South America Salsa - 49 days
FROM USD $8,919
This epic journey begins in the lively city of Rio de Janeiro and covers the amazing Iguazu Falls, the marshlands of Pantanal and the Bolivian altiplano. Marvel at the salt lakes of Uyuni, Lake Titicaca, Colca Canyon and the magnificent Amazon Jungle before discovering the fabled Inca city of Machu Picchu.
This holiday is also offered in reverse. Start in Lima and end in ritzy Rio!
Day 1: Rio de Janeiro
Welcome to Brazil! Upon arrival at Rio Airport you'll be met and transferred to our joining hotel. The first day of your tour is simply an arrival day with no pre-organised activities. In order to allow time to relax and see some of the sights you may wish to add pre tour accommodation. A welcome meeting will be held later this evening. Overnight - Rio de Janeiro
Days 2 - 5: Parati & Sao Paulo
Rio de Janeiro – Parati – Sao Paulo. We follow the stunning coastline north to the old pirate town of Parati. Explore the nearby beaches and local hippy markets or opt for a full day boat cruise around the bay. We continue to the sprawling metropolis of São Paulo where we can enjoy an optional visit to a snake farm and the Latin American Exhibition Centre, designed by famous architect Oscar Niemeyer. Overnight - Parati (2), Sao Paulo (2) (B:4)
South America Salsa - 49 days Go Guide
: :Check out the go guide for details of the tour, info on visas, climate, money, what to bring and more!
Sao Paulo – Curitiba – Foz do Iguacu. Next we arrive at the university town of Curitiba, an attractive and exceptionally well-planned city with many pleasant squares and parks. An overnight bus journey brings us to Foz do Iguaçu, our base for visiting the famous Iguazu Falls. We’ll get to see this impressive waterfall from both the Argentinean and Brazilian side. In Brazil, board a speedboat that takes you right under the falls, whilst on the Argentinean side you’ll find the famous ‘Devil’s Throat’. Overnight - Curitiba (1), bus (1), Foz do Iguacu (2) (B:3)
Days 10 - 14: Asuncion, Ponta Pora & Bonito
Foz do Iguacu – Asuncion – Ponta Pora - Bonito. Travelling through fertile land we reach Asuncion, Paraguay’s charming capital. Asunción sits on the banks of the Paraguay River and its duty free zone makes it an ideal shopping destination. We travel across the Paraguay pampas to the border of Brazil and the town of Ponta Pora. Leaving Paraguay behind, we travel to Bonito in the Sierra do Bodoquena Mountains. Enjoy caving and river activities, including snorkelling, or opt for forest walks with amazing mountain scenery. Overnight - Asuncion (2), Ponta Para (1), Bonito (2) (B:5)
Days 15 - 21: Santa Cruz & Sucre, Bolivia
Bonito – Pantanal – Santa Cruz – Sucre. We next make our way to the fabulous Pantanal, a huge wetland in the centre of South America that is a birdwatcher's paradise and home to a variety of other wildlife.
We cross the frontier into Bolivia where we take an overnight train to Santa Cruz to enjoy some free time sightseeing and overnight. We then fly to the official capital of Bolivia. Sucre retains much of its colonial charm and is famous for its warm and sunny climate. Visit the cathedral and its jewel encrusted painting of Sucre’s patron, the Virgin of Guadalupe, or indulge in a spot of shopping at the bustling Tarabuco market. Overnight - Pantanal (2), Overnight train (1), Santa Cruz (1), Sucre (3) (B:6, L:2, D:2)
Days 22 - 29: Deserts, saltlakes & La Paz
Sucre – Potosi – Uyuni – La Paz. The UNESCO-listed city of Potosi is home to one of the world’s longest continually operated silver mines. An optional excursion will give you the opportunity to descend down a working mine and witness archaic mining methods that are still practiced today. We continue to the world’s largest salt lake, Salar de Uyuni. Explore the stunning landscapes between the salt lake and Chile’s Atacama Desert by four wheel drive vehicle. The area’s unusual landscape of mountains, active volcanoes, colossal cacti and geysers is like nowhere on earth. Leaving this surreal terrain we head towards La Paz via an overnight bus journey. The highest city in the world, La Paz is built in the basin of a canyon with the snow-capped Mount Illimani in the background. Wander through the vibrant Indian street markets and the fascinating Witches’ Market or visit attractions further afield like the rock formations of Moon Valley or Coroico, the gateway to the Bolivian jungle region. Overnight - Potosi (2), Uyuni (1), Salar de Uyuni (1), overnight bus (1), La Paz (3) (B:1)
Days 30 - 32: Lake Titicaca
La Paz – Puno – Lake Titicaca – Puno. Departing La Paz we cross the border into Peru and head to Puno on the shores of Lake Titicaca. In Puno we will learn about the culture of the Uros people with a boat visit to the floating reed islands. We continue to the island of Amantani where we’ll enjoy the hospitality of native Aymara/Quechua families. The next morning we visit Taquile Island where you can buy unique handicrafts at the local cooperative shops.
