Please enable JavaScript to continue using this application.
Destinations
Help
English
USD $
search icon
Login
Sign up

Login
Sign up


W Trek Alternative

The most adventurous alternative to the classic W along the unknown paths of Torres del Paine with a professional guide

5 days
From
$1,840


Summary
Itinerary
What to bring
Reviews
FAQs

W Trek Alternative tour information

location_onPuerto Natales
timer 5 days
chat English and Spanish

Starts

At the Puerto Natales Bus Station at 06:30 a.m.

Ends

To the Puerto Natales Bus Station at 9:00 p.m.

Included

  • Access ticket to Torres del Paine National Park
  • Bus transfer from Puerto Natales to Torres del Paine (round trip)
  • Transfer in Catamaran from Pehoe Lake to Pudeto
  • 1 night's accommodation in Sector Central
  • 2 night's accommodation in Los Cuernos Sector
  • Welcome kit: liner; microfiber towel; stainless steel water bottle; a map and a notebook
  • Food every day (breakfast + dinner in the dining room and lunch-box)
  • Bilingual guide
  • Activity Horseback ride or guided climbing activity on day 2
  • 1 night's accommodation in Sector Grey

Not included

  • Other meals

error_outlineImportant information


The day before the tour starts you must go to the commercial office in Puerto Natales to receive an informative talk and pick up the welcome kit along with the maps and other necessary documentation to carry out the activity. You will be informed of the schedule for this talk by email.
The order of the visits could be altered, but it will not affect the content of the program. The schedules of the tickets and transports could be subject to modifications.
SAFE ADVENTURE ‚Äď Covid 19
This activity includes the appropriate protection measures to ensure your safety. In addition, our excursions are outdoor and in small groups to reduce the risk of contagion. Remember to follow the instructions of the staff during the development of the excursion.

restoreCancellation policy


Free cancellation! You can cancel this tour and you'll receive 100% refund of the amount paid if you cancel more than 31 days in advance. After this time, or in case you do not show up, no refunds will be given.
bookmark_borderBriefing
If you are looking for an alternative to the classic W of Torres del Paine, we present you the Alternative W Circuit, the unknown route of Torres del Paine National Park. Did you think we didn't have any trails left to walk? We're happy to say that you were wrong. We invite you to enjoy the impressive granite towers that give the name to the park from another perspective. To walk by the impressive Cuernos del Paine and to be surprised by the little known Bader Valley in Torres del Paine in the company of a professional mountain guide. Choose the type of accommodation that best suits you: camping or shared room in the refuge. Both located in the different sectors of the Park. You will spend the first night in the Central Sector, the following two in the Cuernos Sector, and the last one in the Grey Sector.

The 5-day Alternative W Circuit is a guided tour in a small group through the still unknown and little-traveled trails of Torres del Paine National Park. The tour includes everything necessary to enjoy a complete experience: transfers, accommodation, food, bilingual guide...and adventure activities! Choose between Horseback Riding or Rock Climbing and get immersed in the Patagonian culture. And there's more! If you are in the mood to have a knees-up, you can add an extra activity to your reservation: Kayaking on Grey Lake or Ice Walking on Grey Glacier. Which will be the lucky one?

Come on! Get your poles ready, we're off! Ready to discover the alternative to W Trek? Read on, and find out the full itinerary of the Alternative W Trek:

Tour itinerary

todayBriefing - Puerto Natales

The day before the beginning of the Alternative W Circuit in Torres del Paine we will make the informative briefing in the commercial office of Puerto Natales.

There we will explain everything necessary to carry out the Circuit. We will also give you the welcome kit together with the maps, and all the necessary documentation to enjoy the activity.

todayDAY 1 Cerro Paine Trekking

Difficulty: High - 15 km (8-10 hours) Initial altitude 120 masl. Maximum altitude 1508 masl. Accommodation: Central Sector
access_time6 : 30 AM
Puerto Natales

The Patagonian adventure begins!

