Feedback on my time in Chile and some feedback.
Sat - Santiago de Chile Arrival, Exploring
Santiago is rather dull. Keep your time here as short as possible. Preferably go to Valparaiso.
Sun - Sewell (WHS) -> Only possible with a tour (one provider). Seems restricted to weekends.
Tour from Santiago with VTS was booked and confirmed. Then they cancelled due to bad weather. Not sure if I got my money back. The tours only run on weekends, so my recommendation would be to have at least a buffer day/week, so you can be sure to get in.
Mon - Flight Easter Islands
Tue - Easter Islands (WHS)
Wed - Easter Island. -> Night flight back to Santiago.
If the weather works 2,5 days are the minimum time you need to see the full island. A week may be a bit much, seeing it's a tiny place in the middle of the pacific. Be ready to dish out serious money for the flight.
Thu - Valparisso (WHS) - Santiago
The additional day in Santiago was not warranted. If you can stomach it, I would go to Valparaiso and then fly out the same day.
Fri - Morning flight Santiago -> Puerto Montt, Bus to Punta Varas
Sat - Punta Varas - Chiloe
Sun - Chiloe (WHS)
It ended up being a late afternoon flight. The morning in Santiago offered little highlights as Chile was on strike and all public facilties closed. I visited the Pre Columbian Art museum, but having been to the one in Mexico City this was pretty simple.
I skipped Puerto Varas and stayed in Puerto Montt instead. Keep in mind that it's nearly 4h to get to Castro from Puerto Montt, so you may need to stay in Puerto Montt two nights flying in and out.
For Chiloe read my review.
Mon - Chiloe. Evening flight: Puerto Montt -> Punta Arena
Tue - Punta Arena -> Torres del Paine
Wed - Torres del Paine (THWS)
Thu - Torres del Paine -> El Calafete (Bus and Argentina it is.
Prior to my flight I visited Monte Verde and am not sure if you should, too. Skipped Punta Arenas and took the bus directly from the airport to Puerto Natales. Reserve online. This requires a paypal account. This way I visited Torres on Tuesday and headed to Calafate on Wednesday
* Are 2,5 days enough for Easter Islands? I cannot get a rental car and don't enjoy doing tours for more than a day. Can you explore the islands by foot/bike? I do get this will be expensive (100$ per night, 600$ flight, food expensive).
2.5 Days are fine if the weather is okay. You can rent an ebike to cover the full island. Prices are okay. I think I paid 50$ per night for my room. The flight was 450.
* Is doing the Sewell tour complicated?
Yes and no. You can book online. They may cancel if the weather is bad.
* Santiago itself wasn't described all that fondly by people I knew. Any reason to spend more time there?
No. I would keep Santiago as short as possible. The Maipo valley is nice, if you have some time to spend.
I could spend another 1-2 days in Chile before transferring into Argentine.
* Any THWS I am missing or should try to visit?
* Punta Arenas of any note?
Decided to shorten my stay by a day and think this was okay.