Skip to main content

South America Express

map

Overview

Choose this suggested itinerary or customise to create your own unique journey. Operates daily to suit your travel plans. Price based on budget accommodation. Superior or Deluxe also available.

Fly into the Argentinian capital, Bueno Aires, to begin your trip across South America. After a few days to enjoy the elegant metropolis, make your way to the majestic cascades of Iguazu Falls. See both the Brazilian and Argentinian sides of the falls then travel to Rio de Janeiro, one of the most attractive cities in the world. The Peruvian capital of Lima is ready to be explored for the day before you fly to Cusco. Here, you will see not only the modern city, but the ruins of the ancient Incan civilization at Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu.

Video

Trip Code: MCTSSAE

Location: Argentina, Brazil, Peru

Flights: Internal flights included in itinerary. Ask us to help book your flights to/from South America.

WHY YOU'LL LOVE THIS ITINERARY

  • This itinerary is ideal for those short on time but who want to experience some of the highlights of South America.

  • The itinerary includes many incredible sights and cities but with plenty of time to explore.

  • You will experience the vibrant cities of Buenos Aires, Rio and Lima and in complete contrast, ancient cities such as Cusco and Machu Picchu.

  • You will be introduced to the fascinating and colourful culture of Peru as you travel through the beautiful Sacred Valley to the Lost City of the Incas.

  • The itinerary also includes the spectacular Iguazu Falls from both the Argentinian and Brazilian sides.

ITINERARY INSPIRATION

On arrival, please make your way through to the Arrivals Hall where our representative will be waiting for you to transfer you to your hotel. This service includes a driver and local English speaking guide, who will provide you with any useful information needed for your stay. He/she will be holding a sign with your name on it.

Arrival transfer in Buenos Aires

Buenos Aires, Argentina’s elegant, historic and cosmopolitan capital, is known as the “Paris of the South” due to its European atmosphere with glamorous avenues lined with fashionable shops and Parisian-style restaurants and cafes. Located on the western shore of the estuary of the Río de la Plata, Buenos Aires has many fascinating neighbourhoods to explore including the colourful and lively La Boca, home to art galleries and tango shows; San Telmo with its restored mansions and antique stores and Recoleta, the city’s most exclusive area.

Buenos Aires

You will be collected from your hotel for your three-hour tour visiting the most important highlights of the city of Buenos Aires. Discover the history of the Plaza de Mayo Square, the site of Argentina’s most important historical events - see its surroundings and the most emblematic buildings and learn all about them. Then enjoy Mayo Avenue and wonder in awe at the oldest residential neighbourhood in Buenos Aires: San Telmo. Live and feel the original Tango in the neighbourhood of La Boca: walk along Caminito Street and enjoy the Dancers and souvenir shops. See the mythical Boca Juniors soccer stadium. Contemplate the modernization of the city whilst traveling along Puerto Madero and its exclusive docks, full of excellent restaurants and large offices. Pass through the Retiro neighbourhood and move on to see Palermo and its most exclusive residential area before finally arriving at Recoleta. Here, discover the final resting place of Eva Peron, “Evita” and wander through Recoleta Cemetery where she is to be found. On completion of your tour, you will be taken to your hotel. Please note this is a small group tour.

Highlights of Buenos Aires City Tour

This evening you will be collected from your hotel to experience a Tango Show with dinner. This is an intimate & passionate tango show, housed in a cozy wood-panelled 19th century building with a colourful history as a meeting point for poets and students in the heart of Buenos Aires's historic centre. After being abandoned in the late 1970s, the bar was restored and reopened in 1992 as El Querandí Tango Hall. The show is directed by Claudio Campos, with musical arrangements by Ado Falasca, and it smoothly charts the history of Argentina's most authentic artistic expression from its origins to the modern day. The dinner is better than many, and at just over an hour long, the show is the perfect length. The three house singers, six dancers and four musicians put on a great show. Dinner will be served from 8.30pm followed by the show commencing at 10.00pm. Please note timings are subject to change and will be confirmed directly to you. On completion of the show, you will be taken to your hotel. Please note this is a small group tour.

El Querandi Tango Show & Dinner

You will be collected from your hotel at the appropriate time and transferred to the airport for your onward flight. This service includes a driver only.