Today will start early, but don't worry, sometimes getting up early is worth it. You must be at the Puerto Natales bus station at 6:30 a.m. where we will take the 7:00 a.m. bus to Torres del Paine National Park.

access_time9 : 30 AM

After 2 and a half hours, we will arrive at the Welcome Center of the Torres del Paine National Park where we will register as visitors with the help of our guide and enter the Park. And let the route begin!

Our goal today, one of the most impressive viewpoints of the Torres del Paine National Park located at 1,508 meters high: the Cerro Paine Viewpoint.

access_time10 : 00 AM
Cerro Paine Viewpoint

We will start the walk through the lush forest of the Ascencio Valley. The trail will then ascend by Agostini's route, where explorer and documentary filmmaker Alberto de Agostini took the famous photo of the Towers in the 1940's. Prepare your camera, with luck we will be able to take the same snapshot ;)

And as every effort has its reward, we will arrive at the Cerro Paine Lookout!

From the Cerro Paine viewpoint, we will see how the Mirador Base Torres through which the classic W passes will be at our feet. Travelers who are not doing the Alternative W Circuit will look like ants from here!

Below us will be the Towers to the west, the Paine River Valley and the Blue Lagoon to the east, and Lake Nordenskjöld and Lake Sarmiento to the south.

A unique panorama that includes granite towers, glaciers, lakes, forests and pampas in a single 360¬į view. Only by going through the Alternative W Circuit we can access the Cerro Paine Viewpoint.

access_time1 : 00 PM
Lunch - Back to Central Sector

In front of these impressive views, we'll make a rest stop for lunch. Full belly, happy heart!

With a full belly and charged batteries we'll start our way back to Central Sector, where we'll have dinner and spend this first night.

todayDAY 2 Horseback riding or Rock climbing - Trekking to Sector Cuernos

Difficulty: Medium - 11 Km (3'5 hours) Initial altitude 120 masl. Lodging: Sector Cuernos
access_time7 : 30 AM
Breakfast at Refugio Central

Good morning from Torres del Paine National Park!

The second day of the route, will undoubtedly be the most complete of all. The day will start early. We will have breakfast with the rest of the travelers in the common dining room of the Refugio.

Breakfast will be served between 7:30 and 8:30 a.m. every day. When we finish our breakfast we will pick up our lunch-box and, together with our guide, we will set off.

access_time9 : 00 AM
Adventure activities

In the morning, adventure awaits. To start this second day of the alternative route to the W Trek you can choose between two activities included in the tour.

*If you don't want to do the activities and prefer to take advantage of the morning to recover your strength, don't worry! Take your time and rest in the common areas of the Refugio Sector Central, take a little walk in the surroundings, and enjoy this unique landscape.

Option 1: Horseback riding on the shores of Lake Nordenskjöld

The first, an unusual Horseback ride on the shores of Lake Nordenskjöldby professional riders.

This sounds like a postcard scene, doesn't it?

Option 2: Rock climbing in the Puma Cave

The second, for lovers of adrenaline, is a rock climbing session in the Puma Cave with professional instructors.

The Puma Cave has magnificent climbing walls with 4 routes of 3 levels of difficulty.

Do you know which of these two activities you'll take? We can't decide!

access_time1 : 00 PM
Lunch - Start of route to Cuernos del Paine

After this first part of the day, and with the adrenaline levels recharged, we will take a break to eat the lunch-box we picked up at breakfast. And now, let the second day's route begin!

In the afternoon, we will make a 11 km trek along the Nordenskjöld Lake and the Almirante Nieto Hill until we reach the impressive Cuernos del Paine.

Los Cuernos Sector

During the journey, the views of the Cuernos del Paine will accompany us in the background at all times. But that's not all! We will also observe hanging glaciers, lakes and corners where we will appreciate the flora and fauna of the area.

Until we reach the Cuernos Sector, where we will have dinner and spend the night. We’re going to sleep like babies tonight, aren’t we?

todayDAY 3 Trekking Bader Valley Torres del Paine

Difficulty: High - 7 Km (10 hours) Initial altitude 84 masl. Maximum altitude 1551 masl. Lodging: Sector Cuernos
access_time7 : 30 PM
Breakfast at Cuernos Refugio

We will wake up in the Cuernos Sector, in the heart of Torres del Paine National Park. What a view to start the day!

