This post is also available in: Español
- 1 Preliminary considerations about the places to see in Torres del Paine
- 2 Places to see in Torres del Paine
- 2.1 Waterfall Salto Grande
- 2.2 Lake Pehoé
- 2.3 Skottsberg Lake
- 2.4 Cerro Paine Grande
- 2.5 Valle del Francés
- 2.6 French Glacier
- 2.7 British Viewpoint
- 2.8 Lake Nordenskjöld, an essential place to see in Torres del Paine
- 2.9 Almirante Nieto Mountain
- 2.10 Torres del Paine Bader Valley
- 2.11 Cuernos del Paine
- 2.12 Cerro Paine
- 2.13 Ascencio River Valley
- 2.14 The towers of “Torres del Paine”
- 2.15 Glacier Grey
- 2.16 Hanging bridges in Torres del Paine
- 2.17 Lake Paine
- 2.18 Lake Dickson
- 2.19 Los Perros Glacier
- 2.20 John Garner Pass
- 3 Summary of all the places see in Torres del Paine according to the route
Are you planning your trip to Chile? Surely you have thought about going to Torres del Paine National Park, known worldwide for its trekking routes. It is one of the most coveted destinations for those who like to explore the immensity of nature.
To give you an idea of what awaits you in the park, today we tell you all the must-places to see in Torres del Paine depending on the circuit you decide to do.
Preliminary considerations about the places to see in Torres del Paine
We are going to explain everything you will find but there is something you should keep in mind. There are different circuits available, such as the famous W Trek of Torres del Paine, or the Circuit O and each of them has a different duration. Therefore, and by pure statistics, the more days a route lasts, the more places you can see.
In addition, you also have the option, for example of doing the W Trek in winter, where some of the areas remain closed, or the W Trek Express, which summarizes the same route in less time. On the other hand, you can also do a Torres del Paine Full day tour, where you will obviously not have time to see everything.
In short, depending on the circuit you choose you will be able to see some places, others or all. Here we go!
Places to see in Torres del Paine
Waterfall Salto Grande
We are talking about a fall of about 10 meters high, formed by a riach that goes from Lake Nordenskjöld, to Lake Pehoé.
It is a well known point of the trekkings by Torres del Paine from Puerto Natales. In the multi-day W Treks, it is a place very close to Puerto Pudeto, one of the exits of Torres del Paine.
The Lake Pehoé is one of the most beautiful lakes in Torres del Paine. From its turquoise waters you can see the immensity of the National Park.
It is a navigable lake that in the W Treks is essential to leave the national park, as it connects the virgin terrain of Torres del Paine, with Puerto Pudeto.
Very close to Lake Pehoé is Lake Skottsberg. It is part of the Paine Grande Sector, as it is on the southern slope of Cerro Paine Grande.
It will be a passage area on your way to Grey Glacier during the W Circuit.
Cerro Paine Grande
This is the highest mountain in the area. It is one of the most important points of Torres del Paine, since it also gives its name to the Paine Grande Sector.
Although it is located within the Paine Grande mountain range, the Cerro Paine Grande is the highest of the 4 hills that form it, with 3,050 meters above sea level.
By skirting it, you will be able to see the wonderful views of its hanging glaciers, such as the French Glacier.
Valle del Francés
It is located in the heart of the “W” circuit, and is a mandatory stop for all visitors to Torres del Paine.
The trek through the French Valley is one of the difficulty of the Torres del Paine treks. The slopes that make up the valley get steeper and steeper, especially in the last two kilometers before reaching the Mirador del Valle del Francés.
Undoubtedly, it is one of the most breathtaking places where you will enjoy the most due to the difficulty to reach the viewpoint.
Located in the French Valley, this is a hanging glacier. It is one of the glaciers that form on the slopes of Cerro Paine Grande, and that is where its name comes from.
Once you reach the French Valley Viewpoint, you will have the possibility of continuing a few more kilometers to the Mirador Británico.
These are more complicated trails, with a more exaggerated slope, but the wonderful views it offers to make it well worth it.
Lake Nordenskjöld, an essential place to see in Torres del Paine
The Lake Nordenskjöld is one of the most important lakes of the visit to Torres del Paine. It goes from the Paine Grande Sector to the Central Sector, so from its waters there are complete views of the southern part of the National Park.
On the shores of the lake you can perform climbing activities, as in the Cueva del Puma, or ride on horseback along the shore of this green lake.
Almirante Nieto Mountain
At the shores of Lake Nordenskjöld is Almirante Nieto Hill, an imposing mountain 2,670 meters above sea level.
The Almirante Nieto Mountain can be seen both in the W Circuit and in the O Circuit, since it is a passing place in both routes.
Torres del Paine Bader Valley
The Bader Valley separates Cerro Almirante Nieto from another of Torres del Paine’s most important landscapes, the Cuernos del Paine.
From this valley, you can see up close mountains that normally go unnoticed because they are more hidden. These are the Cerros Máscara, Hoja and Espada, all of them hidden behind the majesty of the Cuernos del Paine.
This place is one of the least known of this national park. Normally, only in the Alternative W Trek is it possible to access the Bader Valley.
Undoubtedly, it is one of the best options to discover Torres del Paine from a different perspective. There are few people that you will find in this place, which will make this trek more attractive, for the tranquility of touring the entire park just you and nature.
Cuernos del Paine
It is undoubtedly one of the most popular places in Torres del Paine. These granite mountains with different shapes at the top create a very original landscape.
