Destination guide: El Calafate
Discover El Calafate
El Calafate combines comfort with adventure. Its icy scenery invites you to go trekking and admire the area's flora and fauna. You can also take a boat out on the lake or use the town as the starting point for an unforgettable adventure that will take you to the thousand-year-old glaciers of Antarctica.
Los Glaciares National Park
The most important glacier in the area, Perito Moreno, is 80 kilometers from El Calafate on a road that is paved almost all the way.
This park is so peaceful it's hard to describe. Visitors are impressed by the scenery, with marvelous birds, including flamingos and black-necked swans, placidly going about their business.
Once you reach the glacier, it's impossible not to be awed by the majesty of the beautiful, thousand-year-old ice. Once you've got over your astonishment, you can continue your visit to the steps from which you can observe the front of the glacier from several different viewpoints. The park also has two restaurants, a snack bar, restrooms and a campsite located 7 kilometers from the area that looks out onto the glacier.
This is one of the biggest lakes in Argentina and the most southern of all the ones in Patagonia. It's located 187 meters above sea level and covers 1,466 square kms.
The Argentine Lake is the center of tourism in the area and contains several glaciers, with Perito Moreno and Upsala particularly worth mentioning. You can sail on this lake's crystalline water on comfortable boats and admire the beauty and immensity of a whole world of glaciers.
This small village is 450 meters above sea level, in the western part of the Santa Cruz province, at the foot of Fitz Roy Mount and on the shore of the Las Vueltas river.
El Chaitén has one of the youngest populations in Argentina and is a big tourist attraction. If you like mountain sports, this is your place, as you can go trekking, mountaineering, rafting, horse-riding and fishing.
Fitz Roy Mount
Also known as Chaltén Peak, this mountain is between Chile and Argentina, 3,375 meters above sea level. It's considered sacred by the ancestral tribes of the area and has a distinctive and impressive granite peak, making it a great natural attraction.
Fitz Roy Mount is an impressive spectacle with its crests, colors, glaciers and clouds. It's often confused with a volcano, because there's always a crown of clouds on its peak, making it look like a "steaming mountain".
Libertador Avenue is the main street in El Calafate and where most of the town's shops and restaurants can be found. It's the ideal place to look for accommodation, enjoy delicious food and buy crafts and souvenirs, among other things.
Here you can discover the ancestral history so treasured by El Calafate's inhabitants. Through archaeological artifacts, such as cattle-catching instruments, carved stones, arrow heads and photographs, visitors can find out about the first inhabitants of the area and how they lived. There's also a paleontology display so you can admire the region's flora and fauna in more detail.