Overnight - Puno (1), Lake Titicaca (1), Puno (1) (B:1, L:1, D:1)
Days 33 - 36: Amazon Jungle
Puno– Cuzco – Amazon Jungle – Cuzco. Leaving Puno we head to Cuzco passing hot mineral pools, snow capped mountains and traditional Native Indian villages where locals sell their wares. We begin our visit to the mighty Amazon with a flight to the jungle community of Puerto Maldonado. Once settled in our Amazon lodge, we will begin to explore the jungle with plenty of free time to enjoy the rich landscapes diverse flora and fauna. We visit Monkey Island, home to a great variety of monkeys as well as an array of birdlife. We will trek through the rainforest and along the way our guide will point out the many different species of bird and explain the use of plants in local medicine with an optional canoe ride later in the day. Observe the abundant birdlife of the Amazon from our lakeside-viewing platform.
On day 36 we depart this jungle haven and make our way back to Cuzco where you have time to explore this fascinating ancient capital. Overnight - Cuzco (1), Amazon Jungle (2), Cuzco (1) (B:2, L:2, D:2)
Inca Trail Trek or free time in Cuzco. For those who have chosen to hike the Inca Trail Trek, we begin a once in a lifetime journey on the ancient trail of the Incas. During your hike you will cross spectacular passes and visit more Inca ruins en-route to Machu Picchu. Enjoy free time to explore Machu Picchu on your own. Later you will have the chance to soak your tired muscles in the hot springs at Aguas Calientes before returning to Cuzco by train. If you are not participating in the trek then you will visit Machu Picchu by train and have plenty of free time to enjoy the activities available in and around Cuzco. Overnight - Cuzco (1), Inca Trail (3), Cuzco (2) (B:3, L:3, D:3)
Days 43 - 45: Colca Canyon
Cuzco – Arequipa – Colca Canyon – Arequipa. After a short flight we have time to explore the beautiful colonial city of Arequipa with stunning architecture, cobbled streets and inviting local cafes. Next we visit the nearby Colca Canyon, considered to be one of the deepest in the world, where we’ll walk along the canyon’s edge spotting soaring giant condors and enjoy a relaxing soak in neighbouring hot springs.
Overnight - Arequipa (1), Colca Canyon (1), bus (1)
Days 46 - 48: Nazca Lines
Arequipa – Nazca – Pisco. We travel to Nazca where an optional flight will give the best views of the strange lines and geometrical figures etched into the desert floor. Visit the underground aqueducts, gold mines and ceramic shops, and the extraordinary Chauchilla Cemetery where you can see the ancient mummies which still have skin and hair intact. Travelling deep into the desert we have the chance to try sand boarding before crossing the Atlantic coast to the town of Pisco. From here we explore the Ballestas Islands, teeming with wildlife, by boat.
We arrive at our final destination, Lima, where you can spend a day visiting the city’s fine museums, the vibrant markets or the catacombs of San Francisco Church. Overnight - Nazca (1), Pisco (1), Lima (1)
Day 49: Lima
Our amazing cross continent holiday comes to an end today. Spend the day relaxing or hunting for souvenirs before taking your flight home.