There are many reasons why Argentina’s Patagonia region is one of the most visited in this South American country, and one of them is the awe-inspiring Perito Moreno Glacier.
Located at the heart of Los Glaciares National Park, Southern Patagonia, Perito Moreno is one of the country’s most popular attractions. Los Glaciares, in its entirety is hailed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Since Perito Moreno is situated within Los Glaciares National Park, a lot of travelers make the town of El Calafate their preferred gateway. This town is conveniently just a one hour and a half drive from the park.
Perito Moreno Glacier is one of the largest glaciers in the national park and in all of South America. It boasts a wall that is more than 200 feet tall. It is similar to the size of a 15-story building that stretches to 3 miles. One of the biggest mysteries surrounding this glacier is that it is actually growing instead of shrinking like the rest of its kind. It grows at the rate of 7 feet every day. Perito Moreno stands in the Patagonian Ice Field together with the other 47 glaciers like Onelli and Upsala. This ice field is actually a shared territory of Argentina and Chile.
To be able to marvel at this giant icy masterpiece of nature up close, is definitely an incredible travel opportunity. Fortunately, there are many ways to get to this natural wonder. If you are a hardcore outdoor enthusiasts, the idea of trekking to the glacier may be the most appealing. There are several trekking companies that offer many types of tours within the Los Glaciares National Park. However, if you are content to admire Perito Moreno in a more relaxing way, you can book one of the glacier viewing cruises conducted on Lake Argentina. Although the glacier is not too close, you can still hear the strange creaking of ice, which indicates that a large chunk of it is about to crash into the water.
The glacier itself is not the only thing that is jaw-dropping. Its beauty is only enhanced by its equally magnificent surroundings, composed of forests and ice-capped peaks. Because of the weight of the ice, the glacier is sort of pushed over to the southern end of Lake Argentina, causing the water in this section to rise.
If you decide to trek to the glacier, there are two major ways to go about it. The first way involves taking the shorter trekking route that can be completed in an hour and a half. The second way is the longer trip, which takes about 5 hours to complete. There is also full day trekking, which allows you to not only explore the glacier but also the surrounding streams, gullies, small lagoons and lookout points.
Most experts recommend doing the trekking excursion during winter for a couple of reasons. One of them is the lack of humidity during this period. Thus, you can hike as hard as you can at this time without sweating that much. Winter trekking also gives you the opportunity to walk on solid ice while you are on your way to the most magnificent glacier in the southern hemisphere.