39 days in South America Itinerary

39 days in South America Itinerary

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Route & dates

39 days in South America Itinerary

Start: Moscow, Russia
Fly:  21​h 45​min
1
Iguazu National Park, Argentina
— 2 nights
Fly:  3​h 30​min
2
Buenos Aires, Argentina
— 2 nights
Fly:  3​h 30​min
3
Mendoza, Argentina
— 2 nights
Fly + bus:  2​h
4
Santiago, Chile
— 3 nights
Fly + shuttle:  5​h
5
San Pedro de Atacama, Chile
— 2 nights
shuttle + Fly:  10​h 45​min
6
La Paz, Bolivia
— 1 night
bus + Fly:  2​h
7
Cusco, Peru
— 2 nights
+2
bus + foot + train:  3​h 15​min
8
Machu Picchu, Peru
— 1 night
+4
train + foot + bus + taxi + Fly:  12​h
9
Lima, Peru
— 3 nights
Drive:  62​h 45​min
10
Perito Moreno, Argentina
— 4 nights
Drive:  35​h 45​min
11
Salta, Argentina
— 2 nights
Fly + Drive:  20​h
12
Chile Chico, Chile
— 3 nights
Drive + Fly:  36​h
End: Moscow, Russia

2
nights
Iguazu National Park, Argentina

Iguazu National Park ©
Iguazu National Park contains 672 sq km (259 sq mi) of fertile subtropical forests, but its main attraction is the majestic Iguazu Falls.
On the 25th (Wed), admire the sheer force of Iguazu Falls. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 26th (Thu): step off the mainland to explore Isla San Martin and then explore the wealth of natural beauty at Provincial Urugua-i Park.

To see where to stay, maps, photos, and other tourist information, refer to the Iguazu National Park day trip planning app .

Moscow, Russia to Iguazu National Park is an approximately 22-hour flight. You'll gain 6 hours traveling from Moscow to Iguazu National Park due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Moscow in December, expect Iguazu National Park to be much hotter, temps between 36°C and 23°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 26th (Thu) early enough to travel to Buenos Aires.

Things to do in Iguazu National Park

Parks Nature Wildlife

Side Trip

Provincial Urugua-i Park
Highlights from your plan
Iguazu Falls ©
Iguazu Falls
Provincial Urugua-i Park ©
Provincial Urugua-i Park
Isla San Martin ©
Isla San Martin

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.
Do some cultural sightseeing at Basilica de Lujan and Parque 3 de Febrero. Explore hidden gems such as Basilica del Santisimo Sacramento and Reserva Natural Punta Lara. Change things up with these side-trips from Buenos Aires: Reserva Natural Urbana (in Castelar), Catedral de San Isidro (in San Isidro) and Delta El Tigre (in Tigre). Next up on the itinerary: steep yourself in history at Palacio Barolo, take in the history at Plaza de Mayo, and pause for some serene contemplation at Iglesia Inmaculada Concepcion.

For reviews, maps, more things to do, and tourist information, use the Buenos Aires online trip itinerary maker .

You can fly from Iguazu National Park to Buenos Aires in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In December, plan for daily highs up to 33°C, and evening lows to 23°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel to Mendoza.

Things to do in Buenos Aires

Historic Sites Parks Wildlife

Side Trips

Delta El Tigre, Catedral de San Isidro, Reserva Natural Punta Lara, Reserva Natural Urbana, Basilica de Lujan
Highlights from your plan
Basilica del Santisimo Sacramento ©
Basilica del Santisimo Sacramento
Catedral de San Isidro ©
Catedral de San Isidro
Basilica de Lujan ©
Basilica de Lujan

2
nights
Mendoza, Argentina

Mendoza ©
Famed for its neat vineyards and thriving wine production, Mendoza remains the place to visit for a pleasant combination of relaxation and recreation.
Start off your visit on the 30th (Mon): ride a horse along Los Pingos Horse Riding, take in the architecture and atmosphere at Santuario de la Virgen de Lourdes, and then look for all kinds of wild species at Reserva Natural Villavicencio. On your second day here, do a tasting at Bodega Carmelo Patti, learn about winemaking at Bodega Matervini, and then do a tasting at Bodega Tierras Altas.

To see photos, ratings, other places to visit, and tourist information, refer to the Mendoza tour itinerary planning tool .

Getting from Buenos Aires to Mendoza by flight takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. When traveling from Buenos Aires in December, plan for somewhat warmer days and about the same nights in Mendoza: temperatures range from 37°C by day to 21°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 31st (Tue) early enough to travel to Santiago.

