Day 01: Arrive Santiago de Chile (CHILE)
Arrival in Santiago and transfer to the hotel. The city tour begins with the visit of the church San Francisco, which was built between 1572 and 1618. You will pass through the Barrio Paris & Londres, which is characterized by its European architectural style and its’ narrow cobbled street. Then you will pass by the sector of Club Hípico, one of the most beautiful horseracing tracks in South America, privileged by its architecture of the late 19th century. Continuing your tour to the Barrio Conchay Toro where you will immediately notice that the constructions of the buildings are very similar to those in the Barrio Paris y London. While walking through the main street you will recover vestiges of the aristocratic past of the capital. 1989 this district was declared as “Zona Típica”. You will be impressed by the gothic, neo-colonial and Bauhaus constructions. After that you will visit the Plaza de Armas and see the cathedral. Just around the corner, you will find the main post office, the National History museum and the town hall of Santiago. From here you head along the famous Alameda, Santiago’s colorful main avenue, towards the heart of the city, seeing the “Palacio de la Moneda” (seat of government), various monuments and public buildings on the way. Afterwards, you continue the tour by driving up to the San Cristóbal Hill. From one of the hill’s view points, you will have the finest views of Santiago and the Andes Mountains. To round off the tour, you will pass through the modern residential areas of the city with their daring architecture and, finally, the bustling Providencia shopping zone.
Overnight: Hotel Providencia or Hotel Atton Vitacura, Santiago de Chile (1 night)
Day 02: Santiago/Calama (Flight)/San Pedro de Atacama (Drive)
Transfer to the airport for the flight to Calama (not included). Arrival and reception by our local tour guide, transfer of approx. 1 ½ hours to San Pedro de Atacama. In the afternoon half day walking tour of San Pedro de Atacama, which is the most important Archaeological center in Chile situated 2,438 meters above sea level and surrounded by a green fertile oasis picturesque, San Pedro has been the center of a Palaeolithic civilization with its narrow streets that have preserved of its old style dating back to the Spanish Conquerors and its beautiful colonial church that was built in 1577. The village is the center for Indian culture in the Atacama Desert. Right in time for the beautiful sunset, you will drive to the Moon Valley in the late afternoon. You will be fascinated by the silence, the moonscape scenery and the snow-capped volcanoes in the background. Don’t miss this unique experience!
Overnight: Hosteria San Pedro or Hotel Kimal, San Pedro de Atacama (3 nights) (B)
Day 03: San Pedro de Atacama
Today you will start your tour visiting the huge Atacama Salt Lake, an inland sea dating back millions of years. Enjoy a unique experience viewing this undoubtedly the driest desert in the world. The flatness and emptiness here are overwhelming. Following the road in direction to Argentina, you will get to know the Lagunas Miscanti & Meñiques, set at the base of two immense volcanoes. These alti-plane lakes are fringed with salt deposits and surrounded by brilliantly colored clumps of “paja brava”, creating a singular visual experience. Afterwards you continue to the small Indian village of Toconao. The inhabitants of Toconao are producing beautiful small sculptures out of a white volcanic stone that can be found in a quarry near the village. Lunch is included. Return to the hotel. (B, L)
Day 04: San Pedro de Atacama
Full day at leisure. Optional tour to visit the impressive Tatio Geysers for extra charge, which can be arranged locally. (B)
Day 05: San Pedro de Atacama/Calama (Drive)/Santiago/Lima (Flights) (PERU)
Transfer to Calama airport for the flights to Lima via Santiago de Chile (not included). Arrival in Lima and transfer to the hotel.
Overnight: Hotel La Hacienda Miraflores or Hotel Casa Andina PC Miraflores, Lima (1 night) (B)
Day 06: Lima/Cusco (Flight)/Yucay (Drive)
Transfer to the airport for the flight to Cusco (not included). Upon arrival transfer to the hotel located in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. On the way you will visit the sanctuary Cochahuasi Wasi. You will have the opportunity to see Pumas, Condors and Aras. The small conservation project is not comparable with a Zoo. It’s also possible to get an insight in the Andean web techniques. You will continue to the “Mercado de Urubamba” and on the way you will have lunch in a typical local restaurant. The “Mercado de Urubamba” is an authentic market where real bartering takes place. The rural people of the surroundings sell and barter agricultural products as well as animals. It is also the place where locals exchange gossips and news.
