Activities In and Around the Park

The future Patagonia National Park and the surrounding areas abound with opportunities for adventure. Much of the area of the future park is wide open and easily accessible, making it an ideal place for hiking, backpacking, and mountaineering. At present, Conservacion Patagonica is still developing trails and hiking circuits in the park, but visitors can rest assured that they will find innumerable options for exploring this landscape.


Walking through the valleys and up the mountains of the future park is one of the best ways to see this landscape. All hikers are responsible for their own safety, and should be properly prepared for Patagonian conditions. Bring water, food, extra layers, rain gear, headlamps, maps, and basic first aid supplies on all hikes. Detailed trail maps are under development: find our most up-to-date map pack on the Travel Planning Essentials page.

Some of the best hikes include:

  • Lagunas Altas: the first official trail of the future park, this 23km loop provides a challenging day hike with spectacular views of the entire valley and opportunities to swim in high alpine lakes. Download a trail map for this hike here.
  • Aviles Valley: one of the trails planned for construction, this route runs up the dramatic Aviles Valley, which connects the Jeinimeni Mountains to the Chacabuco Valley. Ambitious hikers who want to spent some nights camping can hike up this valley, cross over and head towards Chile Chico on the shores of Lago General Carrera. Even a half-day hike up this valley, however, will provide excellent views of this glaciated landscape.
  • Lago Chico Area: This area, close to the Argentine border, offers views down to Lago Cochrane and into the surrounding mountains.
  • Lago Pepa: close to the park headquarters, this stunning lake sits above Lago Cochrane. You can either walk there from the park headquarters or drive to the lake and then walk down toward the shores of Lago Cochrane.

Wildlife observation

From herds of guanacos to Chilean flamingos on lagoons, the park contains a wealth of animals. Please be respectful of wildlife!

For more information about species you will encounter in the park, visit our Protecting Biodiversity page.

Fly fishing

Anglers from around the world visit the rivers of Aysen for their phenomenal fishing. Numerous spots within the park make for incredible fly-fishing, while other rivers just outside the park offer more variety. Park visitors, please ask for permission before fishing within the park.

Horseback riding

For guests at the Lodge, we can arrange horseback rides around the valley. Horses have served as the main mode of transportation in this area for decades, and can be an excellent way to travel and see the area.

In addition to visiting the park, we encourage travelers to explore some of the other natural attractions of this region, which include:

  • Rafting trip on the Baker River: most of the Baker is flat but fast-moving water. Several local guiding companies can arrange trips.
  • Boat trip around the marble caves of Lake General Carrera: in the town of Puerto Rio Tranquilo, on the Carretera Austral, numerous small local operators offer tours of the large, beautiful marble caves on the shore of the lake.
  • Boat trip up the Cochrane River into Cochrane Lake.
  • Travel to Caleta Tortel, a small fishing village on the Pacific coast.

If you spend some time in Cochrane, here are some places to eat:

Restaurante El Nirrantal
Bernardo O'Higgins 650, Phone: 78782621
Located just one block from the Plaza de Armas, this restaurant features salmon or meat and mashed potatoes. Try the homemade cherry compote. Open daily. A fully equipped, cottage is attached (sleeps 6).

Restaurante Lago Esmeralda
San Valentín 14, Phone: 067/522621
Located at the northern entrance of Cochrane, this restaurant specializes in meat from the region. Enjoy the daily menu ($4,500/person) or request a dish a la carte. Also has a bar and single rooms available (US $13/person).

Café Tamango
Esmeralda 464, Phone: 91584521
Located across from Plaza de Armas next to Banco Estado, this small, white house with a bright interior serves a homemade lunch – including sandwiches, pizza and vegetarian-friendly options such as falafel and couscous – as well as pastries, coffee and natural juices. Try the value menu for $6,000 (includes soup or salad, entrée and dessert) and opt to sit outside; on warm days, enjoy complimentary magazines on the patio. Bike rentals are offered by the hour, half or full day along with English-speaking tour guides.

Pub Restaurante Tehuelche
Dr. Steffens 559 B
This pub-restaurant has a pleasant atmosphere and a great variety of drinks, as well as live music, disco and karaoke.