Itinerary

There is a later version of this trip also available for travel from Jan 1, 2014 to Dec 31, 2014. View later Quito to Rio via Ushuaia.

Day 1 Quito

Travel to Ecuador and wander the cobbled streets and colourful Old Town of Quito. Perhaps stop by one of its many churches including La Compania de Jesus, whose ornate interior is often said to be the most beautiful in all the Americas.
ACCOM: Hotel - 1

Days 2-4 Amazon Jungle

Enjoy the warm climate of the upper Amazon Basin, one of the world's most biologically diverse regions. Trek deep into the jungle, visit pools inhabited by caimans, have a chance to meet shaman and fall asleep to the sounds of the jungle.
ACCOM: Lodge - 3

Days 5-7 Rio Verde

Camp in the lush Tungurahua Province and explore nearby Banos, famous for its hot springs and mountainous surrounds. In this lush environment, optional activities abound - from horse riding to mountain biking and even whitewater rafting.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 3

Days 8-9 Chugchilan/Quilotoa Loop

Witness spectacular views while driving along the winding Quilotoa Loop. Stretch legs on a guided trek and overnight in an eco-lodge nestled on the slopes of the Rio Toachi Canyon.
ACCOM: Hostel - 2

Day 10 Riobamba

Be treated to more stunning scenery on the journey towards Riobamba.
ACCOM: Hotel - 1

Day 11 Cuenca

Learn the history of the iconic Panama hat during an insightful factory tour. Pick up a hat at the local market or explore Cuenca's scenic streets and shady plazas.
ACCOM: Guesthouse - 1

Days 12-13 Punta Sal

Nestled in a long bay on the shores of the Pacific Ocean, Punta Sal is a haven for sun, surf and sand. Head out deep-sea fishing or explore the shoreline aboard a boat. For those looking for something more active, horse riding and salsa lessons are also available.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 2

Days 14-15 Huanchaco

Visit the Museum of the Royal Tombs of Sipan to discover the finest artefacts from the nearby archaeological finds at Sipan. Pitch a tent at Huanchaco, home to the surfing fishermen, and watch these skilful men bobbing among the waves while balancing on their narrow reed canoes. Spend a full day exploring the ruins of Chan Chan - the largest pre-Columbian city in South America - and stop by the temples of the Sun and the Moon.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 2

Days 16-18 Huaraz

Get ready for an action-packed stop! There's the option to go mountain biking, trekking to glassy Llanganuco Lagoon or even climbing over the Pastoruri Glacier. Nestled high in the Andes, Huaraz is dominated by the highest tropical mountain range in the world, the Cordillera Blanca, and by Peru's highest peak, Huascaran.
ACCOM: Guesthouse - 3

Days 19-20 Lima

Discover the colonial heart of downtown Lima or perhaps head to scenic Miraflores for a walk along the seafront boardwalks.
ACCOM: Hotel - 2

Day 21 Paracas/Ballestas Islands

Leave the city behind and travel south along the coast of Peru. Pitch a tent in Paracas, which spans over 335,000 hectares and is one of the world's most important marine reserves. Take a walk along the coastline and spot the vibrant birdlife Paracas is famous for.

Day 22 Nazca

Spot penguins, sea lions and boobies during a boat tour through the Ballestas Islands. Learn about the mysterious sand images on a Nazca Lines tour and perhaps take an overhead flight to fully appreciate the scale of this puzzling creation.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 1

Day 23 Puerto Inca

The windswept graves at the Chauchilla Cemetery display the eerie skeletons and mummified bodies of the Nazca people, some of which date from 1,000 AD. Camp overnight near Puerto Inca.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 1

Days 24-25 Arequipa

Explore the scenic city of Arequipa and perhaps stop by the Museo Santury to view Juanita, the ice princess. The body of this frozen Inca maiden is thought to be more than 500 years old, and was found at a sacrificial site on the summit of Nevado Ampato.
ACCOM: Hotel - 2

Days 26-27 Chivay/Colca Canyon

Try to spot the mighty Andean condors as they silently take to the sky thousands of metres above the floor of the breathtaking Colca Canyon.
ACCOM: Hotel - 2

Day 28 Raqchi Homestay

Get to know a local family as guests at a homestay in Raqchi. Spend the evening huddled around a crackling fire, sharing a meal, and discovering traditional Peruvian song and dance.
ACCOM: Homestay - 1

