22 days in South America, Peru & Ecuador Itinerary

22 days in South America, Peru & Ecuador Itinerary

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Route & dates

Start: Washington DC, United States
Fly:  14 h 15 min
1
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
— 2 nights
Fly:  7 h
2
Buenos Aires, Argentina
— 2 nights
Fly:  10 h
3
Cusco, Peru
— 3 nights
+2
Bus + Foot + Train:  3 h 15 min
4
Machu Picchu, Peru
— 2 nights
Fly:  5 h 15 min
5
Lima, Peru
— 1 night
Fly:  3 h 15 min
6
Quito, Ecuador
— 2 nights
Fly:  3 h 45 min
7
Puerto Villamil, Ecuador
— 2 nights
Ferry:  2 h 30 min
8
Puerto Ayora, Ecuador
— 5 nights
Fly:  16 h 15 min
End: Washington DC, United States

2
nights
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Rio de Janeiro
Bustling with samba music and all-night street parties, no city encapsulates the spirit of Brazil better than Rio de Janeiro.
Your itinerary includes some good beach time at Copacabana Beach and Praia de Ipanema. Pedra da Gavea and Corcovado - Christ the Redeemer are good opportunities to explore the local culture. There's still lots to do: stroll through Leblon Beach, kick back and relax at Pedra do Arpoador, don't miss a visit to Escadaria Selaron, and get great views at Morro da Urca.

To see photos, traveler tips, and more tourist information, use the Rio de Janeiro online holiday planner.

Washington DC, USA to Rio de Janeiro is an approximately 16-hour flight. Traveling from Washington DC to Rio de Janeiro, you'll lose 2 hours due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Washington DC in May, Rio de Janeiro is a bit warmer at night with lows of 69°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 23rd (Sat) early enough to travel to Buenos Aires.

Things to do in Rio de Janeiro

Parks Outdoors Beaches
Highlights from your plan
Praia de Ipanema
Praia de Ipanema
Copacabana Beach ©
Copacabana Beach
Parque Lage ©
Parque Lage

2
nights
Buenos Aires, Argentina

Buenos Aires ©
Cultural capital of South America, Buenos Aires remains one of the largest cities on the continent, serving as a point of departure for exploring the rest of the country.
On the 24th (Sun), steep yourself in history at Casa Rosada, take in the history at Plaza de Mayo, get engrossed in the history at El Zanjon de Granados, thentake in nature's colorful creations at Parque 3 de Febrero, and finally stroll the grounds of Cemiterio de Recoleta. On the 25th (Mon), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: visit La Boca and then take a stroll through Puerto Madero.

To see maps, other places to visit, where to stay, and more tourist information, refer to the Buenos Aires online vacation planner.

Traveling by flight from Rio de Janeiro to Buenos Aires takes 7 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Plan for slightly colder temperatures traveling from Rio de Janeiro in May, with highs in Buenos Aires at 64°F and lows at 54°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Mon) early enough to travel to Cusco.

Things to do in Buenos Aires

Historic Sites Neighborhoods Parks
Highlights from your plan
Puerto Madero ©
Puerto Madero
Cemiterio de Recoleta ©
Cemiterio de Recoleta
Parque 3 de Febrero ©
Parque 3 de Febrero

3
nights
Cusco, Peru

Cusco ©
Capital of the Inca Empire for three centuries, World Heritage-listed Cusco is now a major tourist destination, drawing nearly 2 million annual tourists with its well-preserved colonial architecture and proximity to Machu Picchu.
Discover out-of-the-way places like Moray and Archaeological Park Ollantaytambo. Your inner history buff will appreciate Sacsayhuaman and Tambomachay. And it doesn't end there: trek along exploor, steep yourself in history at Plaza de Armas, explore the ancient world of Qorikancha, and get outside with Outdoor Activities.

To find reviews, ratings, more things to do, and more tourist information, refer to the Cusco trip itinerary planning website.

You can fly from Buenos Aires to Cusco in 10 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. The time zone changes from Argentina Standard Time (ART) to Peru Standard Time (PET), which is usually a -2 hour difference. Traveling from Buenos Aires in May, plan for a bit cooler nights in Cusco, with lows around 39°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Fri) to allow enough time to travel to Machu Picchu.

Things to do in Cusco

Historic Sites Tours Outdoors

Side Trips

Moray, Archaeological Park Ollantaytambo
Highlights from your plan
Sacsayhuaman ©
Sacsayhuaman
Moray ©
Moray
exploor ©
exploor

2
nights
Machu Picchu, Peru

Machu Picchu ©
A symbol of the Incan civilization, the abandoned city of Machu Picchu represents a must-see on a Peru vacation.
Start off your visit on the 30th (Sat): explore the ancient world of Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 31st (Sun): explore the ancient world of Winay Wayna and then explore the ancient world of Intipuncu.

