Day 1 - Arrive Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Upon arrival you are escorted to your iconic luxury hotel, on Copacabana Beach.
Rio is called cidade maravilhosa because of its numerous wonders and is considered one of the most beautiful places in the world. It pulsates to a samba beat, alive by day and night. Enjoy the remainder of your day at leisure in this lively city.
Day 2 - Rio de Janeiro
A full day exploring scenic Rio awaits, beginning with a remarkable, 20-minute cogwheel train ride up 2453 feet to the top of Corcovado Mountain. Travel through the lush tropical vegetation of Tijuca Forest, the largest urban forest in the world. Disembark and a few steps lead to the towering statue of Christ the Redeemer. Enjoy the breathtaking view of Rio below before descending by train and continuing your tour. Next, drive past the world-famous beaches of Leblon, Ipanema and Copacabana, populated with tanga-clad beauties and macho cariocas (men of Rio).
In the afternoon, board a cable car for a two-staged ascent up 1279 feet to Sugar Loaf Mountain for more panoramic views. Then descend and drive along Guanabara Bay and Flamengo Park to the downtown.
Tonight, enjoy a Brazilian barbeque dinner in a local restaurant. (B,D)
Day 3 - Rio de Janeiro to Iguaçu
This morning, enjoy a half-day colonial tour of Rio, visiting some of the historic landmarks of this 400-year-old city. See Praça XV de Novembro (named after the date of the proclamation of the Republic), the Paço Imperial (Royal Palace) and the National Historical Museum. Visit the Candelaria Church and the Såo Bento Monastery, considered the city’s richest historical building. And explore the historical center of Rio, housing an impressive complex of colonial Baroque architecture.
Fly to Iguaçu, on the border of Brazil and Argentina, in the afternoon. Returning to the Brazilian side, continue to the Paraná River and the Itaipu Dam. Explore the area and learn about this fascinating hydroelectric facility. (B)
Day 4 - Iguaçu Falls
Spend today exploring both sides of the majestic falls. Entering Iguaçu National Park, following the path along the cascades, and then walk on the catwalk built over the Upper Iguaçu River. Cross several small islands before reaching a perfectly placed lookout to gaze at astonishing Garganta del Diablo, or "Devil's Throat." Next, take the elevator up to the road and drive across the Tancredo Neves Bridge and into Argentina.
Drive along the scenic highway into the Argentinian Iguazú National Park. Explore the Visitors Center, before your walking tour proceeds to the Superior Circuit (up-river cascades) and the Inferior Circuit (down-river falls). Next, take the Ecological Jungle Train to the most impressive observation point of the falls–Devil's Throat.
You arrive back at your hotel in Brazil by late afternoon. (B)
Day 5 - Iguaçu to Buenos Aires, Argentina
Today begins with an ecological walking tour through the native woods of the Bird Park. Watch for the 900 tropical birds from 150 species, and explore the butterfly cage, hummingbird aviaries, and reptile exhibit.
Late morning, fly to elegant Buenos Aires, and enjoy an afternoon shared tour of the stunning Teatro Colón Opera House. Considered one of the best in the world, admire the exterior and interior beauty of this 2,500-seat architecture masterpiece, as your guide relates the Teatro Colon’s tragic tales–involving death, delays, an assassination and a love triangle gone wrong. (B)
Day 6 - Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires, often referred to as “the Paris of South America,” is a city with a European face and a Latin soul. This morning embark on a sightseeing tour of this sophisticated yet traditional metropolitan city. Drive through lovely San Telmo – the best-kept historical neighborhood and the birthplace to the tango. Visit the Casa Rosada where leaders traditionally address the masses from the balconies, the famous Recoleta Cemetery, the Metropolitan Cathedral, and the city’s famous Plaza de Mayo where crowds once cheered Juan and Eva Perón.
Enjoy lunch at a local Argentine restaurant, with the remainder of the day at leisure to explore on your own. Buenos Aires offers museums, art galleries, ultra-chic shopping, and lush green parks. (B,L)
Day 7 - Buenos Aires
You are at leisure today to relax and explore the city on your own.
