Grand Tour of South America

From Lima to Santiago
  • Amazon Jungle
  • Argentina
  • Brazil
  • Custom
  • Wildlife and Nature
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Tour Description

This complete tour of South America will take you to many of the wonderful highlights that this vibrant and exciting continent has to offer. Your tour starts in Peru, be amazed by the mysterious ruins of Machu Picchu, Lake Titicaca and Cusco, the heart of the Inca Empire, not forgetting the wonderful wildlife in the Amazon Rainforest. In Ecuador enjoy a cruise around the famous Galapagos Islands and visit the colonial city of Quito. Your journey then takes you across to the other side of the Continent, starting in Rio de Janeiro, before heading to the incredible Iguazu Falls and discover Buenos Aires, the Paris of the Americas. A flight to Bariloche which lies on the southern shores of Lake Nahuel Huapi in the foothills of the Andes. Enjoy a wonderful overland crossing in to Chile, arriving at Puerto Varas, where you will visit the iconic Osorno Volcano. Finally your trip ends in Santiago, Chiles busting capital city.

Join us on this once in a lifetime experience!

Viva's Best Bits...

Discover incredible Galapagos Islands and witness the wildlife found nowhere else in the world

Tick off five most important South American countries– Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Ecuador and Peru

Experience the spectacular Iguazu Falls made up of 275 individual waterfalls from both Argentinean and Brazilian side

Tour Itinerary

Customisable ? This tour can be customised to suit your tastes and timing. Enquire here for more information.
Day 1

Arrival Day. On arrival into Quito you will be met and transferred to your hotel.
Sitting at 2,850 metres above sea level high in the Andean foothills lies Quito, the capital of Ecuador
Overnight in Quito

Day 2

Commence a colonial city tour of Quito exploring the bustling streets and squares of the largest historical old town in the Americas. Visit some of its most important churches such as the majestic La Compañía and iconic San Francisco which have stunning multi-ethnic designs and cultural heritage. We then take you to the Ethnographic Museum, which shows the great diversity of Ecuador’s native groups.

This afternoon you will see The Equatorial Monument which marks the exact middle of the World, Latitude 0º. You can stand with a foot on each hemisphere. A certificate for having crossed the Equator is issued to each guest! The surrounding, volcanic scenery is stunning. Beside the monument is a Colonial-style town, complete with main square, church, post office, bullring, cafeterias, restaurants and gift shops.
Lunch not included.
Overnight in Quito

Day 3

Free day to explore Quito at leisure.
This evening, you will be picked up from your hotel with a guide and driver and transferred to Pobre Diablo in La Floresta, the most alternative and trendy neighbourhood in Quito, full of local artisans, music venues, restaurants, bars, boutique and artisanal coffee shops, and more.
Pobre Diablo (Bar, Restaurant, Art and Music), offers the most talented artist in Ecuador and every month you can enjoy a different performer and you will be delighted by samples of a delicious drink and typical Ecuadorian starter while you enjoy the show.
After the show you will be returned to your hotel by our driver and guide.
The show stars at 7:30 P.M (subject to change).
Overnight in Quito

Day 4
Quito Galapagos Islands

Transfer to Quito Airport for your onward flight to the Galapagos. Flight Included.
Please note that before taking the flight you must pay the INGALA Tourist Control Card Fee at the Galapagos Government Council counter. This is currently US$20 per person but subject to change.
On arrival at Baltra Airport, travellers pass through an airport inspection point to ensure that no foreign plants or animals are introduced to the islands and to pay the Galapagos Islands National Park Entrance Fee. This is currently US$100 per person but subject to change.
The first excursion will be in the afternoon as you land at Isla Seymour Norte, a flat island compared to the archipelago’s mainly volcanic lands. Witness the large populations of frigate birds, blue-footed boobies and swallow-tailed gulls, while sea lions line the shore.
**NOTE : This is an example itinerary. We have a variety of Galapagos Cruises available from 4-15 day itineraries. Please ask for more details)
Overnight on board Galapagos Seaman Journey

