SANTIAGO – Chilean Patagonia has become in the last few years a model of nature tourism committed to conservation, an effort that has been redoubled with the creation of a new network of hiking trails that will cross 17 nationals parks.
The new hiking trails are being developed by the Tompkins Conservation foundation in collaboration with Imagen de Chile, an agency that promotes Chile’s image throughout the world, and will include paths starting in Puerto Montt and ending in Cape Horn, the southernmost part of the Tierra del Fuego archipelago
The director of Tompkins Conservation Chile, Carolina Morgado, told EFE that the new network of hiking trails is the result of 25 years of work and seeks to “position this area of Chile as the route of Patagonia parks.”
According to Morgado, there are currently 17 national parks among the regions of Los Lagos, Aysen and Magallanes, where Tompkins Conservation has helped create seven of those parks by means of several donations.
The new network of trails will have a web page so that visitors can find information about the natural environment and the communities that live in the area, as well as advice, suggested hikes, and a detailed map with 50 different trails.
The territory that the trails will cross includes 11.5 million hectares (more than 28 million acres) of protected areas, home to 140 species of birds and 46 species of mammals.
The creation of the new network of hiking trails also seeks to honor the creator of the foundation, US businessman and philanthropist Douglas Tompkins, who passed away in 2015, Morgado said.