Day 1: Arrive in Rio and setle into your hotel for the next 3 nights.
Day 2: Half Day Tour to Corcovado and Statue of Christ the Redeemer. From the gigantic statue of Christ the Redeemer visitors can enjoy one of the most wonderful views of Rio de Janeiro: the beaches of Copacabana, Ipanema and Leblon; the Lagoon and Sugar Loaf, which are nothing short of breathtaking. Time to sunbathe and swim at Copacabana or Ipanema Beach, before trying the local cuisine and night life. Dinner at “Churrascaria Carretao Restaurant”: The Carretão combines the tradition of the authentic Brazilian “rodízio” along with a cheerful environment. Includes: (B), (D).
Day 3: Half Day City Tour and Sugar Loaf. Ride along the beaches on the way to downtown, visiting baroque churches, the modern Metropolitan Cathedral and the Sambódromo, the huge purpose-built Carnival Parade area. Arrival to Sugar Loaf, to enjoy a late afternoon view of the city, the best time of day. Free morning for sightseeing, shopping and relaxing. Rio by night - Dinner at one of the best "all-you-can-eat”- restaurants that features Brazilian folkloric music, Carnival costumes and dances, with special emphasis on the world famous “Samba”. Includes: (B), (D).
Day 4: Transfer to the airport for our flight to the most beautiful and spectacular waterfalls in the world – Iguassu Falls. Spend the afternoon on a half day tour. Descend the walkways located in the Iguassu National Park, and along the way, get a spectacular view of the falls. We continue by Jeep for a 3 Km’s ride and a short walk through the forest to get to Macuco Falls and the banks of the Iguassu River. From there, aboard open boats, cruise up the river through the Iguassu Canyon. Includes: (B).
Day 5: After breakfast we will be transferred from the hotel to the Airport for the flight on to Buenos Aires. On the way however we’ll stop for a tour of the Argentine side of the falls and the spectacular “Devils Throat” This exciting cosmopolitan City, often known as the “Paris of the Americas” is a mix of colonial architecture and European influences - and a shoppers paradise. We will be met and transferred to our hotel, steps away from the major shopping area of Recoleta. Includes: (B).
Day 6: This morning we will enjoy a city tour of Buenos Aires visiting the Plaza de Mayo, fashionable Recoleta where we wander through the maze of the famous Recoleta cemetery and the chance to see the tomb of Eva Peron. On to the colourful Bohemian district of La Boca with it’s many artists and street markets. Afternoon is free for shopping and sightseeing. This evening will feature an exciting ‘Dinner and Tango show”. Includes: (B), (D).
Day 7: Visit the San Telmo antiques market this morning, then join us for an optional trip to the best kept secret in Buenos Aires, the Mataderos street fair. If you are here for a real South American experience, Mataderos is an absolute must. See gauchos (Argentine cowboys) and their displays of horsemanship. Enjoy the local handicrafts, live music, entertaining folk dancing and delicious food, all with hardly another tourist in sight.
Day 8:Leaving Buenos Aires we fly on to Lima Peru where we will be met and transferred to our hotel. Later that afternoon we take a short orientation walking tour of the neighbourhoods of Miraflores and Barranco, overlooking the Pacific Ocean. The evening meal will feature regional Peruvian specialties (B, D)
After breakfast we visit Lima’s fabulous Gold Museum, Plaza Mayor and San Fransisco church during an insightful city tour. Rest of the afternoon free to relax or explore further. There are many interesting sites in and Lima and we’d love to show you more of the city. Includes: (B).
Day 10: After a short flight via Cuzco, we arrive in the steamy Amazon town of Puerto Maldonado, where we will be met and transferred by boat to our lodge in the rainforest. Puerto Maldonado to Tambopata River Port. Skirting Puerto Maldonado, we drive 20 kilometers to the Tambopata River Port, entering the Native Community of Infierno. The port is a communal business. Tambopata River Port to lodge. The forty five minute boat ride from the Tambopata Port to the lodge will take us into the Community´s Primary Forest Private Reserve.
Canopy tower: A twenty minute walk from the lodge leads to the 30 meter scaffolding canopy tower. From atop you obtain spectacular views of the vast expanses of standing forest cut by the Tambopata River winding through the middle. Now and then toucans, parrots or macaws are seen flying against the horizon, or mixed species canopy flocks land in the treetop next to you. Ecotourism Lecture. A daily presentation on the Infierno ecotourism project is available every night from a staff member. Includes: (B, L, D).
Day 11: Amazon lodge - Tres Chimbadas Oxbow Lake: Tres Chimbadas is thirty minutes by boat and forty five minutes hiking from the lodge. Once there you will paddle around the lake in a catamaran, searching for the resident family of nine giant river otters (seen by 60% of lake visitors) and other lakeside wildlife such as caiman, hoatzin and horned screamers.
