39 days in Mexico & South America Itinerary

39 days in Mexico & South America Itinerary

Created using Inspirock trip planner

Make it your trip
1
Mexico City, Mexico
— 14 nights
Fly
2
Cartagena, Colombia
— 1 night
Fly
3
Medellin, Colombia
— 2 nights
Fly
4
Tayrona National Park, Colombia
— 2 nights
Fly
5
Armenia, Colombia
— 2 nights
Fly to Bogota, Foot to Bogota
6
Bogota, Colombia
— 3 nights
Fly
7
Machu Picchu, Peru
— 2 nights
Train
8
Ollantaytambo, Peru
— 2 nights
Shuttle
9
Cusco, Peru
— 2 nights
Fly
10
Arequipa, Peru
— 2 nights
Fly
11
Lima, Peru
— 3 nights
Fly
12
Quito, Ecuador
— 2 nights

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Mexico City, Mexico

— 14 nights

City of Palaces

Breathtakingly large, Mexico City provides a home for almost 9 million people living in nearly 1,700 distinct neighborhoods.
Explore Mexico City's surroundings by going to Cuernavaca (Archaeological Zone of Xochicalco & Robert Brady Museum) and Zona Arqueológica de Teotihuacan Estacionamiento Puerta 5 (in San Juan Teotihuacan). The adventure continues: get a new perspective on nature at Museo Nacional de Antropologia, delve into the distant past at Metropolitan Cathedral (Catedral Metropolitana), walk around Bosque de Chapultepec, and indulge in some culinary diversions at a local gastronomic tour.

For reviews, photos, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read Mexico City trip planner.

If you are flying in from United Arab Emirates, the closest major aiports are Licenciado Benito Juarez International Airport, Querétaro Intercontinental Airport and Santa Lucía Air Force Base / Felipe Angeles International Airport. December in Mexico City sees daily highs of 26°C and lows of 9°C at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 24th (Fri) early enough to catch the flight to Cartagena.

Things to do in Mexico City

Museums · Historic Sites · Tours · Parks

Side Trips

Find places to stay Dec 10 — 24:
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Cartagena, Colombia

— 1 night

City of Heroes

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 25th (Sat): see the interesting displays at Choco Museo, don't miss a visit to Plaza de Bolivar, and then contemplate the long history of Walled City of Cartagena. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: take in the architecture and atmosphere at Sanctuary of Saint Peter Claver, then step into the grandiose world of Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas, and then take in the spiritual surroundings of Convent of Santa Cruz de la Popa.

To see maps, ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, use the Cartagena trip itinerary maker site.

Traveling by flight from Mexico City to Cartagena takes 7.5 hours. The time zone difference moving from Central Standard Time (CST) to Colombia Standard Time (COT) is 1 hour. Expect a bit warmer weather when traveling from Mexico City in December: highs in Cartagena hover around 37°C, while lows dip to 28°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 26th (Sun) to allow time to fly to Medellin.

Things to do in Cartagena

Find places to stay Dec 24 — 26:
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Medellin, Colombia

— 2 nights

City of the Eternal Spring

Nestled between rising hills in a narrow valley, Medellin serves as an energetic melting pot of people from all socio-economic classes.
Kick off your visit on the 27th (Mon): take an in-depth tour of Museo de Antioquia and then take in the local highlights with Walking tours. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: observe the fascinating underwater world at Parque Explora and then make a trip to Plaza Botero.

You can plan Medellin trip in no time by asking Inspirock to help create your itinerary.

Getting from Cartagena to Medellin by flight takes about 3 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. Prepare for little chillier weather when traveling from Cartagena in December: high temperatures in Medellin hover around 32°C and lows are around 20°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 28th (Tue) early enough to catch the flight to Tayrona National Park.

Things to do in Medellin

Zoos & Aquariums · Parks · Tours · Museums
Find places to stay Dec 26 — 28:
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Tayrona National Park, Colombia

— 2 nights
Kick off your visit on the 29th (Wed): explore the striking landscape of Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 30th (Thu): tour the pleasant surroundings at Cabo San Juan Del Guia.

