21 days in South America Itinerary

21 days in South America Itinerary

Created using Inspirock South America trip planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Santiago, Chile
— 3 nights
Fly
2
Cusco, Peru
— 4 nights
Bus to Ollantaytambo, Train to Machu Picchu
3
Machu Picchu, Peru
— 2 nights
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4
Sao Paulo, Brazil
— 2 nights
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5
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
— 4 nights
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6
Buenos Aires, Argentina
— 3 nights
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Santiago, Chile

— 3 nights

City of the Island Hills

Santiago tourism thrives largely thanks to the city's big selection of cultural and entertainment options, including museums, theaters, restaurants, bars, and giant malls.
Do some cultural sightseeing at La Chascona and Castillo Hidalgo. There's still lots to do: stroll through San Cristóbal Hill, examine the collection at Centro Cultural Palacio de la Moneda y Plaza de la Ciudadania, make a trip to Cerro Santa Lucia, and take an in-depth tour of Museo de la Memoria y los Derechos Humanos.

To see other places to visit, ratings, reviews, and tourist information, refer to the Santiago tour itinerary planner.

Auckland, New Zealand to Santiago is an approximately 16.5-hour flight. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 16 hours traveling from Auckland to Santiago. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 1st (Tue) to allow time to travel to Cusco.

Things to do in Santiago

Museums · Parks · Nature · Shopping
Find places to stay Jan 29 — Feb 1:

Cusco, Peru

— 4 nights

Imperial City

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.
Sacsayhuaman and Centro Historico De Cusco will appeal to history buffs. Plaza de Armas and Museo de Arte Precolombino are good opportunities to explore the local culture. Change things up with these side-trips from Cusco: Ollantaytambo (Pinkuylluna Mountain Granaries & Archaeological Park Ollantaytambo). There's still lots to do: delve into the distant past at Tambomachay, take a stroll through San Blas, steep yourself in history at Choquequirao Archeological Park, and take in the architecture and atmosphere at Cusco Cathedral.

To find maps, where to stay, more things to do, and more tourist information, read Cusco road trip planning site.

Traveling by flight from Santiago to Cusco takes 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. The time zone changes from Chile Standard Time (CLT) to Peru Standard Time (PET), which is usually a -1 hour difference. In February, plan for daily highs up to 23°C, and evening lows to 9°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 5th (Sat) to allow time for travel to Machu Picchu.

Things to do in Cusco

Historic Sites · Neighborhoods · Museums

Side Trips

Find places to stay Feb 1 — 5:

Machu Picchu, Peru

— 2 nights
A symbol of the Incan civilization, the abandoned city of Machu Picchu represents a must-see on a Peru vacation.
Start off your visit on the 6th (Sun): explore the ancient world of Intipuncu and then steep yourself in history at Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu.

To find ratings, maps, photos, and tourist information, use the Machu Picchu trip app.

You can do a combination of bus and train from Cusco to Machu Picchu in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or drive. Finish your sightseeing early on the 7th (Mon) to allow enough time to travel to Sao Paulo.

Things to do in Machu Picchu

Find places to stay Feb 5 — 7:

Sao Paulo, Brazil

— 2 nights

Land of Drizzle

Don't let the city's nickname--"Land of Drizzle"--dampen your spirits during a trip to Sao Paulo.
On the 8th (Tue), explore the world behind art at Museu de Arte de Sao Paulo Assis Chateaubriand - MASP, then shop like a local with Paulista Avenue, and then indulge your taste buds at Mercado Municipal de São Paulo. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: take a stroll through Liberdade, stroll around Parque Ibirapuera, and then admire the masterpieces at Pinacoteca do Estado de Sao Paulo.

To find other places to visit, more things to do, photos, and more tourist information, read our Sao Paulo online trip itinerary builder.

Fly from Machu Picchu to Sao Paulo in 14.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. The time zone difference moving from Peru Standard Time to Brasilia Standard Time is 2 hours. In February, plan for daily highs up to 34°C, and evening lows to 23°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Thu) early enough to travel to Rio de Janeiro.

Things to do in Sao Paulo

Shopping · Museums · Neighborhoods · Parks
Find places to stay Feb 7 — 10:

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

— 4 nights

Marvelous City

Bustling with samba music and all-night street parties, no city encapsulates the spirit of Brazil better than Rio de Janeiro.
Your cultural itinerary includes sights like Corcovado - Christ the Redeemer and Pedra do Arpoador. Popular historic sites such as Parque Lage and The Metropolitan Cathedral of Saint Sebastian are in your itinerary. And it doesn't end there: enjoy the sand and surf at Praia de Ipanema, make a trip to Escadaria Selaron, get lost in a book at Real Gabinete Portugues Da Leitura, and admire the natural beauty at Jardim Botânico do Rio de Janeiro.

To find other places to visit, maps, more things to do, and other tourist information, refer to the Rio de Janeiro itinerary builder tool.

Traveling by flight from Sao Paulo to Rio de Janeiro takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Sao Paulo in February, things will get a bit warmer in Rio de Janeiro: highs are around 38°C and lows about 28°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 14th (Mon) to allow time to travel to Buenos Aires.

Things to do in Rio de Janeiro

Parks · Beaches · Outdoors · Nature
Find places to stay Feb 10 — 14:

Buenos Aires, Argentina

— 3 nights

Queen of La Plata

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.
Popular historic sites such as Cemiterio de Recoleta and La Boca are in your itinerary. Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Parque 3 de Febrero and Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes. Next up on the itinerary: take in the history at Plaza de Mayo, contemplate the long history of Museo Histórico Nacional del Cabildo y la Revolución de Mayo, take in the architecture and atmosphere at Catedral Primada, and admire the striking features of El Ateneo Grand Splendid.

To see maps, more things to do, and other tourist information, use the Buenos Aires online holiday planner.

You can fly from Rio de Janeiro to Buenos Aires in 7 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Rio de Janeiro in February, expect Buenos Aires to be slightly colder, temps between 32°C and 24°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 17th (Thu) to allow time to travel back home.

Things to do in Buenos Aires

Find places to stay Feb 14 — 17:

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.