NORTH CHILE & ARGENTINA
Chile & Argentina travel!
From volcanoes, dry canyons, geysers and flamingo lagoons to luscious vineyards and colourful artistic cities. This trip combines the north of Chile with the natural wonder of Atacama and colourful Valporaiso with the varied north of Argentina. Around the Argentinian colonial city of Salta, you can marvel at the splendid mineral mountains, cactus landscapes and native culture. Lastly, enjoy the tropical spectacle that is Iguazu waterfalls!
Day 1 - Santiago
Santiago de Chile, founded in 1541 by the Spanish conquerors, has been the capital of Chile since colonial times. The city is surrounded by the Andes mountain range and has a centre of 19th century neoclassical architecture with winding side streets, littered with art deco, neo-Gothic and other styles. You can enjoy the many street musicians and handmade copper jewellery at the markets in the streets. The city consists of several hills, the Mapocho River, many parks and the Andes mountain range can always be seen. The city is surrounded by vineyards and is a few hours away from both the mountains and the Pacific. During a city tour of half a day, the guide takes you on a walk through the city.
Day 2 - Santiago wineries
Chile has world-famous wines. The fertile hills around Santiago have produced many award-winning wines. You can visit these peaceful vineyards. During this tour, you see the stately homes, gardens and wine cellars of the first owners of the largest wine export in South America. You have probably enjoyed a glass or more, of Concho y Toro wine; one of the world’s most famous wines which is available in more than 130 countries. Don’t miss out on the chance to visit the vineyards and cellars of these wines. The wine cellars are in the picturesque Pirque region. During the tour, you visit the summer home and garden of the Concho y Toro family. You’ll also see the Casillero del Diablo wine cellars, and visit the vineyards with 26 different types of grapes. Enjoy the delicious favours during the wine tasting!
Day 3/4 - Valporaiso
Climb the hills and saunter through the colourfully painted streets with artistic boutiques, atmospheric restaurants and street artists live at work! There are so many words to describe ‘Valpo’, but the fact remains that the place is indescribable. Let’s start with some facts: Valparaiso is the largest and oldest port city in Chile and dates from 1536. The charming city has around 42 hills, on which colourful houses are situated, linked with each other through a labyrinth of streets and lookouts. This Bohemian city inspired many poets including the famous Pablo Neruda. Between the hill and sea is the centre, with the cable car, splendid architecture and narrow streets. In the 19th century, Valpo was already known as the ‘Jewel of the Pacific’. A guide will tell you more about this special place and you will have plenty of time to yourself to get lost amongst the streets.
Day 5 - San Pedro de Atacama
San Pedro de Atacama is a small oasis village at the Altiplano. In this geographical region are some of the tallest volcanoes of the Andes. Nowadays, this small town is of great importance because it’s considered the archaeological capital of Chile due to the epic beauty of the landscape. Thanks to the high altitude, dry, cloud-free air and lack of ‘light pollution’ from big cities, this is one of the best places in the world to observe stars and a fixed base for NASA. Why not incorporate a stargazing tour into your programme. We fully recommend this tour.
During your visit to the driest desert in the world, you must absolutely visit the spectacular Moon Valley and Death Valley. Enjoy the exceptional shapes of the landscape, as if you’re walking on the moon. The views of the Andes and volcanoes are spectacular. When dusk falls, you’ll be overwhelmed by the red and golden colours of the desert sky.
Day 6 - Atacama Pedras Rojas Lagoons
Discover the magical colours of the Atacama Desert, with the imposing Piedras Rojas, the beautiful lagoons of Chaxa, Miscanti and Miñiques Andes and the expansive Atacama salt flats. You start in Piedras Rojas, an impressive geological rock formation with a fascinating red-coloured landscape, caused by oxidised iron. You’ll also visit the Altiplano lagoons (4200m), which are surrounded by impressive volcanoes from formations of the Andes mountain range. The lagoons are inhabited by a great variety of wild birds, including brightly coloured flamingo colonies. A spectacularly beautiful environment! On the way you back, you’ll enjoy the views of the famous volcanoes of Licanabur and Lascar and we visit the traditional colonial village of Toconao.
Day 7 - Tatio geysers
Those who are interested, can rise extra early to visit the Tatio geysers (4000m). You can see the sunrise in one of the most significant geothermal fields in the world. There are more than 70 geysers with steaming pools of boiling water, bubbling mud and gushing water.
