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Cultures and Contrasts of South America 2014

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Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro, BrazilCopacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro, BrazilSugarloaf Mountain in Rio de Janeiro, BrazilPlaza de Armas in Santiago, ChileNahuel Huapi National Park, ArgentinaCasa Rosada in Buenos Aires, ArgentinaLa Boca in Buenos Aires, Argentina
Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Sugarloaf Mountain in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Plaza de Armas in Santiago, Chile
Nahuel Huapi National Park, Argentina
Casa Rosada in Buenos Aires, Argentina
La Boca in Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • Duration: 16 Days
  • Rating: Read Reviews
  • Brochure: South America 2014 flyer
  • Style: Discovery
  • Description: Embrace the music, cuisine and culture of South America as you tour through magnificent Brazil, Argentina and Chile. See the famous Christ the Redeemer statue and take a cable car ascent up Sugarloaf Mountain. Admire nature's true beauty at the spectacular Iguassu Falls before discovering the streets of bustling Buenos Aires and a charming scenic view of Santiago. Why not customise your trip with one of the following extensions: Easter Island or Brazilian Amazon.

Guest Experiences

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Trip Itinerary

  • Day 1


    Bemvindo ao Rio de Janeiro! On arrival at the airport, you will be met by a local host and taken to your luxurious oceanfront hotel (check in time is 3 p.m.). Relax, get settled in and enjoy your hotel's superb location overlooking Copacabana Beach, minutes from downtown Rio.

    Hotel: Windsor Atlantica Hotel

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 2


    Enjoy a leisurely morning before joining your Travel Director for an exploration of the cidade maravilhosa (marvellous city) and its many contrasts, from the 18th century aqueduct and colonial Candelaria Church to the 20th century opera house, Sambodromo, and city Cathedral. Then, ascend Sugarloaf Mountain via cable car for astounding views over the city and the bay. This evening, enjoy a festive Welcome Reception at the hotel with your Travel Director and fellow travellers.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast / Welcome Reception)

  • Day 3


    Board a classic cogwheel train for the journey to the summit of majestic Corcovado, site of the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. After admiring the panoramic views, head back down the mountain for a chance to learn about a Local Speciality, Brazil's precious gemstones. You'll be fascinated by the creative process as you watch precious metals and rough gemstones transformed into works of art. Stop for a lunch at a local restaurant and then see the song inspiring Copacabana and Ipanema beaches on your way back to your hotel. This evening, learn how to mix the perfect Caipirinha, a Local Speciality, and Brazil's national cocktail made with cachaça. You'll also indulge in a traditional barbecue Highlight Dinner at a local churrascaria. Feel the spirit of Rio's world-famous Carnival as you're treated to a lively extravaganza of Samba song-and-dance.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast / Lunch / Highlight Dinner)

  • Day 4


    Enjoy a full day to explore Rio on your own - or choose from an array of optional outings: take a half-day journey by jeep and foot into the lush Tijuca National Park, the world's largest urban rainforest; or perhaps explore Petropolis, the Imperial City of Brazil.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast)

  • Day 5


    Fly to magnificent Iguassu Falls, bordering Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay. Enter Iguassu National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, home to one of the world's largest waterfalls and to such endangered species as the giant otter and the giant anteater. Explore the Brazilian side of the cascades with a Local Expert and take a scenic walk through the rainforest at the base of the falls.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast / Dinner)

    Hotel: Mabu Thermas & Resort (F)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 6


    Cross the border to Argentina. Stop at the Visitors Centre and take a scenic walk before boarding the open-air Ecological Jungle Train for a different vantage point on the mighty falls and a spectacular view of the thunderous Devil's Throat Falls. Fly to Buenos Aires and arrive at your stylish hotel in the heart of Argentina's sizzling capital, just steps from designer boutiques, fine dining, museums, theatres and the famous Teatro Colon.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast)

    Hotel: Sheraton Libertador Hotel (F)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 7


    Join your Local Expert and embark on an in-depth tour of this passionate city. See the Plaza de Mayo, the pink Casa Rosada, and the renowned Teatro Colon where legendary stars Maria Callas and Caruso have performed; then view the colourful and fashionable neighbourhoods of La Boca, San Telmo and Palermo. See the Teatro Colon, a landmark in Buenos Aires and a Unique Insight. Take a backstage tour of the Opera House, including the main function rooms, the main stage and, of course, the workshops where all the customs and clothes used in the performances are produced. Drive along the stately Avenida 9 de Julio, said to be the widest street in the world, to the elegant Recoleta. See the impressive cemetery where Eva Peron (Evita), Argentina's former first lady, is buried. Return to your hotel this afternoon and enjoy some time on your own. Later, join your Travel Director and fellow travellers for an exclusive Be My Guest experience in Palermo Soho this evening. You will be welcomed by a local family and long-time residents of this now-trendy neighbourhood in the fashionable Palermo Viejo. Be delighted, as they wine and dine you with homemade family recipes. Discover the secrets of kneading country bread. Watch as your hosts demonstrate the art of typical Argentinean crafts. Spending time with these lively people will create a long-lasting insider memory.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast / Be My Guest Dining)

