El Calafate

Photo of El Calafate

About El Calafate

This lakeside city in Patagonia is a centre point for those setting off to explore the region's glaciers. However, it’s also definitely worth a visit in its own right! Flamingos can often be spotted in Lago Argentino and the Glaciarium museum gives fantastic insight into the history of the local terrrain. We’ve selected the best places to stay in El Calafate to make the most of the spectacular region whether you want to be based in the centre of town or in the surrounding countryside.

What not to miss:

  • Parque Nacional Los Glaciares is a stunning body of ice that can never be fully captured by pictures. The park is also very family friendly.

  • Take a boat trip to the Upsala Glacier. Although the weather can be temperamental, this will only add to the dramatic scenery!

  • Walk the well-kept path to Pasarelas Perito Moreno. Beautiful views best enjoyed with a glass of wine! Note, you’ll need to bring your own wine…

Don't forget that this little town is a very busy and popular destination. If you plan to visit during peak season and want to guarantee a bed in one of the best places to stay in El Calafate, you'll need to be organised and book well ahead.

The best places to stay in El Calafate

For Something special

  • Estancia Cristina is a secluded lodge nestled amidst the glorious scenery. Large windows let in plenty of light and the restaurant offers some fantastic regional dishes along with a wine list to be envied! The perfect spot from which to explore the national park.

  • Eolo is a remote luxury lodge with breathtaking views over both lakes and mountains. Come here for a truly magnificent once in a lifetime experience.

In El Calafate

  • Hotel Kau Yatun is a charming traditional hideaway and a great example of the area’s architecture. Cosy rooms, a picturesque setting and a delicious restaurant make this a comfortable and affordable option.

For a ranch experience

  • Estancia Nibepo Aike offers a genuine ranch experience and specialises in horseback tours to explore hidden glaciers. Come home to cosy accommodation and regional cuisine.

For an apartment or villa

  • If you've decided that a self catering property would be more suitable for your holiday, then we recommend you visit our online booking partner Booking.com where they have a wide selection for all tastes and budgets.

Travel Information

  • The simplest way is to reach El Calafate is to fly to El Calafate airport, just 20km east of the town, which has regular flights from all of Argentina's main airports.

  • Best time of year to visit - For the warmest and driest weather aim to visit El Calafate between October and March. Even at these times, however, you’ll need a jumper or two!

  • If you plan to hire a car, check out the range and prices with our online partner Rentalcars.

Still not sure?

Best Hotels in El Calafate

  • Blanca Patagonia 13 rooms from £54

    El Calafate (Santa Cruz)

    This hotel offers boutique accommodation in Santa Cruz, Argentina. Guests can choose rooms in the inn or a private cabin; rooms are traditionally dressed and have exposed wooden beams and cosy, carpeted floors. Book a luxury suite for a private jacuzzi. Dine at the chic restaurant; a charming hotel.

    Back to Nature  -  Located in the breathtaking natural landscape of the Argentinian Patagonia, this hotel makes a great retreat to nature
    Hideaway  -  Hideout in a private cabin at this boutique hotel; there is a restaurant and spa on-site, so there's no need to leave
    Local exploring  -  This hotel makes a great base for exploring Lake Argentina and the surrounding area
    Sights nearby  -  Organize an excursion to the Isla Solitaria or lonesome island; the deserted island offers beautiful natural landscapes
    Check prices
  • Xelena Hotel & Suites 70 rooms from £59

    El Calafate

    This chic, five-star hotel is located in El Calafate, Argentina. Rooms are spacious and modern with breathtaking views of Lake Argentina; book a luxury suite to enjoy a private jacuzzi and underfloor heating. Eat at the gourmet restaurant before booking into the sleek spa; a luxury nature retreat.

    Active Holiday  -  With kayaking, walking and cycling all on offer around the hotel, this is a great choice for active holidaymakers
    Foodies  -  With a café, bistro and fine dining restaurant to choose from, foodies are spoiled for choice at this hotel
    Back to Nature  -  With its privileged view of Lake Argentina, this hotel makes a luxurious back-to-nature retreat
    Birdwatching  -  Go birdwatching at the Nimez Lagoon and spot many indigenous bird species including pink flamingoes
    Check prices
  • Design Suites 60 rooms from £80

    El Calafate

    This design hotel offers privileged views of the Lago Argentino in Calafate, Argentina. Guestrooms feature soft carpets, cosy throws and chic design pieces; book the junior suite for a private spa bath and lake views. Have dinner at the restó bar before a sauna and swim; a stylish Patagonian hotel.

    Back to Nature  -  Offering beautiful views of Lago Argentino and the surrounding landscape, this hotel makes a unique back-to-nature retreat
    Local exploring  -  This hotel is perfectly placed for local exploring in the Argentine Patagonia; book local tours through the hotel
    Romantic Break  -  Couples love the cosy hotel interiors and chic spa; book a luxury suite for a private jacuzzi
    Sights nearby  -  Take a trip to the Isla Solitaria, an island in the middle of the Argentine Lake which is home to a quiet provincial church
    Recommended by  -  Tablet
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  • Hotel Kau Yatun 40 rooms from £92

    El Calafate

    A stunning rural property framed by a picturesque pine forests. Quaint rooms are light and airy with cream hues and floral motifs. Sample hearty regional dishes in the atmospheric restaurant and drink local wines in the bar. A charming base from which to explore the region.

