One of the world's longest hiking trails just opened in Chile - and it's breathtakingly beautiful

2018-10-03 15:00 - Marisa Crous
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The Chilean government recently launched a hiking trail spanning 1 700 miles (about 2 735km!), running through the Patagonian wilderness to Cape Horn, in scenic Chile. 

FUN FACT: The Camino Roncesvalles is almost 800km. 

READ: Rim of Africa: 15 awe-inspiring facts about SA's longest mountain hiking trail

Connecting 17 national parks, lakes, volcanoes, lush rainforests and the Andes Mountains, this trail dubbed "Route of Parks" is one for the bucket list. 

According to The Times, this was all made possible thanks to a rather large donation of vast tracts of land by Tompkins Conservation.

Set up by Douglas Tompkins, founder of the much-loved outdoor brand, North Face clothing company, and his wife Kristine, who is the CEO of Patagonia, also a popular clothing and outdoor brand, they are passionate about conservation. 

Back in the nineties they bought millions of acres of wilderness in Chile and Argentina in an effort to protect the area; and now it is an unparalleled ecotourism marvel.  

The Tompkins Conservation Chile website reads as follows: “We want Chile to be internationally recognised for having the most spectacular scenic route in the world, and thus become a benchmark for economic development based on conservation. The Route of Parks is a protected heritage of all Chileans, and its 17 national parks are a challenge and an opportunity, as much for the more than 60 communities that live near them as for those who visit them."


(Image: Getty)

READ: Quick Guide to Chile: Visa-free travel for South Africans 

READ: A comprehensive guide to the Camino Portugues

This trail might take you several months, if not years to complete in full. But if you're keen to do a portion of it as many hikers do with long trails like the Camino, find out more here. 

Watch more below:

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