Punta Arenas – Chile (Southern Patagonia)
Punta Arenas is the southernmost (continental) city in America located on the shores of the Magellan Strait. Despite its remoteness, it has the most developed urban centre in Chilean Patagonia.
Wander around downtown Plaza de Armas or the new coastal boulevard, dig your camera out to get a panoramic shot of the city from the Mirador del Cerro de la Cruz, sip a cocktail in the casino’s Sky Bar with amazing views over the strait, take advantage of their tax-free shopping centre (Zona Franca) for buying trekking equipment, buy a souvenir and eat a typical dish at the Mercado Municipal, contemplate the city’s history in the gorgeous ornate municipal cemetery, and check out the monument to Magellan or the interesting museums (Maggiorino Borgatello, Regional, Armada de Chile, Militar Palacio Sara Braun and Instituto de la Patagonia).
Venturing out of town, pretend your name is Ferdinand and kayak on the strait, travel to Isla Magdalena or Seno Otway and waddle like a penguin amongst thousands (October-March), take the ferry for a day trip to Porvenir and the Pengüino Rey penguin colony in Tierra del Fuego, visit the mighty Fort Bulnes with its ocean views, put on your boots and do the 4 day trekking to Cape Froward, hike around Reserva Forestal Magallanes and discover Pali-Aike National Park or what the native Patagones used to call “Devil’s Country”.
HOSPEDAJE INDEPENDENCIA – Budget Category
This friendly hospedaje is one of the most popular in Punta Arenas with owners Eduardo and Pamela ready to welcome you in (speaking English too!) and offer you a shared asado most nights!
It is a really affordable option and you’ll pay the same per person whether you opt for a private room (double, matrimonial or triple) or the 4 bed dorm (all shared bathrooms).
You can also choose to camp outside and still get to use the handy kitchen, as well as plenty of camping equipment left from previous guests. In the winter you might prefer the heated rooms though and you can opt for the delicious homemade breakfast (that includes omelets!) or choose to skip breakfast for a more budget option.
It’s only 5 blocks from the center, but if you prefer pedal power the owners also rent bikes.
ADEL RENT A CAR
Adel Rent a Car specializes in car rental for long distance road trips and recommends their SUV 4WD / 4X2 Station Wagon, perfect safe vehicles for the ultimate jouney through Patagonia.
You can start or finish in Punta Arenas & Puerto Montt. Other pick-up and drop-off points are possible, including leaving from Chile and ending in Argentina or vice versa; just ask ADEL and they’ll organize it!
To really enjoy Patagonia’s Ruta 40, the Carretera Austral, Torres del Paine, Tierra del Fuego and other parts of Patagonia, it’s advisable to plan minimum 2 weeks (distance 3.500 to 5.000 km’s). So get your driving gloves on, dictate your own time schedule and feel the ultimate freedom during your dream trip!
ADEL’s helpful bilingual crew is awaiting you on the same block as the Punta Arenas tourist office, or call/mail them for a free price quote!
Rental of 3 days and more = no mileage limit!
WHERE ARE YOU HEADING NEXT?