Note for 2017, sightseeing for this day will be: Transfer to the airport for the flight to Cusco (not included). Upon arrival you will start the tour with a visit to Chinchero community located 28 km away from Cusco. Here are the remains of what was the royal hacienda of Tupac Inca Yupanqui, as well as beautiful colonial temples built on Inca’s foundations. However, its main attraction is its Sunday market originally dedicated to the people of the valley to barter their products. This colourful and lively market still fascinates people with its variety of handicrafts and textiles made in true pre-Columbian style. Afterwards you will be transferred to “El Mirador de Racchi” where you will have a splendid view of the Sacred Valley. Afterwards you will enjoy a typical lunch at a local house, followed by the transfer to hotel.
Overnight: Hotel Sonesta Posada del Inca or Hotel Aranwa Sacred Valley Hotel & Wellness, Yucay (2 nights) (B, L)
Day 07: Yucay
This morning is free. Optional tours (Pisac Market or Moray and Maras or Urubama River Rafting or biking in the Sacred Valley) are available to book locally for extra charge. In the afternoon, a visit to Ollantaytambo, a typical Inca community, is included. Towering above the town of Ollantaytambo we will find the Inca fortress of Ollantaytambo. Steep stone terraces rising from the edge of town lead up to the fortress ruins at the top of the hill. A stone stairway leads up through the terrace walls, allowing visitors to step out on them. One of the best-preserved areas lies north of the Hanan Huacaypata square: an area of 15 blocks of houses built on top of carved stone walls. (B)
Day 08: Yucay/Machu Picchu (Drive)/Cusco (Train)
Transfer by bus to the train station of Ollantaytambo where the tour starts by train that goes through the fertile plain of the Urubamba valley and on to Aguas Calientes. From there, small busses take us up the steep mountain to the ruins of Machu Picchu, which is called The Lost City of the Incas, this cultural heritage of mankind is an impressive stone city constructed with a technique incredible for its era and even for present times. Stone upon stone, fitted together perfectly without any cement, with impressive precision and exquisite details that worthy of the world’s greatest palaces. There are many theories about Machu Picchu, but one thing is for sure - it is one of the most impressive sites in the world. Enjoy a guided visit of around 2 hours of the ruins and return by bus and train to Ollantaytambo station. Transfer to our hotel in Cusco.
Overnight: Hotel Eco Inn or Hotel Aranwa Cusco Boutique, Cusco (2 nights) (B)
Day 09: Cusco
Today’s tour will be including a visit to the Plaza de Armas, where one can find the cathedral built on the ruins of the ancient Inca Palace. The cathedral borders on other churches on both sides. Next stop will be the old town with its magnificent renovated colonial buildings; some of them are being used as hotels. Proceed to Sacsayhuaman, a ruin site located approx. 3 km above Cusco. Sacsayhuaman also offers a fabulous view over the city. Afterwards visit the surrounding ruins. Return to the hotel for a free afternoon. (B)
Day 10: Cusco/Puno (Drive)
A full day bus journey from Cusco to Puno leads through the Peruvian highland along snow-covered peaks, passes up to 4.300 m above sea level and then goes down to Puno, which is right on Lake Titicaca. On route we will visit the town of Andahuaylillas, the ruins of Racchi and the small town of Pucara. Lunch in a typical restaurant en route is included. After arrival in Puno transfer to your hotel.
Overnight: Hotel Jose Antonio or Hotel Libertador Lago Titicaca, Puno (1 night) (B, L)
Day 11: Puno/Juliaca (Drive)/Lima (Flight)
Full day excursion on Lake Titicaca to visit the Uros floating islands. The Aymara Indians build their houses over floating artificial islands that elaborate themselves on the waters of the Titicaca in which they inhabit in organizations and with ancestral customs. Continue to Taquile Island where you find numerous pre-Inca and Inca ruins and Inca terracing. The island is narrow, only about 1km wide, but 6-7km long. The people here still wear their traditional clothes and there is a co-operative shop on the Plaza where one can buy woollen goods of very fine quality. A typical lunch on Taquile Island is included. Then we will be transferred to the airport in Juliaca for a return flight (not included) back to Lima. Meet & transfer to the hotel.
