cross the border. We will navigate along two lakes and cross the rapids between Argentina and Chile. Then, we will leave the boat for a 15-minute walk until we reach the Chilean border checkpoint.
After the customs procedure, we will take another motor-boat to Las Bandurrias Island on Las Rocas Lake. You will be surrounded by an outstanding landscape of crystal clear waters and a temperate forest that sits in stark contrast with the steppe. A friendly and warm welcome will wait for us at Las Bandurrias. (B, LB, T, D)
Time: 10 minutes in a private minibus from Lake Puelo village to Lake Puelo ; Navigation with the motorboats: 45min + 20min.
Day 8 : Las Bandurrias Island / Azul Lake / Las Bandurrias Island
Today we will leave the island to meet the horses and the baqueanos down by the lake. A quick stop at the farm La Colina, a first glimpse of the Chilean countryside in the heart of the cordillera. The journey continues to Azul Lake where we will stop to have lunch on a beach. After the picnic, we will follow our pathway on horseback towards Las Rocas Lake. We will pass through an ancient Valdivian type forest, with very diverse vegetation that’s found in very few Chilean regions. Wet and steep grounds, ancient trees as well as majestic mountains will be part of the scenery. Short boat trip to Las Bandurrias Island. Accommodation on the island in the guest house.
(B, LB, T, D)
Time: 5 / 6 hrs. of horseback riding
Day 9 : Las Bandurrias Island / Las Rosas
We will ride one hour up to the source of the Puelo River. The river is deep and wide so, a boatman will help us cross. This will offer the horses an opportunity to swim, guided by the motorboat. The pathway goes on through the woods along the Puelo River to the west, to reach the Ventisqueros Valley. We will have a break for lunch face to the Las Mellizas lagoons (meaning the twins), surrounded by mountains. In the afternoon, we will cross the river on horseback to arrive to our lodging. In the evening, we will arrive to the local farmhouse where we are staying, a very peaceful environment. (B, LB, T, D)
Time: 7 / 8 hrs. of horseback riding
Day 10: Las Rosas / Ventisqueros
Today, we will continue our ride into the Río Ventisqueros Valley. We will cross the river several times on horseback in the middle of a stunning landscape. In this sparsely populated place some inhabitants subsist on livestock breeding. We will enjoy breakfast on the river shore and thereafter continue our route up to the end of the valley, where we will spend two nights at a local inhabitant’s farm. (B, LB, T, D)
Time: 6 / 7 hrs. of horseback riding
Day 11: Ventisqueros / El Toro
Today, we will visit a neighbouring valley, where we will enjoy the view of a hanging ice glacier. The route is technical. The narrow valley and the dense vegetation will lead us to an “alerce” (larch) forest, a native and protected millenary tree that is one of the world’s most ancient. It is a remote area with few inhabitants, in the middle of a pristine nature.
We will have lunch near El Toro River before descending mid-afternoon to reach our host’s home. This will allow us time to enjoy the remaining afternoon to hike, swim or rest. (B, LB, T, D)
Time: 4 hrs. of horseback riding
Day 12: Ventisqueros / Las Rosas
Departure towards the Puelo River. Ancient woods, open spaces, crossing rivers, a long and great day in the middle of the mountains, waterfalls and isolated landscapes. We will enjoy a nice lunch at the Ventisqueros River’s edge. In the afternoon, we will continue our journey passing though different properties where the locals still use the same techniques to daily cultivate the land, just as their ancestors did. At a certain point of the path, the vegetation becomes quite dense. (B, LB, T, D)
Time: 6 / 7 hrs. of horseback riding
Day 13: Las Rosas/ Llanada Grande/ Puerto Varas
For our last riding day, we will cross again properties along the Puelo River to Puerto Urrutia, the place of local crossings. Horses will swim one last time across the river before returning to the mountain path. We will enjoy this last stretch of the ride, crossing a few prestigeous forests on a path with sumptuous views over the Puelo River. Our arrival in Llanada Grande marks the end of our ride. It is time to say farewell to our fellow travelers. A last lunch in the valley will be prepared for us in the first restaurant established in the hamlet.
A minibus will take us to Tagua-Tagua Lake. After a 45-minute ferry crossing, we will get back on our long but wonderful journey along the Reloncaví estuary and fjords. We will be able to admire the Llanquihue Lake, as well as the Calbuco and Osorno volcanos alongside Vicente Perez Rosales National Park. Arrival at Puerto Varas. Farewell dinner and night at the hotel. (B, L, D)
Time: 4 hrs. of horseback riding. Transfer: Llanada Grande / Puerto Varas: 4 hrs. Ferry Tagua-Tagua Lake: 45 min.
Day 14: Transfer Puerto Varas / Airport
Breakfast at the hotel. A private transfer will take you to the airport.
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