This was such an incredible experience. I was in Chile for school so there were 4 of us that went and ended up meeting 2 Americans on the trip! The small group size was perfect.
Sofia was an amazing tour guide and made sure everyone was okay. We stopped on the way to the Andes to pick up lunch they ask if anyone has any dietary restrictions and you can buy drinks and snacks at the shop. I recommend bringing A LOT of water I had 4 bottles and a bottle of Gatorade and drank it all and snacks. I'm pretty active and this hike was very difficult--at times I didn't think I could do it! I wore layers because some points it was really hot and when you get to the top it's freezing and windy.
Pack your bathing suit and a towel and flip flops and a bag to hold all your dirty clothes in for the hot springs. The bathrooms were kind of dirty as other travelers pointed out but it wasn't that bad. The picnic afterwards was great!
It was a very long day--we didn't get back to our hotel in Santiago until about 11PM. BUT, it was worth it.
Bonnie H Canada
Feb 8,2016...What a fantastic day!! Our amazing guide Alejandro led us with 2 other couples up to the glacier lagoon 15 km return trip where we enjoyed a delicious bag lunch which was picked up just outside of Santiago from a delightful local organic vendor. Bring a windbreaker....just over the rise at the top, it got windy and cool, otherwise a clear sunny day with breathtaking views! After our hike, we drove to the hot springs, the end point of a very rugged road close to the Argentine border. After a wonderfully physically exerting hike, the hot springs were lovely and relaxing and Alejandro gave us all the time we needed to relax and enjoy....while he and our driver prepared a wine and cheese picnic which we thoroughly enjoyed before the return trip to Santiago. We were picked up at 8:30 a.m. and dropped off at 9:30 p.m. so this was a long day.....but we returned with that great physically tired but happily so kind of feeling. Alejandro was interesting, engaging and full of information about Chile and the Andes....showing a deep respect and appreciation for the natural beauty of his country...it was such a pleasure to spend the day in his company!
Wonderful tour and wonderful guide and driver! To those who have not done this, there is a of driving involved around 3 hrs each way from Santiago to El Morado and back. But it was worth it for a wonderful trek into the Andes mountains near the border of Argentina, an amazing view of glaciers and ice lake, then over to Hot Springs to relax after a 5 hour hike. Tour even provided wine, cheese, and other snacks after the hot springs. Really magical. Thank you so much for an amazing day!
Well worth it, had an amazing day, Franko was a great guide and made sure everyone made it to the top, best advise he gave when a couple of people were struggling was to take smaller steps and breathe through your nose, would suggest level of fitness should be between moderate to high. Hot springs were great to unwind and relax afterwards, with a great view of the mountains. Thanks for a fantastic experience and a great bunch of people in our group.
Very good. I highly recommend this tour. Alejandro was an excellent tour guide and was very informative. The tour included a very nice hike and followed by the hot springs. The hot spring pools were outdoors and the view was fantastic. I've been to several before in several countries. This one had the least infrastructure development to spoil the view and atmosphere.
This is a must-do! Daniel was professional, interesting, basically fun to climb a glacier with! He accommodated everyone on the tour to make it special. I got to the top of the glacier and the view was spectacular! I'd do it again in a heart beat. John Vozenilek 11/23/2015
This was an awesome day with our guide - Francine. The hiking was challenging, the scenery stunning, and the thermal springs were wonderful. The boxed lunch was great, and the dinner of empanadas and wine on the way home was the perfect end to the day. Kudos to our driver - he was excellent under extremely difficult road conditions. Highly recommend - be prepared for a long day!
Alejandro was basically the best tour guide ever. The trip was incredible! The views were amazing and the hot springs were the perfect way to end the day. Alejandro was super personal and made sure we enjoyed every aspect of the tour. I would definitely recommend this one!
Daniel was awesome! Great guide, trip, views, etc. Highly recommend
This was a wonderful tour. Our guide Chris was awesome and very knowledgeable. I would recommend this to anyone traveling in the Santiago area.