Transfer to the airport for onward destination

On arrival, please make your way through to the Arrivals Hall where our representative will be waiting for you to transfer you to your hotel.
He/she will be holding a sign with your name on it. Should you not be able to locate them, please refer to the front of your itinerary for emergency contact details of our representative office. Please note this service is with a driver only.

*Please note the Iguazu Tourist Tax will now be charged on check out at all Iguazu hotels. The amount is currently ARS50 (USD3.40) per person per stay. Please note this tax is subject to change without prior notice.

Arrival transfer in Iguazu

The spectacular Iguazu Falls that straddle the Argentine-Brazil border, are made up of 275 individual waterfalls lining a 2.7km wide horseshoe-shaped gorge. The Falls are located where the Iguazu River cascades over the edge of the Paraná Plateau. The Falls can be viewed from both the Argentinian and the Brazilian sides, the Brazilian side offering a broader, panoramic view, with the Argentinian side offering a series of catwalks that allow you to experience the Falls from close range.

Iguazu Falls

Early morning pick up from your hotel for your full day of exploring the Argentine side of the falls. This tour always starts early in order to beat the crowds and get the first train to the Devil’s Throat. There are walkways over the islands which take you to a balcony over the falls and the most spectacular view of the entire Devil’s Gorge. You will then have plenty of time to walk the 800 metres of paths on the upper circuit. These new suspended walkways are detached from the jungle surface so as to protect the fauna by preventing disruption of the natural trails. From this circuit you have a higher sight of the falls, providing you with a magnificent panoramic view. It takes around one hour to cover the upper circuit. The lower circuit contains 600 metres of walkways, also detached from the jungle floor, and has great views from below and around the falls. Once you have finished all the circuits, return to the visitor centre where your vehicles will be waiting to transfer you back to your hotel. Please note there is some degree of difficulty as the path includes many stairs, particularly on the lower circuit. National Park fee is included. On completion of the tour, you will be taken to your hotel. Please note this is small group tour.

Iguazu Argentinian Falls

After checking out, you will be collected from your hotel for your tour of the Brazilian Falls and transfer to the airport. See see the falls from the Brazilian side of the border. After arriving at the visitor centre, we board buses for a tour of the park. Equipped with panoramic windows, the buses are designed to maximize your views of the falls, while the walkways and steps allow you to get up close to the spray. Views of the Floriana Falls, the Devil’s Gorge Canyon and the Iguazu River are spectacular and are guaranteed to impress. National park fee included. After the tour you will be transferred to the airport in time to check in for your flight. This is a small group tour and transfer.

Iguazu Brazil Falls Tour & Transfer to IGU (Apt)

On arrival, please make your way through to the Arrivals Hall where our representative will be waiting for you to transfer you to your hotel.
He/she will be holding a sign with your name on it.
Please note this service is with a driver only. Please note, once you arrival at your hotel you will receive a welcome pack, which will provide you with all the useful information you will need about your trip in Brazil.

Arrival transfer in Rio de Janeiro

After an early pick up from your hotel, this tour makes its way to the bottom of Corcovado Hill, where we ascend the mountain by vehicle. Climbing 4km through the Tijuca Forest, the world’s largest urban National Park, we will arrive at the statue of Christ the Redeemer. After taking in the panoramic views, continue to the Maracana Stadium. We also pass the Sambadrome and the Metropolitan Cathedral, before passing through the bohemian neighbourhood of Lapa and its famous arches en-route to Copacabana. Enjoy a traditional Brazilian BBQ lunch (beverages not included) before visiting the famous Sugarloaf Mountain with views across the entire city. After descending the mountain, you will be dropped off at your hotel. Please note this is a small group tour.

Corcovado & Sugarloaf with Lunch

Today is a free day for you to relax on one of Rio’s famous beaches such as Ipanema or Copacabana, or explore the city further at your leisure.

Rio de Janeiro - Free Day

You will be collected from your hotel at the appropriate time and transferred to the airport for your onward flight.

Departure transfer from Rio de Janeiro

This evening stay at Lima’s premier airport hotel Wyndham Costa del Sol Airport Hotel which is connected by a walkway to the terminal. Remainder of the day at leisure.

Arrive Lima

Please make your way to the terminal for your departure flight. Please note check in time is 3 hours prior to scheduled departure time.