Day 5
Galapagos Islands

MORNING: Genovesa Island is a horse-shoe shaped island formed from the eruption of a shield volcano. Also known as Prince Philip’s Steps, El Barranco has a steep rocky path leading up to a high cliff face. The cliffs are composed of very fragile lava and the natural erosion that has occurred in these lava flows has created the ideal nesting site for storm petrels. Red-footed, Nazca and masked boobies are all found here as are red-billed tropicbirds, short-eared owls and wedge-rumped storm petrels that are active during the daytime. During the panga rides along the cliffs, fur seals may be seen as well as several species of seabirds.
The eventual collapse of one side of the caldera resulted in a submerged crater that formed Darwin Bay. The wet landing is on a beautiful white coral sandy beach. This is a favourite site for birdwatchers as red-footed boobies, masked boobies, wandering tattlers, lava gulls, whimbrels, yellow-crowned and black-crowned lava herons, swallow-tailed gulls and yellow warblers can be seen in the area.
The trail climbs gradually to the edge of the cliff where you may see red-footed boobies nesting in the mangrove trees below. Other birds to have been sighted here include sharp-beaked finches, large cactus finches, ground finches, Galapagos doves and Galapagos swallows. Reaching the end the trail at the cliff's edge offers an incredible view of the island and the many birds living there.
Overnight on board Galapagos Seaman Journey

Day 6
Galapagos Islands

MORNING: Plazas is located at the east of Santa Cruz Island, and forms part of two islands known as Islas Plazas. Despite its small size, some of the most interesting and outstanding species of the Galapagos are found here. The South Plaza land iguanas are the smallest in the archipelago. Marine iguanas are also abundant, as well as an occasional hybrid, a cross between a marine iguana and a land iguana. They are unique, recognizable at first glance by their black/grey colour, with a land iguana's crest, but face and tail of the marine iguana. The large population of iguanas is due to the presence of tuna, their favourite food. Swallow-tailed gulls nesting in the rugged cliffs are seen along with other sea birds such as Audubon’s shearwaters, red-billed tropicbirds, frigate birds and brown pelicans.
AFTERNOON: Santa Fe or Barrington Island is a small, relatively flat island in the centre of the Galapagos archipelago. It is one of the oldest volcanoes. Santa Fe is home to two species endemic to the island - the Santa Fe land iguana and the Santa Fe rice rat. The Galapagos hawk, Galapagos snake and Galapagos mockingbird are also found here.
The visit begins with a wet landing at Barrington Bay. Sea lions are found on the beach here in large numbers. Along the trail many salt bushes can be seen as well as the giant Santa Fe Opuntia (prickly pear) cactus. Snorkelling is an option here, with great possibilities of snorkelling with playful sea lions and tropical fish.
Overnight on board Galapagos Seaman Journey

Day 7
Galapagos Guayaquil

MORNING: In 2004 the Jacinto Gordillo Breeding Centre (named after the famous colonist) was inaugurated, located in the north east of San Cristobal Island, to care for the smallest tortoises on the island. The breeding program on the island began in 2008 with the hatching of the first tortoise in captivity.
After the morning excursion you will be taken to Baltra Airport for your flight to Guayaquil. Flight Included
Arrive Guayaquil & transfer to your hotel.
Overnight in Guayaquil

Day 8
Guayaquil Lima

Transfer to the airport for your onward flight to Lima. Flight Included.
On arrival in to Lima you will be met & transferred to your hotel.
Lima, the capital of Peru, sits on the country's arid Pacific coast. Founded in 1535, its colonial centre is well preserved, but today Lima is a bustling metropolis and one of South America’s largest cities.
Overnight in Lima

Day 9

Today is spent touring Lima, the Colonial ‘City of Kings’. On the city tour you will visit a number of well-known sites including the Cathedral, the Presidential Palace, the Plaza de Armas as well as the Catacombs located beneath the San Francisco Convent. This is a chance to appreciate Lima's magnificent Colonial architecture as well as vignettes of its pre-Colombian past.
Afternoon at leisure.
Overnight in Lima

Day 10

We will introduce you to the history of Peruvian gastronomy. Our culinary adventure begins at a typical “Peruvian market”. There, you will be able to appreciate a wide variety of Peruvian product and enjoy and taste exotic fruits. Be amazed by the huge variety of fish and seafood in our ocean, considered one of the richest in the World. We will also visit an exclusive Peruvian restaurant, where you will have the opportunity to prepare your own “Pisco Sour” and the famous “Ceviche”. Later you will enjoy a delicious lunch, consisting of the most symbolic dishes of Peruvian cuisine.
Overnight in Lima

