Home > News

Historic Donation Creates 5 New National Parks In Chile

patagonia park mountainsPhoto by: Tomkins Conservation
Support us! GearJunkie may earn a small commission from affiliate links in this article. Learn More

With the largest land donation ever, Chile expands its national park network by an area three times the size of Yosemite and Yellowstone National Parks combined.

Chile national parks patagonia mountains
Photo by: Tompkins Conservation

This week, alongside Kristine McDivitt Tompkins, former CEO of Patagonia and head of Tompkins Conservation, Chilean President Michelle Bachelet pledged to create five new national parks. The announcement came thanks to an 11-million-acre private land donation, the largest such donation ever.

Among the new parks, one million acres will go to finalizing both Pumalin and Patagonia national parks. And three other existing parks will expand.

“Today, alongside Kris, I am honored to see how everything has come together,” said President Bachelet. “We are bequeathing to the country the greatest creation of protected areas in our history.”

Chile national park pumalin
Parque Pumalín. Photo by: Tompkins Conservation

Route Of Parks

The 11 million acres of parkland will help build Chile’s proposed “Route of Parks,” a 17-park network spanning more than 1,500 miles from Puerto Montt to Cape Horn.

The Route aims to be an ecological safeguard, ecotourism attraction, and economic boost for South Chile. Estimates of the Route’s impact suggest $270 million in annual revenue and up to 43,000 new jobs.

Tompkins Conservation

The land donation came thanks to the help of Tompkins Conservation, a land trust dedicated to creating new national parks. Doug Tompkins, founder of The North Face founded the Tompkins Conservation 25 years ago.

At 1,300 Miles, Remote 'GPT' Is Longest Trail In South America

A little-known trail follows a spectacular route through the heart of Patagonia and beyond. As of now, there is no guidebook - yet. Read more…

Though he passed away in 2015, his wife, Kristine, continues to champion the Conservation’s mission: Combat biodiversity loss by “rewilding” natural habitats, and expanding protected lands.

With the 11-million acre donation in Chile, Tompkins will have protected more than 13 million acres.

Subscribe Now

Get adventure news and gear reviews in your inbox!

Join Our GearJunkie Newsletter

Get adventure news and gear reviews in your inbox!