Located about 220 km north of Coyhaique, we find the Queulat National Park, discovered in 1767 by a Jesuit monk Jose Garcia Alsue, who sought the mythical lost city of the Caesars. According to the legend, in a remote part of the Patagonia, a city full of gold, silver and diamonds, known as the City of the Caesars would be found. There are many theories about how this city was formed and how many died trying to find it. To date, there is no indication that it ever existed. However, Queulat National Park remains one of the areas most untouched by human hands in our country, making itself into a natural treasure of incomparable wealth.
The journey in car is about 4 hours on the Austral road, crossing rivers, lakes, fjords, and waterfalls ... the most beautiful views of the North Patagonia in our region. Once we arrive at the park we will see a preview of our main objective: the Queulat Hanging Glacier, where you can appreciate the beauty of these ancient glaciers located in the Patagonian Andes at 2,255 meters above sea level. This glacier was discovered in 1875 by Henry Simpson who wrote in his reports that the ice reached 100 meters from the shore of the Pacific Ocean, but over time due to climatic changes, has receded. The ice is now being found about 8 kilometers from the seashore. The trail from the lookout point to the point closest to the glacier is 3.3 km, medium difficulty, taking about 2 1/2 hours. The climate is humid and the ground is in good condition.
It is recommended that you have trekking shoes, trekking poles, a water bottle and snacks. Oh, and of course a camera or video camera to capture the beauty! Walking the path to the Queulat Hanging Glacier is an unforgettable experience. The visitor can enter the Patagonian forest and enjoy breathtaking views, singing birds, and the constant sound of water falling from the glacier in the form of waterfalls from the Laguna of icebergs. The thick vegetation surrounds the visitor in the old paths of early explorers of this land who formed the mystic seeking City of the Caesars, the lost treasure of the Patagonia.
The original name in the Tehuelche language is Chelenko, meaning storms. This lake has an area of 1850 square kilometers (1150 square miles) of which 970 km (603 miles) are located in Chile, making it the largest lake in the Chilean territory. Also, it is the Fourth largest lake in all of South America following Lake Maracaibo in Venezuela, Lake Titicaca and Lake Poopo. The Lake has a maximum depth of 590 meters (1936 ft), and the blue-green color of the water is due to the enormous amount of glacial streams that flow from the Andes. On the shores of the Lake there are formations of calcium carbonate mineral.
Over the years, the lake's waters have sculpted these mineral rocks creating beautiful formations which are known as Los Catedrales de Marmol (The Marble Caves). The area is of incredible beauty as the rock formations appear to float on the clear waters of the lake, creating a beautiful maze that is only accessible by small boats that set sail from Puerto Tranquilo. The trip in vehicle is approximately 3 hours from Coyhaique, going South on the Carretera (Highway) Austral. During the trip the visitor will appreciate the view of Cerro Castillo (Castle Hill) with its beautiful snow-capped peak, as well as Rio Ibañez (Ibanez River), with nice photographic views. On the banks of Rio Ibanez, we will find the valley of the dead forest, where the remains of tree trunks give us an idea of the damage that the Hudson Volcano eruptions in 1971 and 1991 caused. The flowers and vegetation of this spot is impressive and the beautiful landscapes captivate visitors with its unique beauty. From Puerto Tranquilo we will start the tour embarking on a small motorboat, arriving to the turquoise waters of General Carrera Lake to the Marble Caves.
The trip across the Lake takes about an hour. The Lake’s turquoise water transforms this body of water into a natural gem, captivating every visitor with its beautiful colors, thus leaving the memory of an unforgettable trip.
Horseback riding: Horseback riding around the ranch on beautiful and gentle horses with all of the security measures necessary to enjoy galloping through the plains surrounded by flora and wildlife. Activity suitable for the whole family.
Sheepherding: If you prefer to enjoy a day as a "gaucho" we recommend you to opt for sheepherding. While riding a horse, you will see how the sheep dogs help you to care for the flock.