For maps, reviews, where to stay, and other tourist information, read our Tayrona National Park trip builder tool.

Traveling by flight from Medellin to Tayrona National Park takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and taxi. In December, Tayrona National Park is a bit warmer than Medellin - with highs of 39°C and lows of 28°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 30th (Thu) early enough to catch the flight to Armenia.

Things to do in Tayrona National Park

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Beaches
Find places to stay Dec 28 — 30:
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Highlights from your trip

Armenia, Colombia

— 2 nights

Miracle City

The capital city of Quindio Department, Armenia was founded in 1889 by Jesus Maria Ocampo as he sought a hideout in the Quindio mountains.
On the 31st (Fri), get engrossed in the history at Museo del Oro Quimbaya and then get outside with Parque de la Vida. On the 1st (Sat), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: get in on the family fun at Panaca and then get outside with Globos Colombia.

To see photos, where to stay, reviews, and more tourist information, read Armenia sightseeing app.

Fly from Tayrona National Park to Armenia in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of taxi and bus. Plan for a bit cooler temperatures traveling from Tayrona National Park in December, with highs in Armenia at 32°C and lows at 20°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 1st (Sat) to allow time to travel to Bogota.

Things to do in Armenia

Outdoors · Theme Parks · Museums

Side Trips

Find places to stay Dec 30 — Jan 1:
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Bogota, Colombia

— 3 nights

Athens of South America

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.
Change things up with a short trip to Catedral de Sal de Zipaquira in Zipaquira (about 54 minutes away). There's lots more to do: take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Monserrate, savor the flavors at Food & Drink, explore the world behind art at Museo Botero del Banco de la Republica, and steep yourself in history at Bolivar Square.

For ratings, where to stay, maps, and more tourist information, go to the Bogota sightseeing tool.

Getting from Armenia to Bogota by flight takes about 3 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus and flight; or drive. Expect a bit cooler temperatures when traveling from Armenia in January; daily highs in Bogota reach 23°C and lows reach 7°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 4th (Tue) to allow enough time to fly to Machu Picchu.

Things to do in Bogota

Historic Sites · Tours · Parks · Nature

Side Trip

Find places to stay Jan 1 — 4:
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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.
On the 5th (Wed), admire the natural beauty at Mandor and then explore the ancient world of Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: witness a stunning natural landmark at Hot Springs (Aguas Calientes) and then make a trip to Intipuncu.

Planning Machu Picchu trip won't be overwhelming when you use Inspirock's itinerary maker.

You can fly from Bogota to Machu Picchu in 6.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or do a combination of bus and car. Finish your sightseeing early on the 6th (Thu) so you can take a train to Ollantaytambo.

Things to do in Machu Picchu

Historic Sites · Parks · Nature · Wildlife
Find places to stay Jan 4 — 6:
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Ollantaytambo, Peru

— 2 nights
Retaining much of its centuries-old architecture, Ollantaytambo represents one of the world's finest examples of Incan city planning.
On the 7th (Fri), delve into the distant past at Sacred Valley of the Incas and then whizz through the canopy at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: delve into the distant past at Archaeological Park Ollantaytambo and then see the interesting displays at Choco Museo.

To find traveler tips, where to stay, other places to visit, and more tourist information, you can read our Ollantaytambo trip planner.

Traveling by train from Machu Picchu to Ollantaytambo takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. In January, daytime highs in Ollantaytambo are 22°C, while nighttime lows are 9°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 8th (Sat) so you can catch the shuttle to Cusco.

Things to do in Ollantaytambo

Historic Sites · Outdoors · Adventure · Museums

Side Trips

Find places to stay Jan 6 — 8:
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Cusco, Peru

— 2 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.
Kick off your visit on the 9th (Sun): delve into the distant past at Tambomachay, then explore the world behind art at Museo de Arte Precolombino, then delve into the distant past at Sacsayhuaman, and finally contemplate the long history of Plaza de Armas. Keep things going the next day: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Qorikancha, admire the striking features of Centro Historico De Cusco, and then wander the streets of San Blas.

