59 days in South America & Central America Itinerary

59 days in South America & Central America Itinerary

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
— 7 nights
Fly
2
San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina
— 3 nights
Fly
3
Buenos Aires, Argentina
— 7 nights
Fly
4
Cusco, Peru
— 7 nights
Fly to Baltra Island, Fly to Puerto Villamil
5
Puerto Villamil, Ecuador
— 4 nights
Ferry
6
Puerto Ayora, Ecuador
— 6 nights
Ferry
7
Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, Ecuador
— 7 nights
Drive to San Cristóbal Airport, Fly to San Andres Island
8
San Andres Island, Colombia
— 5 nights
Fly
9
Cartagena, Colombia
— 2 nights
Fly
10
Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica
— 3 nights
Drive
11
La Fortuna de San Carlos, Costa Rica
— 7 nights
Fly

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Rio de Janeiro, Brazil — 7 nights

Bustling with samba music and all-night street parties, no city encapsulates the spirit of Brazil better than Rio de Janeiro.
Take a break from the city and head to Copacabana Beach and Pedra Bonita. Visit Ilha Fiscal and Parque Lage for their historical value. And it doesn't end there: kick back and relax at Praia de Ipanema, tour the pleasant surroundings at Praia de Grumari, head outdoors with Leblon Beach, and get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports.

To see traveler tips, where to stay, reviews, and tourist information, read our Rio de Janeiro trip itinerary planner.

London, UK to Rio de Janeiro is an approximately 15-hour flight. The time zone difference when traveling from London to Rio de Janeiro is minus 3 hours. Prepare for a bit warmer weather when traveling from London in September: high temperatures in Rio de Janeiro hover around 32°C and lows are around 23°C. On the 8th (Thu), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can fly to San Carlos de Bariloche.
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Parks · Outdoors · Beaches · Nature

San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina — 3 nights

Nestled against the foothills of the Andes, scenic San Carlos de Bariloche hugs the southern shore of Nahuel Huapi Lake and ranks among Argentina's top destinations for active outdoor vacations.
Step out of the city life by going to Catedral Alta Patagonis and Cerro Otto. Spend the 11th (Sun) exploring nature at Parque Nacional Nahuel Huapi. The adventure continues: tour the pleasant surroundings at Circuito Chico and hit the slopes at Piedras Blancas.

To find photos, reviews, where to stay, and more tourist information, refer to the San Carlos de Bariloche driving holiday planner.

Getting from Rio de Janeiro to San Carlos de Bariloche by flight takes about 9 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. Expect much colder temperatures when traveling from Rio de Janeiro in September; daily highs in San Carlos de Bariloche reach 13°C and lows reach 0°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 11th (Sun) to allow enough time to fly to Buenos Aires.
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Parks · Outdoors · Winter Sports · Nature

Buenos Aires, Argentina — 7 nights

Cultural capital of South America, Buenos Aires remains one of the largest cities on the continent, serving as a point of departure for exploring the rest of the country.
Do some cultural sightseeing at Cemiterio de Recoleta and Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes. Visit Calle Defensa and Recoleta for their historical value. Next up on the itinerary: wander the streets of Puerto Madero, take in nature's colorful creations at Parque 3 de Febrero, explore the engaging exhibits at Museo de los Ninos, and ponder the world of politics at Casa Rosada.

For traveler tips, reviews, more things to do, and more tourist information, you can read our Buenos Aires tour itinerary planning site.

Traveling by flight from San Carlos de Bariloche to Buenos Aires takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Traveling from San Carlos de Bariloche in September, expect nights in Buenos Aires to be much warmer, around 13°C, while days are a bit warmer, around 20°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Sun) to allow time to fly to Cusco.
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Museums · Shopping · Historic Sites · Neighborhoods

Cusco, Peru — 7 nights

Capital of the Inca Empire for three centuries, World Heritage-listed Cusco is now a major tourist destination, drawing nearly 2 million annual tourists with its well-preserved colonial architecture and proximity to Machu Picchu.
Get some historical perspective at Sacsayhuaman and Qorikancha. Get outdoors at Salinas de Maras and Santuario Animal de Cochahuasi. Take a break from Cusco with a short trip to Iglesia Colonial de Chinchero in Chinchero, about 50 minutes away. Spend the 24th (Sat) wandering through the wild on a nature and wildlife tour. There's still lots to do: steep yourself in history at Plaza de Armas, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Museo de Vida Monastica - Monasterio de Santa Catalina del Cusco, explore the ancient world of Centro Historico De Cusco, and admire the masterpieces at Museo de Arte Precolombino.

To find other places to visit, where to stay, more things to do, and tourist information, read Cusco day trip planner.

