August 05 2020

Discover if slow travel by ferry in Patagonia is your thing


If you want to live the best experiences on your next trip to Chilean Patagonia, we invite you to discover how slow travel by ferry could be an alternative for you. 

What is slow travel? 

It’s a travel tendency born from the slow movement that arose in Italy in the late 1980s in protest against fast food. Its followers return to culinary origins and traditional food to savor original flavors, Smarter Travel magazine explains. 

Little by little, this movement spread to other areas, such as travel, giving origin to a mindset in which:

  • You know in depth the places you visit
  • You enjoy flavors and scents more.
  • You connect with local culture and traditions
  • You stay in the same place for a longer period of time
  • You find moments to disconnect and relax
  • You travel sustainably and interact with local producers and/or shops

In short, slow travel is an alternative an authentic slow-paced trip where you meet locals and make responsible purchases from small and medium businesses in the places that you visit. The aim is for you to live a more meaningful experience than traditional tourism. 

In that sense, visiting Patagonia by ferry at a slower pace is a slow travel option that allows you to enjoy nature and people during your trip for a longer period of time. It is different, but it's not to everyone’s taste. Find it if it’s for you:

Slow travel in Patagonia by ferry is your thing if: 


You prefer unstructured journeys 

If tight itineraries are not for you and instead of visiting as many places as possible, you prefer to take your time and explore what Patagonia has to offer, then traveling by ferry is for you. 

Ferry trips allow you to plan a flexible itinerary, meaning you can forget checklists and lightning-quick visits. On the contrary, you have all the freedom in the world to spend more time enjoying your journey on board, getting closer to the locals’ lifestyle, and sail calmly along the Patagonian fjords.

You like simplicity 

Like many of its kind, the Navimag ferry is not a cruise ship. It is a cargo ship adapted to transport passengers also. Therefore, it has some primary living spaces, including sleeping cabins, bathrooms, a restaurant, and a cafeteria.

If you want to travel simply but comfortably, slow traveling in Patagonia onboard a ferry is an ideal experience for you.

You enjoy the unexpected 

Patagonia is an ultimate destination where the weather and tides have their way. So, you should keep a positive attitude and realize that departure and arrival times are subject to change always.

Typical weather here in the high season ranges from rainy to dry sometimes all in the same day. Bearing this in mind, you should pack clothing for cold weather, wind, rain, and seasickness pills (just in case, as we always them available onboard the ferry). 

You want to meet new people

If you are interested in meeting people from other countries and cultures and learn more about the local lifestyle, then slow travel is for you, even more so if you’re traveling alone

When you have a much less structured schedule, you can meet the locals and even extend your stay a few days more to experience their most important festivities and customs.

Meanwhile, on the ferry, you will probably share experiences with other travelers of different nationalities, who like you want to socialize and make new friends. 

You don’t prioritize popular places 

The disadvantage of a standard travel plan for slow travelers is that it takes them from Point A to Point B without leaving time to feel the essence of the destinations they visit.

Traveling through Patagonia slowly by sea, on the other hand, allows meeting local people and their culture, learning new things about them, discovering authentic places, and planning a route that enables partaking in traditional events and original activities.

You are not afraid to switch off

When you sail through Patagonia by ferry, there are no Wi-Fi or mobile signals, so you have to be completely willing to disconnect from technology. You’ll be surprised how this helps you be more involved with the surrounding environment and to enjoy the slow gliding above the water.

For Raquel, who made the trip from Puerto Montt to Puerto Natales by ferry with her family: “On the ferry, you have no Internet, telephone or anything. I loved being disconnected.” 

Live a unique Patagonian experience

If making the most of every moment and taking a contemplative journey at a leisurely pace in the southernmost region in the world appeals to you, then you are a slow traveler. Even more so if you choose to live this experience by ferry.

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