Ethnobotanical Tour: A twenty minute boat drive downriver leads you to a trail designed by the staff of the Centro Ñape. The Centro Ñape is a communal organization that produces medicines out of forest plants and administers them to patients who choose their little clinic. They have produced a trail which explains the different medicinal (and other) uses of selected plants. Night walk. You will have the option of hiking out at night, when most of the mammals are active but rarely seen. Much easier to find are frogs with shapes and sounds as bizarre as their natural histories. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 12: Amazon Lodge - Parrot clay lick. This clay lick is only a twenty minute walk from the lodge. From a blind located about twenty meters away you will see dozens of parrots and parakeets descend on most clear mornings to ingest the clay on a river bank. Species such as Mealy and Yellow- headed Amazon, Blue-headed Parrot and Dusky headed Parakeet descend at this clay lick. The clay lick is active at dawn, during the late mornings and mid-afternoons.
Ceiba Trail Hike: We leave from the lobby and embark on a two hour hike crowned by the largest tree in the vicinity: a giant ceiba tree. During the hike we will focus on the natural history of the rain forest and its principal taxonomic groups. Farm Visit. A thirty minute boat drive downriver takes us to the most complete farm in the community of Infierno. The owner grows a diverse variety of popular and unknown Amazon crops. In his garden, just about every plant and tree serves a purpose. Includes: (B, L, D).
Day 13 & 14: Transfer Pto Maldonado - Airport. We retrace our river and road journey back to Puerto Maldonado. A 45 minute flight takes us to Cuzco, the oldest continuously inhabited city on the continent. On arrival we head out by road into the beautiful Urubamba Valley (Sacred alley of the Inca’s) travelling to historic and scenic Ollantaytambo where we’ll spend the next two nights. The following morning we will visit the famous indigenous market at Pisac before returning to Ollantaytambo to explore the township and the Inca ruins. (B)
Day 15: A highlight of the trip is taking a scenic train ride through spectacular mountain vistas to Aguas Calientes - then transfer by coach to Machu Picchu – the “Lost City of the Incas”. Machu Picchu, rediscovered by archaeologist Hiram Bingham in 1911, is one of the most beautiful and enigmatic ancient sites in the world. After our guided tour of Machu Picchu we return to Cuzco in the late afternoon. Includes: (B).
Day 16: Our tour today reveals to us the ancient city that was known by the Incas as the “Navel of the World”. We also visit the surrounding Inca sites of Sacsayhuaman and South Tipon, a little known but stunning site. Dinner this evening will feature Andean cuisine. Includes: (B, D)
Day 17: Cuzco is an exquisite mix of Incan and Spanish colonial influences. A free day to explore Cuzco and enjoy the special atmosphere. Browse in the many craft shops, enjoy a coffee overlooking the plaza, or relax in the courtyard of your colonial style hotel. The day is yours. Includes: (B).
Day 18: Today we depart Cuzco and travel by road across the Altiplano to Puno - located on the shore of Lake Titicaca, Sacred Lake of the Incas and the world's highest navigable lake (3860 m above sea level). Includes: (B).
Day 19: After breakfast we board our boat to explore - Lake Titicaca visiting the fascinating floating reed islands of the Uros. We continue on to Amantani Island to experience a special overnight treat. Being home hosted and entertained by local Quechua inhabitants. This experience is a highlight of the trip & a chance for you to interact with the locals, learning about their way of life on the islands. Includes: (B), (D).
Day 20: In the morning we head off to visit Taquile Island. Make sure to bring some small change as they have intricate knitted and woven goods for sale. Returning by boat to Puno in the afternoon to relax and explore this mostly Ayamara town. Includes: (B).
Day 21: From Puno we travel by coach along the Andes and cross the border in Bolivia. After exploring the beautiful township of Copacabana we continue by road to La Paz –Capital City of Bolivia (at 4km above sea level it is the highest capital city in the world). Includes: (B).
Day 22: Our morning tour of La Paz includes the historic San Francisco Church, the colourful Indian markets and the unusual Witch Doctor’s market. Later we visit the mysterious ‘Valley of the Moon’ with its strange moonlike shapes and craters. Free time to explore this fascinating city. Includes: (B,D).
Day 23: Today you have free time to explore this fascinating city, shop for those colourful South American souvenirs and explore La Paz further. (B)
Day 24: Depart for your flight back home. Or stay on for an adventurous extra week and get right into the heart of Bolivia. Includes: (B).
Includes internal airfares from Rio to Iguassu to Buenos Aires to Lima to Puerto Maldonado.
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