15 Day - Best of South America

Fixed departure Tours

15 days

Our group tour aims to show you “our South America” and take you close up to the continent’s most dramatic landscapes. You will enjoy good company of other fellow travellers, while our local guides inform and enrich your experience. Travel in comfort, visiting both the highlights and hidden treasures of the continent, staying in good standard and well-located accommodation. Competitively priced, this itinerary is designed to offer you real value for money.
The highlights on this tour are: Buenos Aires; Iguassu Falls; Rio de Janeiro's Copacabana Beach; Machu Picchu; Cuzco, and Lake Titicaca.
Guaranteed departure on fixed dates, minimum 2 participants with local English speaking guide.

ADD-ON TIPS:
Pre-Tour (from/to Lima): Peruvian Amazon or Northern Peru
Post-Tour (from/to Rio): Extra days in Rio / Buzios / Paraty / Pantanal / Salvador

NOTE: Hotels quoted are tourist and superior class categories (similar to 3* & 3.5* and 4* categories).  The hotels we use are clean, safe, with private facilities and are centrally located.

Day 1

Lima - FRI

Arrival in Lima and transfer from the airport to the hotel.

Day 2

Lima / Cuzco / Sacred Valley - SAT

Transfer to the airport for the flight to Cusco.

Cusco – South America's archaeological capital and oldest continuously inhabited city is now one of Peru’ s most important and most frequented tourist attractions. Nevertheless, it is still remaining its vivid legacy as the hub of the Inca Empire: Quechua-speaking Inca descendants can still be found multitudinously in the centuries-old stone-walled city streets. Cusco also boasts magnificent repositories of colonial art – fine examples can be found in the Cathedral and Museum of Archaeology.
Upon arrival transfer to the hotel located in the Sacred Valley of the Incas.
On the way you will visit the typical Pisac market in the town of Pisac. Here a very special and traditional market is performed every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday. A large handicraft fair is organized by the Pisac and Cusco craftsmen who exhibit and sell wide variety of fine crafts such as woven goods, Alpaca rugs, tapestry, sculpture, jewellery.  Continue to the ruin site of Ollantaytambo and visit the town, the shrines and the fortification with its stairs to the sky.
Afterwards transfer to the hotel in Yucay located in the Urubamba valley.

B

Day 3

Sacred Valley / Machu Picchu / Cuzco - SUN

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 drive up the steep mountain to the ruin town Machu Picchu.

Called the Lost City of the Incas, this cultural heritage of mankind is a beautifully located 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 delicacy, exquisite detail and discrimination 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 your hotel in Cusco. 

B

Day 4

Cuzco - MON

In the morning the half-day city tour begins. It will be shown the exact centre of the Inca Empire, the Plaza de Armas. There 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. Then proceed to Sacsayhuaman, a ruin located approx. 3 km above Cusco. Sacsayhuaman also offers a fabulous view of the city. Afterwards visit the surrounding ruins.

The afternoon is free at leisure.

B

Day 5

Cuzco / Puno - TUE

A full day bus journey from Cusco to Puno leads through the Peruvian highland along snow-covered peaks, passes up to 4.300m 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.
Puno - The beauty and charm of Puno town is made up by its habitant’s kind personality and by its mixture of typical Andean architecture that is to be found all way down from the sides of the hills until the bank of the Titicaca Lake. Its archaeological, cultural and architectural variety and richness owes Puno to the fact that it once has been inhabited by three different civilizations on the banks of the Titicaca Lake: Aymara, Quechua and Spanish. This multicultural origin has created a mestizo race that is also found in their artistic and cultural expression and especially in an incomparable folklore which is second to none and has made Puno the “Folklore Capital of Peru”. But the main attraction of Puno is the Titicaca Lake, a must for any visitor. The Sacred Lake of the Incas is one of the most enigmatic places in the world. It is the highest navigable lake and combines beautiful sights, culture and history

B
L

Day 6

Puno / Lake Titicaca / Puno - WED

Early in the morning you will visit the Uros Indians, famous for living on their floating islands made out of reeds. Afterwards bus transfer and border crossing to Bolivia and proceed to Copacabana, probably the most important place of pilgrimage in Latin America, which also gave name to the famous beach in Rio de Janeiro. Visit of the famous pilgrim’s church, then you will board a Catamaran, which will take you over Lake Titicaca to the Island of the Sun. According to the legend this was the home of the Sun God. Lunch will be served on Taquile Island.

B
L

Day 7

Puno / Lima - THU

Transfer from the hotel to the airport of Juliaca.

Flight to Lima and transfer to the hotel.
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, Jewelry 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 Jewelry 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 8

Lima - FRI

Day at leisure. Optional tours can be booked locally or you can explore on your own.

B

Day 9

Lima / Iguassu Falls - SAT

Transfer from the hotel to the airport of Lima. Flight to Iguassu and transfer to the hotel.
Iguassu - one of the biggest wonders of nature in South America: located amidst a sub-tropical forest in the triangle of Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil, a gigantic row of waterfalls goes down into the river Iguassu.

B

Day 10

Iguassu Falls - SUN

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 Argentiniean 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 11

Iguassu / Buenos Aires - MON

Transfer from the hotel to the airport for the flight to Buenos Aires. Arrival in Buenos Aires and transfer to the hotel.