Day 11
Lima Peru Amazon

Transfer from your hotel to Lima Airport for your onward flight to Puerto Maldonardo. Flight Included.
Upon arrival transfer by road and a two and a half hour boat journey to Refugio Amazonas (Alternative Amazon Lodges available), located in a 200-hectare private reserve. The boat ride from the Tambopata River Port to Refugio Amazonas takes us past the Infierno Community and the Tambopata National Reserve checkpoint and into the buffer zone of this 1.3 million hectare conservation unit. A boxed lunch is provided to eat along the way.
On arrival you will be welcomed to the lodge and given a brief orientation.
After dinner at the lodge there is the option to join a night walk when most of the animals are active but sometimes difficult to see. The frogs are easier to see with their fascinating shapes and colours and fascinating sounds.
Overnight at Refugio Amazonas

Day 12
Peru Amazon

After breakfast venture out onto the lake by canoe or catamaran, looking for wildlife such as hoatzin, caiman, horned screamers, macaws and otters that are sometimes seen in the area. Back on land, a 30 minute walk from the lodge takes you to the 25 metre scaffolding canopy tower, complete with staircase running through the middle and providing safe access to the platforms above. The tower has been built on high ground to give views of the primary rainforest extending out towards the Tambopata National Reserve. Enjoy excellent views across the canopy and look for toucans, macaws and raptors.
After lunch you will visit a farm to learn about local agriculture and Amazonian crops before an ethnobotanical tour to learn about the medicinal uses of the various plants and trees of the region. In the evening, Refugio Amazonas staff offer lectures covering topics such as conservation threats, opportunities and projects in the Tambopata National Reserve.
Overnight Refugio Amazonas

Day 13
Peru Amazon

Witness the audio and visual spectacle of a clay lick, watching vibrant coloured macaws, parrots and parakeets feast on clay. Species such as dusky-headed and cobalt-winged parakeets are often seen and with luck we may also see mealy and yellow-crowned Amazons, blue-headed pionus, severe macaw and orange-cheeked (Barraband`s) parrots.
Later, a short hike from the lodge brings us to a beautiful Brazil nut forest that has been harvested for decades. Here you can learn about the whole process of the rainforest’s only sustainably harvested product, from collection through transportation to drying. You will also see the remains of a camp used by the Brazil nut gatherers for 2 months each year.
In the afternoon, there will be a visit to a peccary clay lick, this time to see mammals. Wild rain forest pigs show up in herds of up to twenty to eat clay, alongside deer, guan and parakeets.
Overnight Refugio Amazonas

Day 14
Peru Amazon Cusco

After breakfast, return to Puerto Maldonado for your onward flight to Cusco. Flight Included.
Upon arrival in to Cusco, you will be met & transferred to your hotel.
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.
Overnight in Cusco

Day 15

Take 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.
Afternoon is at leisure.
Overnight in Cusco

Day 16
Sacred Valley Aguas Calientes

Today, explore the Sacred Valley of the Incas. This fertile river valley was home to many important sites for the Incas, both strategic and religious. We visit the village of Pisac, with its famous market. On market days Pisac comes alive with locals from nearby hillside villages in traditional dress selling local fruit and vegetables as well as handicrafts. Later we explore Ollantaytambo, which is dominated by a giant Inca fortress, and is perhaps the best surviving example of Inca town planning.
In the late after board a train in Ollantaytambo bound for Aguas Calientes (also known as Machu Picchu township)
Overnight in Aguas Calientes

Day 17
Machu Picchu Cusco

Today you will be astonished at your first view of Machu Picchu, a stunning display of ancient architecture with incredible surroundings! Enjoy a guided 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.
Optional extra: Include a permit to climb Huayna Picchu.
Afternoon you will return to Cusco by train & road.
Overnight in Cusco

Day 18

Today is at leisure allowing you to spend time wandering the cobble-stoned streets of the ancient Inca capital. With treasures around every corner, Cusco is a wonderful city to explore on foot. Vibrant markets and stores give the traveller a plethora of shopping opportunities set amongst fine Inca and Spanish colonial architecture. The UNESCO World Heritage city is lined with history and ancient monuments, a truly enthralling city to spend time in.
Overnight in Cusco

Day 19
Cusco Puno

Transfer from your hotel in Cusco to the bus station for your bus journey across the Altiplano to Puno. This drive will take you through sleepy Andean villages, past spectacular snow-capped mountains, sheer cliffs and rampaging rivers. Stops along the way include the atmospheric towns of Pucara and Andahuaylillas, and the pre-Inca ruin of Raqchi. Arrive in Puno in the early evening. Includes lunch. Approx. 10 hours (NOTE: We also offer option by train or air)
Upon arrival we transfer you to your hotel.
Overnight in Puno