Days 29-30 Cuzco

Arrive in the city set high city in the mountains of Peru, Cuzco. Wander through cobblestone streets lined with massive Inca stone walls and Spanish-colonial architecture. Perhaps enjoy a traditional dance performance or sign up for one of the many adventure activities on offer in Cuzco, including quad-biking and whitewater rafting.
ACCOM: Hotel - 2

Days 31-34 Classic Inca Trail/Quechua Community Trek/Ollantaytambo

Follow ancient footpaths through the Andes on a four-day alternative Inca trail trek that winds through traditional Quechua communities. Pass soaring mountain peaks, trek amid grazing herds of llamas and camp beside ancient forests. Meet the locals and discover lesser-known Inca pathways before descending into the Sacred Valley to explore the massive Inca fortress at Ollantaytambo.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 4

Days 35-36 Machu Picchu/Cuzco

Rise early to discover the ruins of Machu Picchu bathed in the golden morning light. Spend a memorable day in the 'lost Inca city', perhaps hiking to the Sun Gate or braving the steep climb to the top of Huayna Picchu - the views are breathtaking! For those wishing to unwind post-trek, seek out bustling markets and cosmopolitan Cuzco cafes.
ACCOM: Hotel - 2

Day 37 Puno

Spot the ancient funerary towers of Sillustani rising from the windswept antiplano. Spend the night in Puno, located on the shores of Lake Titicaca.
ACCOM: Hotel - 1

Days 38-39 Lake Titicaca/Copacabana

Sailing across the glassy surface of Lake Titicaca is a memorable experience. Hike around the car-free Island of the Sun and discover its scenic heart. This island is widely believed to be the birthplace of Inca culture - there are plenty of ancient ruins and traditional villages to explore here.
ACCOM: Hotel - 2

Days 40-42 La Paz

Arrive in La Paz and set off on foot to explore the myriad of winding streets. La Paz is a colourful, enigmatic city, packed full of markets, restaurants and cultural attractions. Why not stay a few extra days to explore it.
ACCOM: Hotel - 3

Days 43-44 Potosi

Soak up the barren yet impressive Andean landscapes en route to Bolivia's colonial mining town of Potosi. An optional tour of a working mine provides a fascinating and somewhat hair-raising insight into life in the region.
ACCOM: Hotel - 2

Days 45-46 Salar de Uyuni

Gaze in awe at the seemingly endless expanse of Bolivia's largest salt flats before admiring the remarkable red waters of Laguna Colorada.
ACCOM: Bush camp (no facilities) - 1, Hotel - 1

Day 47 Bolivian Altiplano

Journey towards the Argentine border, camping among spectacular scenery.

Day 48 San Pedro de Atacama

ACCOM: Bush camp (no facilities) - 1

Days 49-51 Salta

Delight in the laidback atmosphere of Argentina's elegant colonial city of Salta. Relax in the main plaza, discover the pumping nightlife or head out of town to Quebrada de Humahuaca, a narrow valley flanked by spectacularly colourful mountains and giant cacti.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 1, Hotel - 2

Day 52 Cafayate

Learn about Argentina's wine production on a guided vineyard tour, perhaps taking the opportunity to indulge in some renowned blends.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 1

Days 53-56 Quilmes

Experience Argentine hospitality while staying on a working cattle ranch. Perhaps explore the Pampas on horseback before savouring the mouth-watering aromas and succulent flavours of a traditional barbecue.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 3

Day 54 Estancia stay

Experience Argentine hospitality while staying on a working cattle ranch. Perhaps explore the Pampas on horseback before savouring the mouth-watering aromas and succulent flavours of a traditional barbecue.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 1

Days 57-59 Mendoza

Traverse the high passes of the Andes travelling to Mendoza. Relax in the shade of the trees that line the city's wide avenues, visit local art galleries or chill out with a glass of wine.
ACCOM: Bush camp (no facilities) - 1, Hostel - 2

Days 60-61 Santiago

Celebrate the end of an unforgettable adventure in Chile's cosmopolitan capital, Santiago.
ACCOM: Hotel - 3

Day 62 Salto del Laja

Camp amid spectacular scenery and perhaps visit the Mamalluca Observatory - the view of the night sky is extraordinary.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 1

Days 63-65 Pucon

Journey to the small town of Pucon and make the most of the beautiful landscapes that this part of the world is famous for. Try hiking, horse riding or rafting during the day, and then relax back at camp by night.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 3

Days 66-68 Barlioche

Cross the border into Argentina and kick back in the resort town of Bariloche. For a dose of adventure try mountain biking or horse riding. Feeling a little indulgent? Then why not relax in a cafe and sample the decadent chocolate delicacies this town is known for.
ACCOM: Hostel - 3

