Patagonia's Futaleufu offers some of the best whitewater rafting opportunities in the world. This Argentina and Chile travel adventure begins in Puerto Varas before traveling further into the heart of Patagonia. Days are spent splashing down the river, through Class III, IV, and even a Class V rapid! Luxury camping, horseback riding, kayaking and beautiful landscapes also await this Patagonia adventure. This is a great Patagonia tour for the experienced rafter, or the novice looking to improve their skills.
Arrive in Santiago,Chile. After completing customs, transfer onto a domestic flight to Puerto Montt. Look for our local representative for your transfer to the scenic town of Puerto Varas on Lago Llanquihue. In the evening gather for a group welcome dinner.
After breakfast, drive to Puerto Montt airport to take your short scenic flight to Chaiten. Drive through the temperate rainforest, passing countless waterfalls and hanging glaciers surrounded by jagged mountain peaks! Along the way pause for a short hike and a picnic lunch in Pumalin National Park. Arrive early afternoon at camp; camp orientation, swim, hot tub, and welcome happy hour. Unwind in your private tent platform with riverside views of the Futaleufu.
The Futaleufu called to you all night – today you'll answer! The morning begins with a comprehensive training session with world-class guides, followed by a set of practice drills. Your warm-up session is only 10 km long, but possesses more rapids per 1000 meters than anywhere else on the river. In the afternoon you may choose from mountain biking, hiking, fly-fishing class and our popular intro to hard shell, river kayaking clinic. A campfire under the stars finishes your Patagonia travel adventures today.
Today’s rafting journey takes you further down the river, where you come face to face with the Futaleufu’s more aggressive personality. Your adventure takes you past the Puente Futaleufu, Mas o Menos, and into your first Class V technical rapid, Casa de Piedra – House of Rock! After the tough rapids, we switch gear and Kayak Clinic part II starts, you can fish or just ” booze cruise “ as we drift into lunch which is served off the grill on a remote island where we will relax. After lunch resume the kayaking and a most scenic mellow float for 5 kms to Puerto Ramirez take out. Short drive back to camp for hot tubbing, massage, relaxing and dinner! Tonight, relax as the sound of the river lulls you to sleep.
Venture up the canyon to the Rio Azul side valley. Here you find crystal-clear water forming gentle Class II-III rapids that are the perfect arena to become a great captain of your own boat. Today gain experience navigating your very own inflatable kayaks. There is something deeply satisfying when paddling your own boat down river, knowing that your destiny is in your own hands. Of course your highly trained guides are there to coach you and provide safety should you need assistance.
After breakfast, continue to explore the Azul valley on horseback for a three hour ride. Stop for lunch and you will enjoy a quick hike to La Cascada – a beautiful multi stepped 200 ft + waterfall. Aching to get back in the river? Trade in the saddles for paddles and splash into the water and kayak down the Rio Azul. This evening return to base camp for a massage and drink after a "biathlon" day.
You spend the early part of your day exploring the charming mountain town of Futaleufu before launching your rafts. Your journey takes you up the Rio Epsolon where you put-in as you descend back to the Futaleufu River at Inferno Canyon. This is a very adventurous day of rafting, including a three-mile canyon of Class V whitewater. Then float down to Zeta and Throne Room rapids which we walk around, only to resume paddling the exciting “Wild Mile “- four miles of class IV fun rapids. You tread lightly and safely through these exciting and humbling waters with some of the world's best raft guides.
Ths best is saved for last! Wake up to a beautiful morning and get ready for the grand river-rafting climax! Today meet “The Terminator,” the longest and toughest rapids on your journey. Take the plunge, and hold on for the next three miles of non-stop wild rapids. Calm waters return – just in time – and you float into base camp for lunch. Return to the river to tackle as much whitewater as the day allows. Celebrate into the night – feast to your heart’s content on roasted lamb, ensalada, potatoes, and fresh bread. Toast your wonderful whitewater adventure and the mighty Futaleufu!
Day 9: Transfer to Chaiten | Fly to Puerto Montt
Early morning drive back to Chaiten and the flight back to Puerto Montt. Take connecting flights home or to next destination!
*Any of these rafting days can be substituted for a day of horseback riding, inflatable kayaking, fly fishing, mountain biking, or even repeating one of the more relaxing, less intense rafting days.
Our guide and driver were very good with their knowledge and were very helpful with our questions. It was a very pleasant visit that would have been impossible to do on our own. Hotels and restaurants were fantastic. The special places we got to go to, like the kitchens, were great. Enjoyed the entire trip!
When to Go
Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.
Typically not offered during this period because of weather conditions.