Patagonia: North to South
Detailed Trip Information
January 11 - 29, 2019
Argentina & Chile
Patagonia, the bucket list tour for every off-road rider! You’ll explore the southernmost part of South America on almost half unpaved and sometimes challenging roads. Are you up for the adventure?
You will be rewarded with the incredible views of the Andes Mountains, the turquoise water of the Perito Moreno Glacier, and the towering granite horn of the Torres del Paine National Park. Experience all that Patagonia has to offer! We'll take a boat ride along the Beagle Channel, the strait in the Tierra del Fuego archipelago at the southern tip of South America, a trip that most travelers dream of!
The route is technically demanding with a mix of paved and unpaved roads. Riding in these conditions is fine as long as you are prepared. But no worries, that’s where we come in! We will take good care of you.
Highlights: City of Bariloche • Ruta 40 • El Bolson • Carretera Austral • Los Glaciares National Park • Torres del Paine National Park • Strait of Magellan • Tierra del Fuego • Fin del Mundo National Park • City of Ushuaia
Registration Deadline: October 12, 2018
Duration: 18-day vacation, 16 riding days,
2 travel days
Skill Level: (difficult)
Group Size: 6 – 12 motorcycles
Arrival: Temuco, Chile (ZCO)
Departure: Puerto Natales, Chile (PNT) or
Punta Arenas, Chile (PUQ)
Total Distance: 2,860 miles (4,600km)
Average Daily Mileage: 180 miles (288km)
Average Temperature: 61-86ºF / 16-30ºC
The first day in this itinerary is your departure from the U.S. or Canada. Depending on your flight schedule, you will arrive in Temuco, Chile either one or two days later (with one or two overnights). When you return, you will depart from Puerto Natales, Chile (PNT) or Punta Arenas (PUQ) and arrive back home on the next day. There are flights four times a week out of Puerto Natales (PNT). We highly recommend leaving a day later to fly out of Puerto Natales (PNT) because it’s closer to the hotel. Please note that dates may be subject to change.
Friday, January 11, 2019
Saturday, January 12, 2019
Sunday, January 13, 2019
Monday, January 14, 2019
Tuesday, January 15, 2019
Wednesday, January 16, 2019
Thursday, January 17, 2019
Friday, January 18, 2019
Saturday, January 19, 2019
Sunday, January 20, 2019
Monday, January 21, 2019
Tuesday, January 22, 2019
Wednesday, January 23, 2019
Thursday, January 24, 2019
Friday, January 25, 2019
Saturday, January 26, 2019
Sunday, January 27, 2019
Monday, January 28, 2019
Tuesday, January 29, 2019
Flight to Temuco, Chile
Arrival in Temuco
Temuco – Junin de los Andes, Argentina
Junin de los Andes – Bariloche, Argentina
Bariloche – Esquel, Argentina
Esquel – Puyuhuapi, Chile
Puyuhuapi – Coyhaique, Chile
Coyhaique, Chile – Puerto Guadal, Chile
Puerto Guadal, Chile
Puerto Guadal – Gobernador Gregores, Argentina
Gobernador Gregores, Argentina – El Calafate, Argentina
El Calafate, Argentina
El Calafate – Cerro Sombrero, Chile
Cerro Sombrero, Chile – Ushuaia, Argentina
Ushuaia – Porvenir, Chile
Porvenir, Chile – Puerto Natales, Chile
Puerto Natales, Chile or Punta Arena, Chile
Departure / Flight home
What Your Tour Includes
Your choice of motorcycle rental
Multilingual tour guide(s) with support vehicle
Ferry and tolls
Accommodations at comfortable, middle-class hotels (17 hotel nights)
Airport shuttle service
A detailed tour information package including maps and guide books
Price (per person)
*rates per person
Not Included in the Tour Price
Not included in the tour price are international or other airfare, fuel, entrance fees to parks, museums, etc., lunch and dinner, beverages, motorcycle gear, personal items, passport, speeding tickets and other fines, laundry and dry cleaning, telephone calls, beverages, personal hotel room charges, medical and accident insurance, and transportation to and from the airport for early arrivals and late departures.
To ensure that you have the easiest travel experience possible, Blue Rim Tours offers select services for an additional fee. If you are interested in early/late lodging arrangements, please let us know.
Deposit and Payment
A deposit of $500 per person is required to reserve your place on the tour. All deposits are nonrefundable and non-transferable. We accept personal checks, Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and money orders. On October 12, 2018, 50% of the tour price is due. The remaining balance of the tour is due before or on November 8, 2018.
The deadline for registration is October 12, 2018.
If for any reason you need to cancel your trip and do so (in writing) between October 12 and November 7, 2018, you forfeit 50% of the total tour price. November 8, 2018, and after the total tour price is non-refundable.
Minimum Tour Requirement
We reserve the right to cancel any tour if the number of participants booked does not meet the minimum requirement to operate the trip. Should that occur your payment will be refunded in full if we are unable to transfer you to another trip to your satisfaction. Please make your flight reservations after the registration deadline for the tour.
Trip & Medical Insurance
It is highly recommended that you get trip cancellation insurance. Also, check with your health insurance provider about your coverage while traveling overseas. For additional information on trip cancellation insurance, visit www.insuremytrip.com.
It’s a good idea to arrive early in order to acclimate yourself to the area and avoid travel delays. Please let us know your arrival plans in advance, so that we can make arrangements accordingly.
