30 days in South America Itinerary

30 days in South America Itinerary

Created using Inspirock South America sightseeing planner
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1
Buenos Aires, Argentina
— 5 nights
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Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
— 5 nights
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Sao Paulo, Brazil
— 2 nights
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Santiago, Chile
— 1 night
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Cusco, Peru
— 3 nights
Bus to Ollantaytambo, Train to Machu Picchu
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Machu Picchu, Peru
— 3 nights
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Quito, Ecuador
— 9 nights
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Bogota, Colombia
— 1 day
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Buenos Aires, Argentina — 5 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.
Buenos Aires is known for sightseeing, nightlife, and historic sites. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: stop by Puerto Madero, explore the engaging exhibits at Museo de los Ninos, take an in-depth tour of El Zanjon de Granados, and ponder the world of politics at Casa Rosada.

To find photos, ratings, more things to do, and other tourist information, go to the Buenos Aires trip site.

Auckland, New Zealand to Buenos Aires is an approximately 15-hour flight. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 15 hours traveling from Auckland to Buenos Aires. Plan for a bit cooler nights when traveling from Auckland in July since evenings lows in Buenos Aires dip to 10°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 13th (Wed) early enough to catch the flight to Rio de Janeiro.
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Historic Sites · Neighborhoods · Museums · Shopping

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil — 5 nights

Bustling with samba music and all-night street parties, no city encapsulates the spirit of Brazil better than Rio de Janeiro.
Rio de Janeiro is known for sightseeing, beaches, and nightlife. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: don't miss a visit to Corcovado - Christ the Redeemer, explore the world behind art at Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil - CCBB Rio de Janeiro, take in the local highlights with Walking tours, and step into the grandiose world of Ilha Fiscal.

To see reviews, traveler tips, maps, and other tourist information, read our Rio de Janeiro road trip tool.

Getting from Buenos Aires to Rio de Janeiro by flight takes about 6 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Buenos Aires in July, things will get a bit warmer in Rio de Janeiro: highs are around 30°C and lows about 22°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Mon) early enough to fly to Sao Paulo.
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Parks · Beaches · Outdoors · Museums

Sao Paulo, Brazil — 2 nights

Don't let the city's nickname--"Land of Drizzle"--dampen your spirits during a trip to Sao Paulo.
On the 19th (Tue), pick up some local products at Mercado Municipal de São Paulo, then explore the world behind art at Pinacoteca do Estado de Sao Paulo, then walk around Parque Ibirapuera, and finally visit Liberdade. On your second day here, wander the streets of Paulista Avenue and then admire the masterpieces at Museu de Arte de Sao Paulo Assis Chateaubriand - MASP.

To find reviews, traveler tips, and tourist information, go to the Sao Paulo trip maker tool.

You can fly from Rio de Janeiro to Sao Paulo in 3 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Rio de Janeiro in July, things will get slightly colder in Sao Paulo: highs are around 26°C and lows about 15°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Wed) to allow time to fly to Santiago.
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Neighborhoods · Shopping · Museums · Parks

Santiago, Chile — 1 night

Santiago tourism thrives largely thanks to the city's big selection of cultural and entertainment options, including museums, theaters, restaurants, bars, and giant malls.
On the 21st (Thu), admire the landmark architecture of Metropolitan Cathedral (Catedral Metropolitana), look for gifts at Patio Bellavista, take in the awesome beauty at San Cristóbal Hill, take in the pleasant sights at Plaza de Armas, then walk around Cerro Santa Lucia, and finally contemplate the long history of Centro Cultural Palacio de la Moneda y Plaza de la Ciudadania.

To see more things to do, photos, where to stay, and other tourist information, go to the Santiago trip planner.

Traveling by flight from Sao Paulo to Santiago takes 7.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. You'll gain 1 hour traveling from Sao Paulo to Santiago due to the time zone difference. You will leave for Cusco on the 22nd (Fri).
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Parks · Nature · Shopping · Museums

Cusco, Peru — 3 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.
Cusco is known for historic sites, sightseeing, and museums. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: contemplate the long history of Sacsayhuaman, see the interesting displays at Museo de Arte Precolombino, delve into the distant past at Qorikancha, and wander the streets of San Blas.

To see maps, ratings, and other tourist information, refer to the Cusco online travel planner.

You can fly from Santiago to Cusco in 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. You'll gain 1 hour traveling from Santiago to Cusco due to the time zone difference. In July, daytime highs in Cusco are 24°C, while nighttime lows are 1°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 25th (Mon) so you can go by car to Machu Picchu.
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Historic Sites · Museums · Neighborhoods · Outdoors
Side Trip

Machu Picchu, Peru — 3 nights

A symbol of the Incan civilization, the abandoned city of Machu Picchu represents a must-see on a Peru vacation.
Machu Picchu is known for historic sites, nature, and sightseeing. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: explore the ancient world of Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu, take in the natural beauty of Hot Springs (Aguas Calientes), admire the natural beauty at Mandor, and don't miss a visit to Plaza Manco Capac.