Tonight, spend the evening savoring a gastronomic dinner while watching the famed and fun Rojo Tango cabaret show. Splendor and elegance envelope you as you watch the spectacular show that reenacts the sophistication, luxury and style of the golden decade of Buenos Aires. (B,D)
Day 8 - Buenos Aires to San Carlos de Bariloche
Your late morning flight to Bariloche takes you from urban excitement to mountain serenity. Located in the Andean foothills, Bariloche rivals the Swiss Alps for sheer beauty and offer s arrange of four-season activities that include skiing, fishing, bicycle tours, trekking, climbing, horseback touring, and water sports. Bariloche is also famous for its delicious chocolate, local beer and smoked cold cuts delicacies as well as tasteful dishes influenced by the European cuisine. (B)
Day 9 - San Carlos de Bariloche
Bariloche lies on the banks of Lake Nahuel Haupi, surrounded by a national park. On this morning’s scenic tour, you travel through the forests, lakes and mountains to the base of Campanario Mountain, where a chairlift will take you 3,400 feet to the top for a breathtaking view. Continue around the Llao Llao Peninsula, viewing the delicate St Edwards Chapel, Moreno Lake, Nahuel Huapi Lake, and Lopez Bay before arriving into the village of Bariloche.
This afternoon is left open for you to play a round of golf, go shopping for leather goods, take a hike, or cruise out to one of the lake's many islands. (B)
Day 10 - Bariloche to Puerto Varas, Chile
Depart early morning for Puerto Varas, Chile. Along the way, travel through the rugged Patagonian landscape of native forests, rushing rivers, and crystal blue lakes, on the watch for herds of the indigenous camel-like guanaco or Andean condors soaring through the skies. Stop in the charming village of Villa La Angostura, on the shores of Nahuel Huapi Lake, before continuing on to Lake Correntoso, world famous for its fly-fishing, Espejo Lake (Mirror Lake), and the Chilean border.
Your drive continues down rustic roads, passing salmon and raspberry farms, and stunning vistas to Puyehue, where you will stop for lunch.
Arrive in Puerto Varas by early evening. (B)
Day 11 - Puerto Varas to Santiago
Driving through exquisite scenery, you get a wonderful view of the commanding Osorno Volcano before arriving at Puerto Montt, the capital of Chile’s Lake District and one of the country’s most spectacular and important ports. Enjoy a tour of the city –admire the towering volcanoes and bustling harbor, and visit the local fish and seafood market, Angelmo, which offers an eclectic variety of local seafood.
This afternoon, fly to Santiago. Enjoy magnificent views of the city and the towering Andes Mountains from San Cristobal Hill. Its beautiful public park features a monumental sculpture of the Virgin Mary. Take the funicular down to the Bellavista district, and visit the home, now museum, of the famous Chilean poet Pablo Neruda. (B)
Day 12 - Santiago
Start the day with a morning tour of colonial Santiago. Visit Plaza de Armas and its 18th century Santiago Cathedral, as well as the Museum of Fine Arts and Santa Lucia Hill. Next, your guide leads you through the bustling Providencia shopping zone.
Your tour continues as you drive south across ancient farming country to visit one of Chile’s renowned wineries. Located at the foot of the Andes, the Santa Rita Winery is considered the most traditional winery in the country.
Enjoy lunch and wine tasting before touring the vineyards and learning about every stage of the winemaking process. You also visit Santa Rita winery’s Andean Museum, which houses a private collection of valuable Pre-Columbian objects, belonging to a variety of Chilean Andean cultures. (B,L)
Day 13 - Depart Santiago
This morning, visit the El Pueblo de Los Dominicos, built to resemble a small village, and filled with handicraft and artisan shops. See artists working in copper, wool, ceramics, lapis lazuli and other indigenous materials.
You are transferred to the airport in time for your flight home or on to your next destination. (B)