Day 20
Lake Titicaca

Enjoy a full day out on Lake Titicaca by boat. We explore a scenic and less touristy area of Taquile Island. Enjoy a pristine sandy beach where you will have plenty of time to relax and feel the serenity of Lake Titicaca. We then hike along a pre-Inca trail with spectacular landscapes of the island, visiting families of weavers to learn about their textile art and symbolism. We then journey to the community of Santa Maria-Llachon, on the tip of the Capachica Peninsula. This is a picturesque off the beaten track destination. We are welcomed by the small Quechua speaking community and introduced to an intensive cultural experience, observing the traditions of the community and participating in an ancient ceremony to learn about their magical world.
After lunch we head to a remote area of the National Reserve of Lake Titicaca to explore Uros Capi. These are considered to be the last authentic floating islands, less commercial and little visited. The Uros are descendants of one of the oldest cultures in South America.
Overnight in Puno - We also offer an overnight homestay Tour on Lake Titicaca. Please ask for more details

Day 21
Puno Lima

Transfer to the airport for your outward flight from Puno to Lima. Flight Included.
Overnight in Lima

Day 22
Lima Rio de Janeiro

Fly from Lima to Rio. Flight Included.
Upon arrival in to Rio, you will be met & transferred to your hotel.
Known as the ''Cidade Maravilhosa'', or Marvellous City, Rio never fails to amaze with its sandy beaches, carefree lifestyle and unparalleled natural beauty
Overnight in Rio

Day 23
Rio de Janeiro

Today we explore Corcovado & Sugarloaf Mountain. An early start to get you to thee 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. We have a traditional Brazilian BBQ lunch before visiting the famous Sugarloaf Mountain with views across the entire city. After descending the mountain, you will be dropped off at your hotel.
Included: All transport, tickets and entry fees, lunch (beverages not included).
Approximate duration of tour: 8 hours
Overnight in Rio

Day 24
Rio de Janeiro

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. We have a great selection of optional day tours. Please ask for more details.
Overnight in Rio

Day 25
Rio de Janeiro Iguazu

Transfer from your hotel to the airport for your onward flight to Iguazu. Flight Included.
Upon arrival in to Iguazu you will be met & will embark on your first tour of the falls. Today we 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 fees included.
*Optional - Add on a visit to the Bird Park, or why not book an amazing helicopter flight over the falls. Additional costs apply. Please ask for more details.
At the end of the tour you will be taken over the boarder into Argentina, to your hotel.
Overnight in Iguazu, Argentina

Day 26

In the early morning we will visit the Iguazu Falls on the Argentinian side. We will ride the Rainforest Ecological train and then explore panoramic views from above and below the waterfalls. We will visit the Devils Falls, which is said to be one of the most spectacular falls and you have the option of taking a boat ride under the Falls (additional costs apply. Payable locally). National Park fees included.
Overnight in Iguazu, Argentina

Day 27
Iguazu Buenos Aires

Transfer to the airport for your outward flight from Iguazu. Flight Included.
On arrival into Buenos Aires you will be met and transferred to your hotel.
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.
Overnight in Buenos Aires

Day 28
Buenos Aires

Today you have the option of exploring Buenos Aires by regular bus or for the more adventurous, by bicycle (please advise your preference at the time of booking). You will visit many of the highlights that Buenos Aires has to offer including San Telmo, Plaza de Mayo, La Boca, the old docks etc.
Afternoon is at leisure before your evening Dinner & Tango show.
Overnight in Buenos Aires

Day 29
Buenos Aires

Today is free to enjoy the sights and sounds of this world famous city.
We have a great selection of optional day tours. Please ask for more details.
Overnight in Buenos Aires

Day 30
Buenos Aires Bariloche

Transfer from your hotel to the airport for your onward flight to Bariloche. Fight Included.
Arrival into Bariloche airport and private transfer to your hotel.
San Carlos de Bariloche lies on the southern shores of Lake Nahuel Huapi in the foothills of the Andes surrounded by mountains and forests. Its location is stunning, surrounded by the Nahuel Huapi National Park, the oldest National Park in Argentina.
Overnight in Bariloche

Day 31

This traditional trip along the southern shore of Lake Nahuel Huapi is the most popular tour in Bariloche, and is a quick and easy way to get an overview of the Nahuel Huapi Lake. There is a great viewpoint of the Llao Llao Hotel and the lakes, as well as attractions like the Saint Edward Chapel, near Port Pañuelo. 17 kilometres away from Bariloche you will find Mount Campanario, where you can take a chairlift and enjoy the incredible views.
Afternoon is at leisure.
Overnight in Bariloche