  • Day 8


    Cross the Rio de la Plata by hydrofoil this morning. On the Uruguayan side, a Local Expert takes you on a walk through the UNESCO World Heritage-listed historic district of the charming Colonia del Sacramento. After a leisurely Highlight Lunch at a local restaurant, enjoy time to stroll the exclusive art galleries and shops on your own. Return by hydrofoil to Argentina later this afternoon.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast / Highlight Lunch)

  • Day 9


    Relish a day on your own in the “Paris of South America.” If you like, take an optional trip to a traditional Argentinean estancia (ranch) for the day; share a drink with the local gauchos (cowboys), marvel at their horsemanship during a lively equestrian show and then feast on a traditional parrillada (barbeque) lunch. Back in the city, linger over a Highlight Dinner and a chance for an authentic taste of world-renowned Argentinean beef! Cap off the evening watching a sensual performance of the best tango dancers in Buenos Aires.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast / Highlight Dinner)

  • Day 10


    Fly to the edge of the Andes and the lovely resort town of San Carlos de Bariloche. Enjoy the afternoon to explore the town on your own - perhaps visit the many chocolate shops, browse the quaint boutiques or take a stroll in the parks along the shores of Lake Nahuel Huapi. Tonight, share your stories with your travel companions during dinner at your hotel.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast / Dinner)

    Hotel: Hotel Edelweiss (SF)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 11


    Discover the natural wonders of one of Argentina's prettiest areas, known as the “Switzerland of South America.” Meet your Local Expert and travel along the “Circuito Chico” for spectacular vistas of forests, mountains and sparkling waters in Nahuel Huapi National Park. Visit lovely Playa Bonita, soak up the scenery from the hilltop at St. Edward's Chapel on the Llao Llao Peninsula, and ride a chairlift to the top of Cerro Campanario for sweeping views of Lake Nahuel Huapi, the Llao Llao Peninsula, and the high peaks of Catedral and Tronador. Then, find out about Bariloche's chocolate connection with a visit to the Chocolate Museum. After a briefing on some 2,000 years of chocolate history, view the production area, and, of course, sample an array of this Local Speciality. The rest of the day is free in Bariloche.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast)

  • Day 12


    Today, journey by land and water across the breathtaking Lake District straddling Argentina and Chile to marvel at some of the Southern Hemisphere's most stunning landscapes. Soak in the breathtaking scenery of snow-capped mountain peaks, gloriously green forests and sapphire blue lakes as you cruise upon lakes Nahuel Huapi and Frias and drive across the Chilean border to Peulla for an included lunch. Board another catamaran for the scenic crossing of Todos Los Santos Lake with the mighty Osorno volcano looming in the background. Keep an eye out for Andean condors gliding over the lakes and mountains. Make a stop at the Petrohue River to see the burbling waterfalls cascade over the black volcanic rock. Arrive in Puerto Varas, one of Chile's most charming villages, located on the banks of Lake Llanquihue. Check in to your lakefront hotel and enjoy a light dinner.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast / Lunch / Dinner)

    Hotel: Cabana del Lago Hotel (F)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 13


    Relish an entire day to relax, pursue your own interests and perhaps explore the city at your own pace. Puerto Varas is renowned for its spectacular views of the Osorno and Calbuco volcanoes. Discover why it is also known as the “City of Roses” with its stunning rose arbors and Germanic-style architecture gracing the many centuries-old houses and churches that dot this tranquil town. Relax at one of the many cafés, trendy restaurants or delve into the budding bar scene. As an option, take an excursion to the isolated island of Chiloe to get acquainted with the mythical world of the island and its traditional architecture, including its typical wooden churches (October to mid-April, a visit to several Magellan and Humboldt penguin colonies is offered instead).

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast)

  • Day 14


    Fly north from Puerto Montt to the Chilean capital. Upon arrival, head for the Maipo Valley, Chile's most traditional wine-producing valley known for its premium wines. Visit an exclusive winery where you will enjoy a gourmet Highlight Lunch served alfresco on the beautiful grounds. After, meet the winemaker, your Local Expert, for a personalised winery experience, from the vineyards to the bottling process. Celebrate Chile's proud wine-making traditions with a wine tasting. Back in Santiago, meet your Local Expert and embark on an orientation tour of this vibrant city, travelling past Club Hipico - the regal racetrack - and sprawling Parque O'Higgins. Cruise along Alameda Avenue past the Church of San Francisco and the University of Chile on your way to the vibrant Plaza de Armas with its fountains and sculptures. View the Palacio de la Moneda, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the Central Market. Drive up San Cristobal Hill for panoramic views of the city and the snow-capped Andes. Return to your hotel, which is situated in one of Santiago's most beautiful neighbourhoods, near boutiques, bars and restaurants.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast / Highlight Lunch)

    Hotel: InterContinental Santiago (MD)

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 15


    Enjoy a day in Santiago on your own. Explore further, or perhaps embark on an optional trip to Valparaiso, site of a historic naval battle and the seaside resort of Vina del Mar. This evening, gather with your travel companions for a festive Farewell Dinner.

