SACRED VALLEY, MACHU PICCHU, CUSCO, LIMA, BUENOS AIRES, IGUASSU & RIO DE JANEIRO
Explore the highlights of South America on this comprehensive tour that takes you to all the must-see sites of Peru, Argentina, and Brazil. Start your journey in the heart of the Inca civilization, exploring the ruins of Ollantaytambo in the Sacred Valley, incredible Machu Picchu, and Cusco, considered to be the oldest living city in the Americas. Next, you’ll see both the colonial and modern parts of Peru’s capital city, Lima. In Argentina, take a stroll through Buenos Aires’ La Boca district and enjoy a tango show before venturing out to the Argentine Pampas for a barbeque and regional Gaucho games. See one of the most spectacular waterfalls in the world – Iguassu Falls, which sits on the border of Argentina and Brazil before ending your trip in sunny Rio de Janeiro where you’ll ascend Sugar Loaf Mountain by cable car for stunning views of the city and take a cog railway up to the landmark statue of Christ the Redeemer.
For COVID-19 updates, please scroll down to our Before You Depart section.
Did you know that you can make this tour private? Find out about pricing and options for groups of 10 or more travelers.
- Overnight flight
- 1 night in Yucay
- 2 nights in Cusco
- 2 nights in Lima
- 4 nights in Buenos Aires
- 2 nights in Iguassu Falls
- 2 nights in Rio de Janeiro
- Sacred Valley
- Ruins of Ollantaytambo
- Visit a typical house in the “last living Inca Village of Peru”
- Machu Picchu
- Colonial & contemporary city tour of Lima
- Tango lesson and show (Buenos Aires)
- Folk music & wine in the Argentinian countryside
- Iguassu Falls
- Sugar Loaf Mountain (Rio)
- Copacabana (Rio)
- Round-trip airfare from Miami (passengers may also book this tour without flights)
- Airfare taxes, fees & fuel surcharges
- All intra-South America flights & ground transportation
- Accommodations at deluxe & superior first-class hotels
- 21 meals: 13 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 5 dinners
- Comprehensive sightseeing tours and admission fees
- English-speaking Tour Director throughout and local guides
Day 1: Depart from the U.S.
Your journey to South America begins as you depart this evening on your overnight flight bound for Peru.
*Passengers who did not purchase flights will join the tour in Yucay on Day 2.
Day 2: Arrive Cusco/Sacred Valley
Arrive in Lima and catch your connecting flight to Cusco. Upon arrival, drive to the Sacred Valley of the Incas where you’ll visit the small town of Pisac, well known amongst both locals and tourists for its bazaar-like market offering a wide selection of Peruvian handicrafts. Next, explore the impressive ruins of Ollantaytambo, one of the few places where the Incas won a battle against the Spaniards, before visiting a local home in the town of Ollantaytambo, often called the “last living Inca village of Peru”. Here, you’ll experience the unique way of life in the Sacred Valley.
Sonesta Posadas del Inca Yucay Hotel or similar | Lunch
Day 3: Sacred Valley/Machu Picchu/Cusco
This morning, board the train to Machu Picchu enjoying the stunning Andean views of small communities and snow-capped mountains along the way. When you arrive in Aguas Calientes, the small village nestled at the bottom of Machu Picchu, take the shuttle bus up to the ancient citadel where you’ll learn more about the Inca civilization, the site’s discovery, and the different theories of this mysterious and spectacular archaeological site. After our tour of Machu Picchu, we’ll travel onward to Cusco.
Sonesta Hotel Cusco or similar | Breakfast
Day 4: Cusco
Today’s walking tour starts at the “Plaza de Armas” where you’ll visit the impressive Renaissance-style Cathedral. Make your way through small alleys edged with Incan walls until you reach Koricancha, the temple dedicated to the sun, “Inti”. Believed to be the most important temple for the Incas, it was destroyed by the Spanish conquerors in the 16th century and its foundations were used to build Santo Domingo, a Catholic church, epitomizing the clash of cultures. Enjoy the afternoon at leisure or join an optional tour visiting different ruins around Cusco including Sacsayhuamán! This evening, enjoy a special welcome dinner with the group at a local restaurant.
| Breakfast, Dinner
Day 5: Cusco/Lima
Enjoy a morning at leisure in Cusco before you fly to Lima, Peru’s capital city. Upon arrival, check-in at the hotel and enjoy the evening at leisure.