    Active Holiday  -  Set in the Patagonian steppe, the perfect terrain for outdoor pursuits.
    Sights nearby  -  Marvel at the outstanding terrain of the glaciers of Parque Nacional Los Glaciares.
    Views  -  Great views from hotel
    Outstanding location
    Check prices
  • Posada los Alamos 144 rooms from £96

    El Calafate (El Calafate,)

    A beautiful building of brick dark quebracho wood boasting a fully-equipped spa, swimming pool, two bars and a restaurant offering a range of local and international gourmet meals. Rooms are cosy and uniquely decorated and come with a minibar and impressive views of El Calafate or Lake Argentino.

    Business meetings  -  Large conference rooms and banquetting facilities make this venue ideal for a corporate event with a difference
    Families  -  Hotel Posada is welcoming to families with large rooms and babysitting services
    Spa breaks  -  Relax in the spa after a day spent hiking in the gorgeous surrounds
    Sights nearby  -  El Calafate is a traditional Argentine town with museums, cafes and bars to explore
    Recommended by  -  Fodors
    Check prices
  • Esplendor El Calafate 57 rooms from £129

    El Calafate

    An elegant hotel overlooking the turquoise, glacial waters of Lake Argentino. The interiors echo the raw natural beauty found beyond the numerous windows- think fur lined chairs, hardwood floors and antler chandeliers. Feast on Patagonian dishes, heavy on meats and rich red wines. A sumptuous treat.

    Active Holiday  -  This is the ideal place for an active getaway with hiking, skiing, mountain biking, fishing and many more besides
    Back to Nature  -  Take a hike to the famed Perito Moreno glacier, or wander the shores of the beautful lake Argentino
    Total relaxation  -  Feel all your cares and woes slip away as your are massaged and pampered in the spa
    Great walks  -  There is something for all abilites from an afternoon stroll to a week long hike throguh the mountains
    Check prices
  • Hotel Kosten Aike 80 rooms from £139

    El Calafate

    An Alpine inspired hotel sitting just outside the town of Calafate. The traditional interiors offer comfort and class, and the welcoming staff will make you feel right at home. Enjoy typical Argentine food in the restaurant and pampering treatments in the spa. A great option for all the family.

    Groups  -  The hotel can accomadate large groups and has facilities on site to cater for large parties and events
    Families  -  A fun spot for all the family - with hot tubs and sauna, ping pong and billiards and plenty more
    Sights nearby  -  The Upsala Glacier is a short drive from the property and is a spectacular sight to behold
    Great walks  -  This is superb countryside for those keen on getting out and about.
    Check prices
  • La Cantera 18 rooms from £118

    El Calafate

    A stunning boutique hotel offering unbeatable views of the Patagonian landscape with floor-to-ceiling windows in the cosy bar and private balconies with every room. The on-site restaurant serves fine Argentinian cuisine in a rustic traditional mountain lodge setting.

    Groups  -  Guests can choose to hire a wooden cabin with two spacious rooms, dining room and kitchen - ideal for small groups
    Active Holiday  -  Discover outstanding glaciers and the lakes Argentino and Roca- perfect for trekking and climbing
    Outstanding location
    Views  -  Great views from hotel
    Recommended by  -  Great Small Hotels
    Check prices
  • Los Ponchos 11 rooms from £123

    El Calafate

    This boutique hotel occupies a heritage property in El Calafate, part of the Argentine Patagonia. Choose from rooms, apartments or a private lodge with cosy, inviting interiors in a neutral palette; book the lodge for family-sized living space. Request a lunch-box for day trips; a charming hotel.

    Local exploring  -  With a central location in El Calafate, this hotel is a great base for local exploing in Santa Cruz
    Romantic Break  -  Couples love the cosy rooms at this hotel; book the Mansard Suite for great views
    Families  -  Book the independent lodge for family-sized living space and a charming garden
    Birdwatching  -  Go birdwatching at Laguna Nimez, an important site that is frequented by many local bird species
    Recommended by  -  Great Small Hotels
    Check prices
  • Eolo 17 rooms from £844

    9405 El Calafate

    A remote luxury lodge with an outstanding location. Rooms are simply designed with emphasis given to the surrounding views, admired from enormous windows and terraces. Sample gourmet cuisine in the restaurant and unwind in the fabulous spa. Discover authentic Argentina in serious style.

    Back to Nature  -  Situated in a magically remote Patagonian location, next to Argentina's largest lake with views stretching over the Andes.
    Birdwatching  -  There are an exciting array of birds to be spotted in the area.
    Restrictions on children  -  Children over 12 are welcome.
    Swimming Pool  -  Indoor pool.
    Recommended by  -  I Escape, Relais & Chateaux, CN Traveller
    Check prices