53 days in South America Itinerary

53 days in South America Itinerary

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Route & dates

53 days in South America Itinerary

Start: Porto, Portugal
Fly:  17​h 30​min
1
Cartagena, Colombia
— 6 nights
Fly + Drive:  22​h 30​min
2
Machu Picchu, Peru
— 7 nights
Drive:  20​h 30​min
3
Huasco, Chile
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h 15​min
4
Copiapo, Chile
— 5 nights
Fly:  19​h
5
Foz do Iguacu, Brazil
— 5 nights
6
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
— 9 nights
Fly + bus:  1​h 30​min
7
Sao Paulo, Brazil
— 8 nights
Drive:  1​h 15​min
8
Campinas, Brazil
— 6 nights
bus + Fly:  13​h
End: Porto, Portugal

6
nights
Cartagena, Colombia

Cartagena ©
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.
Your inner history buff will appreciate Walled City of Cartagena and Convent of Santa Cruz de la Popa. Get some cultural insight at Nature & Wildlife Tours and Oceanario. Step out of Cartagena to go to Isla Baru and see Aviario Nacional de Colombia, which is approximately 50 minutes away. Spend the 9th (Sun) among aquatic life with a scuba or snorkeling tour. There's still lots to do: step into the grandiose world of Castillo San Felipe de Barajas, contemplate the geological forces at Volcan de Lodo El Totumo (Mud Volcano), steep yourself in history at Casa del Marquez de Valdehoyos, and take in the architecture and atmosphere at Sanctuary of Saint Peter Claver.

For more things to do, where to stay, other places to visit, and tourist information, use the Cartagena holiday planner.

Porto, Portugal to Cartagena is an approximately 17.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of train and flight; or do a combination of bus and flight. The time zone difference moving from Western European Time (WET) to Colombia Time (COT) is minus 5 hours. Expect somewhat warmer weather when traveling from Porto in June: highs in Cartagena hover around 38°C, while lows dip to 30°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 13th (Thu) to allow time to travel to Machu Picchu.

Things to do in Cartagena

Historic Sites Wildlife Outdoors

Side Trip

Aviario Nacional de Colombia
Find places to stay Jun 7 — 13:
Highlights from your plan
Walled City of Cartagena ©
Walled City of Cartagena
Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas ©
Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas
Scuba & Snorkeling

7
nights
Machu Picchu, Peru

Machu Picchu ©
A symbol of the Incan civilization, the abandoned city of Machu Picchu represents a must-see on a Peru vacation.
Deepen your sense of the past at sights like Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu and Winay Wayna. Escape the urban bustle at Perolniyoq Waterfall and Salinas de Maras. Venture out of the city with trips to Moray (in Maras) and Ollantaytambo (Sitio arqueológico Pinkuylluna, ALQA - Gallery of Andean Expressions, & more). There's lots more to do: explore the ancient world of Sacred Valley of the Incas, pause for some serene contemplation at Iglesia Virgen Del Carmen, contemplate the long history of Choquequirao Archeological Park, and take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Phutuq K'usi.

To find photos, more things to do, reviews, and more tourist information, use the Machu Picchu tour itinerary planner .

Traveling by combination of flight and car from Cartagena to Machu Picchu takes 22.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and taxi. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 21st (Fri) to allow time for travel to Huasco.

Things to do in Machu Picchu

Historic Sites Parks Nature

Side Trips

Ollantaytambo, Maras, Sacred Valley of the Incas, Choquequirao Archeological Park
Find places to stay Jun 14 — 21:
Highlights from your plan
Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu ©
Sacred Valley of the Incas ©
Sacred Valley of the Incas
Salinas de Maras ©
Salinas de Maras

1
night
Huasco, Chile

Huasco ©
Huasco is a Chilean city and commune, in the Huasco Province, Atacama Region.The port city of Huasco is located 50 km west of Vallenar and close to the town of Huasco Bajo, which lies on the southern bank of the Huasco River and only a few km from its mouth. Start off your visit on the 22nd (Sat): explore the striking landscape of Parque Nacional Llanos del Challe. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 23rd (Sun): stroll through Tres Playitas, take a leisurely stroll along Costanera de Huasco, then admire all the interesting features of Payantume Extra Virgin Olive Oil, and finally explore the wealth of natural beauty at Parque Nacional Llanos de Challe.

