We begin in Argentina’s capital, Buenos Aires - the birthplace of the tango. This cosmopolitan city has wide boulevards, French colonial architecture, colourful traffic-free shopping areas and a legendary lively atmosphere.
Then we travel to Patagonia, a region shared by Argentina and Chile, with the Andes Mountains as its dividing line. We will tour the highlights of this mystic region including the amazing Perito Moreno Glacier.
We continue our adventure to Chile’s lively capital city of Santiago, with its stunning backdrop of the majestic Andes. In addition to touring the city we will also visit Vina del Mar, known as the 'Garden City' and one of Chile's premier beach resorts, as well as Valparaiso - a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of Chile's most historic ports, with its colourful hillside houses.
*** This tour is suitable for the fit and active traveller.
- Buenos Aires, including a Tango Cabaret
- Tigre – the enormous delta of the Parana River, with a river boat cruise along the canals and streams Glacier National Park
- Perito Moreno Glacier – Highlight of Patagonia!
- Upsala Glacier
- Argentino Lake
- Visit of Estancia Chali Aike
- Torres Del Paine National Park
- Punta Arenas
- Valparaiso – a UNESCO World Heritage Site
- Santiago - Chile’s colonial capital
- Visit of Santa Rita Winery in the Maipo Valley
Day 1: Depart
Tonight we board our flight to Buenos Aires.
Day 2: Arrive Buenos Aires
We arrive in Buenos Aires. The rest of the day is free until this evening’s Welcome Dinner at a local restaurant.
Day 3: Buenos Aires
On our city tour we see some of the unique neighbourhoods this city is known for. We also see the Presidential Palace (former headquarters of Eva Peron - still a popular cult figure here), the Plaza de Mayo, Metropolitan Cathedral and the Colon Opera House. We will stop in historic San Telmo, the oldest neighbourhood in Buenos Aires, and stroll the narrow streets with unique shops. This evening we enjoy a fabulous Tango Cabaret.
Day 4: Delta Cruise / Buenos Aires
We will board a typical riverboat for a cruise along the canals and streams that thread their way among many islands along the Parana River, until we reach the town of Tigre on the edge of the Delta. Many Porteños (inhabitants of Buenos Aires) have made sailing clubs and weekend homes built on stilts here because of frequent flooding.
Day 5: El Calafate, Argentina
We fly to El Calafate, situated by Argentino Lake - a glacier lake of the Patagonian Andes. It is the biggest lake in Argentina and the 3rd biggest in South America. Dinner is at a local restaurant.
Day 6: Perito Moreno Glacier / El Calafate
The most important highlight of Argentinian Patagonia is the spectacular Perito Moreno Glacier in Los Glaciers National Park. Here we will see many glaciers and turquoise blue lakes with a backdrop of snow-capped Andean mountain peaks. The glacier has 80-metre-high walls, and the deep blue colours of the ice and the columns within the glacier seem unbelievable! From a series of catwalks and vantage points we will be able to see, hear, and photograph the glacier safely while enormous chunks of ice erode off the glacier and crash into the water.
Day 7: El Calafate / Glacier Boat Tour
We board a boat and navigate through the North Arm of Argentino Lake until we reach the Upsala Channel, where we will find a spectacular ice barrier from where we will have a panoramic view of the Upsala Glacier. Then we sail the Spegazzini Canal, where we can observe the Seco Glacier - the highest glacier in the park.
Day 8: Puerto Natales, Chile
We transfer to Puerto Natales, visiting enroute a typical “estancia” - a ranch where the cowboys (“gauchos”) will demonstrate their remarkable equestrian skills. Included here is a delicious traditional barbecue lunch.
Day 9: Torres Del Paine National Park
Today we enjoy a full-day excursion to Torres del Paine (“Blue Towers”) National Park. There will be wonderful views onto the Torres Massif and its jagged peaks, as well as the Grey Glacier. Several short hikes enable visitors to reach the most beautiful viewing points and to become acquainted with the wealth of flora and fauna.
Day 10: Punta Arenas, Chile
This morning we transfer to Punta Arenas, and this afternoon we enjoy a city tour. We begin with a drive to the viewpoint of the Cerro La Cruz for a beautiful view of the city and the Magellan Strait. We’ll also visit the Salesian Museum Marggiorino Borgatello, where we will learn about Patagonia’s original inhabitants. We continue to Punta Arenas cemetery, widely known for its unique and impressive tombs. We end in the main square - the Plaza de Armas, lined by the 19th century mansions of wealthy sheep-farming families.
Day 11: Punta Arenas, at Leisure
Your Tour Manager will be on hand to offer suggestions. You may want to join an optional excursion to the penguin islands of Santa Marta and Isla Magdalena, or perhaps a tour to see the majestic Andean Condor.
Day 12: Santiago, Chile
This morning we fly to Santiago, and this afternoon enjoy a tour of this lively and historic city. We will see or visit some of the more important buildings such as the Cathedral, the Central Post Office, the Presidential Palace, “La Moneda”, the Cousiño Palace and the Basilica de los Sacramentinos. Later we travel toward the soaring Andes, past the Cerro San Cristóbal - an outpost of the mountains which tower over the city with a great white statue of the Virgin Mary crowning its summit.
Day 13: Vina Del Mar and Valparaiso
Valparaíso is Chile’s undisputed cultural capital, with fine 19th-century architecture that has earned it a designation as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We will see the historic city centre, then ascend to a view-point overlooking the city via one of Valparaíso’s signature funicular elevators. Later we proceed to Viña del Mar, whose manicured boulevards lined with palm trees, stately palaces, sprawling public beaches and beautiful expansive parks are a sharp contrast to the charming jumble of neighbouring Valparaíso. During our city tour we will visit the famous flower clock, originally built by Swiss clockmakers.
Day 14: Winery Tour / Santiago
Morning at leisure. This afternoon we head to the Santa Rita Winery in the Maipo Valley, which served as a refuge for the Chilean hero Bernardo O’Higgins and his soldiers during the fight for national liberation. The winery’s museum has an outstanding collection of Columbian native artefacts. This evening is our Farewell Dinner at a local restaurant, with delicious Chilean cuisine as well as live music.
Day 15: Santiago at Leisure / Depart for Home
A day at leisure for last-minute shopping and sightseeing. Tonight we board our flight for home.
Day 16: Arrival Home
Arrival in Canada.
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