Cosmos

Ultimate South America with Brazil's Amazon & Arequipa & Colca Canyon (1209) - 2015

27 Day Tour from Manaus to Lima


Ultimate South America with Brazils Amazon & Arequipa & Colca Canyon
Dance the Tango in Buenos Aires
Dance the Tango in Buenos Aires
See the beautiful Lily Pads in the Amazon
Lake Titicana Huts
A beautiful Blue Butterfly found in the Amazon
Rio de Janeiro is on a strip of Brazils Atlantic coast, close to the Tropic of Capricorn, where the shoreline is oriented east–west
The “Lost City of the Incas”
View of stunning Rio de Janeiro
Iguassu Falls will captivate you
Stroll through the famous Recoleta Cemetery in Buenos Aires
TOUR FOR 8+ PEOPLE

Vacation Overview

Begin this great journey in the Brazilian Amazon, then discover some of South America’s greatest cities at a leisurely pace, finishing with a visit to the continent’s top destination: Peru. Starting in Manaus, your Amazon adventure takes you to a local market and on a cruise along the Rio Negro to the Meeting of the Waters, where light and dark waters come together but never blend A monkey reserve and a visit to a local village to meet the residents who still make their life on the banks of the river will provide a full experience in the Amazon.

In Rio and Buenos Aires you’ll have plenty of free time in each city to explore and experience the varied restaurants, shops, and optional excursions. In Rio, view the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue on Corcovado Mountain; sip caipirinhas, a popular Brazilian cocktail; catch a Samba show; and enjoy famous Copacabana Beach for endless people watching! While in Buenos Aires, you’ll have the opportunity to visit the Cemetery of the Recoleta, where Eva Peron is buried, and learn how at the age of 33 she was declared the “Spiritual Leader of the Nation.” And no visit to Buenos Aires would be complete without a Tango show, the world’s most sensuous dance, in a city where romance permeates the air.

A major highlight on this journey is a visit to Iguassu Falls in between your two city stays. It truly is one of the most spectacular sights on Earth. See the impressive falls from both the Brazilian and Argentine sides. Brazil’s view takes you through clouds of mist and the opportunity to see these 275 falls, spanning nearly two miles! Argentina’s side allows you to walk along the boardwalk network and embark on a jungle train through the forest for unforgettable views. Hear the deafening roar and admire the brilliant rainbows created by the clouds of spray, and take in the majesty of this wonder of the world.

Next, journey to Peru, where a city stay in Lima reveals the colonial heritage of Peruvians, then venture to Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley, two of the most stunning and mystical places on Earth. Glimpse the ancient history and culture, and enjoy the unique opportunity to stay overnight in both the Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu, where you’ll have two included entrances to the site, the chance to visit a local Inca home, and traditional Indian market. From the charming city of Cusco, where you’ll have a full day to explore the city and the Temple of Sacsayhuaman, you’ll head to fascinating Lake Titicaca, a lake of floating islands, maintained over centuries by the local Indians who build their islands and homes from the continuously sinking reeds.

Wrap up your journey in Arequipa and Colca Canyon for a drastic change of landscape to drier vistas and some of the deepest canyons in the world, where giant condors soar and you’ll marvel at views unlike anywhere on the globe.

Experience some of South America’s greatest cities, the wonder of Iguassu Falls, Machu Picchu, Lake Titicaca, the vast canyons of Arequipa, and Brazil’s Amazon on this extraordinary tour that will generate stories you can tell for years to come.

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Sightseeing:
In Manaus, Brazil’s Amazon, Rio de Janeiro, Iguassu Falls, Buenos Aires, Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu, Cusco, Lake Titicaca, Colca Canyon, and Arequipa

Scenic Highlights:
Brazil’s Amazon, Corcovado, Brazilian & Argentine sides of Iguassu Falls, Recoleta Cemetery, Tango Show, Sacred Valley, and Machu Picchu, Lake Titicaca, Colca Canyon, and Arequipa

Guides:

Naturalist in the Amazon, Local Guides for sightseeing in Manaus, Rio de Janeiro, Iguassu Falls, Buenos Aires , Lima, Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu, Cusco, Lake Titicaca, and Arequipa; services of a professional Tour Director.


Day 1Manaus, Brazil

Welcome to the capital of the Amazonas region. Located in the dense Amazon Jungle area, Manaus preserves images of its opulent past and is still a major port—even 1,000 miles inland! Meet your guide at 2 pm for a city tour featuring sites from Manaus’ glorious past. See the downtown area; visit the famous OPERA HOUSE, completed in 1896 after 15 years of construction, and a LOCAL MARKET humming with locals selling anything from fruit to rubber.