The Mirador Los Cuernos is one of the most visited. It is located on the south side of Lake Nordenskjöld, and from there you can see both Cerro Paine Grande and the Cuernos del Paine, as well as the French Valley that separates them.
In addition, this place is characterized because you can feel the strong winds characteristic of Patagonia.
The Cerro Paine is located in the Central Sector of the Torres del Paine National Park.
This mountain has a height of 1,508 meters, and is located in the easternmost part of Nordenskjöld Lake.
The slopes of this mountain are the most traveled of the entire park, since on its west face, is the access to the star monument, the Torres del Paine.
Although it is not very well known, there is the Mirador Cerro Paine, which is located on the top of the hill. From there, you can get the most original photographs of the Torres del Paine, since it is located above the Base Torres Viewpoint, the most popular of the place.
From above you will be able to see all the hikers, the size of ants, who visit the most traditional and well-known viewpoint of the Torres del Paine.
Ascencio River Valley
This is the valley that separates Cerro Paine from Cerro Almirante Nieto and leads to the Torres del Paine Base Viewpoint.
Its lower part is of fluvial formation, created by the Río Ascensio. Its upper part is of glacial origin, and you will even have to cross a glacial moraine, which will be the previous place to get to the Mirador de las Torres.
The towers of “Torres del Paine”
Located in the Chilean Sector, it is the place that gives its name to the national park. The Torres del Paine are three giant granite stones, the highest reaching 2,850 meters in height.
The adventurers have this place as the most precious point of their visit to Torres del Paine. Our companion Javi, in his travel experience in Torres del Paine, told us that seeing these stones from the viewpoint is something amazing.
On the slope, there is the Torres Glacier. The waters released from this glacier form Lake Torres del Paine, which, along with the Torres themselves, is the most popular photo of the excursions in Torres del Paine.
Given its importance, there are single-day tours to Torres del Paine, in which hikers are essentially taken to this location.
In the westernmost part of the national park, lies the Grey Sector. Its name is due to the imposing Glacier Grey found there.
The Grey Glacier is integrated within the Southern Patagonian Ice Field. This is an ice mass that extends over 16,800 square kilometers, divided between Argentina and Chile.
Fruit of the Grey Glacier is the Lake Grey. It is also one of the most important points of the national park since you can practice kayaking activities inside the Grey Glacier Lake.
Another of the most impressive activities is the possibility of walking over the glacier itself on its northern side, which you can do during the W Alternative Trek.
Hanging bridges in Torres del Paine
Next to the Grey Glacier, there are some hanging bridges of about 50 meters long, from which you can marvel at the views of the glacier itself. Undoubtedly a vertigo activity, which you will see rewarded with its views.
This will be one of the restricted activities in the W Trek in winter, due to the difficulty and danger of this activity during this season.
The Lake Paine is located in the Sector Serón, the northeastern part of the Torres del Paine Circuit O. It is one of the places that you can only visit if you take this tour.
In the lake you will see an incredible landscape, reflecting in its waters the mountains that surround it. If the day is clear, you will even be able to see the northeast summit of the Paine Massif, along with forms such as the “Indian Head”, “Shield”, “Cube” and Dickson.
The climate in this area normally exceeds 20º C. This is why depending on the season in which you visit Torres del Paine, you will be able to enjoy its rich flora and fauna to a greater extent.
The Lake Dickson is located in the sector that bears the same name, the Dickson Sector. The camp located in this sector is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful of all the campsites in Torres del Paine.
During the visit to Lake Dickson, you will be able to see the glaciers that feed this lake, the Dickson, Cubo, and Frias glaciers.
Due to the recession of the ice, this lake has become a binational lake between Chile and Argentina.
Los Perros Glacier
Another of the points only accessible through the O Circuit, is the Perros Sector. It is the northwestern part of Torres del Paine National Park.
Through the Valle de los Perros, you discover the Los Perros Glacier. It is a hanging glacier, whose water comes from Cerro Blanco Sur and Cerro Ostrava.
Unfortunately, it is one of those with the greatest retreat in the last 20 years, although it still retains its spectacular views of Lago Glaciar Los Perros, with the glacier tongue feeding the lake.
John Garner Pass
Finally, this is one of the most spectacular viewpoints in the entire national park.
At 1,200 meters above sea level, it is attached to the Grey Glacier. From there, you can see the entire tongue of ice coming from the Southern Patagonian Ice Field, which ends at Grey Lake.
Summary of all the places see in Torres del Paine according to the route
In summary, we leave you a table with the places to see in Torres del Paine according to the tour you choose.
|W Trek||Base Torres del Paine in 1 day||W Trek Express||Alternative W Trek||O Circuit|
|Waterfall Salto Grande||✔||✘||✔||✔||✘|
|Cerro Paine Grande||✔||✘||✔||✔||✔|
|Valle del Francés||✔||✘||✔||✔||✔|
|Cerro Almirante Nieto||✔||✔||✔||✔||✔|
|Bader Valley de Torres del Paine||✘||✘||✘||✔||✘|
|Cuernos del Paine||✔||✘||✔||✔||✔|
|Las Torres del Paine||✔||✔||✔||✔||✔|
|Glacier Los Perros||✘||✘||✘||✘||✔|
|John Garner Pass||✘||✘||✘||✘||✔|
This concludes all the points that you can visit within the Torres del Paine Park. Each one has its magic, especially for the views of each place.
And you, have you already visited Torres del Paine National Park? Have we missed any place to see in Torres del Paine that was important to you?