Depart Lima

On arrival, please make your way through to the Arrivals Hall where our representative will be waiting for you to transfer you to your hotel.
He/she will be holding a sign with your name on it. Please note this service is with a driver only.

Arrival transfer in Cusco

Cusco, set at an altitude of 3,400 metres in the Peruvian Andes, was once the capital of the Inca Empire. It is known for its Spanish colonial architecture and Incan remains. Narrow, cobble-stoned streets lined by Inca walls stretch out from the main plaza in every direction. Many of the colonial buildings were built on top of Incan foundations and the stonework is unparalleled in its precision and beauty.

Cusco

You will be collected from your hotel for a sightseeing tour through Cusco, the heart of the Inca Empire. Visit the fascinating Qorikancha Temple of the Sun, the 12-Angled Rock and the Cathedral, built on the ruins of an Inca Palace. From here head to the archaeological remains located around the city, including the fortress of Sacsayhuaman, Qenqo (giant rock), the ancient site of Puca Pucara and finally the Water Temple of Tambomachay. On completion of your tour, you will be taken to your hotel. Included in your tour price is the BTG (Tourist Ticket of Cusco). Please note this is a small group tour.

Cusco - City Tour

This morning you will be collected from your hotel for full day of exploring the Sacred Valley of the Incas. This fertile river valley was home to many important sites for the Incas, both strategic and religious. The first stop is the village of Pisac, with its famous market. The colonial village of Pisac sits at the base of the spectacular Pisac Ruins – a hilltop Inca citadel and fortress with impressive agricultural terracing. On market days Pisac comes alive with locals from nearby hillside villages in traditional dress selling local fruit and vegetables as well as handicrafts. There is free time to wander the colourful market stalls before a typical Andean lunch at a local restaurant.

Continue your journey along the River Urubamba, to Ollantaytambo. The town, which is dominated by a giant Inca fortress, is perhaps the best surviving example of Inca town planning and was the scene of a rare Inca victory over the invading Spanish. At the end of the tour you will be transferred to the train station in Ollantaytambo to take the train to Aguas Calientes. Lunch is included.

Sacred Valley Tour

Travel from Ollantaytambo to Machu Picchu in this comfortable train, and let your feet have rest. Enjoy an authentic Andean experience, while relaxing in modern and comfortable interior design illuminated by Latin American music. Comfortable seats with tables in front to share the journey with friends and partake of a refreshing beverage. On-board services includes a fun and refreshing selection of drinks prepared using Andean herbs and fruits, all of which boast revitalising properties to fill you with energy and keep you ready for the next adventure waiting ahead of you.

*Due to limited space for luggage storage on trains, luggage restrictions apply: one bag or backpack (carry-on luggage) with a maximum weight of 5.0 kg/11 lb, measuring no more than 62 linear inches/157 linear cm (height + length + width)

Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes

Machu Picchu is a 15th century Inca site, located 2,430 metres above sea level on a mountain ridge above the Sacred Valley. It is the most famous of all Inca sites, but it was not until 1911 that it was brought to the world’s attention by the American historian Hiram Bingham. The Incas abandoned the city just prior to Spanish colonisation, the city was never pillaged and as a result the ruins are still in fantastic condition. With its location on a dramatic ridgeline surrounded by sheer cliffs and the Urubamba River on three sides, the city of Machu Picchu is a remarkable place to visit. Machu Picchu was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983 and in 2007 it was voted one of the new Seven Wonders of the World.

The tour starts with a bus ride from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu. You will be astonished at your first view of Machu Picchu, a stunning display of ancient architecture with incredible surroundings. Enjoy a guided shared tour of the ruins and monuments such as the Main Square, the Circular Tower, the Sacred Solar Clock, the Royal Quarters, the Temple of the Three Windows and the Cemeteries. Return by bus to Aguas Calientes village.

Please be aware that your tour of Machu Picchu does not include an entry permit to Huayna Picchu (the iconic hill behind the Machu Picchu ruins). If you want to climb Huayna Picchu then you need to pre-book your permit with at least 3 months in advance. Please contact your travel specialist if you would like to do this.

Machu Picchu Guided Tour

This afternoon travel by train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo.

*Due to limited space for luggage storage on trains, luggage restrictions apply: one bag or backpack (carry-on luggage) with a maximum weight of 5.0 kg/11 lb, measuring no more than 62 linear inches/157 linear cm (height + length + width)

360 Machu Picchu Train: Mapi - Ollanta PM

Transfer from Ollantaytambo train station in the Sacred Valley to Cusco.

