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Essence of South America

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Essence of South America

14 Nights / 15 Days

Day 1

DAY 01 Arrive Manaus

On arrival into Manaus, your representative greets you at the 'meeting point' at the exit after immigration and customs and transfers you comfortably to your hotel (check-in after 1400 hrs).
Then, proceed on a guided sightseeing tour of Manaus, to view the vestiges of its glory days during the rubber boom. Your first stop will be the famous Opera House, built in 1896, with materials imported from Europe. Next, visit a bustling local market, filled with regional foods and wares.
Overnight in Manaus. Dinner at the hotel / Local Restaurant.


Day 2

DAY 02 Manaus – Amazon

After breakfast, check-out of the hotel and proceed to the port to embark on your 'Meeting of the Waters' cruise, which passes by the impressive British-built Custom House and the floating port. Cruise along the chocolate-coloured Rio Negro, to its confluence with the yellow-gray Rio Solimoes, where the two rivers form the mighty Amazon. For 4 miles, the differently coloured bodies of water flow side by side and never mix!
Explore a Jungle Island (if water levels permit), with fascinating native flora and fauna.
Later this afternoon, arrive at the resort inside the Amazonian Rainforest. Overnight in Amazon. Breakfast at the hotel, lunch and dinner at the lodge / Local restaurant.

Day 3

DAY 03 Amazon

Accompanied by a Naturalist, enjoy a guided jungle walk, that introduces you to the flora and fauna that thrive in the Amazon. After lunch, sail up the river to visit a Caboclo's native Amazon Village, to learn about their traditions and culture. Also, try your hand at piranha fishing!
Later, visit the Monkey Jungle Reserve, where researchers work to rehabilitate captive primates and reintroduce them to the jungle. Here, you have the opportunity to see feeding of spider monkeys, squirrel monkeys, woolly monkeys and capuchin monkeys.
This evening, venture back out on a canoe with the naturalist, into the flooded forest to appreciate the jungle at night, with the possibility to spot small alligators and other night creatures.
Overnight in Amazon. Breakfast at the hotel, lunch and dinner at the lodge / Local restaurant.


Day 4

DAY 04 Amazon - Rio de Janeiro
Today, transfer to the airport in Manaus to board your flight to Rio de Janeiro.
On arrival, proceed on a guided sightseeing tour to the bustling downtown Rio where modern office towers stand next to relics of the Portuguese colonial past.
View the Sambadrome and the Cathedral before visiting the 300-foot-high Sugar Loaf Mountain. Ascend by cable car to its summit where you can savour spectacular vistas of the city and beaches.

Overnight in Rio de Janeiro. Breakfast at the hotel and dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 5

DAY 05 Rio de Janeiro

This morning, proceed to Cosme Velho district, and board a cog-wheel train, which will take you through lush vegetation of Tijuca Forest to the top of the Corcovado Mountain. This rounded peak rising 2,300 feet from the bay below is one of the new Seven Modern Wonders of the World and home to the iconic statue of Christ the Redeemer.
Enjoy a breathtaking 360-degree panorama, which affords sweeping views of the city and beaches below.
Tonight, join us on an outing to a fun churrascaria for a feast of barbecued veggies marinated and roasted over charcoal in true Brazilian style, followed by a Samba show, where the sheer vitality of this country explodes in a colourful extravaganza.


Overnight in Rio de Janeiro. Breakfast at the hotel, lunch and dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 6

DAY 06 Rio de Janeiro – Iguassu

Today, after breakfast, fly to Iguassu Falls, at the crossroads of Brazil, Argentina, and Paraguay. This masterpiece of nature encompasses 275 separate falls and spans almost two miles.
On arrival, check-in to the hotel (check-in from 1600 hrs).
The rest of the day is at leisure for independent activities. Overnight in Iguassu. Breakfast and dinner at the hotel / Local restaurant.

Day 7

DAY 07 Iguassu – Lima

This morning, after breakfast, check-out of the hotel and proceed to visit Iguassu Falls, where you can enjoy the spectacle of this 2-mile-wide torrential downpour. With some cataratas as high as 250 feet, it's nothing short of hypnotic. The clouds of spray, the incessant roar and the surrounding luxuriant tropical growth make this an unforgettable natural wonder.
Later, transfer to the airport for your flight to Lima. Overnight in Lima. Breakfast at the hotel and dinner on board the flight.


