The COVID-19 pandemic indeed marked a before and after for travel worldwide. It is also true that traveling to Chilean Patagonia already had its complexities. Did things change with the pandemic?
In general, the situation added new requisites to reach this remote destination. We explain what it means to visit the farthest corner of the world right now and what your trip could be like.
Getting to Chilean Patagonia
Traveling during the pandemic added precautions you should take. These can vary quite a bit, but knowing them beforehand gives you an idea of how your trip could change if the situation evolves locally or globally.
The Chilean government's COVID-19 Step-by-Step Plan establishes the sanitary protocols currently in force for tourist activities at the national level.
According to this plan, you can now enter Chile by land or air. However, you must constantly check the bus lines and airport websites because travel conditions may vary daily depending on where you are flying from.
If you are an international traveler, you are no longer required to use a mobility pass to enter enclosed areas. However, wearing face masks is recommended, according to the Ministry of Health. We recommend you check sanitary measures up until the day of your trip to Chile in case of changes.
Moving to Patagonia
Once in Chile, you can move around without the need of this mobility pass. However, some specific areas will demand wearing masks, such as public hospitals and clinics.
What activities are allowed in Patagonia?
All tourism-related activities are allowed now. However, providers of these services could request visitors to wear masks as a precaution. For example, at Navimag Ferries, we will not demand passengers to show their mobility pass, but we will encourage masks in public areas on board the ferry.
Recommendations for travelers and what to expect
Being a sparsely populated territory, Chilean Patagonia allows tourism away from large crowds like few other destinations. It is especially recommended for those who look for an alternative trip in this remote destination.
Even so, it is a good idea to follow these tips:
- Find out about the health services in the community you are visiting.
- Wear a face mask in public, including transportation and common enclosed spaces.
- Wash your hands constantly and prefer activities that facilitate social distancing.
- Prefers accommodations that follow sanitary measures.
- Some national parks have enabled online reservations (check the list here).
Even in a pandemic, visiting Patagonia is still possible
As you can see, you must travel with patience and a set of extra days to comply with all the isolation and sanitation requirements if you enter the country from abroad.
If you reside in Chile, you have fewer time requirements, but you must still comply with all the sanitary rules, so make sure you have your documentation updated.
These procedures require you to plan, which was already recommended for Patagonia before the pandemic.