Private Transfer Ollantaytambo - Cusco

You will be collected from your hotel at the appropriate time and transferred to the airport for your onward flight.

Transfer to the airport for onward destination

This is a suggested itinerary. All Tailor-Made journeys can be customised to suit. Add in additional highlights, spend more time in areas of particular interest to you, or extend your journey to visit other regions of Latin America or Antarctica.

DOWNLOAD ITINERARY PDF

ITINERARY ADD-ONS

  • Explore the Chilean capital of Santiago, before heading to Torres del Paine National Park, one of the most spectacular parks in South America. Head to El Calafate on the edge of the Southern Patagonian Ice Field and from here visit the world famous Perito Moreno Glacier. Find out more

  • Why not add on a tour to the Galapagos at the end of your South American journey, spending 4 days exploring the beautiful archipelago that abounds with fascinating wildlife? Amidst spectacular volcanic scenery you will see a myriad of birds and animals from lava lizards to blue-footed boobies, Galapagos penguins, frigatebirds and giant tortoises. Find out more

  • Alternatively, your experience in the Sacred Valley could follow and experience the evolving role of the original Andean people as you move from unique lodge to lodge, experiencing daily hikes with panoramic views of waterfalls, snow peaks and turquoise lakes and discovering breathtaking sites of ancient Inca civilisation. Find out more.

     

WHY TAILOR-MADE?

  • Personalise your itinerary
  • Access to great flight deals
  • Choose your accomodation
  • Tailored travel insurance options
  • Choose your preferred dates
  • Cater to your travel needs

Pricing & date

Travel Style Departing Duration PRICE FROM
Enquire Now

Important Information

  • Airport transfers
    Internal flights
    Accommodation with breakfast
    Tours as detailed in itinerary 
    Other meals where stated 

    EXCLUSIONS

    Tips, personal expenses
    International flights
    Visas
    Gratuities for tour guides and drivers 
    Any items not mentioned in the itinerary 
    Travel insurance 

  • 3 Light Adventure (high altitude in some areas)
  • Contact us for more details

  • This itinerary can be also be done in the reverse. Contact us for more details.

  • Season and availability

Accommodation

We believe that appropriate accommodation should add to the authentic travel experience, as well as providing utmost enjoyment. For that reason our accommodation is scrutinised by our staff on the ground frequently, ensuring the properties adhere to our high standards. This key will help you understand the levels of accommodation available on this tour.

SPEAK TO A SPECIALIST

Your Destination Specialists will turn your South America adventure dream into a reality. With exceptional knowledge and first-hand experience, our Destinations Specialists will assist in every way possible to make your journey the most memorable it can be, matching not only the itinerary, but the accommodation and activities to suit your style of travel and budget.

Sustainability

Being environmentally accountable is a crucial part of our organisation. Chimu is currently striving towards using less paper, taking several initiatives to do so and tracking our progress along the way. Our goal: A paperless organisation. For this reason, all information given to you will be sent electronically. We encourage those who choose to travel with us to support our aspirations and actions and ask that you reconsider printing out documentation. To view these documents, you can download them to your iPad or portable computer before and during your trip.

Chimu is passionate and dedicated to sustainability measures and understands the crucial part sustainability plays within the tourism industry.

We use local guides and office staff to both maximise local employment opportunities and minimise carbon footprint. Local guides also ensure you benefit from the intimate knowledge, passion and culture of the country you’re visiting. Our guides are all highly qualified (most with university degrees) or equip with many years of experience and are paid above the standard wage. Whether it be our knowledgeable local guides, locally produced meals or the transport on tour, we do not use imported goods when local products are available. We aim to minimise our impact on the environment and give as much back as possible to the communities we work in.

While visiting the many national parks, heritage sites, museums and landmarks our travellers are encouraged to explore whilst remaining culturally aware and sensitive. We further encourage you to buy appropriate souvenirs and discourage the buying of anything wrongfully made or taken from the environment i.e. shells and endangered species products. Information on how you can be environmentally conscious, and travel responsibly will be made available in our Travellers Guides and provided during your travels by guides and staff.

 

For more information on our sustainability policies, including how we are striving towards being a paperless organisation, click HERE