Soon, I will be headed on another travel adventure. This one will be another trekking adventure with Trekking for Kids (TFK) with whom I climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro, hiked the Transylvanian Alps in Romania, and “pilgrimaged” on the Camino de Santiago in Spain. I am thrilled because I get to return to a part of the world that is remote, pristine, and with which I fell in love the first time I went in 2010: Patagonia. No, not the store but the southern part of the continent of South America.
The trip begins in Buenos Aires, Argentina. OK, it really begins at the Atlanta airport but that’s just a technicality. We will spend a few days in the Argentine capital working with a local orphanage that is benefiting from our trek. If you would like to donate to the work TFK is sponsoring, please visit my fundraising page; all donations go STRAIGHT to the orphanage, not my costs and are 100% tax-deductible in the U.S. In any case, I have gotten to visit Buenos Aires a couple of times and it is truly a great city!
But I decided to take advantage of having some flexibility and will arrive a couple of days early to head over to a lesser-known jewel in neighboring Uruguay: a colonial charming town appropriately and simply named “Colonia,” mentioned in the book 1,000 Places to See before You Die. Not planning on dying anytime soon but better safe than sorry, no? 🙂
After the orphanage work, we will fly down to the town of El Calafate on the Argentine side of Patagonia. From there we will hike around the iconic Fitz Roy peak and its siblings, and visit the famous and imposing Perito Moreno glacier.
After visiting the glacier park, we will transfer the next day to Puerto Natales, the Chilean town that is the real gateway to the wildness and beauty of Patagonia (I like the Chilean side better!).
I stayed in Puerto Natales when I visited in 2010 and there is something about its remoteness, its simplicity that was charming to me. From there, we will launch our trek to the impressive Torres del Paine, surrounded by lakes and glaciers. Our route is the typical route to trek there – it is called the “W” route. Take a look at the map (with the route in red) and you will see where the name comes from!
I am thrilled at this upcoming adventure and have tons to do to prepare. I also wonder if I am physically ready enough as I will be needing to carry about 30 lbs on my back – a first for me in any of my hikes. Wish me luck and stay tuned for future write-ups on the experience!