Just a few hours bus ride from Coyhaique you reach the second biggest lake in South America. Shared by two countries it is called General Carrera in Chile and Lago Buenos Aires in Argentina. Puerto Tranquilo is a tiny place with little accommodation offer and rather hard to reach by public transport (rental car advised to go Coyhaique – Puerto Tranquilo – Chalten – Calafate – Puerto Natales).
One of the main sights of the area are the marble caves in the lake. We got a kayaking tour to explore the different types of caves, chapels and churches. Luckily it was a sunny day and we enjoyed the windstill lake to paddle easily.
The next day we had the choice of going to Laguna San Rafael or Exploradores Glacier. Since the latter is less expensive and requires less travelling time we headed for a hike on the glacier. The rainy and cold weather that day couldn’t stop us and we got to see beautiful ice caves and walked on fresh as well as ancient ice.
We would have gone for the Laguna San Rafael as well but the entire town was fully booked and we had to move on towards the border with one of the 2 weekly buses.
- Puesto travel agency – great organization with a variety of trips including kayaking, ice hiking and horseback riding. They also have a lovely hotel (quite pricey)
- Cabañas Los Exploradores – nice 2 bedroom cabañas including kitchen, fire and lounge area. We got a good deal on booking for about 60.000clp.
- Take cash because there is no ATM close by and lots of places only accept cash.