Take a look at this suggested itinerary to do in San Martín de los Andes in 3 days, a beautiful city on the shores of Lake Lácar and the gateway to the Seven Lakes Route.
🔎 Check here the guide to travel to San Martín de los Andes.
San Martin de los Andes has become one of the must-visit destinations if you are touring Patagonia Argentina. Its growth has been remarkable in the last few years thanks to the tranquillity and the natural environment where it is located on the shores of Lake Lácar and surrounded by high mountains. In addition, it has its own airport, which makes it easy to connect with Buenos Aires and one of the best ski resorts in Argentina, the Chapelco mountain.
There are many attractions to visit besides the village of San Martin de los Andes, as there are hundreds of trekking routes and viewpoints in the surrounding area. But what stands out the most is the scenic route of 100 km that connects it with Villa La Angostura, called the Route of the Seven Lakes.
That is why we made this itinerary to visit San Martin de los Andes in 3 days and see the most of this wonderful Patagonian enclave.
🚘 Are you arriving in San Martin de los Andes by plane? Book your transfer from the airport to the city centre here.
Table of Contents
Summary – Itinerary for San Martín de los Andes in 3 days:
- Day 1: City centre, viewpoints and Chapelco Hill.
- Day 2: Seven lakes route to Villa La Angostura.
- Day 3: Excursion to Villa Quila Quina or Hua Hum.
Day 1: City centre, viewpoints and Chapelco Hill
The first day begins with a tour of the city. In the architecture of the buildings you can see wood and stone as the main element of their construction, which gives a special charm to the area. Here you can lose yourself in the chocolate shops, bars and restaurants located on General Villegas, San Martín and General Roca streets, the three main arteries.
The San José Parish Church and some museums such as the Museum of the First Settlers and the Lanín National Park Museum are worth a visit to learn about the origins of the first inhabitants that populated these inhospitable lands and to get to know the whole ecosystem surrounding the city.
📷 Get to know the city with a local guide on this free tour of San Martín de los Andes. It’s free!
🔎 Check here the guide to visit San Martín de los Andes’ downtown.
On the surrounding area, there are two viewpoints with different views, both of which are a must-see. One is the Bandurrias, on the top of a hill west of the city. The views of Lake Lácar from the top are truly fascinating. You can get there by hiking from the city centre for about two kilometres or by car along a narrow, unpaved road.
More easily accessible, the Arrayanes viewpoint is on the east side of town. One is the Bandurrias, on the top of a hill west of the city. The views of Lake Lácar from the top are truly fascinating. You can get there by hiking from the city centre for about two kilometres or by car along a narrow, unpaved road.
🔎 All the details to visit Bandurrias and Chapelco viewpoints here.
Finally, if you continue the road from this last viewpoint, you will reach Chapelco Hill, which is the ski centre of San Martin de los Andes. It has several slopes that operate in winter. In addition, there are activities with snowmobiles or snowshoes. But not only in the winter you can enjoy the mountain, during the summer you can go hiking, mountain biking and zip-lining, among other activities.
📷 Book here the visit to Chapelco Hill on your own. Includes round trip transfer.
🔎 Check here the guide to visit Chapelco Hill.
Day 2: Seven lakes route to Villa La Angostura
The so-called Seven Lakes Route is a scenic road that runs along the mythical Route 40. It connects the cities of San Martín de los Andes and Villa La Angostura in a zigzagging way between mountains and seven lakes of crystal clear water. You can stop at each of the viewpoints to contemplate the scenery. It is undoubtedly one of the places to see in San Martin de los Andes in 3 days.
It is a total of 100 kilometres that, going and coming back, deserves a whole day. The Seven Lakes that the route crosses are the Lácar, Machónico, Falkner, Villarino, Escondido, Correntoso and Espejo, each one with a different characteristic.
As public transport is infrequent in this area, it is best to do the Seven Lakes route by renting a car or by an excursion with transfer and guide included. One way or the other, the scenery is sure to leave you speechless.
🔎 Check here the guide to travel the Seven Lakes Route.
Day 3: Excursion to Villa Quila Quina or Hua Hum
On the last day the main attraction is Lake Lácar itself. Here you can choose between a lake trip to Quila Quina beach, on the shores of Lake Lácar, or to Hua Hum on the border with Chile.
Quila Quina beach is a haven of tranquillity on the outskirts of San Martin de los Andes. Stony beach and with turquoise water, it is ideal for swimming in summer, even if the temperature is not ideal. There are also Mapuche communities here. The aborigines still live in this territory and preserve their traditions. If you want, you can go hiking through forests and waterfalls.
If you choose the excursion to Hua Hum, you will get to know one of the most remote and charming places on Lake Lácar. Surrounded by coihues and myrtle trees of the Valdivian forest and by the turquoise water of the lake, the scenery is truly spectacular. There is a hiking route that takes you to the Chachin waterfall, a 30-metre waterfall that will leave you astonished.
🔎 Check here the guide to travel to visit Quila Quina Beach.
Where to stay in San Martín de los Andes
From wood and stone cabins to hotels with spa on the shores of Lake Lácar, San Martin de los Andes is a perfect place to stay surrounded by peace and quiet and a beautiful natural environment.
🏨 Check here where to stay in San Martín de los Andes and get your ideal accommodation.