Argentina boasts a long coastline, tall mountains, cosmopolitan cities, quaint villages, tropical jungles, glistening glaciers and one of the most spectacular waterfalls in the world. It has a rich and diverse culture, punctuated by both historic and modern events that have shaped its personality. European influences endure still today as Buenos Aires is often called the 'Paris of the South.' Lively nightlife centered around tango contrasts with the farm life on a traditional estancia.
This tour features many of the most amazing natural wonders of this diverse country as you step outside the bounds of civilization. Compare the moving waters of thundering Iguazu Falls to the creeping glacier ice fields down south in Patagonia. Get up close and personal with these natural phenomenons - a nature lover's dream!
- Colonial architecture and history
- Gauchos on their horses perform over BBQ lunch
- Boat ride down the Tigre & Delta Rivers
- Dinner Show with Tango Lessons
- Waterfall cruise, walk and train ride at the â€œGreat Watersâ€ of Iguazu Falls
- Glacier cruise for an exhilarating experience alongside ice fields of Patagonia
Buenos Aires - 4 nights
Day 1: Arrive Buenos Aires
Upon arrival, you will be met at the airport by our local representative who will escort you to your hotel via private coach. The balance of the day you are free to explore this vibrant city on your own. Buenos Aires has a strong subway system, and taxis are plentiful and cheap, though you may just want to stroll along the pedestrian promenades living like a local.
Starting in the sophisticated neighborhood of Recoleta, see the cemetery where Eva Peron is buried and the Church of Our Lady of Pilar. We'll continue on to Palermo, with its elegant residences and Japanese gardens, then on to the colorful neighborhood of La Boca featuring typical cantinas. The oldest area of San Telmo with cobbled streets is also home to many tango houses. Finally, see the modern side of town showing off its port warehouses converted to chic flats in Puerto Madero.
Our 2-hr drive into the rural countryside reveals a traditional estancia built in the colonial style of the Pampas region. Gauchos on horseback welcome you to a spread of typical empanadas and wine. The gauchos perform in the ring and cuadreras races, followed by the Argentine BBQ lunch and folklore show. The balance of the afternoon is yours to take advantage of the facilities such ride on a sulky, go for a horseback ride or just relax around the pool. Finish the day with a sip of 'mate'(green tea) and delicious home-made pastries.
Heading through the San Isidro district, we come to Tigre, situated on the delta of the Parana River. The maze of little rivers and isles harbored smugglers until the end of the 19th century when the upper class favored it as a recreation area. We'll sail along the delta, admiring the grand old residences contrasting with their neighboring wooden houses built over piles. Enjoy lunch on the patio at Gato Blanco overlooking the Rio Capitan.
Dinner Show and Tango Lesson:
This evening's tango lessons might not turn you into a pro, but the experienced locals put on a show while you enjoy a sumptuous dinner. Its origins trace back to 1880 slums inhabited by Italian and Spanish immigrants, Africans and gauchos. By the 1920's the tango came out of the shadows and into the high-class ballrooms and is still on display today.
Iguazu Falls - 2 nights
Transfer to the airport for your flight to the world famous waterfall. As a UNESCO World Heritage site, this is one of the most stunning falls on earth. It's over 2 miles long and boasts 275 individual waterfalls cascading down 260 feet into the gorge below. It also features over 200 species of flora and 400 species of birds and wild animals.
In the morning, we'll take an excursion to the Argentine Falls, walking along the upper and lower paths to get a really close view of the imposing cascading wall of water. The environment is also exquisite due to the amazing variety of ferns, orchids, begonias, birds and butterflies.
In the afternoon, we will take an open train departing from the Visitor Center to the 'Garganta Station' where we disembark for a 1 mile walk up to the Devil's Throat balcony, to share one of the greatest shows on earth. Return by train to the Visitor Center where you'll experience the 'Great Adventure', a brief cruise which will allow you to approach the bottom of the San Martin and Tres Mosqueteros falls with an outstanding view of the Devil's Throat. Recap your day's adventure over dinner in the hotel.
Patagonia - 3 nights
After breakfast, transfer to the airport via private coach for your flight to El Calafate, a picturesque village and gateway to an impressive land of glaciers in Patagonia. Here, in the Province of Santa Cruz, at the southern extreme of Argentina, nature lovers have the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to have the most unique experience in the world; see living remnants from the Ice Age. Dinner in hotel.
A blanket of ice covers this huge and dynamic protected area. The giant icepack is 30 miles long, 6 miles wide and hundreds of feet thick. Icebergs are constantly calving into Lake Argentino. We'll take the most intriguing excursion into Los Glaciers National Park to see one of the world's largest glaciers; Upsala Glacier. In Onelli Bay we'll cruise among the icebergs that have broken off from the main glacier. A truly unworldly place, this is a photographer's dream. Dinner in hotel.
We'll take an overland trip to Perito Moreno Glacier, one of the most spectacular in all Patagonia. It was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO because of its breathtaking beauty and its unusual behavior. This natural wonder epitomizes the beauty and sheer magnitude of these ice formations that tower over 200 feet high. Enjoy the brilliant vistas while you learn about the scientific significance of the ever-changing faÃ§ade of this â€œadvancing glacierâ€. Dinner in hotel.
After breakfast, catch the flight back to Buenos Aires to connect to your flight home.
- Accommodations: Buenos Aires 4 nights, Iguazu Falls 2 nights, Patagonia 3 nights
- Continental breakfast daily. Lunch and dinner as noted in itinerary
- Ground transportation via air conditioned luxury coach
- English speaking assistants and guides
- Admission tickets as outlined in itinerary
Download the Argentina: Buenos Aires, Iguazu Falls, Patagonia pdf file.