Plan trip to Machu Picchu with our itinerary maker to find out where to go and what to do.

Traveling by combination of bus and train from Cusco to Machu Picchu takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or drive. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 31st (Sun) early enough to travel to Lima.

Things to do in Machu Picchu

Historic Sites
Highlights from your plan
Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu ©
Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu
Intipuncu ©
Intipuncu
Winay Wayna ©
Winay Wayna

1
night
Lima, Peru

Lima ©
Founded in 1535 by Spanish explorer Francisco Pizarro, Lima represents an interesting blend of modern attractions and preserved colonial architecture, much of it clustered in the World Heritage-listed city center.
Kick off your visit on the 1st (Mon): get engrossed in the history at Museo Larco, thendelve into the distant past at Huaca Pucllana, thentake an in-depth tour of Museo Convento San Francisco y Catacumbas, and finally get to know the fascinating history of Centro Historico de Lima.

To see more things to do, maps, and other tourist information, go to the Lima online day trip planner.

You can fly from Machu Picchu to Lima in 7 hours. Other options are to drive; or do a combination of taxi and bus. In May in Lima, expect temperatures between 73°F during the day and 65°F at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 1st (Mon) early enough to travel to Quito.

Things to do in Lima

Historic Sites Museums
Highlights from your plan
Centro Historico de Lima ©
Centro Historico de Lima
Huaca Pucllana ©
Huaca Pucllana
Museo Convento San Francisco y Catacumbas ©

2
nights
Quito, Ecuador

Quito ©
High in the Andean foothills, Quito remains one of the world's most photogenic capital cities, featuring two dramatic mountain ranges as its backdrop.
On the 2nd (Tue), appreciate the extensive heritage of Quito Old Town, thenadmire the striking features of Basilica del Voto Nacional, and then take an in-depth tour of Museo Templo del Sol Pintor Ortega Maila. On your second day here, take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Illiniza Ecological Reserve, thenadmire the landmark architecture of Iglesia y Convento de San Francisco, and then make a trip to La Capilla Del Hombre.

For maps, other places to visit, traveler tips, and more tourist information, go to the Quito vacation planner.

Traveling by flight from Lima to Quito takes 6 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In June, plan for daily highs up to 73°F, and evening lows to 59°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 3rd (Wed) to allow time to travel to Puerto Villamil.

Things to do in Quito

Historic Sites Parks Wildlife
Highlights from your plan
Quito Old Town ©
Quito Old Town
Basilica del Voto Nacional ©
Basilica del Voto Nacional
Iglesia y Convento de San Francisco ©
Iglesia y Convento de San Francisco

2
nights
Puerto Villamil, Ecuador

Puerto Villamil ©
Located in the southeast of Isla Isabela, Puerto Villamil is home to the majority of the island's 2,200 inhabitants.
Kick off your visit on the 4th (Thu): tour the pleasant surroundings at Posada de flamengos and then get impressive views of Sierra Negra. Keep things going the next day: enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Puerto Villamil, find your balance on the water with some of the best stand-up paddleboarding in the area, and then stroll through Concha de Perla.

To find where to stay, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our Puerto Villamil travel planner.

You can fly from Quito to Puerto Villamil in 6 hours. Traveling from Quito to Puerto Villamil, you'll gain 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Fri) to allow time to ride a ferry to Puerto Ayora.

Things to do in Puerto Villamil

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

Sierra Negra
Highlights from your plan
Concha de Perla ©
Concha de Perla
Sierra Negra ©
Sierra Negra
Stand-Up Paddleboarding

5
nights
Puerto Ayora, Ecuador

Puerto Ayora ©
The largest settlement in the Galapagos, Puerto Ayora offers visitors to the islands an array of facilities and things to do.
Do some cultural sightseeing at Maprae and Galeria Aymara. Discover out-of-the-way places like Galapagos Beach at Tortuga Bay and Las Grietas. Next up on the itinerary: have unforgettable encounters with a shark diving experience, stroll through Los Gemelos, cast your line with a fishing tour, and get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports.

For maps, photos, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read Puerto Ayora day trip planner.

You can ride a ferry from Puerto Villamil to Puerto Ayora in 3.5 hours. The time zone difference when traveling from Puerto Villamil to Puerto Ayora is 1 hour. In June in Puerto Ayora, expect temperatures between 83°F during the day and 73°F at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 10th (Wed) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Puerto Ayora

Wildlife Parks Outdoors

Side Trip

Santa Cruz
Highlights from your plan
El Chato - Giant Tortoise Reserve ©
El Chato - Giant Tortoise Reserve
Galapagos Beach at Tortuga Bay ©
Galapagos Beach at Tortuga Bay
Scuba & Snorkeling

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