Day 2Manaus–Amazon Jungle

Floating past the clustered huts of locals living on the banks of the river, cruise down the Rio Negro to the MEETING OF THE WATERS. Marvel at the confluence of the dark-colored Rio Negro and the light chocolate-colored Rio Solimões, where the two rivers come together to form the mighty Amazon. For four miles, these two bodies of water flow side by side before they mix together. Later, disembark at a JUNGLE ISLAND (water level permitting) with fascinating native flora and fauna. This afternoon, arrive at the Ecopark Jungle Lodge on the banks of the Rio Negro inside the Amazonian rainforest. (B,L,D)

Day 3Amazon Jungle

Enjoy a Naturalist-guided WALK to see the flora and fauna that thrive in the Amazon. After lunch, sail up the river to visit an AMAZON NATIVE CABOCLO VILLAGE to learn about their traditions, costumes, and culture. Also try your hand at piranha fishing! Later, visit the MONKEY JUNGLE RESERVE, where researchers work to rehabilitate primates like spider, squirrel, woolly, and capuchin monkeys and reintroduce them to the jungle. This evening, venture back out on canoe with your Naturalist to appreciate the sounds of the jungle at night and look for small alligators (and other night creatures). (B,L,D)

Day 4Amazon Jungle–Rio De Janeiro

This morning, depart the Ecopark for a flight to Rio. (B)

Day 5Rio De Janeiro

Today, enjoy free time in Rio, host to the upcoming Summer Olympics in 2016! After arrival, settle into your hotel and meet your Tour Director, who will have pointers for your free time exploration.

Day 6Rio De Janeiro

Guided sightseeing begins with a drive along Rio’s famed Leblon, Ipanema, and Copacabana Beaches. Take the cog railway 2,300 feet up to the summit of CORCOVADO to view the Christ the Redeemer statue and enjoy 360-degree views of Guanabara Bay and the bustling city below. Your afternoon is free to explore. Perhaps join an optional excursion to a favela for a glimpse into the life of these colorful communities that nearly 25% of the people call home. Tonight, your Tour Director hosts a welcome dinner at a local churrascaria. (B,D)

Day 7Rio De Janeiro

A free day in Rio allows you to relax on one of the beaches or take an optional excursion to the historic city of Petropolis. Tonight, opt for a fun outing to see a fiery samba show. (B)

Day 8Rio De Janeiro–Iguassu Falls

Fly to Iguassu Falls, one of the greatest natural wonders of the world. Journey to the Brazilian side of the FALLS to see the 275 waterfalls cascading over a precipice almost two miles wide and 250 feet deep. Walk into Devil’s Throat Canyon, where clouds of mist, a thundering roar, and 180-degree rainbows surround you—an unforgettable experience! (B,D)

Day 9Iguassu Falls

Cross the border for a visit of the Argentine side of the FALLS. Begin with a short ride on the open-air ECOLOGICAL JUNGLE TRAIN through the surrounding rainforest. A series of boardwalks takes you above the falls for a look over the edge to see the water crashing down below into the Devil’s Throat. This afternoon you may opt to visit the Bird Park, home to many species of indigenous birds as well as flora from the area. (B)

Day 10Iguassu Falls–Buenos Aires, Argentina

Fly to Buenos Aires, Argentina’s cosmopolitan capital. After settling into your hotel, an orientation tour familiarizes you with the “Paris of South America” and its wide boulevards, outdoor cafés, and charming shops. (B)

Day 11Buenos Aires

Morning sightseeing with a Local Guide focuses on the city’s well-known landmarks, including the Colon Opera House and Plaza de Mayo, site of La Casa Rosada (the President's Pink House) and Metropolitan Cathedral. Also visit San Telmo, one of Buenos Aires’ oldest neighborhoods, and RECOLETA CEMETERY, where Eva Peron is buried. End your day with an Argentinean meal, followed by a sensuous TANGO SHOW highlighting this alluring dance so popular here. (B,D)

Day 12Buenos Aires

Today is free for independent activities, or you can take an optional excursion to visit a local estancia (ranch) to experience the life of the gauchos (cowboys) on a traditional Argentine ranch complete with a barbecue lunch. (B)

Day 13Buenos Aires–Lima, Peru

Board a flight for Lima, Peru. Heralded as the “City of Kings” by Spanish conquistadors, Lima still carries vestiges of its opulent past with its colonial buildings and world-class museums. (B)

Day 14Lima

Sightseeing today focuses on Lima’s colonial heritage. Founded in 1535, Lima was once the capital of Spain’s South American Empire. Visit the baroque 11th-century SAN FRANCISCO MONASTERY, with Spanish and Moorish architecture throughout. Continue to Plaza Mayor, where you will see the Government Palace that houses the presidential palace and was once the home of Francisco Pizarro, founder of Lima and conqueror of Peru. Nearby, see the Cathedral where Pizarro’s remains are buried. The remainder of your day is free to explore on your own. Enjoy dinner at a local restaurant this evening. (B,D)

Day 15Lima–Cusco–Sacred Valley

Fly to Cusco high in the Andes and upon arrival, descend into the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Stop at AWANAKANCHA and learn about the importance of Camelids (llama, vicuña, alpaca, and guanaco) for Inca cultures. See them up close and learn how their coats are transformed into precious weaving fibers that are then used in ancient weaving techniques still in use today. Continue to your hotel nestled in the peaceful Sacred Valley. (B,L,D)