Buenos Aires - is not only the capital of Argentina; it is also one of the 10 most important metropolises in the world and the centre of the political, economic and intellectual life of the country. This cosmopolitan city - with great European cultural influence - displays a refined taste in its cooking, in its ”boutiques” and in the elegance of its inhabitants. Almost 12 million people live there and can enjoy the plentiful night life visiting ”tango” bars, cabarets, discotheques, restaurants or eternally open bars. During the day, a wide variety of attractions is offered: museums, art galleries, tasteful shops, fascinating antiques, large green areas, parks, wide tree lined boulevards, clubs and sporting events. The Italian-Spanish descent of the inhabitants has formed this modern metropolis. Feel the flair, above all in the Italian old quarter La Boca and in the wide streets with cafes from the turn of the century. At the Plaza de Mayo, in the political centre of town, is the starting point of this tour through this exciting capital. The widest street of the world, the very famous opera house and also the shopping street Florida make Buenos Aires unforgettable.

B

Day 12

Buenos Aires - TUE

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.

Afternoon free at leisure. 

B

Day 13

Buenos Aires / Rio de Janeiro - WED

Transfer from the hotel to the airport for the flight to Rio de Janeiro. Arrival in Rio and transfer to the hotel.

Rio de Janeiro founded in 1556, the city of St. Sebastian of Rio de Janeiro became the capital of the Colony of Brazil in 1776. In 1808 the Portuguese royal family fled Napoleon and settled in Rio. This brought a surge of progress and the city became the main cultural, political and economic centre of the Portuguese empire. In 1889, when the republic was proclaimed, Rio was confirmed as the country's capital, which it remained until 1960, when the construction of the new capital, Brasilia, was founded. Rio is situated in a 15-mile-strip of land, wedged between mountains and sea. There are some thirty miles separating downtown Flamengo, from far-flung Recreio, bordered on one side by the blue sea, on the other by verdant hills. Between them lies a colourful state of mind called CARIOCA, with almost 8 million locals who samba their way through life, relaxed and high-spirited. That is just the way it should be in Rio, surrounded by natural beauty on all sides, with Christ the Redeemer perched on top of Corcovado blessing the city and Sugar Loaf, one of the most famous postcards of our country.

B

Day 14

Rio de Janeiro - THU

This afternoon starts a half day city tour including visit of Sugarloaf.

Downtown is the business heart of Rio. It is a part of the city where colonial Rio meets modern skyscrapers. Passing through Rio Branco Avenue, you will see the Candelaria Church, which was started being built in the late 18th century and was completed in 1898. The headquarter of major Brazilian banks and commercial enterprises is located on this avenue.
You will also see the Opera House (Teatro Municipal) and the Carioca Square, the church of Santo Antonio built in the 17th century as well as the contrast of the modern buildings such as Petrobras and the Cathedral. Moreover you will get to know Rio's aqueduct built in the 18th century which is nowadays connecting downtown to Santa Teresa district, an old residential area. Afterwards you will drive through one of the highlights of this tour: the Flamengo Park from where you have the chance to see already the top highlight of this tour, the Sugar Loaf. This famous mountain reached by a cable car 1,200 feet high, will give you an experience you will never forget: looking down at Rio from top of the Sugar Loaf is one of the most spectacular views in the world.

The rest of the day at leisure.

B

Day 15

Rio de Janeiro - FRI

Transfer to the airport for your international flight back home or your next destination (transfer not included in the price).

B

Included:

Accommodation at selected hotel categories w private facilities
Daily breakfast and meals as indicated in the itinerary
Transfers and tours as per itinerary (shared)
Cuzco tourist tax
Vistadome Ollanta/Aguas Calientes/Ollanta
Machu Picchu Entrance Fee
Aguas Calientes-Machu Picchu and vv shuttle bus
Iguassu National Park Brazil
Iguassu National Park Argentina

Not Included:

Airfares and optional tours.
Airfare for Lima/Cuzco + Juliaca/Lima/Iguazu/Buenos Aires//Rio = US$ 1,298.00 p.p including taxes. - prices subject to change without notice and availability.
Rio: Day 15: Hotel/Airport Transfer
Any item not mentioned as included
Tips and gratuities
Travel insurance
Airport taxes

Notes:

Rates are subject to change without notice and availability.
Additional pre-night(s) in Lima and/or post-night(s) in Rio de Janeiro can be booked at additional cost upon request.

Indicative Tour Cost

Per person in USD

*** Tourist Share Twin - $3,074.00

*** Tourist Single - $4,103.00

**** Superior Share Twin - $3,744.00

**** Superior Single - $5,336.00

MEALS:

B.  Breakfast included
L.  Lunch included
D.  Dinner included

Why Choose BFirst Travel?

BFirst Travel, a wholly owned Australian tour company, ATAS/AFTA accredited and helloworld affiliate. For the past 15 years we have specialised exclusively in Latin America. We know a few parts of the world, and we know them well. Our been there, done that expertise elevates your experience beyond the ordinary, to the level of adventure with comfort! "Travel is all about the experience, which starts with your travel preparations”.

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