To find maps, reviews, other places to visit, and more tourist information, use the Huasco online trip itinerary builder .

Explore your travel options from Machu Picchu to Huasco with the Route module. The time zone difference moving from Peru Time to Chile Time is 1 hour. Cap off your sightseeing on the 23rd (Sun) early enough to travel to Copiapo.

Things to do in Huasco

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trip

Parque Nacional Llanos de Challe
Find places to stay Jun 22 — 23:
Highlights from your plan
Parque Nacional Llanos de Challe ©
Parque Nacional Llanos de Challe

5
nights
Copiapo, Chile

Copiapo ©
Surrounded by the Atacama Desert, Copiapo receives very little rainfall and owes its existence to the mining industry.
Escape the urban bustle at Desierto Florido and Bahia Cisne. Get some cultural insight at Iglesia San Francisco and Parroquia Nuestra Senora de la Candelaria. Get out of town with these interesting Copiapo side-trips: Museo Minero de Tierra Amarilla (in Tierra Amarilla) and Caldera (Casa Tornini Museo - Centro Cultural, Faro de Punta Caldera, & more). There's much more to do: contemplate the waterfront views at Laguna Verde, kick back and relax at Bahia Inglesa, see the interesting displays at Museo Mineralogico, and stroll through Cerro Bramador.

To find out how to plan a trip to Copiapo, use our trip itinerary maker.

You can drive from Huasco to Copiapo in 2.5 hours. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 28th (Fri) so you can travel to Foz do Iguacu.

Things to do in Copiapo

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trips

Caldera, Museo Minero de Tierra Amarilla
Find places to stay Jun 23 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
Bahia Inglesa ©
Bahia Inglesa
Iglesia San Francisco ©
Iglesia San Francisco
Casa Tornini Museo - Centro Cultural ©

5
nights
Foz do Iguacu, Brazil

Foz do Iguacu ©
A gateway to the world-renowned Iguacu Falls, which spectacularly divide Brazil and Argentina, the modern, high-rise city of Foz do Iguacu can't help but play second fiddle to the natural wonder in its vicinity.
Popular historic sites such as Buddhist Temple and Triple Frontier are in your itinerary. Get outdoors at Iguazu Falls and Parque das Aves Bird Park. There's much more to do: surround yourself with nature on a nature and wildlife tour, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Igreja Batista de Tres Lagoas, explore the activities along Iguacu River, and identify plant and animal life at Bela Vista Ecological Refuge.

For maps, other places to visit, more things to do, and other tourist information, use the Foz do Iguacu attractions website .

Explore your travel options from Copiapo to Foz do Iguacu with the Route module. The time zone difference when traveling from Copiapo to Foz do Iguacu is 1 hour. Expect a daytime high around 25°C in June, and nighttime lows around 14°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 4th (Thu) so you can travel to Rio de Janeiro.

Things to do in Foz do Iguacu

Parks Nature Wildlife
Find places to stay Jun 29 — Jul 4:
Highlights from your plan
Iguazu Falls ©
Iguazu Falls
Devil's Throat ©
Devil's Throat
Buddhist Temple ©
Buddhist Temple

9
nights
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Rio de Janeiro ©
Bustling with samba music and all-night street parties, no city encapsulates the spirit of Brazil better than Rio de Janeiro.
Escape the urban bustle at Sugarloaf Mountain and Copacabana Beach. Praia de Ipanema and Parque e Instituto Sitie are good opportunities to explore the local culture. And it doesn't end there: take in the awesome beauty at Trilha do Dois Irmaos, kick back and relax at Pedra do Arpoador, explore and take pictures at Leblon Beach, and tour the pleasant surroundings at Praia de Grumari.