We will have breakfast in the common dining room of the Refugio along with the rest of the travelers and pick up our lunch-box. Since we are going back to sleep at the same refuge today, you will only have to carry in your backpack what you need to spend the day, the rest of the luggage you can leave here.

access_time8 : 30 AM
Bader Valley Torres del Paine

During this third day of the Alternative W Circuit, we will explore one of the less visited corners of Torres del Paine National Park. Get ready to feel the real tranquility of nature far from the crowds with this alternative to the W Trek.

The route will start from the Cuernos Refuge, from where we will turn to the Bader Valley in Torres del Paine.

Along the route we will cross forests and a base camp for climbers. The path will become more difficult as we advance further.

Coming up a rather loose and sloping stone moraine. At all times, we will be accompanied by our mountain guide who will give us the necessary directions to follow the Alternative W Circuit.

Viewpoint Bader Valley Torres del Paine

If the physical and climatic conditions of the day allow it, we will reach our peak today: the viewpoint of Valle Bader Torres del Paine.

A glacial lagoon with an incomparable landscape. Did you know this unusual place in Torres del Paine National Park?

access_time1 : 00 PM
Lunch - Return to Cuernos Sector

We will make a stop for lunch and enjoy the lunch-box we will have picked up in the morning at the Refuge. And we will return by the same way we came until we arrive again to the Cuernos Sector.

Where we will also have dinner and spend the night. It's time to recharge the batteries, the circuit is still going!

todayDAY 4 Trekking Grey

Difficulty: High - 22 km. (8-10 hours) Initial altitude 120 masl. Maximum altitude 320 masl. Lodging: Sector Grey
access_time7 : 30 AM
Breakfast at Refugio Cuernos

After having breakfast with the rest of the travelers, we will start our way with our professional mountain guide by the alternative route to the W Trek.

Today we will reach the third milestone of the Alternative W Circuit, the unforgettable postcard of the Park: the wonderful Glacier Grey.

access_time8 : 30 AM
Lago Nordenskjöld

The route will start passing a big waterfall where we will be able to fill the bottle with the purest water of Patagonia. How fresh!

Afterwards we will border the beautiful beach of the Nordenskjöld Lake where we will be able to observe the tranquility of its water. We will continue the way having a beautiful view of the French Glacier in the background.

Grey Lake Viewpoint

We will follow the trail along the Cerro Paine Grande, the highest point of the Massif with 3,050 meters high, in front of incredible views towards its hanging glaciers.

Walking between √Ďirres, Coig√ľes and Notros, we will reach the viewpoint of Grey Lake, where we will observe numerous ice floes floating as if it was magic. You won't know which one to photograph for your Instagram!

access_time6 : 00 PM
Refugio Grey

The Alternative W Circuit will continue with the impressive view of the Grey Glacier in front of us, until we reach the Grey Refuge, where we will have dinner and sleep.

Have you ever imagined spending the night on a stage like this? We may come to live here for a while…

todayDAY 5 Trekking to Hanging Bridges - Kayak or Ice Walk (optional) - Return to Puerto Natales

Difficulty: Medium - 18 Km (6-8 hours) Initial altitude: 80 masl. Maximum altitude: 340 masl.
access_time7 : 30 AM
Breakfast at Refugio Grey

Last breakfast in the mountain paradise.

On this fifth and last day of the Alternative W Circuit, we will have breakfast once again in the common dining room of the Refuge, with our friends and our guide. With our stomachs full, we will prepare our things and start our way.

access_time8 : 30 AM
Hanging Bridges

During the morning we will walk to the Hanging Bridges of Torres del Paine National Park that will offer us an impressive view of the southern ice fields. Selfie moment!

And now, if you are looking for a more extreme adventure to culminate this experience, we have something for you!

Optional activity: Kayak in Grey Lake or Ice Walk on Grey Glacier

Complete this experience by adding an extra activity that you will enjoy during this fifth day of the circuit.

You can choose as an extra the kayak excursion in Grey Lake or the ice walk on Grey Glacier. The Kayak activity has a duration of 2 and a half hours, while the Walk activity has a duration of 5 hours.