Arriving at the Temuco, Chile Airport (ZCO)
Once you arrive at the Temuco airport on Saturday, January 12, 2019, we’ll meet inside the airport, but we will give you a more detailed location closer to your departure.
Departing from the Puerto Natales (PNT) or Puerto Arenas (PUQ)
There are flights four times a week out of Puerto Natales, which is close to the hotel. If you fly out of Punta Arenas (PUQ), we will drop you off at the Puerto Natales bus station and you will take a bus directly to the Punta Arenas (PUQ) airport. The bus ride is about 2.5 hours and is included in your tour package. If you prefer to fly conveniently out of Puerto Natales, then you need to stay an additional day after the tour.
The hotels are tourist class hotels with a private bathroom and all provide breakfast. If you bring any electronic devices, remember that South America has different voltage (220V) and electrical outlets, so make sure you have the right converters and plugs and that your electronic devices work on both voltages. Casual clothes for evenings are fine; there’s no need for formal wear.
The group will be between six and twelve riders and will be led by one guide and support vehicle.
Available motorcycles may be subject to change.
BMW F 700 GS
BMW F 800 GS
BMW R 1200 GS
Motorcycles are reserved on a first-come, first-served basis, depending upon availability and are not guaranteed. The R 1200 GS is a good choice for two-up riding. If you do not have any experience with a model that you are considering, we suggest that you visit your local dealer to see which bike feels the most comfortable for you. Keep in mind that a smaller motorcycle is more manageable on dirt and gravel roads.
A non-refundable insurance payment of $300 in cash only, is due at the time of pick-up of the motorcycles.
The insurance deductible is $700. This insurance deductible can be paid in cash or will be held on your credit card (Visa, MasterCard, or Discover) at the time of picking up your motorcycle and is refunded upon inspection of the motorcycle for damages.
In case of minor damage to your motorcycle, an appraisal of the repair cost is made, based on the dealer’s cost, and paid from your deductible. In case the cost of any damage to the motorcycle is higher than the deductible, or if the bike is stolen, the deductible is forfeited entirely. The insurance company will cover the remainder of the cost.
Riding Equipment Recommendations
Proper riding gear (leather, GORE-TEX, Cordura) is essential to cope with the temperature changes due to altitude and weather conditions and to help protect you in case of an accident. Jeans (without Kevlar and armor) and chaps are not considered suitable riding gear. Bring your full-face helmet and riding boots, and don’t forget your raingear! Pack your heated gear, too, and bring the right cables and connectors. It’s also a good idea to pack two pairs of gloves (a warmer and a lighter pair).
The support vehicle will transport one bag per person. Please bring a waterproof duffel bag as your luggage, which will be transported by the chase vehicle. We suggest packing everything into this bag so that your belongings don’t get wet in the back of the pick up truck. You may also want to bring a small tail bag or backpack for personal items to mount to the motorcycle. If you bring a tankbag, make sure that it uses straps and not magnets, which won’t work on the plastic tanks.
Internet Access and Phone Service
Some hotels on the tour offer Internet access free of charge, but some might charge a small fee. Also keep in mind that purchased Internet access for hot spots in South America only work in large cities and in areas that we will not be covering on our tour. Ask your cell phone provider about their international calling plan and data package options available for trips and traveling abroad. Many cell phone companies, as well as SPOT, now sell global phones, which are useful if you plan to regularly travel outside of the U.S. or Canada. Another option would be to purchase a pre-paid cell phone or SIM card for international calling or to use Skype, or Facetime which is the most cost-efficient option.
The currencies on this tour are the Chilean and Argentinean Peso. It’s important to call your credit card company and let them know that you will be traveling in South America and when. You will need your credit card both to rent the bike and for the deposit. South America has switched from magnetic strips to chipped credit cards for increased security. Ask your bank or credit card company to find out if your card is chipped or if you have that option with your card. The cheapest and easiest way to get money is with a bankcard carrying a CIRRUS or MAESTRO symbol and for which you have a PIN (personal identification number). Please ask your bank if you have any questions.
Credit cards are also useful for getting cash, again, provided you have a PIN. Paying for services, such as food and souvenirs, with a credit card is still rather uncommon in small and remote places so make sure you have enough cash as a primary way to pay. We recommend using the ATM to withdraw money; this generally gives a much better exchange rate than exchanging money at the airport. Traveler’s checks are outdated and hard to exchange. You can estimate spending about $1,000 USD per person for all items which are not included in the tour price. That’s about $55 per person per day for fuel, lunch, dinner, snacks, and beverages.
Cash is still the preferred and most accepted payment method in South America.
There is no time difference between Eastern Standard Time and Argentina/Chile.
Roads and Traffic
Note, though riding an average of only 180 miles or 288 km per day may seem easy don’t be deceived. A good portion of this ride is on dirt and gravel roads. You must be comfortable riding off-road, partly in rough and challenging road conditions, in traffic as well as on narrow and curvy mountain roads.
In South America, tips are welcome but are not the standard 18-20% like they are in the U.S. In most places 5-10% is perfectly acceptable. Tipping the tour guides, however, is common. Based on your personal preference, $20-50 is usually what each person chips in, and $10-25 for the driver of the support vehicle/mechanic.
Temperatures will range between 60 and 80 degrees F. Patagonia is a windy place, though, so it can feel colder. It’s still a good idea to dress in layers so that you can easily adjust to changing weather conditions. Bring a heated jacket liner.
Blue Rim Tours
Ashley McDowell, Tour Concierge
3601 Edgemoor Court, Clemmons NC 27012