Jose Antonio Deluxe or similar | Breakfast
Day 6: Lima
You’ll start your exploration of Lima today in the historical center where you’ll admire the colorful colonial architecture around the “Plaza San Martin” and the main square (Plaza de Armas) where you’ll find the Government Palace, the Cathedral, and the Municipality. From here, visit the San Francisco Monastery and discover its underground maze of tunnels and catacombs. Finally, head to Lima’s Contemporary districts, Miraflores and San Isidro, which combine beautiful parks like “El Olivar” and “Parque del Amor” with shopping centers and modern architecture. This afternoon is yours to explore Lima independently or consider an optional visit to the Larco Museum.
| Breakfast, Dinner
Day 7: Lima/Buenos Aires
Today, you’ll board your flight bound for Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina. The city is often referred to as the “Paris of South America” and has a strong European influence which is reflected in its refined taste in cooking, luxury boutiques, and the elegance of its inhabitants. Upon arrival, check-in at your hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure to relax or explore Buenos Aires independently.
Loi Suites Recoleta or similar | Breakfast
Day 8: Buenos Aires
Today’s highlights include a drive along “9 de Julio”, the widest avenue in the world, the Plaza de Mayo, and the Metropolitan Cathedral with its towering ceilings and striking stained glass. Stroll along colorful “Caminito” in La Boca district, and pass by the Boca Juniors soccer stadium before driving to the Puerto Madero area, a district made with recycled docks where some of the city’s best restaurants are located. Our tour ends in Recoleta, one of the city’s most glamorous spots. Here we’ll visit Recoleta cemetery, where we can admire the ornate mausoleums, sculptures, and vaults on our way to visit Eva Perón’s grave. Before your dinner and show this evening, experience the unique opportunity to take your first steps in tango. Learn the basic moves and have fun during your dance lesson with professional tango dancers. Later, we’ll learn more about the Tango tradition with a visit to one of the famous Tango houses for dinner where we’ll enjoy a show with music, singing, and dancing.
| Breakfast, Dinner
Day 9: Pampas
Travel outside the city on a full-day excursion to the Argentine Pampas, where the native gauchos raise the cattle and other livestock that graze on the long grasses of these flatlands. You’ll be welcomed with typical Argentinian empanadas and drinks and then you’ll have the opportunity to appreciate the charm of the Argentinian countryside by a sulky or horse ride. Enjoy a typical barbeque lunch with Argentinian wines followed by a show of folk music and traditional dances. Today’s excursion ends with some typical activities on an estancia: regional Gaucho games such as the “carrera de sortijas”.
| Breakfast, Lunch
Day 10: Buenos Aires
Today is yours to explore this cosmopolitan city! Consider an optional half-day tour to the Tigre Delta or explore Buenos Aires independently.
Day 11: Buenos Aires/Iguassu Falls
After breakfast, board a short flight to the Argentinian side of Iguassu Falls. You’ll soon discover why this is considered one of the greatest natural wonders of the world! Set at the border of Argentina and Brazil, the falls consist of 275 inlets and cataracts that send their cascades roaring 250 feet below. Enjoy a ride on the ecological train through the rainforest for a spectacular close-up view of the falls.
Bourbon Cataratas do Iguaçu or similar | Breakfast, Dinner
Day 12: Iguassu Falls
Because Iguassu Falls is too spectacular to leave behind just yet, today you’ll be afforded a view of the dramatic Brazilian side of the falls and surrounding lush sub-tropical vegetation on an included morning tour. The afternoon is free for independent activities, shopping, or relaxing beside your hotel’s hot-spring-fed pool.
Day 13: Iguassu/Rio de Janeiro
Today, you’ll catch a flight to Rio de Janeiro, often described as one of the world’s most beautiful cities. Sprawling between lush tropical mountains and the exquisite beaches of the Atlantic, Rio’s natural beauty and the warmth of its people will win your heart. This afternoon, you’ll ascend imposing Sugar Loaf Mountain by cable car to the 1,300-foot summit for stunning views of the city and surroundings. Later, you’ll ride beside the white-sand beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema before arriving at your luxurious hotel.
Sheraton Grand Rio Hotel & Resort or similar | Breakfast, Lunch
Day 14: Rio de Janeiro
Enjoy a full day at leisure! How will you do Rio? Jewelry fans will love shopping for authentic gemstones. Culture hounds can explore the city’s museums and historic monuments. Sunbathers can spend the day basking in the rays on the beach. If you’d rather get out of the city, you can join our optional full-day excursion to the picturesque mountain resort of Petropolis, 42 miles away. It’s such a desirable destination that Pedro II, the last emperor of Brazil, had a summer palace built there. Tonight, you’ll celebrate with your fellow travelers at a festive dinner.
| Breakfast, Dinner
Day 15: Depart Rio de Janeiro
Before leaving the big city, enjoy a fruit tasting tour at a Rio market! Next, our morning tour takes us to a cog railway that leads through the rainforest up Corcovado Mountain, a 2,300-foot peak crowned by the landmark statue of Christ the Redeemer. The views from the top of the mountain are dazzling! The balance of the day is dedicated to your leisure for last-minute sightseeing or simply relaxing by the hotel pool. Time allowing, consider an optional Carnival experience where you’ll learn the Samba before being transferred to the airport for your overnight return flight to the States.