    Meal(s): (Full Breakfast / Farewell Dinner)

  • Day 16


    Say hasta luego to Chile this morning and transfer to the airport for your flight home. For your comfort, your rooms are reserved until 6 p.m., or until you are taken to the airport for your onward flight arrangements. Or you may chose to extend your stay in Santiago at the InterContinental Santiago if you wish.

    Meal(s): (Continental Breakfast or Full Breakfast)

What's Included

Insider Experiences

  • Hidden Treasure Enjoy at least one surprise Hidden Treasure experience, unique to your itinerary, courtesy of your expert Travel Director.
  • Be My Guest Experience dinner at the home of a local family in the Palermo Soho neighbourhood.
  • Local Speciality Find out about Brazilian gemstones.
  • Local Speciality Learn how to mix a perfect Brazilian Caipirinha.
  • Local Speciality See the Chocolate Museum and enjoy samples in Bariloche.
  • Local Expert Experience the wine-making process with a winemaker in Chile.
  • Local Expert For included sightseeting in Iguassu, Buenos Aires, Colonia del Sacramento, Bariloche, and Santiago.
  • Unique Insight Learn about the Teatro Colon Opera House, a landmark in Buenos Aires since its construction in 1908.

Sightseeing Highlights

  • Rio de JaneiroEnjoy a cogwheel train ride through Tijuca Forest and up Corcovado Mountain to see the Christ the Redeemer statue.
  • Iguassu FallsExplore the magnificent falls from Brazil and Argentina.
  • Buenos AiresVisit the “Paris of South America,” the Evita Museum and Recoleta Cemetery and enjoy a Tango show.
  • Colonia del SacramentoStroll in this UNESCO World Heritage city.
  • BarilocheEnjoy the surroundings of this lovely resort town.
  • Andean Lake District CrossingExplore Nahuel Huapi National Park; cruise the “Switzerland of South America.”
  • Puerto VarasDiscover Chile's loveliest town.
  • SantiagoDelight in this cosmopolitan capital.


  • 15 full breakfasts
  • 4 lunches:
    • Highlight Lunches with drinks in Colonia del Sacramento and Maipo Valley
    • 2 lunches
  • 8 evening meals:
    • Welcome Reception with light appetisers and wine with your Travel Director in Rio de Janeiro
    • Highlight Dinner with wine and Samba Show in Rio de Janeiro
    • Highlight Dinner with wine and Tango Show in Buenos Aires
    • Be My Guest dinner with wine in Buenos Aires
    • 3 dinners
    • Farewell Dinner with wine in Santiago

Travel Highlights

  • Travel by luxury air-conditioned coach with reclining seats and an on-board restroom.
  • First Class hotel accommodation featuring twin rooms and private facilities.
  • Audio Headsets provided throughout your holiday to enhance your included sightseeing experiences.
  • Complimentary keepsake photo and map.
  • The services of a professional Travel Director throughout your journey.
  • All hotel service charges and tips, baggage handling fees and local taxes included.
  • Airport transfers are provided on the first and last day of your guided holiday
  • 15 nights First Class accommodation
  • A Trafalgar bonus: guaranteed late hotel check-out until 6 p.m. in Santiago on Day 16
  • A Trafalgar bonus – all Intra-Air Flights: Rio de Janeiro to Iguassu, Iguassu to Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires to Bariloche, Puerto Montt to Santiago, including porter service at all airports

Airport Transfers

  • For full details on transfers, please click here.
  • These prices are LAND-ONLY and are correct at the time of the website going live, however prices are subject to confirmation at the time
    of booking.
  • All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however prices and itineraries are subject to change, please confirm all details and final cost at time of booking.
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  • Hotels are subject to change.
  • * For single travellers purchasing the twin-share option, please note that there is a no smoking policy in all shared rooms. Solo travel is not accepted on guided Family Experiences holidays unless travelling as part of a family group. 
  • ^Twin-share option not available for trips to South America., Costa Rica, Mexico, Alaska, Hawaii or for any holiday & cruise combination, or in Asia and Eastern Mediterranean except Highlights of Turkey (without cruise) & Best of Turkey.

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