Day 1 to 1 – Arrive Rio de Janeiro
Fantastic Rio de Janeiro has many things to see and do. A highlight for many would be to experience the majestic gaze of Christ the Redeemer at the top of Corcovado, the breath-taking panoramic views from the top of Sugarloaf Mountain, and the vibrant coloured tiles of the Selarón staircase. You can walk from the top of the staircase up to the quiet hill-top neighbourhood of Santa Teresa, with many quaint cafés and shops lining the cobblestone streets. In the city centre, you can stroll around Rio’s old colonial buildings and wander around the skyscrapers of the financial district. Alternatively, you may like to visit the Botanical Gardens, one of the world-famous beaches of Copacabana or Ipanema, or the beautiful Rodrigues de Freitas Lagoon. If you are in Rio de Janeiro around February/March, get ready for the world’s biggest party, the Rio Carnival.
Full day Rio de Janeiro city tour – US$68 • Pão de Açúcar (Sugar Loaf) cable car – US$12 • Beaches – free • Maracana Stadium tour – US$7-35 • Favela half day tour – US$29 • Hang-gliding – US$245
1 night(s) in hotels at Hotel Regina or similar
Day 2 to 3 – Foz do Iguaçu
We fly over fertile farmlands to the Brazilian town of Foz do Iguaçu, our base for visiting the famous Iguazú Falls – the most magnificent waterfalls in the world. Unlike most other waterfalls that have just one or two cataracts, at Iguazú Falls there are 275 cataracts in a magnificent 3 kilometre long U shape that we will visit from both the Brazil and Argentinean sides.
Visiting the Argentine side of the falls you can board a speed boat which will take you under the falls soaking you from head to toe, an optional adventure you’ll never forget! On the Argentine side you’ll also find the famous „Devil’s Throat“ where fourteen falls drop with such force that there is always a massive cloud of spray overhead.
Visiting the Brazilian side of the falls will give you a completely different perspective from the Argentine side. On the Brazilian side you can see the falls by walking through the rainforest and along catwalks above and below the rushing water. You can also visit the world’s largest hydroelectric dam at Itaipu (optional) where you can learn more about the ecological issues faced during the dam’s construction. There is also a very interesting bird park nearby, perfect for that must-have photo with a toucan!
Entry to Iguazú Falls in Brazil,Entry to Iguazú Falls in Argentina
Helicopter ride over the Falls – US$120 • Bird Park – US$14 • Rafain dinner and dance show – US$50 • Itaipu Dam, including transport, presentation film and tour around the engineering marvel – US$25 • Jungle 4WD and boat trips – US$12-60
2 night(s) in hotels at Hotel Taroba Express or similar
Day 4 to 6 – Buenos Aires
We fly to the beautiful city of Buenos Aires, known as the „Paris of South America“ due to its lovely green parks, plazas and wide boulevards. Explore the quirky neighbourhoods and artistic markets of the city, where European and Latin American influences have mixed together to create a city like no other. Stroll down Avenida 9 de Julio, the widest avenue in the world, spotting the Obelisk of Buenos Aires, which was built to commemorate the fourth centenary of the city, and the impressive Teatro Colón, one of the world’s best opera houses. You can also visit the famous Casa Rosada, Argentina’s presidential palace, from where Juan and Eva Perón famously addressed the crowds gathered on Plaza de Mayo in 1945.
Argentina’s capital city is a great destination for culture lovers, with the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes boasting an impressive collection including original works by Monet, Renoir and Cézanne. You can also learn about the national heroine ‘Evita’ at the Museo Eva Perón.
Buenos Aires has a variety of craft markets, and if you stroll through them at the weekends you may come across live bands, barbecues, make-shift bars and practising tango dancers for a truly atmospheric Latin-American experience. San Telmo is the best market for antiques, while the market at Recoleta has great hand-made craft items. The nearby Recoleta Cemetery is also worth a visit – it has beautiful marble tombs and Eva Peron’s family tomb can be found here. No visit to Buenos Aires would be complete without a stroll around the upmarket boutiques and cafés of the Palermo district, and the contrasting bohemian barrio of La Boca, where poor inhabitants of the area used left-over paint from the nearby shipyards to paint their humble houses made of scrap metal in bright, block colours.
The city is also world-renowned for its incredible nightlife, with many nightclubs, bars, restaurants and cinemas open all night. For a great evening, you could see an authentic tango show in the city where the dance originated, and you can’t leave Buenos Aires without trying some of the best steaks in the world!
Tango show & dinner – US$90 • Hop on/hop off bus – US$28 • Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes – Free
3 night(s) in hotels at Hotel TWO or similar
Day 7 to 9 – Mendoza
We head to Mendoza is where General José de San Martín organised the army with which he liberated Chile and Peru from Spanish rule in 1818. Unfortunately, few historic buildings remain after an earthquake devastated the city in 1861. However, the city was rebuilt on a grid system, resulting in the broad tree-lined streets and beautiful green plazas for which the city is famous. There are great views from the top of “Cerro de la Gloria” at Parque San Martín. Situated on the foothills of the Andes, the city is a great base for some optional outdoor activities, such as white-water rafting and rappelling. But of course no trip to Mendoza would be complete without touring the surrounding vineyards. You can hire bikes and cycle the ‘Ruta de los Vinos‘ (wine route), visiting both ancient cellars and working wineries – tasting some of the world’s best Malbecs en route.
White water rafting – from US$40 • Full day wine tour – US$100 • Paragliding – US$106 • Parque San Martin – free
3 night(s) in hotels at Urbana Suites or similar
Day 10 to 10 – Santiago
We take a plane to Chile’s bustling capital Santiago. En route you may catch sight of Chile’s ski resorts.. You will have the rest of the day free to explore the cosmopolitan capital city at your own pace. For the best views of the city, take a funicular railway to the top of San Cristobal where the Statue of the Virgin overlooks the capital and the distant Andes. Here you can taste some of Chile’s best wines and find some beautifully situated swimming pools. Santiago is a very clean, modern city with many fountains and parks, and is well-renowned for its markets such as the famous Mercado Central, one of the best seafood markets in the world. In the Plaza Constitución at the Palacio de la Moneda you can see the changing of the guard on most days.
Tours 4 Tips Walking Tours – Free (tip how much you think the tour is worth) • Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes – US$1 • Museo Histórico Nacional – US$1 • Teatro Municipal, with daily shows ranging from opera, ballet, orchestras and concerts – from US$3-12 • Maipo region winery tours – US$18-50
1 night(s) in hotels at Hotel Libertador or similar
Day 11 to 11 – Depart Santiago
Your adventure of a lifetime comes to an end today. If you have a late flight or have lengthened your stay by adding post tour accommodation you will have more time to explore the sights.
1 night(s) in hotels
Excursions & Activities
- Entry to Iguazú Falls in Brazil
- Entry to Iguazú Falls in Argentina
- Argentinian Winery
11 night(s) in hotels
Travel by 3 flight(s)
Travel tour leader
What’s Not Included
- Visas and travel insurance
- Spending money – budget for meals, snacks, drinks, limited souvenirs, laundry, tips and any extras
- International flights to/from the start/end of your tour and departure taxes
- Tips on included excursions, visas, travel insurance, personal items and single rooms.
- Optional excursions – On each trip, you may find there are some excursions that are not included. This might be because they are not to everyone’s taste or there may be various options of differing value to choose from. More information on the excursions we recommend is listed under each day of your itinerary though prices may vary. If you are after something in particular, don’t hesitate to ask your tour leader.
- Airport transfers and pre and post tour accommodation