Day 16Sacred Valley

Start the day with a visit to OLLANTAYTAMBO and the Inca ruins of the same name. Explore the archaeological site that was the scene of the Inca resistance during the Spanish conquest—the only place ever to resist Spanish attacks. You will see how the temple area at the top of the terraces was the perfect defensive stronghold. Next, visit a LOCAL HOME to experience life in this traditional village which has been remarkably well preserved. Continue to PISAC, a charming village with an infamous INDIAN MARKET, where you have plenty of time to browse the many colorful stalls selling handicrafts ranging from fine alpaca sweaters and blankets to hand-painted vases and sterling silver . (B)

Day 17Sacred Valley–Machu Picchu

Board the VISTADOME train that cuts a path through the picturesque Urubamba Valley bound for Aguas Calientes, the quaint town closest to the “Lost City of the Incas.” Ascend the mountainside through tropical forest to the sacred refuge of MACHU PICCHU. Your guide recounts the many accomplishments of the Incas as you tour the terraced ruins dating back to the 15th century. The ruins went undiscovered for nearly 400 years after they were abandoned when the Inca Empire fell to the Spanish. For this reason, many of the mysteries surrounding Machu Picchu remain to this day. (B,L,D)

Day 18Machu Picchu–Cusco

Awaken early and use your included second entrance to MACHU PICCHU to see the sunrise over the ruins. Early risers will be awe-struck as the sun first illuminates the ruins that are free of crowds. Later, return to Cusco, former capital of the Inca Empire. (B)

Day 19Cusco

Embark on a guided sightseeing tour of Cusco that focuses on the city that was once the political, military, and cultural epicenter of the Incas. In fact, Inca foundations can still be found in Cusco, with the Spanish baroque structures built on top. Visit the SANTO DOMINGO MONASTERY, where these two forms of architecture are melded together with the temple of both cultures atop one another. Also see the CATHEDRAL in the Plaza de Armas before a visit to the TEMPLE OF SACSAYHUAMAN. Some of the best examples of Inca masonry can be found at this fortress, where stones weighing up to 350 tons are pieced together to form a complex that could house up to 10,000 men. Learn about the ceremonies and battles that took place here on your tour. Also see the ruins of Kenko and Puca Pucara before returning to Cusco. (B,D)

Day 20Cusco–Juliaca–Puno

Fly to Juliaca, then transfer to Puno on the shores of Lake Titicaca. Legend says the first Inca, Manco Capac, arose from the waters of the lake by the power of the Sun God to found the Inca Empire. (B)

Day 21Puno. Lake Titicaca

Experience fascinating LAKE TITICACA today as you embark on a motorboat tour of the highest navigable lake in the world and its manmade islands. On TAQUILE ISLAND, see how the local people integrate their Inca and Spanish past. Continue to the UROS FLOATING ISLANDS, a group of approximately 40 artificially made islands. Learn how the Uros Indians construct their islands, homes, boats, and many other resources completely of tortora reed, a centuries-old practice. Enjoy a farewell dinner hosted by your Tour Director this evening. (B,L,D)

Day 22Puno–Juliaca–Arequipa

Enroute to Juliaca, stop at the pre-Incan burial grounds of SILLUSTANI. See the above-ground tombs, chullpas, in which the Aymara Indians buried their high priests. You will be welcomed into one of the locals’ HOMES for an inside look at life here. Board a flight for Arequipa, known as the “White City” for its buildings made of sillar, a white volcanic rock. (B)

Day 23Arequipa–Colca Canyon

Depart for Colca Valley enjoying scenery of pre-Columbian terraces populated with vicuñas and a variety of birds stopping for lunch in the town of Chivay. This afternoon, relax at LA CALERA hot springs. (B,L)

Day 24Colca Canyon

Today, spend time in COLCA CANYON, an impressive geological formation more than twice as deep as the Grand Canyon. Visit CONDORS’ CROSS, an observation point where you can view the Andean Condor at eye level. This afternoon is free for independent exploration. (B,L)

Day 25Colca Canyon–Arequipa

Return to Arequipa for a city TOUR that shows off the Plaza de Armas, the cathedral , and the Jesuit CHURCH. Continue to the districts of Yanahuara and Chilina for a magnificent view of Arequipa’s countryside and the Mount Misti volcano. (B)

Day 26Arequipa–Lima

Fly to Lima today. (B)

Day 27Lima

Your vacation ends after breakfast this morning. (B)

Transportation:
Private, deluxe air-conditioned motorcoach while touring; travel by boat to Amazon lodge


MANAUS Tropical Manaus (MD),
AMAZON LODGE Ecopark Jungle Lodge (BA)
RIO DE JANEIRO Windsor Plaza Copacabana (F)
IGUASSU FALLS Recanto Park (F)
BUENOS AIRES Dazzler Maipu (F)
LIMA San Agustin Exclusive (F)
SACRED VALLEY Hotel Inkallpa (F)
MACHU PICCHU El Mapi Hotel Machu Picchu (F)
CUSCO Jose Antonio Cusco (F)
PUNO Eco Inn Puno (F)
AREQUIPA Sonesta Posada del Inca Arequipa (MF),
COLCA CANYON Hotel Casa Andina Classic Colca (F)

26 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 10 dinners

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As recommended by Budget Travel