Patagonia, the very name conjures up images of remoteness, of majestic mountains and of great ice fields.
Surrounded by three oceans it gives the region an impression of being perched on the edge of the world.
It is believed that Lady Florence Dixie, a Scottish traveller, was the first tourist to arrive in the area and in her book in 1880, she referred to the amazing geological formations to be found here, as the “Cleopatra Needles”. In 1916, the priest Alberto de Agostini (who gives his name to a national park in Chile) made first explorations in the region and went on to show it to the world in his excellent expositions and publications. Since then, many scientists and climbers have carried out expeditions.
It was declared a national park in 1959, and in 1976 the mountaineer John Gardner, with two park rangers, circled the massif of Paine, giving rise to the most famous trekking circuit in Chile - The Torres del Paine (The Towers of Paine).
The Torres del Paine National Park is situated in the south of the Southern Patagonian Ice Field, which is the most extensive field of glaciers in the world after Antarctica and Greenland. Part of this ice field is protected under national parks law, and it is the origin to four major glaciers Dickson, Grey, Pingo, and Geikie.
Torres del Paine is well known by the three magnificent granite massifs shaped by glaciers, to which it owes its name. A landscape that seems to be taken from our imagination; powerful mountains rising up from the flat steppes, surrounded by ice fields, glaciers and lakes, with waterfalls emerging everywhere.
It is one of the most spectacular treks that can be done in the world.
Over the next few weeks we will be travelling round the Torres del Paine circuit and hope you will join us on our journey.
If you would like more information on the Toress del Paine circuit our guidebook is available as an iphone app, ibook or Kindle book and can be purchesed here