Cueva del Milod贸n Natural Monument
The Cave of the Milodon is an impressive crevice located on the slope of Benitez Hill. It is named after the Milod贸n, a 2,5 mt sloth that lived in Patagonia before being extict 10.000 years ago.
In 1896, the French researcher Hermann Eberhard found the first remains that proved the existence of this animal. Along with this there were remains of human settlements, who would have used these聽 caves as refuges over 12.000 years ago.
Cueva del Milod贸n Basic Information
How to get there
Santiago-Punta Arenas: by air. Punta Arenas-Puerto Natales: by land. Approximately 8 kilometers (5 mi) after leaving Puerto Natales, take the left turn towards Puerto Prat. Leaving from this village, take the road to the right at the first crossroads, 4km (2.5 mi) more to the north you will come to another crossroads, this time take the road to the left and travel two kilometers more and you will arrive at the Conaf office.
When to go
Other nearby attractions
Puerto Natales, Parque Nacional Torres del Paine.
Trekking, cultural tours,photography.
The area is typically cold and wet without a dry season. However, just like the rest of the region, the climate varies and has the unstable characteristics of a micro-climate. The average annual temperature is 8掳C (46掳F), reaching between 10掳 and 18掳C (50掳 and 64掳F) in the summer months. The average annual rainfall is 450 mm (17.7 in).
From 8:30 to 20:30.
Adult: Chileans 1,500 CLP; Foreigners 3,000 CLP.
Children: Chileans and Foreigners 200 CLP.
Adults: Chileans 800 CLP; Foreigners 1,500 CLP.
Children: Chileans 100 CLP; Foreigners 1000 CLP.
Infrastructure and Services in Cueva del Milod贸n
For more information contact Conaf.
Punta Arenas: 0309 Bulnes Ave. Phone number: (56-61) 23 85 81.
Puerto Natales: 847 Manuel Baquedano st. Phone number: (56-61) 41 14 38.
- Cueva Grande interpretive trail.
- Guarder铆a-Cueva del medio-cueva chica-Silla del diablo-Guarder铆a.
Attractions in Cueva del Milod贸n
What to see
- You can visit the environmental information center and use the meal area for free. It has 15 sites in the Cueva Chica and Silla del Diablo sectores. Making fire is not allowed and car access is open year round.
- Cueva Grande interpretive road: it takes to the Cueva del Milod贸n.
- The trail passing by Guarder铆a-cueva del medio-cueva chica-silla del diablo connects all the attractions in this Natural monument. It's easy and it will let you appreciate the flora and fauna species.
- La Silla del diablo is a rock formation belonging to the geologycal formations of Sof铆a Lake. With 35 mts, it is a natural lookout from which you can have a panoramic view of the reserve.
What to do
- Cultural tours
- Help us protect the monument's natural resources by following these recommendations:
- Protect the vegetation
- Protect the fauna species, natural refuges and nesting sites.
- Camp and picnic only in authorised places.
- If you have doubts, contact the park ranger or the area administrator.
Nature in Cueva del Milod贸n
The Cueva del Milod贸n is an impressive natural formation. Its importance lays in the fact the in 1896 pieces of skin and bones of an extinct animal were found. This creature was named Darwin's Milodon. Research carried out later on determined that the Milod贸n had lived in the area more than 5000 years ago, and also confirmed the existence of other animals like the dwarf horse, the saber tooth tiger, and the big guanaco. Proof about the existence of the primitive Patagonian man were also found.
Vegetal species can be found between 150 and 250 mts msl, in areas with a precipitation index of 450 mm. The following vegetal formations are present:
- Magellanic deciduous forest: The reserve has sparse areas of deciduous leaf forests, the main species being the Lenga and 脩irre.
- Preandean bush: in this category it is possible to find the following species: Chaura, Calafate, Ciruelillo, Le帽adura, and Siete Camisas, amongst others.
It is possible to find mammals such as: culpeo fox, South American Gray Fox, Puma, Colocolo, and Patagonian Skunk.
Some of the birds you can find include the: Carancho, Eagle, Condor, House Sparrow, Austral trush, Rufous-collared sparrow, and Patagonian negrito.
Cold steppe. The average annual temperature is of 8掳C, with extremes ranging from -10掳C and 18掳C. The highest temperatures take place in January and February. The annual precipitation index is of 450 mm, concentrated between May and September.
It was founded in 1968 and bought by Conaf in 1978 so as to protect and preserve its natural, scenic, and cultural valie.