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One Week in Chile: Our Recommendations

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Although we recommend a two-week Chile itinerary to cover the country’s main highlights, travellers intending to spend just an extended weekend or one week in Chile don’t have to be disappointed. With careful planning and prioritization, even visitors on a time crunch can make the best of their short trip to Chile. Below, we have listed a handful of Chile itineraries for around one week, lasting from four to seven days, each featuring a different pursuit to fit your personal taste.

4 days in Chile: A Self-Drive road trip

A huge rock island in the middle of a lake
The Marble Caves in Lake General Carrera can only be accessed through kayak or a boat
A women kayaks through a cave on turquoise waters
The blue and grey chambers of Marble Caves are submerged in turquoise waters lending them a vibrant, illuminated appearance
Day 1 Visit Puerto Tranquilo en route to General Carrera Lake
Day 2 Stop at the confluence of the Baker and Neff rivers on the way to Caleta Tortel
Day 3 Boat trip to the ‘Island of the Dead’ before reaching Puerto Bertrand
Day 4 Stunning scenery on the final day before returning the vehicle


Have less than a week in Chile? Don’t want to follow the beaten track? Try getting behind the wheel and exploring the best of the country in a four-day road trip. Start at Balmaceda and drive south on Chile’s Route 7, known more evocatively as the Carretera Austral. Uncover some of Chile’s hidden gems — stop off to visit sleepy lakeside towns like Puerto Tranquilo, kayak the General Carrera lake to witness the Marble Caves, appreciate stunning landscapes and marvel at exquisite viewpoints. See tour.

5 days in Chile: Hike the W Trek

Three towering rock formations against the backdrop of turquoise blue lake
Torres del Paine National Park gets its name from the three rock towers
Day 1 From Puerto Natales, take a bus to Torres del Paine
Day 2 Enjoy some of the best views of the park from Las Torres base
Day 3 Hike at Nordenskjold Lake and see incredible hanging glaciers
Day 4 Appreciate the majestic views of French Glacier
Day 5 Trek to Grey Glacier lookout points

For those looking to skip the hustle of Santiago, and dive straight into the heart of Chile, this five-day trek in Torres de Paine National Park is an ideal choice. Head straight to Puerto Natales to start off your Chile trip. Trek the famous ‘W’ trail as you marvel at the sparkling lakes, mighty glaciers and sublime scenery of the park. The highlight of the trek is the hike to the base of the Paine Towers, the three geological formations that give the park its name. Also, try to spot some of the region’s abundant wildlife, including guanacos, foxes and even pumas during your stay. See tour.

6 days in Chile: Cycle the Atacama Desert

two people cycle through a track of an arid landscape
Cycling through the arid valley of Atacama Desert can be difficult but nonetheless a once-in-a-lifetime-experience
Day 1 In San Pedro de Atacama cycle to the Valle de la Luna
Day 2  Cycle through the Atacama Salt Flats and visit flamingo lagoons
Day 3  A long bike ride downhill to Caspana 
Day 4  Bike to see the views of Atacama Salt Flats and Licancabur Volcano
Day 5  Visit Yerbas Buenas Petroglyphs and ride in the little-known Rainbow Valley
Day 6  Transfer to airport

If you’d like to venture into an off-beat trip but are short on time, this six-day mountain bike adventure in the Atacama Desert is hard to resist. Kick off in San Pedro de Atacama and cycle to the otherworldly Valle de la Luna. Explore the arid desert on mountain bikes every day. Pedal through the hostile terrain of the Atacama Salt flats and observe flamingos in their harsh natural habitat. Experience exhilarating long downhill rides and stunning vistas on this once-in-a-lifetime trip. See tour.

7 days in Chile: Snow, Ski and Cities

Skiing in Portillo, Chile
A winter holiday in Chile is possible if you are into snow and skiing
Day 1 Arrive in Santiago and take a guided tour of the city
Day 2 Travel to Valparaíso and sample local products including Chilean wine
Day 3 Start a four-day skiing trip at Portillo Ski Centre
Day 4 Spend your time skiing and enjoying the facilities at the resort
Day 5 Try yoga, sauna, swimming and other activities
Day 6 More skiing
Day 7 Transfer to airport

This seven-day Chile itinerary is perfect for the active traveler who is looking for a winter getaway in the country during winter. Explore the exciting attractions of Santiago before heading to the unmissable town of Valparaíso, a UNESCO-listed World Heritage Site. A trip to the region’s famous vineyards is the highlight of the journey. Do not miss the opportunity to sample wines and try some delicious food. Next, head off to the Portillo Ski Centre for the last four days of the tour. Enjoying some of the best skiing experiences the country has to offer, before pampering yourself at the facilities in the resort after dark. See tour.

As seen in the itineraries provided above, just one week in Chile or even less is enough to make a memorable trip to country. If you’d like to plan a similar holiday or something completely different for yourself, connect with our Travel Experts in Chile. For other recommended itineraries and possible trip durations, check out our guide on how long to spend in Chile.

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Marius Perrois Travel Expert in Chile
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    Marius Perrois
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    Macarena Colla
    Travel Expert in Argentina & Chile
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    Maria Szlafsztein
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