*The tour will end for passengers who did not purchase flights today, on Day 15, in Rio de Janeiro.
Day 16: Arrive in the U.S.
Your exciting journey ends as you land in the U.S. this morning.
We are working diligently to secure future tour dates and pricing for this itinerary. Please fill out the "Request a Future Date" form linked below and we will notify you once dates are available.
Optional Tours Customize your trip with these optional tours.
Enhance your trip with our recommended optional tours. Indicated optional tours are available to pre-book when you reserve your trip and can be added to your reservation up to final payment. This is the best option to guarantee your spot on your preferred optional tour! Optional tours require a minimum number of participants. Optional tours are non-refundable unless they do not operate.
Some optional tours can be purchased in-destination and may cost extra. The payment methods and currency information to purchase tours in-destination will be provided on final documentation.
Ruins of Cusco Tour
- From approx. $55 Per Person
Journey into the past as we explore the different inca ruins around Cusco. We’ll begin our tour at Sacsayhuamán, the Inca ceremonial fortress dedicated to the sun, where gigantic rocks were perfectly fitted together to build the site. We’ll continue to the nearby temple of Qenqo, a temple carved in a gigantic monolith with tunnels and chambers that were hand-carved by men thousands of years ago. Next, we’ll visit the Puca Pucara fort, an important a military checkpoint for Inca Empire. Our tour comes to an end at the Inca Baths known as Tambomachay where we’ll learn about the aqueducts and channels that allow the water to flow naturally.
AVAILABLE TO PRE-BOOK!
- From approx. $46 Per Person
Visit Larco Museum and appreciate its collection with over 45.000 objects including pre-Columbian ceramics, textiles, gold and silver pieces. Don’t miss the museum’s famous and unique erotic ceramics collection from the Mochica culture.
AVAILABLE TO PRE-BOOK!
Tigre Delta Morning Excursion
- Buenos Aires
- From approx. $89 Per Person
The Tigre Delta, located on the outskirts of Buenos Aires, boasts rivers, streams and numerous green islands, making it one of the most attractive destinations for visitors. The continuous sediment of the Parana River, which gives the river and estuary their particular brownish-red color, forms the Delta Islands. After arrival, enjoy a delightful one-hour boat ride along the waterways. En route to the Delta, you will cross the Northern suburbs of the city, where you’ll see some of the most exclusive mansions facing the river.
AVAILABLE TO PRE-BOOK!
Petropolis plus Hippie Fair Full-Day Tour
- Rio de Janeiro
- From approx. $70 Per Person
Enjoy a perfect excursion to the picturesque mountain resort of Petropolis, the summer home to the former Brazilian Imperial Family. You’ll enjoy a scenic drive on a private Macro Bus from Rio to quaint Petropolis, with its breezy mountain climate and magnificent views from 2,500 feet above sea level. En route, you’ll enjoy a tasty stop for fresh Brazilian bananas before visiting a chocolate factory. Then tour the Imperial Museum, once the Summer Palace, with collections featuring jewels and works of art once owned by the Imperial Family as well as the Crown and Scepter of Brazil’s last Emperor. You’ll also visit the Old Cathedral and have some time to see the sights—including the charming village square and elegant mansions. To cap off your full-day excursion, you’ll visit the lively Hippie Market in Ipanema, where you’ll have some time to explore, before returning to the hotel.
AVAILABLE TO PRE-BOOK!
- From approx. $62 Per Person
Enjoy a Carnival experience with a guided visit to the Samba School in the “City of Samba”. We’ll learn about the history of the Samba and the Carnival Parades. Enjoy a special drink and dance class with dancers at the school during your visit.
AVAILABLE TO PRE-BOOK!
Sonesta Posadas Del Inca Yucay Hotel
Once an 18th-century monastery, this beautiful hotel is located in the heart of the Sacred Valley and is surrounded by gorgeous gardens. Your hotel room features a digital safe, hairdryer, and WiFi.
Plaza Manco II 123 Yucay
Urubamba, Cusco, Peru
Sonesta Hotel Cusco
Just blocks from the main square, the Sonesta Hotel Cusco boasts a restaurant and bar with excellent food, laundry service, and rooms with a hairdryer, minibar, safe-deposit box, and WiFi.Website
Hotel Jose Antonio Deluxe
Located in Lima’s cosmopolitan Miraflores district, enjoy the hotel’s swimming pool, gym, restaurant and WiFi! Rooms here have a hairdryer, coffee kit, safe, and WiFi.