Overnight: Hotel La Hacienda Miraflores or Hotel Casa Andina PC Miraflores, Lima (2 nights) (B, L)
Day 12: Lima
In the afternoon you will explore the city on a sightseeing tour through Lima. The Plaza de Armas with the beautiful buildings of the government Palace, the town hall, the Palace of the archbishop and the cathedral are still the most important places in town. After that you will visit the beautiful San Francisco monastery, which displays the largest collection of religious art in America. The highlight of this convent is the visit of the underground vaults known as “catacumbas” or catacombs. Proceed through the modern districts of San Isidro and Miraflores and to the Coastline enjoying the view over the beaches of Lima and the Pacific Ocean. Afterwards enjoy a guided visit of one of the Lima’s most noted museums, the Rafael Larco Herrera Archaeological Museum which houses the world’s largest private collection of Peruvian pre-Columbian Art. Mr. Rafael Larco Hoyle founded the museum on July 28, 1926, in the Chiclin sugar estate in Trujillo, naming it as his father as an expression of filial homage. In 1958 he moved the collection to Lima, installing the Museum in a Colonial house in the district of Pueblo Libre, where it currently functions. This locale was adapted to the characteristics style of the 18th century Colonial houses from Trujillo. The approximate 45,000 objects of the collection have been exhibited to the public in the Permanent Hall, Jewellery Vault and the Classified Storage Area ever since. The Halls of the Larco Museum are organized by subjects. The Metals, Ceramics, the Stones, the Culture, the Great Jewellery Vault and Textile Halls emphasize the technological aspects by Pre-Columbian cultures. Finally the World’s unique Erotic Hall gives us a glimpse of the fascinating sexual life of ancient Peruvians. (B)
Day 13: Lima/Iguassu (Flight) (BRAZIL)
Transfer from the hotel to the airport of Lima. Flight to Iguassu (not included) and transfer to the hotel. The rest of the day is free at leisure.
Overnight: Hotel Recanto Park or Hotel MaBu Foz, Iguassu (2 nights) (B)
Day 14: Iguassu
You will leave your hotel on the Brazilian side by motor coach and cross the Iguassu National Park towards the Brazilian Falls. You walk along the paths following the cascades and then along the catwalk, which leads you very close to the bottom of the Devil’s Throat. You will enjoy magnificent views. Afterwards you take an elevator to go up back to the road, and there you will board the motor coach, which will take you to the Argentinean side of the falls. You will make a short stop at the Visitor’s Centre and proceed from there along the Inferior Circuit, the down-river falls, to the Superior Circuit, the up-river cascades. The Ecological Jungle Train leads you to the most impressive observation point of the falls/The Devil’s Throat. After visit transfer to the hotel on the Brazilian side of the falls. (B)
Day 15: Iguassu/Buenos Aires (Flight) (ARGENTINA)
Transfer from the hotel to the airport for the flight to Buenos Aires (not included). Arrival in Buenos Aires and transfer to the hotel.
