Getting there

A mini-bus picked us up from the hotel around 9am and it would take about 2 hours to reach the jetty inside the Parque Nacional Los Glaciares.

The landscape was no different from what we witnessed yesterday at the Glacierium but the snow-capped mountains provided a form of contrast.

The guide was bilingual and gave an account of the early colonization of the area by sheep farmers from Europe. The difference in size between the Patagonian and their Northern counterparts in the Pampas can be attributed to the low productivity of the arid Patagonian shrub-land. The Pampas (of gaucho fame) are lush green and produce much of Argentina’s beef and dairy. What the Patagonian farmers lack in productivity they make up for in massive scale given that land isn’t scarce here.

The park

Our first sight of the Perito Moreno Glacier

Around 11am we reached the park and the landscape gradually took on an icier appearance.

The mini-bus dropped us off at the top of a hill and we gingerly (on account of the icy gravel) made our way to the jetty below.

The boat

The closest way you can safely get to the ice shelf would be to view it from a boat.

We made our way up to the observation deck of the boat as we moved out of the bay and within view of the glacier.

Once the boat came within a close distance of the ice shelf it came to rest to allow for the tourists to take their photos.

As the sun rose higher and warmed up the ice, the first splinters of ice began to occur. And chunks of ice the size of cars began to break off the shelf and crash into the water below causing massive ripples. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to catch any videos of these events on the water. You’d hear a loud crack like that of a gun-shot followed by a crash of ice. It’s all over in a matter of seconds.

Many hues of blue

As you wait for the spectacular ice-falls, you get time to admire the various shades of blue in the different blocks of ice. They vary from a snowy white to glassy dark blue ice.

Some icebergs which were once attached to land (by the grey soil on its side)

Dark blue glass-like ice-berg

Ice Hikers

Although I didn’t capture it on my camera, we also noticed a group of hikers ascending the glacier from the gravel land (on the left-side of the glacier). They moved up the ice peaks in single-file and given the distance I wasn’t able to make out their gear but I guessed from the brochures I had read over the past week, that they included ice-picks and snow-shoes.

I had briefly toyed with the idea of joining such a hike but given they were:

  1. Rather pricey for an hour
  2. Risk of falling into crevasses etc

And my friend was dead-set against such a risky enterprise, I was content to view it from a safe distance.

For less risk-averse travellers, hielo & aventura have a few packages to chose from.

The view from land

Crashing ice

Unfortunately I wasn’t quick enough to capture the start of the ice breakage but I was able to capture the aftermath.

The walkway

The metal walkway covered quite a distance so we were quite exhausted (and blinded by the sun above as my aviators didn’t block the sun from the sides) by the time we reached the visitor’s lodge at the park exit.


The Perito Moreno Glacier is one of the highlights of the El Calafete area and you’d be at a great loss to miss it. There are other glaciers in the region but this one is probably the most accessible with a wide variety of tour operators servicing it.

I visited during Autumn (April in the Southern Hemisphere), but i’m not sure what the glacier-status would be in Summer so it would be advisable to check beforehand.