Day 69 Esquel

Relax in easy-going Esquel, the traditional southern terminal of La Trochita. In this chilled out basecamp, admire the epic scenery at the foothills of the surrounding mountains.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 1

Days 70-71 Rio Pinturas/Cueva de las Manos

Travel to Rio Pinturas for a night of camping and then discover the wild beauty of Monte Leon National Park. Spend time exploring the diverse landscapes of this area and have fun spotting the native inhabitants - pumas, wolves, penguins and guanacos can all be found here, as well as many species of birds.
ACCOM: Bush camp (no facilities) - 1, Camping (with facilities) - 1

Days 72-73 Magellan Straits

Sail through the treacherous Magellan straits and experience the inhospitable winds and currents that the frontier explorers braved to pass between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.
ACCOM: Bush camp (no facilities) - 2

Days 74-75 Tierra del Fuego/Ushuaia

Travel to Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world, then venture into windswept Tierra del Fuego to see a diverse array of wildlife, from colonies of seals to majestic condors.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 1

Day 76 Magellan Straits

Traverse the Magellan straits and head back to Chile to arrive in the remote Punta Delgada. Spend the night in a bush camp under the South American stars.
ACCOM: Bush camp (no facilities) - 1

Day 77 Puerto Natales

Watch the breathtaking Patagonian landscape roll by on the drive to Puerto Natales. Spend the night at an idyllic lakeside camp.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 1

Days 78-81 Torres del Paine National Park

Trek through pristine wilderness and marvel at the park's granite cliffs, barren plains, clear lakes and dramatic waterfalls.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 4

Days 82-83 Perito Moreno Glacier/El Calafate

Be amazed by the blue beauty of the breathtaking Perito Moreno Glacier. Watch as chunks of ice break off and fall into the lake below.
ACCOM: Hostel - 2

Days 84-86 Los Glaciares National Park/El Chalten

Enter a world of incredible natural beauty. Hike past crystal lakes and soak up stunning glacial scenery.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 3

Days 87-88 Bush Camp/Camarones

Travel through remote parts of Argentina and enjoy camping in the bush at night.
ACCOM: Bush camp (no facilities) - 1, Camping (with facilities) - 1

Days 89-90 Puerto Madryn/Valdez Peninsula

Keep watch for a wide range of aquatic creatures while exploring the Valdes Peninsula with a local guide. Whales, penguins and sea lions all call this area home as do a host of land animals and birds.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 2

Day 91 Bush Camp

Camp under the stars near Monte Hermoso on the way to the Argentinean capital.
ACCOM: Bush camp (no facilities) - 1

Days 92-95 Buenos Aires

Delight in the rich culture of Buenos Aires. Wander grand boulevards, admire the city's splendid buildings or enjoy its famed nightlife.
ACCOM: Hotel - 4

Day 96 Concordia

ACCOM: Bush camp (no facilities) - 1

Day 97 San Ignacio Mini

The intricately carved ruins of San Ignacio Mini are an impressive sight.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 1

Days 98-100 Iguazu Falls

The mighty falls of Iguazu are a breathtaking spectacle not to be missed. Explore the Iguazu Falls from both the Argentinean and Brazilian banks and marvel at the magical, misty rainbows that surround the splendour.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 3

Days 101-103 Bonito

The ecotourism capital of Brazil awaits at Bonito, where the list of optional activities include hiking scenic forest trails and snorkelling among colourful river fish. For even more exhilarating adventures, why not try caving, horseriding, abseiling or whitewater rafting.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 3

Days 104-106 Pantanal

The Panatanal wetlands are the largest in the world and one of the most incredible places to visit in Brazil. Truly exotic wildlife inhabits these haunts so keep eyes peeled!
ACCOM: Bush camp (no facilities) - 1, Hacienda - 2

Days 107-108 Brotas

The tiny town of Brotas is Brazil's very own adventure sports hub. Dabble in a touch of canyoning or prepare to get splashed with some whitewater rafting.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 2

Days 109-111 Paraty

While away the hours with a walk along Brazil's beautiful secluded beaches at Paraty. Island hop on a local boat ride or explore the depths of the crystal clear waters on a scuba diving excursion.
ACCOM: Camping (with facilities) - 3

Day 112 Rio de Janeiro

Get ready for the ride that is Rio de Janeiro! Brazil's former capital is a breathtaking city and the thumping heart of this pulsating country. Get moving to the rhythm of the samba and say hello to the small hours in this city that never sleeps.