On the way back, you will travel through epic landscapes with impressive valleys, full of flora and fauna and will be able to spot vicuñas and vizcachas! You stop by the village of Machuca, a real atacameño village with only 20 homes, built from clay, straw and cactus wood. The inhabitants of Machuca offer handmade wares from the Andes and typical dishes from the region, like llama meat and empanadas. While we’re there, we’ll visit the wetlands where we can spot flamingos, ducks and other birds!
Day 8 - Salta
The sunny city of Salta lies in the north-west of Argentina and is surrounded by spectacular landscapes. Spanish colonial architecture dominates the street scene, on terraces you can enjoy a delicious empanada and see the charming population of highland natives come by in colourful ponchos. There’s much to do in the area. For example, you can visit the largest vineyards in Cafayate, enjoy the colourful mineral mountains and cactus landscapes around Humahuaca, visit salt flats and the environment also offers great opportunities to ride a horse in the Andes. The choice is yours! Some of the options are described below, though much more is possible, let us know what you want and we’ll customise your trip!
Day 9 - Humahuaca
Optional excursion 1: Humahuaca
Cactus landscapes, mineral mountains and native culture. Today, there’s an optional excursion to the UNESCO world heritage site of Humamuaca and environment, consisting of small villages, fascinating cultures and spectacular landscapes. You’ll drive to Purmamarca, where you visit the Seven Coloured Hill and a local market. On the way, you’ll see old ruins in the village of Tilcara surrounded by cactuses, the famous colourful La Pollera del Coya hill and paintings of the Arcabuceros angels. You also visit the villages of Humahuaca and San Salvador de Jujuy.
Optional excursion 2: Salt flats
Across the well-known Route 40, we continue to one of the most deserted areas in Argentina until we reach the Salt Flats. Immense, white salt flats offer optical illusions and a great opportunity to make some crazy perspective photos! On the way back, you drive past the famous Seven Coloured Hill of Purmamarca and San Salvador de Jujuy.
Day 10 - Cafayate
Following route 68, we drive to Quebrada de las Conchas, where wind and water erosion have formed unique rock formations (the amphitheatre, the devil’s throat, the castles etc.). In Cafayate, we visit the famous Torrontes vineyards, the museum of wine production and two vineyards to taste delicious wines.
Day 11 - Iguazu
Puerto Iguazu is known for its impressive waterfalls that form the natural border between Brazil and Argentina. The waterfalls are the widest in the world with 160m to 260m (it can vary depending on the water level) big and small waterfalls with a total width of 2,700 metres. At the banks of the Iguazu river, you can see the coastlines of Brazil and Paraguay and if there’s enough time, you can even visit these countries by boat!
Day 12 - Iguazu
Iguazu Argentinian side
You’re picked up at your hotel and will visit the Argentinian side of the Iguazu waterfalls today. A professional guide tells you everything you need to know about the history, flora and fauna of the National Park and the waterfalls. Experience the imposing views and sounds of the waterfalls. The National Park has easily accessible hiking trails that provide a spectacular view of the many waterfalls. Using the Upper and Lower Circuit, you walk past the forces of water.
Optional excursion – sail past the waterfalls
Additionally, you can participate in the forces of water! In a zodiac, you sail past the waterfalls as close as is possible. During this close-up, you experience how gigantic the waterfalls are, you feel the force and the mist hits you. You then sail across the Iguazu river and back to shore, after a short hike, you hop into the 4×2 jeep from which you explore the jungle! This excursion is for 12 years of age and up, not for pregnant woman or people with physical handicaps. Wear suitable clothes, you will get wet.
Day 13 - Iguazu
The Brazilian side of the waterfalls is on the programme today. Once again, you drive to the Iguazu park accompanied by a guide. Today’s hike gives you a fantastic panoramic view of the impressive waterfalls of Bozzetti, Two Sisters, San Martin and the three musketeers.
Dag 14 - Back to Buenos Aires
Flight back to Buenos Aires & flight home.
End of an unforgettable journey through Chile and Argentina.
* All accommodations with breakfast
* Mentioned meals
* Transport like mentioned in the program
* Excursions like mentioned in the program, unless stated otherwise
* International an domestic flights
* Not mentioned meals
* Entry fees national parks, unless mentioned differently
* Optional and not mentioned services and excursions