In 2012, Donnavventura decided to travel from freezing Tierra del Fuego to the very Equator, starting its expedition in Santiago, Chile. The caravan headed South and visited Santa Cruz and the nearby vineyards of excellent Cabernet, before stepping on the legendary “Panamericana” leading all the way to Patagonia.
Off road tracks and challenging, harsh weather demanded sheer determination and the very best of the girls’ driving skills. After tackling so many treacherous icy roads, the team eventually reached the Villarica volcano – one of the most fascinating up there on the Andes range.
In Puerto Aisen a chartered boat took the Donnavventura explorers to the Torre del Paine National Park and the Grey lake, where the very first, majestic icebergs appeared lazily floating in the frigid waters. What an impressive sight, embedded in the natural amphitheatre of mountains and icy plains.
The the caravan crossed the Strait of Magellan, tackling endless snowy plains, all the way to the very last outpost of civilization, in Usuhaia. After a frigid, but most fascinating sightseeing tour of such a remote and mostly secluded place, the travel reporters of Donnavventura got back to their Mitsubishi pickups and took the road to Perito Moreno glacier, along “Ruta 40” – going past Mendoza and to Santiago.
New Caledonia, the island of Pines, Lifou and Ouvea were thus thoroughly explored by the team of brave reporters; then it was time to pay a visit to the capital city of Noumea and enjoy endless, breath-taking landscapes and turquoise coastlines. By then, the caravan had already been on the road for 40 days, flown 20 times and visited four Countries – not to mention seven different time-regions!
After a brief catamaran cruise, everybody set off to Fiji – a wonderful blend of beige and black natural shades, intertwining long beaches and basalt rock formations, in the very places featured in Hollywood blockbusters “Cast Away” and “Blue Lagoon”.
Later on, the team visited enchanted French Polynesia and Easter Island (Rapa Nui), discovering more and more about ancient traditions, cultures and mystical volcanoes and Moai tribes.
The last leg of the itinerary took the girls to northern Chile and Peru, driving across rocky, barren plains and majestic sand dunes. Travelling from San Pedro de Atacama – worldwide renowned for its wondrous fandagoes – to the geysers in Tatio, the caravan traveled up and down incredible heights, some 15.000 ft. up in the sky.
The Valley of the Moon and its mesmerizing canyons and craters proved as another unforgettable location that the travel reporters would never, ever forget.
Back on the road along the Panamerican route, the team soon arrived in Peru and flew over the mind-puzzling lines in Nazca - a series of large ancient geoglyphs in the Desert, in the southern part of the Country. The girls could observe most of the 800 animals carved on the grounds thousands of years ago, including, whales, parrots, lizards, spiders, condors and hummingbirds.
Also the exploration of the Amazon proved just as exciting, while the girls explored many secluded waterways, hamlets and different cultures thriving in such remote, but extremely luxuriant part of the globe.
It was thus very hard to bid all these wonders good-bye and eventually go back to everyday life, at the end of another successful and incredibly spectacular Donnavventura Grand Raid.