Things to do in Mendoza

Wineries Parks Historic Sites

Side Trip

Reserva Natural Villavicencio
Highlights from your plan
Bodega Tierras Altas ©
Bodega Tierras Altas
Reserva Natural Villavicencio ©
Reserva Natural Villavicencio
Bodega Matervini ©
Bodega Matervini

3
nights
Santiago, Chile

Santiago ©
Santiago tourism thrives largely thanks to the city's big selection of cultural and entertainment options, including museums, theaters, restaurants, bars, and giant malls.
Escape the urban bustle at San Cristóbal Hill and Playa El Canelillo. Your inner history buff will appreciate Santuario de la Inmaculada Concepcion and San Francisco Church. Explore Santiago's surroundings by going to Casa de Isla Negra (in Isla Negra) and Kingston Family Vineyards (in Casablanca). There's still lots to do: step into the grandiose world of Castillo Hidalgo.

To see more things to do, traveler tips, and other tourist information, refer to the Santiago trip itinerary maker tool .

Traveling by combination of flight and bus from Mendoza to Santiago takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Mendoza to Santiago, you'll gain 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 3rd (Fri) early enough to travel to San Pedro de Atacama.

Things to do in Santiago

Parks Historic Sites Outdoors

Side Trips

Kingston Family Vineyards, Playa El Canelillo, Casa de Isla Negra
Highlights from your plan
Casa de Isla Negra ©
Casa de Isla Negra
San Cristóbal Hill ©
San Cristóbal Hill

2
nights
San Pedro de Atacama, Chile

San Pedro de Atacama ©
Major archeological sites and a renowned museum remain the big draws in San Pedro de Atacama tourism, appealing to visitors interested in learning more about South America's pre-Columbian cultures.
Kick off your visit on the 4th (Sat): take in the dramatic natural features at Valle De La Luna, take in the natural beauty of Geyser del Tatio, and then look for all kinds of wild species at Valle Arcoiris. Keep things going the next day: get curious at Museo del Meteorito and then get impressive views of Lascar.

To see photos, ratings, reviews, and more tourist information, you can read our San Pedro de Atacama online holiday planner .

Do a combination of flight and shuttle from Santiago to San Pedro de Atacama in 5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In January in San Pedro de Atacama, expect temperatures between 29°C during the day and 8°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Sun) to allow time to travel to La Paz.

Things to do in San Pedro de Atacama

Parks Nature Wildlife
Highlights from your plan
Valle Arcoiris ©
Valle Arcoiris
Valle De La Luna ©
Valle De La Luna
Geyser del Tatio ©
Geyser del Tatio

1
night
La Paz, Bolivia

La Paz ©
Take a moment to catch your breath as you commence your holiday in La Paz.
Start off your visit on the 6th (Mon): hit the slopes at Scree Rush and then pause for some serene contemplation at Catedral Basilica Menor de Nuestra Senora de la Paz. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 7th (Tue): fly down the slopes at Chacaltaya Ski Resort and then take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Huayna Potosi.

To see where to stay, more things to do, other places to visit, and other tourist information, you can read our La Paz holiday maker tool .

Do a combination of shuttle and flight from San Pedro de Atacama to La Paz in 11 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and flight; or drive. Expect slightly colder temperatures when traveling from San Pedro de Atacama in January; daily highs in La Paz reach 17°C and lows reach 4°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 7th (Tue) early enough to travel to Cusco.

Things to do in La Paz

Parks Winter Sports Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
Huayna Potosi ©
Huayna Potosi
Chacaltaya Ski Resort ©
Chacaltaya Ski Resort

2
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.
Start off your visit on the 8th (Wed): delve into the distant past at Piquillacta, then stroll through Santuario Animal de Cochahuasi, and then explore the ancient world of Sacsayhuaman. Here are some ideas for day two: paddle through the water with a kayaking and canoeing tour, delve into the distant past at Q'enqo, and then take in the dramatic natural features at Cerro Colorado Vinicunca.

To see reviews, photos, where to stay, and more tourist information, use the Cusco online trip itinerary planner .

You can do a combination of bus and flight from La Paz to Cusco in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 1 hour traveling from La Paz to Cusco. Traveling from La Paz in January, things will get a bit warmer in Cusco: highs are around 22°C and lows about 9°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 9th (Thu) so you can travel to Machu Picchu.

