Day 1 - Overnight flight to Buenos Aires
Days 2-4 - Buenos Aires at leisure or optional tours/excursions
The tour starts with direct flights with British Airways between London Heathrow and Buenos Aires, arriving in the morning. You will be met by your guide and transferred to your hotel in the city centre for a three night stay.
Buenos Aires is often noted as the most stylish and romantic of South America's capital cities, full of European influences but with a distinct Latin American flair. It is for this reason that Buenos Aires is known as "the Paris of South America". Situated on the historic River Plate, it is divided into distinct barrios, some of the most popular of which are the upmarket neighbourhoods of Palermo and Recoleta, traditional San Telmo, charactarised by old-time cafes, antique markets, tango halls and leafy squares and La Boca, famed for its colourful corrugated iron buildings. In between is the Plaza de Mayo, surrounded by grand government buildings, including the Casa Rosada.
We have a range of excursions available providing an authentic experience to enhance your stay in Buenos Aires:
Full day trips outside the city:
Day 5 - Fly to Salta
Today you will fly west to the colonial city of Salta, which sits in the Lerma valley surrounded by mountain peaks in the Northwest of Argentina. You will have the afternoon at leisure to enjoy this city of fine plazas, beautiful colonial architecture and magnificent churches.
Day 6 - Cafayate Desert Landscapes and Winery
In this full day you will venture out into the dramatic scenery which unfolds south of the city, reaching Cafayate and then returning to Salta for the evening. En-route you will stop at the Quebrada de las Conchas (the Gorge of Shells), where wind and water erosion have carved curious shapes on the rocks, creating several distinct formations with vivid names, including the Amphitheater and the Devil's Throat.
Upon arrival in Cafayate you will visit one of the local wineries, famous for their production of Torrontes, with special characteristics due to the particularities of the climate and land. In the afternoon there will be time to explore the town and visit the magnificent colonial church, stroll around the leafy square, browse the handicraft stalls and shops, or visit the fascinating modern wine museum. You will then return to Salta along the same picturesque route.
Day 7 - Self-drive from Salta to Purmamarca
Today you will collect you car to start your round trip between Salta and Pumamarca. The provinces of Salta and neighbouring Jujuy are well-known for their high mountain and desert landscapes, with wind-sculpted gorges and red-ochre coloured rock formations, high altitude salt flats and winding mountains roads.
Among this desert scenery there are a number of rivers providing green foliage which contrasts the dry surroundings, as well as micro-climates which produce humid forests and jungles, like the one which stretches between the cities of Salta and Jujuy. You will drive north from Salta along these roads, stopping in Jujuy to admire the colonial churches if you wish. Continuing north will bring you to the town of Purmamarca, an ancient settlement surrounded by towering mountains, including the famous ‘Seven Colours Hill’.
You may also with take visit the Salinas Grandes, a 90 minute drive up through the mountains, to see the high salt flats. Overnight at Purmamarca.
Day 8 - Self-drive from Purmamarca to Salta
The following day you will continue north, along the main road through Humahuaca Gorge, to the thriving colonial town of Humahuaca. Here you can visit the historic church and the monument to independence heroes. You then head back south towards Salta, with a possible stop at the small colonial town of Tilcara and the pre-Inca archaeological site ‘Pucara de Tilcara’. Return to Salta in the evening and return the car.
Day 9 - Fly to Iguazu
Day 10 - Iguazu Falls
Set in sprawling sub-tropical rainforest on the border between Brazil and Argentina, the Iguazu Falls are one of the world's most spectacular natural wonders. Vast torrents of water cascade over a myriad of falls in a 1.7 mile long horseshoe-shaped curve in the Iguazu River. In total the falls are twice as wide and a third taller than Niagara.
The Argentinean side provides three major trails to give you a wonderful overview of the falls, from both near and afar, including a close encounter with the mighty Devil's Throat - the epicentre of the action. You can take boat trips to see the waterfalls from below and even take to the skies on a panoramic helicopter ride.
Day 11 - Transfer to Posadas via San Ignacio Ruins
The tour continues with a scenic drive from Iguazu to Posadas, the gateway to the Iberá Wetlands - one of the continent's premier wildlife destinations. On the way to Posadas you will stop at the Ruins of San Ignacio Miní, one of the best preserved Jesuit missionary settlements in South America. Nestled amid lush vegetation, as well as showcasing a fine baroque architecture style, the ruins also teach us about the fascinating existence of the Jesuits, their efforts to evangelise the local Guaraní people and how they ultimately were suppressed and the mission destroyed in the early nineteenth century.
You will then continue on to your lodge, where you will stay for the next two nights.
Day 12 - Iberá Wetlands excursions with lodge guides
This trip has no fixed departures but restrictions may apply - check operator website
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