- Southern Patagonia, Torres del Paine & Tierra del Fuego
- Torres del Paine National Park
- Cueva del Milodón Natural Monument
The Cave of the Milodon is an impressive crevice located on the slope of Benitez Hill . It is named after the Milodón, 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 caves as refuges over 12.000 years ago.
Cueva del Milodón 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 : Year round.
Climate : 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°C (46°F), reaching between 10° and 18°C (50° and 64°F) in the summer months. The average annual rainfall is 450 mm (17.7 in).
Opening Hours : From 8:30 to 20:30.
Admission Fees :
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 Milodón
Administration Office : The park administrator is Jovito González Chamblá (firstname.lastname@example.org). The park also has three permanent park rangers, who control the visitors entrance. 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.
Information office: email@example.com
- Cueva Grande interpretive trail.
- Guardería-Cueva del medio-cueva chica-Silla del diablo-Guardería.
Attractions in Cueva del Milodón
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 Milodón.
- The trail passing by Guardería-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 Sofía 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 Milodón
The Cueva del Milodón 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 Milodón 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.
Flora : 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 Ñirre.
- Preandean bush: in this category it is possible to find the following species: Chaura, Calafate, Ciruelillo, Leñadura, and Siete Camisas, amongst others.
Fauna :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.
Climate : Cold steppe. The average annual temperature is of 8°C, with extremes ranging from -10°C and 18°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.
We recommend that you Schedule your flight to arrive in Punta Arenas in the morning, so you are able to participate in the scheduled activities without affecting the itinerary.
The climate is temperate, cold, and humid. The average annual temperature is 9° C maximum, and the minimum is 3° C. In autumn and winter, rainfall increases considerably.
For those who visit national park or national reserves, DO NOT litter the trails. Taking care of our parks and environment is everyone's responsibility. Avoid fines by following the rules.
Stores in rural areas are open all day, but they close between 13.00 and 15.00. We advise you to carry local currency (Chilean pesos), since it isn’t possible to pay with debit or credit cards in kiosks and rural stores.