Trekking: For those who prefer to walk and take pictures, Estancia del Zorro provides trails of medium difficulty trekking where visitors can enjoy the natural surroundings accompanied by the wildlife, flamingos, geese, queltehues, pheasants, alpacas, and sheep, among others.
Patagonia BBQ Roast: Because good food is a must on an unforgettable day, Estancia del Zorro, along with its chef and staff will share with you a delicious “Asado de Cordero al palo” (spit-roasted lamb on a stick), cooked over an open fire. The "stick" has roasted meat that is set up within inches of a fire where it is cooked for about 3 hours along with potatoes, homemade bread, tortas criollas, (fried bread) salad and obviously a good red wine. Truly exquisite, unique and our own regional cuisine.
Estancia del Zorro is pleased to share with its visitors the essence of our region, the daily life of the "gaucho", enjoying the spirit of the Patagonia.
Aiken Park: About 45 minutes from Coyhaique in the direction of Puerto Aysén, we will find one of the major parks in the region, where there is an abundance of ferns and big leaved nalcas (giant rhubarbs), plus the intermittent typical rain that accompanies the visitor. You will experience beautiful views, waterfalls, and the shores of Lake Riesco will delight the eyes and soul. The trek is medium difficulty.
Hands Cave Paintings -Cerro Castillo- Puerto Ingeniero Ibañez: About 100 km (62 miles) south of Coyhaique, we find the town of Cerro Castillo, whose name is derived from the helpless mountain ridge that bears its name, beautiful hiking and photographic tour that captures every visitor, different paths lead to unique, beautiful views of the Region. Puerto Ibañez is on the shores of Lake General Carrera, and is a small town where you can appreciate the beauty of the lake water and have access to regional crafts. The trip may include going to the Hands Cave, where you can find cave paintings made by the Tehuelches Indians who inhabited this area.
Route 6 Lagoons: On the outskirts of the city, about 20 minutes by car one can access this trail where the roads take visitors to see beautiful lakes in the region, nestled in between the mountains, the Lake Atravesado and gorgeous views of the Simpson Valley (leaving early it can be done in half a day)
Coyhaique Natural Reserve: At 5 km(3 miles) north of Coyhaique we find the Natural Reserve with beautiful trails that penetrate the regional flora, moist fragrant forests, and the sound of the birds is the perfect travel companion. In the park there are some lagoons, the most famous ones being the Venus Lagoon and Green lagoon. (can be done in half a day)
The Carretera Austral is recognized worldwide as one of the most attractive destinations for biking, every summer athletes and enthusiasts around the world travel the 1,240 kilometers (771 miles) of road between Puerto Montt and Villa O'Higgins. Our strategic location in Coyhaique, allows the Road to be divided into two portions: North Carretera Austral- from Coyhaique to Futaleufu - Chaiten. Or the South Carretera Austral- from Coyhaique to Villa O'Higgins. Each tour is unique and special. If your passion is for this sport, our region invites you to see each one of its hot spots. Excellent Choice!
In 1834, Charles Wood Taylor designed our Nation's Coat of Arms which was formalized in 1967 with the current model where one of the most majestic birds of our country appears... the Condor. The tour is called “Waking up with the Condors”. The tour begins at 5 am and from Coyhaique it is approximately 1.30 hrs driving east towards the "Estancia punta del Monte” where you will observe the awe-inspiring flight of one of the largest birds in South America. Definitely a captivating experience.
The tour begins with panoramic views from around the region, beautiful views of the Divisadero Mckay hills, the Coyhaique and Simspon Rivers, and the hospitality and friendliness of the Coyhaiquinos who love visitors. The tour includes a visit to a microbrewery, a small local beer brewery.
And in the main square you can buy souvenirs and handmade crafts made by local craftsmen.
In addition, you can always enjoy a good coffee, hot chocolate or a piece of dessert in one of the many cafes and restaurants found in the region.