For maps, where to stay, more things to do, and more tourist information, use the Rio de Janeiro trip builder app .

Traveling by flight from Foz do Iguacu to Rio de Janeiro takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In July, Rio de Janeiro is a bit warmer than Foz do Iguacu - with highs of 30°C and lows of 22°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 13th (Sat) early enough to travel to Sao Paulo.

Things to do in Rio de Janeiro

Parks Outdoors Nature
Find places to stay Jul 4 — 13:
Highlights from your plan
Pao de Acucar ©
Pao de Acucar
Copacabana Beach ©
Copacabana Beach
Praia de Ipanema
Praia de Ipanema

8
nights
Sao Paulo, Brazil

Sao Paulo ©
Don't let the city's nickname--"Land of Drizzle"--dampen your spirits during a trip to Sao Paulo.
Do some cultural sightseeing at Pinacoteca do Estado de Sao Paulo and Paulista Avenue. Popular historic sites such as Sao Paulo da Cruz Church and Igreja Chagas do Serafico Pai Francisco are in your itinerary. Explore Sao Paulo's surroundings by going to Quilombo Valley (in Santos), Mogi das Cruzes (Pesqueiro Sao Luiz & Parque Natural Francisco Affonso de Mello) and Raizes Aventura (in Sao Sebastiao). The adventure continues: stroll around Ibirapuera Park, pick up some local products at Mercado Municipal de São Paulo, explore the world behind art at Museu de Arte de Sao Paulo Assis Chateaubriand - MASP, and explore the activities along Lago das Carpas.

To find maps, other places to visit, traveler tips, and tourist information, go to the Sao Paulo attractions planning site .

Getting from Rio de Janeiro to Sao Paulo by combination of flight and bus takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: fly; or drive. Traveling from Rio de Janeiro in July, things will get a bit cooler in Sao Paulo: highs are around 26°C and lows about 15°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Sun) to allow time to drive to Campinas.

Things to do in Sao Paulo

Parks Wildlife Outdoors

Side Trips

Mogi das Cruzes, Raizes Aventura, Parque Estadual Do Jurupara, Lago das Carpas, Quilombo Valley
Find places to stay Jul 13 — 21:
Highlights from your plan
Parque Ibirapuera ©
Parque Ibirapuera
Pinacoteca do Estado de Sao Paulo ©
Pinacoteca do Estado de Sao Paulo
Paulista Avenue ©
Paulista Avenue

6
nights
Campinas, Brazil

Campinas ©
A large city of over 1 million stands at the center of the municipality of Campinas.
Visit Fazenda Ipanema and Sao Carlos Borromeu Church for their historical value. Do some cultural sightseeing at Igreja Matriz Sao Sebastiao and Ordinariado Militar – Capelania Sao Tomas de Aquino & Sao Judas Tadeu. Venture out of the city with trips to Extrema (Valenbier Microcervejaria & Parque Municipal Cachoeira do Salto), Parque Ecologico Eugenio Walter (in Boituva) and Fundacao Serra do Japi (in Jundiai). Next up on the itinerary: identify plant and animal life at Parque Natural da Água Vermelha, take in nature's colorful creations at Mata Santa Genebra, explore the landscape on two wheels at Parque Ecologico de Indaiatuba, and experience rural life at Fazendinha Vo Braulio.

To see where to stay, reviews, ratings, and tourist information, you can read our Campinas day trip app .

Traveling by car from Sao Paulo to Campinas takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. The time zone difference when traveling from Sao Paulo to Campinas is minus 1 hour. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 27th (Sat) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Campinas

Parks Wildlife Historic Sites

Side Trips

Indaiatuba, Sorocaba, Extrema, Parque Ecologico Eugenio Walter, Fazendinha Vo Braulio
Find places to stay Jul 21 — 27:
Highlights from your plan
Fazenda Ipanema ©
Fazenda Ipanema
Sao Carlos Borromeu Church ©
Sao Carlos Borromeu Church
Parque Ecologico de Indaiatuba ©
Parque Ecologico de Indaiatuba

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