You can fly from Buenos Aires to Cusco in 10 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. You'll gain 2 hours traveling from Buenos Aires to Cusco due to the time zone difference. Expect somewhat warmer weather when traveling from Buenos Aires in September: highs in Cusco hover around 25°C, while lows dip to 5°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 25th (Sun) early enough to travel to Puerto Villamil.
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Historic Sites · Wildlife · Outdoors · Tours
Side Trips

Puerto Villamil, Ecuador — 4 nights

Located in the southeast of Isla Isabela, Puerto Villamil is home to the majority of the island's 2,200 inhabitants.
Visiting Los Tuneles and Isabela Island Wetlands Complex will get you outdoors. There's lots more to do: get impressive views of Sierra Negra, pause for some serene contemplation at Iglesia Cristo Salvador, kick back and relax at Playa Puerto Villamil, and head off the coast to Turtle Island.

Inspirock's itinerary builder makes planning a Puerto Villamil trip simple and quick.

Traveling by flight from Cusco to Puerto Villamil takes 14 hours. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 1 hour traveling from Cusco to Puerto Villamil. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 29th (Thu) early enough to ride a ferry to Puerto Ayora.
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Parks · Wildlife · Nature · Outdoors
Side Trip

Puerto Ayora, Ecuador — 6 nights

The largest settlement in the Galapagos, Puerto Ayora offers visitors to the islands an array of facilities and things to do.
Your cultural itinerary includes sights like Samay Latin Art and Maprae. Escape the urban bustle at Charles Darwin Research Station and Scuba & Snorkeling. There's lots more to do: stroll through El Chato - Giant Tortoise Reserve, enjoy the sand and surf at Galapagos Beach at Tortuga Bay, explore the activities along Laguna las Ninfas, and take in the dramatic natural features at Las Grietas.

To see more things to do, ratings, reviews, and tourist information, you can read our Puerto Ayora road trip planning site.

Ride a ferry from Puerto Villamil to Puerto Ayora in 3.5 hours. Traveling from Puerto Villamil to Puerto Ayora, you'll lose 1 hour due to the time zone difference. In September, plan for daily highs up to 30°C, and evening lows to 24°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 5th (Wed) early enough to catch the ferry to Puerto Baquerizo Moreno.
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Parks · Outdoors · Wildlife · Beaches
Side Trip

Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, Ecuador — 7 nights

The capital of the Galapagos Islands, Puerto Baquerizo Moreno is located on easternmost island of the archipelago, San Cristobal.
Get a sense of the local culture at Interpretation Center and Catedral Inmaculada Concepcion. Get outdoors at Eco-Challenger Galapagos Tour Agency and Galapaguera de Cerro Colorado. Spend the 7th (Fri) exploring nature at Cerro Tijeretas. Next up on the itinerary: kick back and relax at Cerro Brujo, make a trip to La Casa del Ceibo, get outside with Cerro Tijeretas, and head off the coast to Isla Lobos.

For more things to do, where to stay, photos, and tourist information, go to the Puerto Baquerizo Moreno itinerary planner.

Traveling by ferry from Puerto Ayora to Puerto Baquerizo Moreno takes 3.5 hours. In October in Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, expect temperatures between 30°C during the day and 24°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 12th (Wed) to allow time to travel to San Andres Island.
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Parks · Outdoors · Beaches · Nature
Side Trip

San Andres Island, Colombia — 5 nights

The coral San Andres Island boasts a rich colonial history, exotic beaches, and a laidback, tropical lifestyle.
Get outdoors at Scuba San Andres Dive Shop and Johnny Cay. There's much more to do: tour the pleasant surroundings at La Piscinita, relax and rejuvenate at Dream Island Spa, kick back and relax at Bahia Cocoplum, and Head underground at Morgan's Cave.

To see ratings, where to stay, photos, and more tourist information, use the San Andres Island online driving holiday planner.

Explore your travel options from Puerto Baquerizo Moreno to San Andres Island with the Route module. Prepare for a bit warmer weather when traveling from Puerto Baquerizo Moreno in October: high temperatures in San Andres Island hover around 36°C and lows are around 29°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 17th (Mon) so you can catch the flight to Cartagena.
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Parks · Outdoors · Beaches · Nature

Cartagena, Colombia — 2 nights

The site of the continent's first Spanish colony, Cartagena retains much of its colonial flavor thanks to a World Heritage-listed old town, encircled by old walls and protected by imposing fortresses.
Kick off your visit on the 18th (Tue): contemplate the long history of Walled City of Cartagena and then don't miss a visit to Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas. Keep things going the next day: discover the deep blue sea with Caribe Colombiano Diving.

For maps, reviews, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read Cartagena itinerary builder site.

You can fly from San Andres Island to Cartagena in 3 hours. Expect a daytime high around 38°C in October, and nighttime lows around 30°C. On the 19th (Wed), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can fly to Manuel Antonio.
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Historic Sites · Wildlife · Outdoors · Tours
Side Trip

Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica — 3 nights

The rainforest meets the sea at Manuel Antonio National Park, a small but scenic natural preserve on the west coast of Costa Rica.
Escape the urban bustle at Playa Manuel Antonio and Tropical Waterfalls Tour. When in Manuel Antonio, make a side trip to see Parque Nacional Marino Ballena in Uvita, approximately Uvita away. There's still lots to do: see what you can catch with Jackpot Sport Fishing and head outdoors with Outdoor Activities.