To see reviews, traveler tips, and more tourist information, use the Cusco sightseeing site.

Getting from Ollantaytambo to Cusco by shuttle takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. January in Cusco sees daily highs of 22°C and lows of 9°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 10th (Mon) so you can fly to Arequipa.

Things to do in Cusco

Historic Sites · Neighborhoods · Museums
Find places to stay Jan 8 — 10:
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Arequipa, Peru

— 2 nights

White City

In an area dominated three imposing volcanoes, Arequipa vacations allow visitors to admire well-preserved colonial architecture in a dramatic setting.
Start off your visit on the 11th (Tue): get the lay of the land with Walking tours and then admire the striking features of Plaza de Armas. On the 12th (Wed), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: steep yourself in history at Historic Centre of Arequipa, examine the collection at Santa Catalina Monastery, and then take an in-depth tour of Museo Santuarios Andinos.

For more things to do, reviews, traveler tips, and more tourist information, use the Arequipa online tour planner.

Traveling by flight from Cusco to Arequipa takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Cusco in January, expect a bit warmer with lows of 13°C in Arequipa. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 12th (Wed) so you can catch the flight to Lima.

Things to do in Arequipa

Find places to stay Jan 10 — 12:
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Lima, Peru

— 3 nights

City of the Kings

Founded in 1535 by Spanish explorer Francisco Pizarro, Lima represents an interesting blend of modern attractions and preserved colonial architecture, much of it clustered in the World Heritage-listed city center.
Lima is known for historic sites, parks, and museums. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: take an in-depth tour of Museo Larco, see the interesting displays at Museo de Minerales Andres del Castillo, steep yourself in history at Basilica y Monasterio de Santo Domingo, and pause for some serene contemplation at Museo Convento San Francisco y Catacumbas.

To find where to stay, maps, ratings, and other tourist information, you can read our Lima trip planner.

Getting from Arequipa to Lima by flight takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. Plan for a bit warmer temperatures traveling from Arequipa in January, with highs in Lima at 31°C and lows at 24°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Sat) early enough to fly to Quito.

Things to do in Lima

Historic Sites · Museums · Neighborhoods
Find places to stay Jan 12 — 15:
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Quito, Ecuador

— 2 nights

Light of America

High in the Andean foothills, Quito remains one of the world's most photogenic capital cities, featuring two dramatic mountain ranges as its backdrop.
Start off your visit on the 16th (Sun): explore the world behind art at Centro Cultural Metropolitano, then get to know the fascinating history of Quito Old Town, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Fundacion Iglesia de la Compania, and finally gain insight at La Ronda. Here are some ideas for day two: take in the architecture and atmosphere at Iglesia y Convento de San Francisco and then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Basilica del Voto Nacional.

To see photos, maps, more things to do, and other tourist information, go to the Quito day trip app.

You can fly from Lima to Quito in 6 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Lima in January, things will get little chillier in Quito: highs are around 26°C and lows about 16°C.

Things to do in Quito

Find places to stay Jan 15 — 17:
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Mexico travel guide

4.5
Tailor-made for anyone seeking that traditional sun-and-sand experience, Mexico vacations allow visitors to explore nearly 10,000 km (6,200 mi) of picturesque coastlines. Idyllic beaches and favorable year-round weather aside, this diverse country with a rich pre-Colombian history allows tourists a chance to discover a fascinating cuisine, numerous archaeological sites, state-of-the-art museums, colonial-era haciendas, and outstanding examples of 21st-century architecture. Most visitors get to know the country by its cities, but if you want a well-rounded Mexico tour, spend some time exploring its jungles, cloud forests, Caribbean reefs, snowcapped volcanoes, vast deserts, and tranquil lagoons. Life is lived outdoors in Mexico, so wherever you go, don't forget to dine alfresco and stroll the country's colonial streets.

Colombia travel guide

4
Historic Sites · Landmarks · Churches
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.

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.

Ecuador travel guide

4.5
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.