Day 8

DAY 08 Lima
Today, proceed on a half-day guided sightseeing tour of Colonial and Modern Lima passing by outstanding monuments such as the Government Palace, the City Hall and the Cathedral (closed on Sundays) and the 17th century San Francisco Convent. Later, visit the Larco Herrera Museum.
Overnight in Lima. Breakfast at the hotel and dinner at a local restaurant (set menu)


Day 9

DAY 09 Lima – Cusco

Early this morning, proceed to the airport for your flight to Cusco. On arrival into the ancient capital of the Incas transfer to your hotel. Cusco is perhaps the most fascinating city in the western hemisphere. As the capital of the Inca Empire - the largest empire in the Americas prior to that of the Spanish - Cusco was hugely important as a political, religious and spiritual center, to the extent that the Inca's referred to it as the "Home of Gods".
Later this afternoon, be fascinated on a guided sightseeing tour of the city constructed on the foundations of Inca palaces. We will start at "Coricancha" or the Temple of the Sun, then pass on to the "Plaza de Armas" where we will enter the Cathedral with its fine wooden sculptures, altars and paintings. Afterwards, we will leave the city to visit Sacsayhuaman Fortress where the Incas' construction of tightly placed stones created an incredible series of walls, the Temple of Qenqo, the ruins of Puca Pucara and Tambomachay.
This evening, enjoy a Folklore Dinner Show. Overnight in Cusco. Breakfast at the hotel and dinner after the Folklore Show

Day 10

DAY 10 Cusco

Early this morning, board the Vistadome train from Poroy station to breathtaking Machu Picchu. The train journey passes through picturesque Andean scenery, traditional villages, Inca ruins and rushing rivers. Descend 1300 meters to the Sacred Valley of the Incas and follow the Urubamba River, until the final stop at Aguas Calientes at the foot of the mountains. Board a small bus and head up to the ruins of the 'Sacred City', Machu Picchu.
The famous lost city of the Incas is one of the most magical and mysterious places on earth! Stand 2,430 meters above sea level in the middle of a tropical mountain forest. In an extraordinarily beautiful setting, it was probably the most amazing urban creation of the Inca Empire at its height. Its giant walls, terraces and ramps seem as if they have been cut naturally in the continuous rock escarpments. The natural setting on the eastern slopes of the Andes encompasses the upper Amazon basin with its rich diversity of flora and fauna and is frequently shrouded in misty clouds pierced by the powerful equatorial sun.


Take the Vistadome train, back to Poroy station on your return to Cusco. Overnight in Cusco. Breakfast at the hotel, lunch and dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 11

DAY 11 Cusco - On board the flight

Today, embark on a full day tour to Urubamba, the largest town in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Passing the impressive landscape of the Sacred Valley of the Urubamba River, arrive at the colourful market of Pisaq where you can still see citizens and farmers from nearby villages interchanging their goods like they have been doing for centuries. We'll also see a lot of handcrafted products for sale. Head to Ollantaytambo to see the impressive fortress where the Temple of the Sun, formed of 6 gigantic monoliths, whose total weight exceeds 50 tons and the Terrace of the Ten Niches stand out.
Ollantaytambo was the site of the only successful Incan battle against the Spanish. It was originally built as a fortified city to protect the great Inca capital from attacks of the "Antis", a savage jungle tribe who were never subdued by the Incas.
Return to Cusco and late in the evening, proceed to the airport for your overnight flight to Buenos Aires, the proud capital of the vast country that occupies most of the southern part of the continent. Overnight on board the flight. Breakfast at the hotel, lunch at a local restaurant and dinner on board the flight

Day 12

DAY 12 Buenos Aires

Today, arrive in Buenos Aires and transfer to the hotel (early check-in). You will have time to become acquainted with the "Paris of South America" and its wide boulevards and outdoor cafes. Later, enjoy a boat ride through the Tigre Delta and its islands.
Overnight in Buenos Aires. Breakfast either in the hotel OR onboard the flight and dinner at a local restaurant.


Day 13

DAY 13 Buenos Aires

After breakfast this morning, embark on a guided sightseeing tour that starts in the colourful La Boca district, site of the city's first port. Take a short walking tour of this unique neighbourhood, then on to San Telmo, famous for its late-colonial buildings and a popular gathering spot for artists. At the Plaza de Mayo, see La Casa Rosada (the President's Pink House) and the Metropolitan Cathedral which houses San Martin's Mausoleum. Drive past the ornate Colon Opera House before reaching the Cemetery of the Recoleta, the burial site of Eva Peron. Later, depart for a short panoramic night tour in Buenos Aires ending at the venue for the Tango lesson, followed by a Tango Dinner Show.
Overnight in Buenos Aires. Breakfast at the hotel, lunch at a local restaurant and dinner after the Tango Show

Day 14

DAY 14 Buenos Aires

Experience Argentine country life as you visit an estancia Santa Susana's (ranch) on your tour to Pampas. Get acquainted with the lifestyle of the gauchos and enjoy the warm hospitality of your hosts before returning to the city.
Overnight in Buenos Aires. Breakfast at the hotel, lunch and dinner at a local restaurant

Day 15

DAY 15 Homeward Bound

Good times need never end!
Get ready for the airport and your flight back home. We are confident you will join us again, sometime soon. Breakfast at the hotel

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