To see photos, reviews, traveler tips, and tourist information, you can read our Manuel Antonio trip planner.

Fly from Cartagena to Manuel Antonio in 10 hours. The time zone changes from Colombia Standard Time (COT) to Central Standard Time (CST), which is usually a -1 hour difference. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Sat) early enough to drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.
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Outdoors · Beaches · Parks · Wildlife
Side Trips

La Fortuna de San Carlos, Costa Rica — 7 nights

Set against the backdrop of the imposing Arenal Volcano, La Fortuna de San Carlos offers visitors a chance to explore diverse natural landscapes and sample some delicious local produce.
Take a break from the city and head to Tabacon Hot Springs and River Rafting & Tubing. Change things up with a short trip to Tree Chocolate Tour in Upala (about 2 hours away). There's lots more to do: take in the dramatic scenery at La Fortuna Waterfall, stroll around Bogarin Trail, stroll through La Fortuna Arenal Volcano Rain Forest Reserve, and push the limits with an extreme tour.

To see traveler tips, photos, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our La Fortuna de San Carlos online route planner.

You can drive from Manuel Antonio to La Fortuna de San Carlos in 4.5 hours. Other options are to take a shuttle; or take a bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 29th (Sat) early enough to catch the flight back home.
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Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Tours
Side Trips

Patagonia travel guide

4.3
Bodies of Water · Geologic Formations · Mountains
Sparsely populated and largely untamed, Patagonia is equally appealing to photographers, nature lovers, adrenaline seekers, and fans of long road trips through desolate regions far from the noise and pollution of big cities. Many Patagonia vacations start in thriving Neuquen, the region's largest center and a major hub of Argentina's fruit production. Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world, is another important stop on most Patagonia tours, serving as a base for excursions across the region and trips to Antarctica. While its urban centers provide modern comforts, Patagonia's main appeal remains its vast, remote stretches, crossed by a network of paved roads linking old oil boomtowns with ancient forests and nature reserves.
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Peru travel guide

4.6
Historic Sites · Parks · Landmarks
Land of the Incas
In a country renowned for its pre-Columbian archeological sites, no Peru vacation would be complete without an adrenaline-inducing hike to Machu Picchu, World Heritage-listed symbol of the once-mighty Incan Empire. Aside from visiting these spectacular ruins set against the backdrop of photogenic mountain peaks, most holidays in Peru also include an exploration of the country's pretty cities, boasting well-preserved colonial architecture and a slew of modern buildings housing fine museums, galleries, shops, and restaurants. Ideal for active vacationers, Peru trips are also tailor-made for gourmands, as the country's eclectic cuisine blends tasty influences from Africa, Asia, and Europe.
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Galapagos Islands travel guide

4.4
World heritage site · Nature & Parks · Beaches
Famous worldwide thanks to Charles Darwin's theory of evolution, the remote World Heritage-listed Galapagos Islands are situated in the Pacific Ocean and belong to Ecuador. On a tour of Galapagos Islands, you can witness the staggering amount of endemic wildlife the archipelago is noted for. Besides a couple of cities on the main islands, the landscape remains mostly pristine, as the guided tours follow strict rules and limit visitor numbers. Fascinating creatures, untouched nature, unrivalled snorkeling, scuba diving, and more await you on your Galapagos Islands trip.
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Colombia travel guide

4
Historic Sites · Landmarks · Beaches
Diverse in terms of landscapes, climates, and cultures, Colombia remains one of South America's least explored tourist destinations, overshadowed by its more popular southern neighbors. Combining the best of what the continent has to offer, a vacation in Colombia allows you to blend outdoor adventures with tours of picture-perfect cobblestoned towns dating back to the colonial era. Tourists on a Colombia holiday can easily hop from sun-kissed coastal spots to the hilly coffee-growing region, where thriving plantations quickly give way to a landscape of snow-covered volcanic peaks and the paramo--alpine ecosystems sheltering some of the rarest plants growing above the continuous forest line.
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Costa Rica travel guide

4.4
Beaches · Nature & Parks · Zipline
Tiny in terms of land area, Costa Rica is astoundingly diverse when it comes to culture and natural attractions. In a country called "Rich Coast", it's no surprise most Costa Rica vacations dedicate at least a few days to picturesque Pacific and Caribbean beaches, ideal for water sports and relaxation. Few small countries offer such a range of landscapes, allowing tourists to observe towering volcanoes while soaking away their worries in a hot spring, or hike into dense rainforests in the morning and surf at a modern resort in the afternoon. A trip to Costa Rica also lets you discover pristine national parks, ensuring plenty of chances to view wildlife from the comfort of eco-friendly lodges packed with amenities even ardent nature lovers secretly desire.
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