Things to do in Cusco

Historic Sites Parks Nature

Side Trip

Piquillacta
Highlights from your plan
Sacsayhuaman ©
Sacsayhuaman
Kayaking & Canoeing
Q'enqo ©
Q'enqo

1
night
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 10th (Fri): steep yourself in history at Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu and then admire the natural beauty at Los Jardines de Mandor.

To find reviews, traveler tips, ratings, and more tourist information, you can read our Machu Picchu online trip itinerary planner .

You can do a combination of bus and train from Cusco to Machu Picchu in 3.5 hours. Other options are to take a train; or drive. Finish your sightseeing early on the 10th (Fri) to allow enough time to travel to Lima.

Things to do in Machu Picchu

Historic Sites Wildlife Parks
Highlights from your plan
Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu ©
Los Jardines de Mandor ©
Los Jardines de Mandor

3
nights
Lima, Peru

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.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Nature & Wildlife Tours and MALI - Museo de Arte de Lima. Get some cultural insight at Huaca Pucllana and Iglesia y Convento de San Francisco. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Lima: Playa Santa Maria del Mar (in Santa Maria Del Mar), Reserva Nacional Lomas de Lachay (in Huaral) and El Silencio (in Punta Hermosa). There's still lots to do: steep yourself in history at Basilica y Monasterio de Santo Domingo.

To see traveler tips, ratings, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our Lima trip itinerary planner .

Traveling by combination of car and flight from Machu Picchu to Lima takes 12 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of taxi and bus. In January in Lima, expect temperatures between 31°C during the day and 24°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Tue) to allow enough time to travel to Perito Moreno.

Things to do in Lima

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trips

Playa Santa Maria del Mar, El Silencio, Reserva Nacional Lomas de Lachay
Highlights from your plan
Nature & Wildlife Tours
Huaca Pucllana ©
Huaca Pucllana

4
nights
Perito Moreno, Argentina

Perito Moreno ©
Perito Moreno is a town in the northwest of Santa Cruz Province, Argentina, 25 km east of Lake Buenos Aires. Get in touch with nature at Parque Nacional Patagonia and Portal La Ascension. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Monte Zeballos and Cave of the Hands.

For more things to do, ratings, traveler tips, and tourist information, refer to the Perito Moreno route planner .

You can drive from Lima to Perito Moreno in 63 hours. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 2 hours traveling from Lima to Perito Moreno. Traveling from Lima in January, things will get slightly colder in Perito Moreno: highs are around 24°C and lows about 11°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Tue) early enough to travel to Salta.

Things to do in Perito Moreno

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

Los Antiguos
Highlights from your plan
Parque Nacional Patagonia ©
Parque Nacional Patagonia
Monte Zeballos ©
Monte Zeballos
Cave of the Hands
Cave of the Hands

2
nights
Salta, Argentina

Salta ©
Salta boasts a vibrant social life and array of informative museums appealing to visitors looking for a memorable cultural experience.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Volcan Llullaillaco.

To find photos, reviews, where to stay, and tourist information, you can read our Salta day trip planning site .

You can drive from Perito Moreno to Salta in 36 hours. Traveling from Perito Moreno in January, expect Salta to be a bit warmer, temps between 32°C and 19°C. You will leave for home on the 22nd (Wed).

Things to do in Salta

Parks Nature
Highlights from your plan
Volcan Llullaillaco ©
Volcan Llullaillaco

3
nights
Chile Chico, Chile

Chile Chico ©
Perched on the gusty shores of a lake separating Chile from Argentina, the small town of Chile Chico makes a great base to explore the surrounding nature.
Discover out-of-the-way places like Turismo Puerto Cristal and Laguna Verde. Get in touch with nature at Lago Jeinimeni National Reserve and Jeinimeni Lake. There's much more to do: trek along Circuito Piedra Clavada, take some stellar pictures from Plaza del Viento, and pause for some photo ops at Plaza del Viento Cerro Las banderas.

To see where to stay, other places to visit, photos, and tourist information, read our Chile Chico itinerary app .

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from Salta to Chile Chico. Traveling from Salta to Chile Chico, you'll gain 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Plan for slightly colder temperatures traveling from Salta in January, with highs in Chile Chico at 26°C and lows at 13°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 29th (Wed) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Chile Chico

Parks Historic Sites Nature

Side Trip

Turismo Puerto Cristal
Highlights from your plan
Lago Jeinimeni National Reserve ©
Lago Jeinimeni National Reserve
Turismo Puerto Cristal ©
Turismo Puerto Cristal
Laguna Verde ©
Laguna Verde

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