The trip from Mendoza to Santiago, is a breath-taking journey across the Andes. For a traveller, nothing is better than travelling and visiting at the same time! The tour will begin early in the morning so that we can fully enjoy the variety of colors illuminating the mountains as the sun rises up onto the contrasting rock formations.
We will depart from your Hotel in Mendoza in a private van (and a bilingual guide if you prefer), and head south through the legendary and famous Route 40 which goes from the north of Argentina in the Jujuy region down to the south of Argentina, nearly reaching Ushuaia. The total length is 4.700 km (2.920 miles) and in some parts the road goes up to 5.000 m (16.404 ft). We will drive through vineyards and fruit plantations and eventually follow the national route 7, which is part of the famous Pan-American Highway extending from Alaska down to the Chilean Patagonia. This road leads us to the "Heart of the Andes.”
On the way we pass the 12 km long Potrerillos lake (7.5 miles) which is a reservoir built in 2001. Shortly after we will drive through the oasis town of Uspallata, where the movie "Seven years in Tibet” with Brad Pitt was filmed. We will continue driving along the Mendoza River Canyon, and on the way pass in front of Penitentes which is a ski resort on the Argentinean side. Next we will stop at the "Inca Bridge". This yellow reddish stone bridge has been created by nature! Our next stop will be at the Aconcagua Provincial Park to admire the highest mountain of America and the southern hemisphere: 6.962 mts high. Then we will continue our drive to the border which is located at 3.200 mt (10.500 ft).
It is now time to go through customs! For this you will need to show your passport at the Argentinean authorities to exit the country and then to the Chilean authorities to enter Chile (important note: visa might be required). Remember it can be cold in the mountain, so don´t forget to take a jacket with you. Please note you are not allowed to cross the border with fruits and vegetables, severe fines apply. After customs we will stop at "El Portillo" Hotel, world famous ski resort, and the best restaurant in the high mountain area. After lunch (lunch is not included), drive down the "Caracoles" which are a series of hairpin turns. We will drive through agricultural lands until we reach the busy capital, Santiago de Chile where you will be dropped off dat your hotel.