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Cerro Castillo National Reserve

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Discover a Castle Made of Stone and Ice

You'll get your first glimpse of the strikingly beautiful Cerro Castillo about 80 km south of Coyhaique on the Carretera Austral. One of the best ways to explore the mountain and its surroundings is a five-day, 45 km hike that covers part of the Paths of Chile. This is one of the country's most famous hikes because it offers fantastic views of hanging glaciers, paths that run through beech forests and narrow passes that remain covered in snow even during the summer months.

As you move along the route, you will see exotic wildlife such as majestic eagles and condors and the timid huemules, Patagonia's native deer and one of Chile's national symbols. Those who are not expert trekkers or familiar with the area are advised to go with a guide because the route is poorly marked and there are no bridges or gateways.

If you plan ahead, you can make a day trip of it. Plan to reach the lake (which used to be a glacier) that lies at the foot of this imposing mountain in the morning. The four-hour climb offers a spectacular view of Cerro Castillo itself, the hanging glaciers and the Ibáñez River Valley. You will make the first half of the trek on horseback and the following two on foot over loose rock. Book your tour in advance in the town of Villa Cerro Castillo.


Featured Destinations of Northern Patagonia

aCarretera Austral
bIce Fields


Tours you can do

San Rafael Lagoon
Palena - Queulat
Pumalín - Futaleufú Cerro Castillo National Reserve
Villa O'Higgins - Tortel General Carrera Lake and Baker River
Exploradores Glacier




Rational Dressage Villa Cerro Castillo Clothing
When you reach Villa Cerro Castillo, ask for Cristian Vidal. He'll take you out for a ride on horses tamed using natural horsemanship, a non-violent technique that produces safe and docile horses that are not easily frightened. This small town at the base of the mountain offers visitors several places to stay with shared bathrooms. Stock up on basic supplies before you arrive. Note that there is no mobile phone service here (though public telephones are available). Patagonia's climate can be fickle. During the summer months, you should anticipate everything from blizzards to temperatures of 30°C. Dress in layers and don't forget to bring sunscreen and a sun hat as well as a warm gear to protect you from the cold.


Be Prepared Don't Litter 
In order to complete this circuit, you will have to be in good shape and bring the right equipment. If you're not sure of your skills, ask your guide to hire a porter to help with your pack. The campgrounds here are not equipped with garbage cans, so take your refuse with you and dispose of it in the nearest town.



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Avenida Providencia 1550, Santiago Chile
Teléfonos: (56+2) 731 8336

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