To see more things to do, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read our Machu Picchu road trip planning app.

Traveling by combination of bus and train from Cusco to Machu Picchu takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and train; or take a train. On the 28th (Thu), you'll travel to Quito.
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Historic Sites · Parks · Nature · Wildlife

Quito, Ecuador — 9 nights

High in the Andean foothills, Quito remains one of the world's most photogenic capital cities, featuring two dramatic mountain ranges as its backdrop.
Get out of town with these interesting Quito side-trips: Pululahua Geobotanical Reserve (in Calacali), Cuicocha (in Cotacachi) and Otavalo (Municipio de Otavalo & Otavalo Market). On the 2nd (Tue), give your taste buds a day to remember with a local gastronomic tour. And it doesn't end there: take an in-depth tour of Museo Templo del Sol Pintor Ortega Maila, make a trip to Independence Square, examine the collection at La Capilla Del Hombre, and explore the world behind art at Casa Museo Guayasamin.

To find where to stay, more things to do, and more tourist information, go to the Quito trip planning site.

Fly from Machu Picchu to Quito in 8 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of car and bus. In July, daytime highs in Quito are 26°C, while nighttime lows are 17°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 6th (Sat) so you can fly to Bogota.
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Museums · Parks · Tours · Historic Sites
Side Trips

Bogota, Colombia — 1 day

Colombia's heart and soul, Bogota has earned the nickname "Athens of South America" thanks to its abundance of universities, libraries, and lower-level schools.
Start off your visit on the 6th (Sat): stop by Bta Capital.

To find ratings, maps, more things to do, and more tourist information, use the Bogota driving holiday tool.

You can fly from Quito to Bogota in 5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. In August, Bogota is a bit cooler than Quito - with highs of 22°C and lows of 9°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 6th (Sat) to allow time for the flight back home.
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Shopping
Highlights from your trip

Argentina travel guide

4.3
Landmarks · Bodies of Water · Specialty Museums
Land of Contrasts
Home to the highest and lowest points in South America, diverse Argentina enthralls visitors with its contrasting landscapes and rich cultural heritage. A tour of Argentina reveals a sprawling land of fiercely proud and hardworking gauchos, the legendary cowboys of South America's pampas. A vacation in Argentina also leads you to giant urban centers, filled with modern tourist attractions that include fine restaurants, award-winning museums, and renowned public parks, gardens, and zoos. Away from big cities, Argentina sightseeing combines visits to mighty waterfalls situated inside World Heritage-listed national parks in the north of the country, with excursions to icy glaciers in the south.
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Brazil travel guide

4.4
Beaches · Landmarks · Specialty Museums
Land of Brazilwood
The largest country in South America and the biggest Portuguese-speaking nation in the world, Brazil remains best known for its soccer tradition and annual Carnaval. Most visitors on holiday in Brazil come for the country's outstanding beaches, music, wildlife, and diverse neighborhoods, each one boasting its own distinct character, atmosphere, and way of life. A tour of Brazil reveals a vast land of great natural and human diversity, from its sprawling rainforest wildernesses, to its busy urban centers. There are plenty of things to do in Brazil, from basking on its coastline to chasing the samba scene or catching a picturesque sunset from one of the country's lush mountaintops.
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Chile travel guide

4.3
Landmarks · Parks · Specialty Museums
Land of Poets
Squeezed between the Andes and the Pacific Ocean, geographically diverse Chile is a long, thin stretch of land encompassing some of the world's driest deserts in the north, and some of its largest glacial fields in the south. Though most Chile holidays include some form of adventure in the vast wilderness areas, the country also contains charming cities providing plenty of urban things to do and see. Many tours of Chile include at least a brief visit to the country's lush wine regions, where backyard vineyards compete with sprawling estates producing some of the world's most respected whites and reds.
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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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Ecuador travel guide

4.5
Architectural Buildings · Landmarks · History Museums
With abundant opportunities to discover fascinating World Heritage Sites, a holiday in Ecuador remains among the most culturally enriching travel experiences. Home to the world's highest active volcano, this little country packs a big punch when it comes to tourist activities. Some of the most popular things to do in Ecuador include visits to its astonishingly biodiverse wilderness areas, home to some 1,500 bird species, 840 species of amphibians and reptiles, and nearly 20,000 plant species. Of course, the highlight of many Ecuador vacations is bound to be the Galapagos Islands, made famous by naturalist Charles Darwin. Aside from the stunning nature, Ecuador also boasts many historic cities filled with photogenic colonial-era churches, mansions, and plazas.
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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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