Will you keep charging the adrenaline counter by adding any of these two activities to your reservation?

If you don't want to add any of the extra activities, we will keep walking quietly with our guide through the W Trek alternative.

access_time6 : 30 PM
Pehoe Lake Pier - Return to Puerto Natales

Both those who have added the extra activity to their reserve, and those who prefer to enjoy the last day of the route in a more relaxed way, in the afternoon, we will all arrive together with our guide to the Paine Grande Sector.

From the Lake Pehoe pier we will take the catamaran that will take us to Pudeto. There our bus will be waiting for us to take us to Puerto Natales.

Puerto Natales

We will arrive at the Puerto Natales bus station around 9:00 p. m. And we will put an end to this adventure through the most unusual Chilean Patagonia.

Undoubtedly, the Alternative W Circuit, the alternative to the classic W of Torres del Paine, will be a unique way to know the Torres del Paine National Park through its still unknown trails.

What to bring to W Trek Alternative

The climate in Torres del Paine hike is very variable. The period when you do this is spring and summer, therefore you will have less rain and temperatures can range between 5¬ļ and 25¬ļ degrees (Celsius). In this zone, the climate is very changeable and during the same day you can suffer cold, heat and even strong winds. For that reason, it‚Äôs important to take good equipment and many layers of clothes to be able to regulate your temperature. We recommend you to take with you:
  • Passport + immigration card (the document given when stamping the passport)
  • Cash (USD) as no card payments are allowed in the area and there are no exchange houses or ATMs.
  • Medium trekking backpack (30 liters aprox.)
  • Long/Short Sleeve T-shirts (one for each day)
  • Long hiking trousers
  • Hiking shorts
  • Warm jacket or fleece
  • Cap or hat
  • Mountain shoes (if possible waterproof boots)
  • Resting shoes
  • Raincoat/waterproof poncho
  • Sandals (for showers)
  • Personal hygiene products
  • Flashlight and battery (especially useful in campsites)
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses
  • Photo camera
  • Walking poles

Where does the tour W Trek Alternative start

The 5 days W trek starts from Puerto Natales. If you are travelling from Santiago de Chile, the best option is to take a flight to Punta Arenas. From Punta Arenas, you can take a bus that is just 3:15 hours away and will bring you to the Puerto Natales bus station. Another very common starting point is El Calafate (Argentina), there are buses that connect this Argentinian city directly with Puerto Natales which is a 5 hours journey.

Questions & Answers

Are the activities Horseback Riding on the shores of Lake Nordenskjöld and Rock Climbing in Puma Cave included in the Alternative W Circuit tour?
Yes, the activities Horseback Riding at Lake Nordenskjöld and Rock Climbing at Puma Cave are included in the tour. These activities will take place on the second day and you can only do one of the two. Choose the one that best suits you, and enjoy a different adventure in Chilean Patagonia!

I have never ridden a horse, can I do the Horse Ride on the shores of Lake Nordenskjöld?
Of course! The activity Horseback Riding on the shores of Lake Nordenskjöld included in the tour we will do during the second day does not require any previous experience. It is a quiet ride and you will be accompanied at all times by professional instructors who will provide you with all the material and knowledge necessary to enjoy the activity.

I have no climbing experience, can I do the activity Rock Climbing in the Puma Cave during day 2?
Yes! The activity Rock Climbing in the Puma Cave will be done in the company of professional instructors and it is not necessary to have previous experience or have climbed on rock before. The Puma Cave has 4 routes of 3 levels of difficulty: basic (with or without experience), medium and expert. So you can choose the one that best suits you and enjoy climbing in Torres del Paine National Park.

During day 2, I don't want to do the Climbing or the Horse Riding, can I stay resting in the Central Sector?
Of course! If during the second day of the route you do not dare to try either of the two activities included in the tour, you can take advantage of the morning to rest in the common areas of the Central Sector Shelter, or take a short walk around and enjoy this unique landscape. The guide will indicate the meeting point where you will gather in the afternoon to start the route with the rest of the group.

Book W Trek Alternative

5 days from
$1,840