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Amazing tour! This was my second time joining a tour with AndoAndeslocal tour company and everything was perfectly arranged. Our guide Gonzalo was professional! I was picked up on time, received brief information about the tour and started hiking! I have to say, it is definitely not an easy hike, so be prepared! The view was magnificent all the way up to the glacier lookout, and you get to enjoy a box lunch at the lagoon : If you are in Santiago, do not miss this tour!
What a great hike! Definitely one of the highlights of our trip. The hike is about 9 miles round trip, the first mile is somewhat of a steep hike, but then it levels out for awhile, and gets a little steep again for the last half mile or so up to the viewing point for the glacier. Our group was relatively fit, so we finished in 4 1/2 hours I think - I could see this being a difficult hike for those that aren't very active.
Our driver and guide, Gonzalo, was fantastic - very knowledgeable about pretty much everything we asked him, and had great advice about future trips we might take to Chile. He has a real passion for nature, so the trip was also a fun learning experience.
We had a beautiful and warm day, but I could see if clouds rolled in, that this would be a chilly hike - we came prepared for anything. I'd recommend bringing a backpack, jacket, hiking sticks if you have them, and wear sturdy shoes as the trail is good, but has lots of loose rocks/gravel and some shallow water crossings. Also, don't forget your sunscreen on this one as there is no shade.
Provided on the hike was water, lunch sandwich, snacks, and a juice box, and then a snack and celebratory glass of wine at the end.
The drive to and from the hike is approx 1.5-2 hrs each way, so it was especially nice to be able to relax on the way home and not have to worry about navigating Santiago's crazy traffic.
I did the El Morado Hike Day tour as a solo traveller and really enjoyed it. The scenery for the walk is very beautiful, and the guides are entertaining and well informed.
The sandwich in the boxed lunch was very good, better than expected for something to eat out on a trail.
The tour starts at an elevation of 1,850m, and then climbs 400-600m. For most people, this height should not be a problem. at the area closest to the glacier, you walk through a bit of snow, so shoes that keep your feet dry and warm are handy.
One bit of advice, take gloves and a beanie. It can get a bit cold and windy on some parts of the trip, and my one regret was not having this in my day bag.
The hike in El Morado was the highlight of my trip to Chile. Our guide was very knowledgeable and educated us about Chile's history during the drive to the park. Likewise during the hike, she was very helpful with information. The scenery was amazing. The weather was cool. You could heat up while hiking and get cool when stopped to eat - dress in layers.
Here's what went wrong with my trip: the regular guide had an emergency so we had Felipe doing the driving, guiding, trekking and carrying of all our water/lunches/emergency supplies. Also, there was too much snow to actually get to the final destination.
Here's what went right: Felipe told us what the guide circumstance was and then immediately made us feel comfortable. He apologized for his poor English and then spoke awesome English. He was friendly and accommodating we asked him to stop at some random places for picture opportunities and couldn't have been better prepared. While he wasn't as talkative as a guide may be, and that can be a bit much sometimes, he was very knowledgeable and gave us several very interesting facts. He pointed out rare birds and all along kept saying Take all the time you want. If this is how all the employees are at Viator then I would highly recommend a trip with them. I had a great time and the pictures will be in my photo album....forever.
This is a wonderful hike- not ridiculously difficult but not a walk in the park either- a few hills and steep bits to keep it interesting. The guide was excellent- bursting with knowledge about the history of Santiago, its peoples and also well grounded in natural science- geology, plant and animal knowledge- the works. He was also flexible to the needs of the group- when an older gentleman confessed to not wanting to go any further we went on ahead while a few others rested. In terms of scenery there was a variety of bird life, horses and picturesque valleys, lakes and mountains. The glacier itself is a great landmark to make it to but for me I snapped photos of the valley along the way. It was one of those hikes where I rarely put my camera down. The hike altogether took us about 5 hours, none of it rushed. I highly recommend this tour. I've been living in Chile for one and a half years now and it's the best one we've done yet in terms of guide knowledge, suitably challenging and well organised.
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