Explore South America on this spectacular tour
The Award Winning Leader in Escorted Worldwide Rail Holidays
Experience the allure of South America on a wonderful tour from vibrant Rio to Buenos Aires. From here, fly to Bariloche, in the heart of Patagonia, take a journey on the 'End of the World' Train, and visit the stunning natural phenomenon that is the Perito Moreno Glacier.
We depart London Heathrow on our flight to Rio de Janeiro, a city which revels in intoxicating Samba rhythms, gorgeous beaches and a care-free culture. On arrival, we check into our hotel, the 5-Star Hilton Copacabana Hotel Rio de Janeiro. On Day 2, we embark on an excursion to the top of Rio's most recognisable landmark, Corcovado Mountain, on which perches the astonishing statue of Christ the Redeemer. We ascend via the Corcovado Rack & Pinion Mountain Railway, which takes us the 2.4 miles to the viewing platform 2,329 metres above Rio. On a clear day, the views of the surrounding area are sensational. The statue itself is equally remarkable, standing at 98 feet tall with an arm span of 92 feet. Later we enjoy dinner at a local restaurant. Each February, Rio is gripped by Carnival fever as one of the world's biggest and most colourful festivals erupts into the party of a lifetime, and this evening we are lucky to have tickets to the winner's parade. With seats in the Sambadrome's Grand Stand, we get to see the very best of the festival as all the winners gather together to perform in one place.
After a guided tour of downtown Rio, we make the journey by cable-car up Sugarloaf Mountain, which offers us breathtaking panoramic views across the city and Guanabara Bay. Later we head to Fogo de Chao's for a traditional Churriscera barbecue dinner.
We take a flight to the Iguassu Falls this morning, on the border between Brazil and Argentina. We spend two nights here at the Melia Iguazu Hotel, which enjoys a fabulous location and our rooms overlook this, the largest waterfall system in the world. After time for lunch, we take a tour of the Brazilian side of the thundering waters, guided by an expert naturalist before crossing over into the National Park on the Argentinian side, and seeing the falls from a different angle. We make our way to the Loi Suites hotel in Puerto Iguazu.
On Day 5 we take in a much larger portion of the rapids, all of the San Martin Island and the massive torrent of Devil's Throat. The rest of your day is then at leisure to relax in your jungle surroundings.
Today we fly to Buenos Aires where we take a guided tour that highlights the best of this stylish city such as Casa Rosada, the stately offices of the President, the imposing Metropolitan Cathedral with its spectacular dome, and the mausoleum of General San Martin, 'the liberator' of South America. We also visit the colourful Boca neighbourhood passing the famous Boca football stadium. Travelling on to La Recoleta, we visit the grave of Eva Duarte, known to the world as Eva Perón or Evita.
After checking into our 5-star hotel, the rest of your day is at leisure before an exclusive Argentinian wine-tasting at La Cava, led by a professional sommelier, and an authentic steak dinner. As one of the most famous aspects of Argentina, steak is big business and a real treat of our tour, in fact it's so popular here that the average Argentinian manages to consume an impressive 70kg of beef a year.
A morning flight takes us to Bariloche, in the heart of the Andes, for a two-night stay. On arrival, a scenic excursion showcases this region around the Patagonian mountain range. The Parque Nacional Nahuel Huapi is one of the jewels of Argentina, with spectacular lakes and rivers formed by centuries-old glaciers. The famous Cerro Campanioro Chairlift transports us to the summit for 360° vistas over the lakes and mountains. We then proceed to our hotel, the 5-star Llao Llao which boasts an unparalleled setting surrounded by the Cerro Lopez and Tronador mountain peaks, and the Moreno and Nahuel Huapi lakes.
We board a coach this morning for a scenic drive along Route 40 to El Bolson, situated at the foot of Piltriquitron Mountain. We have time to wander around El Bolson's market which is packed with natural foods including local sweets, jams and honey. We continue to El Maitin for lunch followed by a journey on the Patagonia Express. This steam train is now something of a living museum, winding its way through the tree-lined valleys and desert-like high plains of the Patagonian tundra.
We fly to El Calafate, situated on the shores of Lake Argentino and the gateway to Los Glaciares National Park. Here we stay at the Hotel Alto Calafate, overlooking Lake Argentino, for two nights. On Day 10 we visit the incredible Perito Moreno Glacier, a vast ice formation covering 97 square miles. There is a visitor centre on site and a walking circuit which allows us to view the glacier's southern flank. We also take a nautical safari, boarding our cruising boat at Bajo Las Sombras Bay which takes around the south side of the glacier, where ice meets land - known as the Glacial Wall.
After a leisurely morning we transfer to the airport for our internal flight to the southern most city in the world, Ushuaia. On arrival we are driven to our hotel, enjoying an orientation tour along the way before an afternoon sailing across Beagle Channel. This strait within the Tierra del Fuego Archipelago is home to some unique and rare wildlife such as sea lions, penguins and even an endemic species of dolphin. Tonight we sit down to a delicious crab dinner at a local restaurant, a speciality of the region.
This morning we enter Tierra del Fuego National Park, a part of the subantarctic forest. Here we follow the path of the Lapataia River on foot, until we reach Condor Hill where it's possible to spot these magnificent creatures soaring on the thermal air currents. One of the highlights of our tour comes next as we board the historic Tren Fin del Mundo, or 'End of the World Train'. Re-opened after 40 years of disuse, it now serves as a heritage attraction.
Travelling through a 4.3 mile (7 kilometre) stretch of the stunning Tierra del Fuego National Park, the steam-hauled train offers incredible views of the dense forest landscape through its large carriage windows. Along the way, the train pauses en-route at the Macarena Station Waterfall, for views across the breathtaking Pipo River Valley, before continuing through the unforgettable 'Tree Cemetery', where the tree stumps serve as a reminder of the wood convicts chopped each day over the prison's 50-year lifespan. Our day ends with a flight back to the Argentinian capital.
The last day of our adventure is at leisure until an evening Tango Class, where we learn the basics of this dramatic national dance, before dinner and a special Tango show.
On Day 14 we begin our journey home with a flight to London, landing on Day 15.
Please note that while every departure of this tour features the same excursions, they may not necessarily be in the order listed above.
Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be found together with our dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices & Availability' button. We write to all booked customers approximately 10 weeks prior to the start of their tour to advise the exact departure and return time for their particular group.
An escorted experience and all travel arrangements
Comfortable accommodation in your destination
Delicious meals included
Exciting excursions and free time to explore
Please note: This tour may be suitable for reduced mobility passengers, please call for further information.
Explore South America on this spectacular tour