Puerto Natales is just 245 kilometres or 3 hours away from Punta Arenas. You can go to this town either by bus or rent a car. By bus, you only need to pay around 7 – 10 USD for one-way per person. The bus quite affordable and the bus facility is not that bad. There are some local buses with its terminal just in Punta Arenas centre or they can pick you up at the airport also. If you’re lucky enough, you can get the WiFi connection too!
On your way to Puerto Natales, you got to see a land of pampas along the way with some of the guanacos walking around. For some of you who doesn’t know what pampas is, it’s a plain and dried lowland where you can find it only in some of America Latin countries, like in Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay etc.
Once you arrive in Puerto Natales, you got plenty of choices of the hostel. The one we took is very close to the edge of the Última Esperanza fjord. All of the hostels in this town are basically a house which has been transformed into a hostel with some sharing rooms and a few single rooms to accommodate your needs.
When we were there in December, we got very nice and warm weather, so we loved to walk just along the fjords. During summer and clear weather, you get to see some fantastic views of the surrounding mountains with its glaciers.
Puerto Natales is maybe my most favourite town in the southernmost region in Chilean Patagonia. The first time I set my feet in Puerto Natales, I feel a very good feeling about this town. Basically, I love the town where I could see mountains with its glaciers. If you are like me, then you will absolutely like this town too!
This town is well-known as a gate if you are planning to do some adventurous holiday in Chilean Patagonia. Where you can go to Torres del Paine National Park, Mylodon Cave Natural Monument, Bernardo O’Higgins National Park and doing boat trips through the Patagonian fjords to see many icebergs surround. The last one was my most favourite moment!
If you are someone who is into to do an adventurous experience by doing hiking, camping, horsing, kayaking or doing some navigation to some of the famous icebergs in Patagonia, then you have to visit Torres del Paine National Park. It’s a magical place for every hiker in the world. Navigate to their famous Grey glacier would be an amazing thing to do. It is the biggest glacier in this National Park, where around 6 kilometres wide! The tour was too pricey around USD 130 each person, but its worth to get the lifetime experience.
But if you are into something like archaeology, geology, palaeontology and history, you might be interested to visit the Mylodon Cave Natural Monument. The cave where you can see the prehistoric animal called, Mylodon, which was a giant herbivore and extinct sloth. As my husband doing his PhD research there, so I got my own tour guide! It’s just 24 kilometres away in the north of Puerto Natales. Last time to get there, we went by taxi, then we did an auto-stop to go back to the town.
Fun fact: We did some of auto-stop when we were in Patagonia. The local people were very amazing, nice, sincere and friendly. Every time my husband stay there, he also did a lot of auto-stop with the local people and he always had good experiences. It’s a plus if you can speak Spanish Chilean because they just love to talk!
When I was in Puerto Natales, the excursion I love the most was a boat trip experience to the Glacier Balmaceda and Serrano. We navigated through the Ultima Esperanza fjord until the Bernardo O’Higgins National Park. Oh, look at those amazing views!
Afterwards, we also did a boat trip along with the Rio Serrano. That-was-amazing-and-wonderful-trip-ever-in-my-life! Thanks to Turismo 21 de Mayo for their great service.
A big thanks to my husband who invited me to such experience~
Staying in Puerto Natales was quite pricey, since its remote location and well-known as the touristic town. Some things feel a little bit more expensive than in Punta Arenas. In some places, they still received payment with USD, so if you have some, better to bring it with you than using your credit or debit card, which sometimes charge a little bit more. Indeed, they have an ATM machine in the centre, but they will charge you the same amount, no matter how much you take the money. And that’s quite pricey too!
In the town, you will see some cafes and restaurants to fill up your appetite. Our favourite was in Espacio Ñandu and Mesita Grande. In Espacio Ñandu, you can also do some souvenirs shopping. They have plenty of choices of souvenirs with some handmade by the local people. I would love to recommend you their dessert, which always been delicious, amazing and of course, sweet! And I love their breakfast menu soooo bad.
In Mesita Grande, the Italian fusion restaurant, besides their pizzas, of course, I will recommend you to their Mr Popeyes fettuccine pasta, with creamy garlic spinach sauce, mushrooms, onions and cheese. Oh my God, I am so hungry all of sudden, only by describing their food.
I am drooling~
Attention please: Since we went there during the summer season (December – January), all of the excursions were always full of people. So make sure, you book any activities or excursions you want to do in advance.