At the edge of the Patagonian steppe and lakeshore is El Calafate. This small tourist town, with just over 20,000 inhabitants, is in Argentina’s Santa Cruz province, 316km from its capital Rios Gallegos.
Located at the gateway to Los Glaciares National Park, this breathtakingly beautiful area was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1981. Within the 600,000-acre park are some of Patagonia’s most important places, such as the Perito Moreno and Upsala glaciers, and Cerro Fitz Roy.
El Calafate is 80km from the national park and acts as a base from which the majority of the region’s activities are accessed. Trips to more remote places like El Chalten, and even the Torres del Paine National Park in Chile are all possible from El Calafate.
El Calafate’s tourism infrastructure is ideal, with the city offering a variety of hotels, local cuisine and transport services.