An Adventure Traveller's Guide to Cajon del Maipo

Embalse El Yeso | Lucy Pierce / © Culture Trip
Embalse El Yeso | Lucy Pierce / © Culture Trip
Photo of Lucy Pierce
29 September 2017

Escape the busy city for the weekend and head to the beautiful and peaceful Cajón del Maipo, just 25 kilometres (16 miles) southeast of the capital, Santiago. There are plenty of outdoor activities to be enjoyed, from hiking, cycling and climbing to skiing and whitewater rafting. And after all of that, why not sit back and relax in the baths?

White Water Rafting

The Maipo River whishes from the foot of the Andes through Cajon, providing perfect white-water rafting conditions. You can begin along the class III rapids, and thrill-seekers won’t be able to wait to get in among the IV rapids, which are fast and fun; you are sure to get soaked, and you’ll love every minute of it.

Rafting | © StockSnap / Pixabay

Zip Lining

Feel the need for speed? Strap yourself in and get ready for the ride, whizzing along at high speed over the valley and through the trees, as you feel the wind whip across your face and enjoy the view from 25 metres (82 feet) up.

Zip lining | © sebeldelval / Pixabay


Lagunillas is a small ski resort found just outside San José de Maipo at an altitude of 2,200 metres (7,218 feet). There are 13 slopes with various difficulty levels from beginner to expert. You will also be able to find a hire shop and ski school in Club Andino.

Skiing | © woodypino / Pixabay

Hiking to the El Morado Hanging Glacier

Trek through the Chilean Andes and enjoy the stunning mountain views of the surrounding areas. The hike isn’t particularly difficult, although good hiking boots are recommended, and during winter you may need snowshoes or crampons, which can be organised for you if you choose to do a tour.


Mountain Biking

Forget the bus to Embalse El Yeso, why not mountain bike through the Andes from Santiago! Riding past gorgeous lakes, chilly glaciers all while witnessing plenty of great vistas, keeping the best till last. Embalse El Yeso, a picturesque azure blue lake, which, in winter that mirrors the snow-capped mountains.

Embalse El Yeso | © Christian Córdova / Flickr

Bungee Jump

Want more thrills? Adrenaline junkies will love the Cajón bungee jump. Suspended over the valley, you will be transported across to the middle, where you will prepare for the jump of your life.

Bungee | © mikefoster / Pixabay

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