The Torres del Paine circuit will give your eyeballs a whole new gauge for “the best view you’ve ever seen.” Here, blue glaciers saw into the earth, exotic animals–like the llama-esque guanacos–dot the hillsides, and the mountains themselves take on wild, seemingly impossible shapes. The 52-mile, 10-day loop, which sits 1,500 miles south of Santiago, encircles the Torres del Paine–8,000- to 10,000-foot granite monoliths that twist and curl like frozen waves of rock above glacial lakes studded with icebergs. Go ahead, linger at each pretty spot: The sun doesn’t set until 10 p.m. in summer.
Beta Fly into Punta Arenas, on the Straights of Magellan, the world’s southernmost city. Then bus it three hours north to Puerto Natales, the park’s gateway town. Forgo the crowded huts in favor of camping (sites are next to each hut) and follow the trail’s orange markers counterclockwise to conquer the biggest climbs early. From the trailhead, you’ll follow the Rio Paine to Lago Dickson, and see spiky peaks coming into view as the trail skirts Dickson and Los Perros Glaciers. The descent from 4,000-foot John Gardner Pass, the circuit’s highpoint, deposits you at the edge of Grey Glacier; camp here to watch crumbling ice thunder into the water. Cold winds blow all year, but December through March offers your best weather window, with highs in the upper 50s and the lowest chance of precip all year.