"Information about Torres del Paine and Patagonia (Chile and Argentina)"
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Frequently Asked Questions

WHEN CAN I GO?
The park is open all year, but it is best to go during High season (October to April), since most of the hotels and service are close during low season

HOW MANY DAYS IS IT ADVISABLE TO GO?
If you want to do any circuit, the minimum is 4 days and 3 nights. You have to consider that during the entrance day and the departure day, sometimes it is not possible to do an excursion.

HOW ARE THE ROADS?
Until Cerro Castillo the roads are paved and in good condition, from Cerro Castillo to the park there are gravel roads, constantly under maintenance.

HOW CAN I GET TO THE PARK?
There are many regular buses from Punta Arenas  (airport) and from El Calafate in Argentina to Puerto Natales.
From Puerto Natales, there are 2 daily bus schedules in high season, it itakes 2 hours to get to the park; they stop in Laguna Amarga porter, Pudeto and the Administration.

WHICH LANGUAGE DO THEY SPEAK?
The official language in Chile is Spanish. Even though most of people that work in tourism speak English or another language. You can hire bilingual guides.

¿HOW MUCH IS THE ENTRANCE FEE IN THE PARK?
In high season, for foreigners is CL$ 18.000 (USD $37), Chileans CL$ 4.000 (USD $10), and children CL$ 500 (USD $1) and in low season for foreigners CL$ 8.000 (USD $10), for Chileans CL$ 3.000 (USD $6) and children CL $400.

WHERE CAN I BUY THE ENTRANCE TO THE PARK?
In the park entrance.

HOW ARE THE BILLS AND COINS IN CHILE?
The coin is called Chilean peso (CL). There are: 1, 5, 10, 50, 100 and 500 pesos. And the bills are 1,000, 2,000, 5,000, 10,000 and 20,000 pesos. 1 American dollar is about $500 pesos approximately and 1 Euro is about $636 approximately.

CAN I TAKE MONEY FROM AN ATM?
In Puerto Natales there are many ATM, inside the Banks, the Casino and dome pharmacies. In the park there are no ATM.

ARE THERE ANY MONEY EXCHANGE?
In Puerto Natales there are many, in the park there aren´t any.

WHAT SHOULD I DO WITH THE RUBBISH?

  • Try to minimize it and take it with you until you found rubbish can.
  • Maintain the rubbish far away from the animals; consider that the wind might spread it.
  • The batteries are very harmful for the environment, try to take them back to the closest city and put them in special deposits.
  • Take the organic rubbish or biodegradable (rest of food, fruit skin, eggs shell, etc.), they don´t belong in the park, they decompose very slowly, they are source of many infection and they attract animals. Make sure you don not throw any seed, since it can grow a new specie, and affect the ecosystem.

CAN I MAKE FIRE IN THE PARK?
More tan 18 fires have been generated since 1980 because of human carelessness, this is why it is only allow the use of gas stoves, and fires are estrictically forbidden.

CAN I TAKE MY PET?
It is not allow to enter any domestic pet inside Torres del Paine National Park, they can alter the native animal behavior.

WHAT SHALL I DO IF I SEE A PUMA?
A puma attack is something unlikely to occur. Even though it could be possible, as well as other animal attack. The Pumas could attack only if they felt threatened, as a mechanism of self-defense.

Be aware of:

  • Walk in groups. If you are travelling by car and a puma crosses, don´t follow it, take a picture from your car.
  • Make sure your children walk close to you. Teach children about pumas and how to recognize them.
  • If it is possible identify a way out.
  • If you find a puma, don´t get close to it, especially if it is feeding or has cubs. Most of pumas will run away.
  • Stop and get back slowly, only if you can make it in a safe way. Never run!
  • Try not to make to much noise. If you have children hold them so they don´t run.

IS THERE ANY REGULATION IN THE PARK?

  • Camp only in authorized campsites
  • Contribute with the cleaning
  • Protect the vegetation, don´t cut brunches or wild flowers.
  • Protect the fauna. Try not to chase animals or birds, safeguard their nest and natural shelter.
  • Hunting is not allowed in National Parks.
  • It is not allowed to use fire.

HOW IS THE WEATHER?
The weather in this area is very hard to predict. There is also a lot of variation in the park, close to the mountains it is rainier, this is where most of the Nothofagus forests are. As we go farther from the Paine Massif, the weather gets drier and exposed to strong winds, this is were the pampas appear.

DO TOURIST PAY ANY TAX?
The foreign tourist don´t pay tax in hotels and transport, they have to pay in American dollars. For all the rest, they pay 18% of IVA (Impuesto al Valor Agregado).

WHICH ARE THE HOLIDAYS?

  • 18th, 19th and 20th of April: Holly week
  • 1st of May: Work day
  • 21st of May: Combate Naval de Iquique
  • 16th of June: Corpus Christi
  • 15th of August: Asunción de la Virgen
  • 18th, 19th of September: Fiestas Patrias
  • 1st of November: Día de Todos Los Santos
  • 8th de December: Inmaculada Concepción
  • 25th of December: Christmas

¿HOW IS THE ELECTRICITY IN CHILE?
Electricity: 220 V 10 Amp

IS IT EASY TO MAKE CALLS?
You can call to any place in the world through: Calling centrals, there are also phone cards to be used in public phones and most of the hotels have a direct calling system for national and international calls.

DO I NEED TO VACCINATE FOR ENTERING TO CHILEAN PATAGONIA?
There is no need.

CAN I DRINK THE TUB WATER?
It is drinkable water, but still it is advisable to drink bottled water.

¿WHICH ARE THE MEDICAL ASSISTANCE POSSIBILITIES IN CASE OF AN ACCIDENT R DISEASE?
The cities have hospital and emergency service. In Punta Arenas there are also private hospitals.

ARE THERE ANY CYBER COFFEES IN PATAGONIA?
Yes, many Internet services, communications are modern, even small hotels have telephones.

DO I NEED A SPECIAL PERMIT TO CLIMB A MOUNTAIN IN PATAGONIA?
Yes, CONAF administrates the parks and they issue the permits.

DO I NEED A SPECIAL PERMIT FOR TREKKING?
There is no special permit.