March 2016 - extra days in Santiago and Buenos Aires

We are arriving a day early in Santiago and want to take some independent tours of the city or the vineyard valleys. Anyone else looking to do the same thing? We would appreciate any advice or comments. We are also staying a day later in Buenos Aires and want to take tours there.

Comments

  • edited January 2016
    Trudi. we are going this week and taking two tours - on Thursday afternoon FunTravel (via hotel concierge) taking us on City tour of Santiago, and on Friday, Perro Tours is taking us on a walking tour of Valparaiso with lunch, before returning to hotel and meeting up with Tauck in the evening. I'll let you know end of this week how these tours rate.

    Update: we are now in Puerto Natales - weather is spectacular! In Santiago, both our Fun Travel city tour, and our Perro Tours walk @ lunch in Valparaiso were great. The concierge at the Singular, Osvaldo, was very helpful with arranging tours and dinner reservations, both before and during our visit. Perro Tours - Juan Victor - is highly rated on trip advisor, and very much deserved. The drive to Valparaiso is about 2 hours, and you pass thru wine country ( an option is to also plan a stop for wine tasting & lunch) but we went into town for the walk and local tour.

    Enjoy your trip in March. I hope you have such good weather as we have - but we are so way overpacked with cold weather gear that we haven't yet needed (and likely won't ever take out of our bags).
  • Trudi. we are going this week and taking two tours - on Thursday afternoon FunTravel (via hotel concierge) taking us on City tour of Santiago, and on Friday, Perro Tours is taking us on a walking tour of Valparaiso with lunch, before returning to hotel and meeting up with Tauck in the evening. I'll let you know end of this week how these tours rate.
  • Trudi, my husband and I took this trip last February, and it was wonderful. We arrived a day early in Santiago and went on a tour of the Emiliana Vineyard, about an hour away. Very, very interesting. We used a private guide company called Private Tours of Santiago---www.privattours.cl
    We did not stay an extra day in BA since our plane did not leave until lave evening of the last day. We tok a tour of BA with a private guide named Carla Meije. She works for Tauck as a group guide and doe some private work on her own. her email is [email protected] That is hard to read---last name is m e i j e.
    I put a long post about this on the topic Gift of Time, Santiago or BA?
    Do read all the posts on the Santiago forum, even if they are old. You can get a lot of info that way about packing, etc.
    Have fun!!!
    Nancy
  • Thank you very much, tomh141 and Dixie Chick! Your information and experiences are much appreciated. We have been very concerned about having warm-enough clothes for the Patagonia part of the trip.

    Tomh141, you say that the weather was great in February and that you didn't need warm clothing. What were the temperatures and precipitation levels? Also, did you really need heavy duty hiking shoes for the glacier walks?

    Dixie Chick, the winery tours sound great. I have been looking at the Private Tours company and the Emiliana Winery tour, so now I feel good about booking with them. Thanks again!
  • edited January 2016
    Trudi, the information about weather on the Patagonia tour page appears to be hidden away more than usual when I just looked at it. It is in the Upon Arrival Section, open that up and you will see a weather section. Averages during the time you are visiting are 78 to 81. Degrees F. It is even warmer in January February. You will find rainfall averages too
  • Trudi, you do not need hiking shoes. They are too bulky and weigh too much. Besides, you just look at the glaciers, not hike on them. Those days are when you need warmer clothes. I did layers starting with a thin polyester base topped with a lightweight fleece pullover. Then I had a quilted, poly filled jacket that was warm but not heavy or bulky. And a little pull on knit hat, like for skiing. And gloves. I never wore all this at once, but I could add or subtract as the day progressed. Once I got back to the hotel, all that came off and I wore a cotton sweater and jeans.I never went anywhere in the true Patagonia part of the trip without the quilted jacket. Even if the temp is not too cold, it cam be cloudy or maybe drizzly, and it is always windy. But then, I am always cold. It can be pretty warm in Santiago and BA.
  • I found extra days activities in Buenos Aires and Santiago by a local trip planner called LIZ Andrea wich got many certificated of excellence in trip advisor.
    She can manage big gropus private or semprivate small groups to your time. Very local experience with professional guide.
    www.lizflor2.blogspot.com
    [email protected]
  • I've been in chilean Patagonia, i travelled in a motorhome with my family, from Santiago to Patagonia, more than 2000 kms!! It was an AMAZING trip!! because the motorhome gives you freedom, and you can stop wherever you want!! I have visited a lot of beautiful places, lakes, volcanoes, and the incredible Torres del Paine!! if you want to visit Chile sometime, wait, you MUST VISIT CHILE AT LEAST ONCE IN LIFE, i can recommend you to rent a camper or motorhome and travel through the whole country with friends or family, or with your couple! AndesCampers is a very friendly and helpful motorhome and camper rental company, and their website andescampers.com has a lot of routes and tips about Chile that are very useful!!
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