Day 32
Bariloche - Lakes Crossing Puerto Varas

From Bariloche, your journey across the border today will be a combination of scenic bus rides and lake crossings. Set off from Bariloche at 09.00am, travel by bus to Puerto Pañuelo along the shores of Lake Nahuel Huapi, taking in the lovely flower gardens and Swiss-style architecture that characterizes the area. Continue by boat to Puerto Blest and board the bus to Puerto Alegre. Sail from there to Puerto Frías, complete the Customs procedures to exit Argentina, and cross the Andes (altitude 976m) passing through Pérez Rosales National Park, to Peulla, completing Chilean Customs formalities on route. There’ll be time for lunch (not included) in Peulla, before the onward cruise to Petrohué on Lake Todos Los Santos, widely considered to be one of Chile’s most beautiful lakes with spectacular views of Osorno Volcano and the Puntiagudo and Tronador mountain peaks when the weather is clear. The final leg of the journey is a scenic bus ride to Puerto Varas, arriving in the evening to your hotel.
*NB This schedule is for guidance only and may change according to weather conditions and the number of passengers. National Park fee is not included, payable in Argentinean pesos only (Currently ARS$37.25, Subject to change).
Overnight in Puerto Varas

Day 33
Puerto Montt: Osorno Volcano

Today we visit the iconic Osorno Volcano which stands on the south eastern shore of Lake Llanquihue towering over Todos los Santos Lake. Despite its low altitude, the upper slopes of the volcano are covered in glaciers and the views from the top are truly spectacular. There is plenty of time to explore the mountain and the Osorno volcano ski center, located at 1200 meters above sea level. We return to your hotel late in the afternoon. Includes snack.
Overnight in Puerto Varas

Day 34
Puerto Varas Santiago

You will be collected from your hotel at the appropriate time for the transfer to the airport for your outward flight from Puerto Montt to Santiago. Flight Included.
On arrival into Santiago you will be met and transferred to your hotel.
Santiago, Chile’s capital and largest city, lies in a valley surrounded by the snow-capped mountains of the Andes and the Chilean Coastal Range. Founded in 1541, Santiago has been Chile’s capital since colonial times.
Overnight in Santiago

Day 35

Take a tour of the charismatic Santiago, visiting both the old and new areas of the city. Highlights include the Plaza de Armas & Cerro Santa Lucia, the hill on which Santiago was founded in 1541.
This afternoon we head to Maipo Valley, Chile's oldest and most famous wine producing area. Just south of Santiago, this is predominately red-wine country, with cabernet sauvignon the most celebrated and widely planted variety. Our expert guide takes us to one of the most famous vineyards, Concha y Toro winery, producing excellent wines from the noblest French vines. Includes wine tasting. Lunch not included.
Overnight in Santiago

Day 36
Santiago Depart

Depart Santiago Any time. Transfer to the Airport is Included
NOTE: Tour can be done in reverse. Please ask for more details

What’s Included

  • Included Copy 20 Accommodation in standard hotels
  • Included Copy 20 3 nights on board Galapagos Islands cruise
  • Included Copy 31 Hotel upgrades available
  • Included Copy 31 Alternative 5-15 day Galapagos Cruise options (Additional costs apply)
  • Included Copy 20 Breakfast daily, and other meals as outlined in the included sightseeing tours
Fees & Services
  • Included Copy 20 Internal flights
  • Included Copy 20 Sightseeing on a shared basis as outlined in the tour itinerary with English speaking guides
  • Included Copy 20 All transfers, mostly on a private basis
  • Included Copy 7 Galapagos National Park Fees of USD$100 per person payable locally (subject to changes)
  • Included Copy 7 Galapagos tourist card of USD$20 per person payable locally (subject to changes)
  • Included Copy 20 Train from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes Return
  • Included Copy 20 Entrance fees & National Park fees, unless otherwise stated
  • Included Copy 7 Iguazu Tourist Tax payable locally. Approx. ARS50 (USD3.40) per person. Subject to change
  • Included Copy 7 International flights are NOT included. However can be added. Please ask for more details.
  • Included Copy 31 Tour can be done in reverse. Please ask for more details
Land, Air, Ship, Train ...

M/C Galapagos Seaman Journey | Galapagos Cruise Ship

16 Passengers

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36 days

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$10,720 USD

Per person, twin share

Daily departures