South America Trips

Home to the world’s biggest rainforest, largest river and tallest waterfall, South America is a continent of dizzying natural splendor.

Explore by country: 

"The Patagonian Lakes are fantastic"
Ashley, Australia, Jan 2016

Take a tour of South America with us

From spectacular Rio to secretive ruins

The colliding cultures of its indigenous people and its Spanish colonisers have given South America a fascinatingly eclectic man-made landscape. One of its great cities is a stylish, sprawling modern metropolis, famous across the globe for its carnival and beaches. The other is a mystical complex of 15th century Incan ruins, which was hidden from the outside world for more than three centuries. 

On Trafalgar guided holidays, you’ll get real experiences with real people in South America. 


Brightly coloured, fun-loving carnival queen Brazil has a wonderfully varied landscape. Its most famous city, Rio de Janeiro, sits at the confluence of mountains, beaches and rainforests.

There’s plenty to see here – from the sights of Rio de Janeiro to the view over the city from Sugarloaf Mountain. There’s also lots to learn including how to mix the perfect caipirinha to how to dance the samba. The country’s natural wonders include Tijuca National Park, home to capuchin monkeys, coatis and toucans, and Iguassu Falls, a two-mile torrent on the Iguassu River, made up of more than 250 separate cascades.

Find out more about Brazil.

Brazil ParqueIguazu Toucan 2016 R 525801131

Argentina and Chile

Separated by the Andes, Argentina and Chile form the southern portion of South America, but are two very different countries. Argentina is dramatic, artistic and European, and Chile is relaxed, well organised and self contained.

Discover Buenos Aires by going backstage at one of the greatest opera houses in the world and eating with a family, who’ll show you how to make bread. And join us in Chile, where you’ll get the chance to visit Torres del Paine National Park and look out for condors, rheas, guanacos and cougars. You’ll also learn how the New World’s renowned wines are made during a visit to a winery, sampling some of Chile’s best varieties over an alfresco meal.

Find out more about Argentina and Chile

Argentina BuenosAires MusicalInstrument Bandoneon 2016 R 149708610

Peru and Ecuador

Heavily shaped by its history, Peru is most famous for its lost Incan city, Machu Picchu. Its capital city Lima was the capital of the Spanish American empire for more than 300 years. But why join us on a journey through Peru’s past and present? We’ll introduce you to Peruvian families, the curator of a museum, an Andean storyteller, and a British explorer. As well as showing you the magical Incan ruins, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, we’ll take you to a museum in Cuzco which houses the site’s archaeological finds.

Ecuador is one of the world’s most biodiverse nations, so we’ll take you to stay in the middle of a 5,000-acre ecological reserve. Here you’ll be able to spot anteaters, ocelots, sloths and caimans, and trek through the foliage on a superb canopy walkway. But for all its wondrous wildlife, in Ecuador, as in the rest of South America, it’s the people who make the country what it is. That’s why we’ll introduce you to confectioners and artisans, so you can learn how Ecuador makes its handmade flutes, Panama hats, sweets and chocolate – which, of course, you’ll be able to sample.

Find out more about Peru and Ecuador.

Ecuador Cuenca TodosSantosChurch 2016 r 512990384_super

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Frequently asked questions

We’ve pulled together and answered some of our guests’ most popular questions. Here you’ll find everything you need to know – from who you’ll be travelling with to whether tips are included.

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"Thanks, Trafalgar, for a great trip with lots of memories"

Carol , Jul 2014

Recommended South America tours

  • Impressions of South America
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    Explore Buenos Aires, see Christ the Redeemer and ascend Sugarloaf Mountain on this At Leisure trip.

  • Best of South America
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    This all-embracing exploration of South America visits Rio de Janeiro, Iguassu, Buenos Aires and Santiago.

  • Highlights of Peru
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