This was the highlight of our trip to Chile! Our guide Joaquin Bruna saw to our every need and safety was a priority. He was able to tell us about the sights we were seeing and seemed to be as awed by the scenery as we were, despite him having conducted this tour many times over the years. He was fun yet also careful. The boxed lunch was hearty, then when we arrived at the mineral pools, Joaquin produced a fabulous cheese board with wine that we devoured. The majesty of The Andes will be a treasured memory! We would 100% recommend this day trip for anyone who is reasonably fit.
Really great people and very nice tour. The guys of EcoChile really make us enjoy the whole day (even it was raining half of it). I would recommend it 100%. A must to escape from busy Santiago
Our Guide Alejandro picked us up right on time outside of the hotel on our street. The drive to the Andes was smooth and easy. There were only 4 of us total on the trip which made for some great trekking. 2.5 hour hike up the Andes was awesome and worth getting to the top near the glaciers. Make sure you bring warm clothing as it cools down once you are up there. The hot springs afterwards was the perfect way to end the day. Alejandro is a fantastic guide and answered all of our questions and fed us very well.
Tour was great over all and our tour guid Alejandro was very friendly and knowledgeable.At first the hike was pretty steep but then levelled out after about 45 min to an hour. Lunch was great and we could relax for a good amount of time. Its a little chilly during lunch because you aren't walking anymore, I brought a little blanket for my legs. Sadly, in May the road to the hot springs was closed so we were not able to go. Even though we paid for BOTH trek and hot springs we only went on a trek. We got back to the hotel early as a result, around 6pm. It was disappointing that nothing else could be done as a substitute. If there is snow in the mountains this year already by May 2016 i would recommend inquiring about the road conditions as they could cancel the hot springs. Otherwise great tour and beautiful views.
Guide was friendly and spoke English well. We were not able to go to the glacier since there was rain in the forecast and they were worried about rock slides. This was very disappointing and no apology or alternate activity was given. The provided lunch was good, and the snack after the hot springs was and excellent spread of cheese, bread and meat served with wine. Overall, a decent outing.
The guides were great! They are contracted through Viator after people have shown interest. Working with the Viator website and customer service is garbage. It was very easy to book the event, Viator charges your account right away. I needed to change the pick up location so I submitted the amendment 1 month prior to my trip. I immediately received an automated e-mail from Viator confirming that they had received my amendment and I would be contacted. No one contacted me. I had also received an automated e-mail saying that I would be received information on our guides, nothing came from that either. Not one of my 5 phone calls to the number provided on the reservation confirmation were answered and I did not receive a call back for the 3 voice mails that I left in both Spanish and English. We finally had someone from our group wait in the orginial pick up location while the rest of us waited in the new pick up location since we did not know where they guide was going to pick us up. They came to the original location. They were very nice about it and explained that they had not been contacted at all by Viator regarding our update. After that, the hike was amazing! It would have been a 5 star experience if it wasn't for the hassle of dealing with Viator's terrible customer service.
Sofia our guide was wonderful and a good person. The scenery and hike were awesome. Be warned though about potential altitude sickness. You'll be ascending pretty quickly up to 3100 meters and while I'm in decent condition I rapidly experienced dizziness, labored breathing etc - it felt like climbing while drunk! I think it would have been nice to have been warned of that possibility so one could take pills etc for it.
This trek is all the more energetic as it is at high altitude. Starts at the car park at about 2300 m and finishes at the foot of the glacier at about 3200 m. It is best suited to those who are physically able with higher level of fitness. The Hyundai van with 8 cramped tourists was at times made all the more uncomfortable when bumping over very rough unpaved rocky mountain roads despite the skillful driving by the driver. The hot springs were a disappointing series of muddy pools built into a hillside fed by a clear stream of hot volcanic water. The springs are very popular with local campers and tourists. On matters of potential safety for all aboard the van the driver indicated he lacked sleep as he had returned home at 2.00am after driving and trekking on the same 14 hour tour the day before. The sliding passenger doors on the van could only be opened from the outside with some effort by the driver or guide. On a positive note both the guide and driver were friendly, caring and knowledgeable. The mountain scenery was beautiful in the crystal clear sunny weather. The cheese and wine at the end of a long day was welcome.
This tour is not for beginners and there is nothing to do or see if you can not make the 5hr trek. The springs are difficult to get in and out of since they are muddy at the bottom and covered with rocks and there are no railings to assist you. Changing room has no heat or light. Tour description does not mention this.
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