A South American icon, a dream destination for any trekker, and a source of Chilean pride, the Towers of Paine are familiar before you see them. The striking granite fingers adorn countless postcards and guidebook covers, but images are no substitute for the real thing. At first the mammoth pillars tease, making fleeting appearances over the dense woodland you trek through, then your attention is absorbed by the final scramble uphill to the lookout. Once you get there, you won’t want to leave: in front of you, the Laguna Torres’ jade-green waters give way to abrupt glacial cliffs, above which the towers rise skywards, sheer and enormous, some of nature’s most epic constructs. Trekkers sad to leave the lookout can take comfort: outstanding views await at your refugio, watching the setting sun stream through Torre Central’s v-shaped notch at its apex.