Overnight: Hotel Broadway or Hotel 725 Continental, Buenos Aires (3 nights) (B)
Day 16: Buenos Aires
After breakfast you will visit the most important sites during a city tour. You will drive to the Plaza de Mayo, with the Casa Rosada, the pink house, seat of the government, the Cabildo (town hall) and the Metropolitan Cathedral, home of the Archbishop of Buenos Aires. The tour goes onto the district San Telmo. Until 1888 this part of the city was a river port, today San Telmo is one of the most modern and desired places to live in Buenos Aires. The worker district La Boca is famous for its colourful tin-houses and its history as living district of Italian seamen and dock workers in the 19th century. The Barrio Norte called Recoleta is the quarter of the rich of Buenos Aires. On the cemetery of Recoleta one will find the grave of Eva Duarte who became famous as Evita Perón. Continue along the widest avenue in the world, the Avenida 9 de Julio, and continue to the Plaza Lavalle with the Federal Court of Justice and the Teatro Colón, to Palermo with its parks and gardens. Return to the hotel. The rest of the day is free at leisure. (B)
Day 17: Buenos Aires
Day is free at leisure. Optional tours (Argentinean Estancia or Tigre Tour) can be arranged locally for extra charges. (B)
Day 18: Buenos Aires/Colonia (Ferry) (URUGUAY)/Montevideo (Drive)
Transfer to the ferry station and Buquebus ride to Colonia (approx 1h). Upon arrival in Colonia a comprehensive city tour will take place. Visit the picturesque streets of Colonia del Sacramento, the eldest city in the country, recently declared World Heritage by UNESCO. The streets of Santa Rita, San Gabriel, the Matriz Church, San Pedro road, the Bastion del Carmen, the famous “ Calle de los Suspiros “ (Street of Sighs) used so often as a backdrop for historical films, Puerta del Campo, Plaza Mayor 25 de Mayo. The past can still be felt, in the city’s cobblestone streets and stone-walls. Colonia complements its archaeological values with natural beauty, the permanent company of the Uruguay River and the emblematic monuments that stand out on the horizon, such as the cathedral and the lighthouse, and very nearby, the Real de San Carlos bullring. The city tour ends at the bus terminal where you will board a very comfortable regular bus including air-conditioning to Montevideo (without local guide). The Journey to Montevideo will take approximately 2hrs. Upon arrival your tour guide will pick you up at the bus terminal and transfer you to the hotel.
Overnight: Hotel Balmoral Plaza or Hotel Sheraton Four Points, Montevideo (2 nights) (B)
Day 19: Montevideo
Montevideo is a modern city with european flair but also with historical buildings and a mix of architectural influences. You will be picked up at your hote for a comprehensive tour around the city. The main points of interest are the Old City with its famous Mercado del Puerto, Constitution Square, Cathedral and Colonial Town Hall, Solis Theatre, Independence Square at the centre of which stands a monument dedicated to national hero, José Gervasio Artigas and his Mausoleum. Facing the square is the Government House (museum of the Presidents). The main commercial street 18 de Julio is lined with shops, cafés and office buildings. Congress Building: This huge building is the pride of Uruguay. It was constructed between 1908 and 1925 with local marble consisting of 52 colours and 12 types of wood. Inside visits are only possible on week days (weekends and holidays closed), depending on Parliament activities. Drive through the Prado neighbourhood where one of the oldest parks and a beautiful rose garden is located. You continue to Batlle & Ordoñez Park, passing by the Obelisk, the Soccer Stadium and the residential area of Carrasco. Then you will stop at Plaza Virgilio from which you can enjoy an excellent view of the city. A great spot for photographers! Return along the coast and its beaches back to your hotel. (B)
Day 20: Montevideo/Rio de Janeiro (Flight) (BRAZIL)
Transfer from the hotel to the airport for the flight to Rio de Janeiro (not included). Arrival in Rio and transfer to the hotel.The rest of the day is free at leisure.
Overnight: Hotel Windsor Plaza Copacabana or Hotel Windsor Excelsior Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, (2 nights) (B)
Day 21: Rio de Janeiro
Leave the hotel and proceed as far as Cosme Velho Station to board a cog-train (*) for a ride through Tijuca Forest up Corcovado Mountain at 748 m (2.454 ft.) high. The train ride takes 20 minutes and is a wonderful opportunity for a closer look at the forest’s lush tropical vegetation and to enjoy scenic landscapes of the beaches and city below. Disembarking at the top of Corcovado and then proceeding up the steps that lead to the top lookout where the towering statue of Christ the Redeemer stands. After appreciating the breathtaking view unfolding below, we descend by train. The tour proceeds passing by Rio’s world-famous beaches as far as Urca District to board a cable car for a two-staged ascent up Sugar Loaf Mountain at 390 m (1.280 ft.) high. Then coming down and proceeding along Guanabara Bay and Flamengo Park as far as downtown to visit the area, passing by the financial and business centre and by other attractions such as the Candelaria Church, Saint Sebastian Cathedral, Lapa Arches, Municipal Theatre, National Library, Fine Arts Museum, and by the Sambadrome, site of Rio’s famous Carnival parade.
(*) when the train is not available then we will be driving by vans, which are certified by the city´s administrative office to take us to the top of Corcovado. (B)
Day 22: Depart Rio de Janeiro
Transfer to the airport for your international flight out. (B)