Calle Bellavista 133
Miraflores, Lima, Peru
Loi Suites Recoleta Hotel
Situated in the lovely Recoleta neighborhood filled with art galleries, restaurants, and parks, the hotel features a swimming pool, restaurant, fitness center, and WiFi. Rooms feature a safe, minibar, and flatscreen TV.
Vicente López 1955,
128ACC CABA, Argentina
Bourbon Cataratas do Iguaçu
This resort hotel boasts a pool with a swim-up bar, restaurant, fitness center, sauna, and more! Rooms feature a safe, flatscreen TV, hairdryer, and mini-fridge.
Av. das Cataratas km 2,5, Nº 2345Website
Sheraton Grand Rio Hotel & Resort
The city’s only beachfront resort with spa and private balconies.
Avenida Niemeyer, 121-Leblon, Rio de Janeiro, 22450-220, BrazilWebsite
Departing the U.S.: For the safety of everyone in the group, smarTours has implemented COVID-19 travel requirements which apply to all tours regardless of destination. To learn more, click here.
Please note destination entry requirements are changing rapidly. smarTours will communicate entry requirements in your Tour Documents 10-14 days prior to departure. For up-to-date information, please click the links below.
- Entry requirements
- State Department Travel Advisory Updates (Peru, Argentina, Brazil)
- Center for Disease Control Updates & Information (Peru, Argentina, Brazil)
The high altitude reached on this trip (Cuzco is at 11,000 feet above sea level) as well as the considerable amount of walking involved, often on uneven terrain, requires that you be in good physical condition to enjoy this trip. We strongly suggest that you consult with your physician regarding any concerns as well as possible medications to ease the effects of the high altitude.Immunizations are NOT currently required; however, you may wish to consult your personal physician or local public health authorities as to their suggestions.
Your departure flights to Lima and return flights from Rio de Janeiro are via LATAM Airlines. You are expected to check-in for your flight at least three-and-a-half hours before the scheduled departure. Please make sure to allow sufficient time for clearing immigration and customs if you are planning a connecting flight. We recommend at least three-and-a-half hours. Please keep in mind that flight schedules are always subject to change.
|2022:Sep. 4||11:55 PM||6:30 AM|
|2023: All Dates||TBA||TBA|
ADVANCE SEAT ASSIGNMENT AND FREQUENT FLYER MILES
LATAM Airlines does not assign seats in advance. Actual seat assignment will be provided at the airport. Please note that smarTours® is not involved with assigning seats. If you have a preferred seating choice, please make sure you check-in for your flight as early as possible.
International flights to/from the U.S. are not included. Land-only travelers are responsible for arranging entry and exit flights, as well as their arrival and departure transfers. smarTours cannot be held responsible for any damage caused by air schedule changes and delays. Unused land services are non-refundable.
Main Tour: Land services start upon independent check-in for the flight to Cusco on Day 2 of the itinerary. Land-only services end after breakfast at the Rio de Janeiro hotel on Day 15 of the itinerary listed on the tour page.
PASSPORT AND VISA INFORMATION
You must be in possession of a passport valid for at least 6 months after the date of travel.
U.S. citizens do not require a visa to enter Brazil June 17, 2019 onwards. Non-U.S. citizens should check with the respective consulates of the countries on this tour for the most current visa requirements. Please note that visa procedures may change at any time. Please remember that it is your responsibility to obtain the necessary travel documents before the trip.
TICKETS AND FINAL DOCUMENTS
Your airline tickets, along with final instructions and travel tips, will be sent to you 7–10 days before the scheduled departure of your tour.
You should consult your personal physician, local public health authorities or the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) as to their recommendations, including immunization for Yellow Fever.
Peru, Argentina and Brazil are located in the Southern hemisphere so their seasons are the reverse seasons of the U.S. Spring is in September/October/November with daytime average temperatures in the 50s and 70s. Summer is December through February with daytime average temperatures in the 80s. Early fall is in March with daytime average temperatures in the 70s and April’s average temperatures in the 60s. In areas of higher elevations (Cusco, Machu Picchu), morning, late afternoon and evening temperatures will be considerably cooler. Overnight temperatures may lower by 10-20 degrees.
You may dine at the hotels on this tour or nearby restaurants—ask your guide for recommendations. Average cost for dinner (excluding drinks) in hotel cafes is about $20–$25 per person. Your hotel will accept credit cards for your non-included meals.
CREDIT CARDS AND LOCAL CURRENCY
Hotels and some stores accept major credit cards. However, for “street shopping” you will need local currency or U.S. Dollars. Your hotels will be able to exchange cash to local currency. It is recommended that you bring along cash in small denominations.
Each passenger may bring one piece of checked-in luggage (suitcase) max. 44 pounds, and one carry-on not exceeding 18”x10”x8”. We recommend that you do not overpack and that you take a variety of casual separates with climate and comfort in mind.