9 Day: Buenos Aries, Iguazu and el Calafate


    This itinerary takes in the vibrant capital Buenos Aires as well as the awe-inspiring Iguazu Falls and Perito Moreno Glacier.

    • From: $2800pp for 8 nights.

    Highlights:
    Buenos Aires, Iguazu, El Calafate.

    Ref: ARG-IT-AKOR05

     


    Buenos Aries, Iguazu and el Calafate Itinerary


    Day 1: Arrive Buenos Aires

    Upon arrival in Buenos Aires, a guide will be waiting to escort you on a comprehensive sightseeing excursion of the Argentine capital.

    The tour will take in all the major sights including a behind-the-scenes visit to the Teatro Colón Opera House (re-opening in 2010), the Metropolitan Cathedral, the Government Palace (Casa Rosada), the colourful La Boca district, the tough port barrio and working class heart of Buenos Aires, and San Telmo, home and birthplace of the sultry tango. Lunch will be served at a restaurant in the fashionable Puerto Madero district of the city.

    The legacy of “Peronismo” is not only the subject of books or mere memories. It has left its mark in the very buildings, squares and neighborhoods that grace this fine city. The second part of your tour includes those landmarks connected with this crucial political movement, with the emphasis being on its major figure: Eva Perón. Her life, her political activity, her tragic death, the myth. Everything framed by a story that helps to understand contemporary Argentina. Included in this tour will of course be the incredible Recoleta Cemetery, where Evita is buried.

    Later transfer to the Park Hyatt Palacio Duhau, where you will spend the next two nights.

    Overnight: Park Hyatt Palacio Duhau



    Day 2: Buenos Aires

    After breakfast, your local guide will be waiting in the lobby to take you on a full-day excursion to a typical Argentinean estancia Los Patos located only 120 kilometres from Buenos Aires.

    These are many activities to choose from at Los Patos: a horse carriage ride, visiting the stables, horse riding, Basq bowls, Taba game, folk music show, Gaucho culture activities or swimming in the pool.

    At noon a criollo-styled barbecue will be served with different salads and native desserts, accompanied by Argentine folkloric tunes and melodies. At the end of lunch, return to the hotel.

    Overnight: Park Hyatt Palacio Duhau
    Meal Plan: B,L



    Day 3: Buenos Aires - Iguazu

    This morning transfer to the domestic airport for the flight to Iguazu. This will be the starting point for your three day stay in the Iguazu Falls National Park. Four times wider than Niagara Falls, and undoubtedly the most spectacular in South America, the Iguazu Falls in Paraná is where the powerful river Iguazu hurtles into a deep canyon, carved into the shape of a horseshoe in the gigantic basalt flow. Starting its course near the Atlantic seaboard, the Iguazu River crosses the western highlands of the states of São Paulo and Paraná and arrives at the edge of the plateau to discharge its waters at a rate, which can reach 150,000 m³ per second.

    The Iguazu River divides Argentina and Brazil, so both nations get to claim one of the world's most dramatic waterfalls, or rather 275 waterfalls. The river pours into the fissure for four kilometres along the canyon rim on the Argentina side. As the water level drops in the dry season, April through October, the river splits into dozens of channels and multiple falls form along the cliff face. But regardless of the time of the year, the panoramic view is astonishing.

    Upon arrival to Iguazu Airport, transfer to the Sheraton Iguazu where you will spend the next two nights. The first day will be at leisure, stroll along the pathways inside the hotel complex and enjoy those first views of the falls at your own pace.

    Overnight: Sheraton Iguazu
    Meal Plan: B



    Day 4: Iguazu

    After breakfast at the hotel, a full day of exploration lies ahead. Your local guide will take you on a tour of the Argentinean side of the national park. Walk the paths that lead along the lush, tropical basin of the Devil’s Gorge and over and under the splashing torrents of falling water.

    The Argentine National Park was created in 1934 and covers some 50,000 hectares. In order to feel the proximity of the falls and observe the beauty of its vegetation, birds and butterflies, it is essential to walk along the footbridges and roads. Waterproof clothing is essential, since there is a small price to pay for getting within such close range of the falls!

    A short train trip will take you up to the pathways leading to the Devil’s Gorge, one of the more impressive falls. Standing on the viewing platform at the edge of Iguazu Falls, one realises exactly why the narrow gorge is known locally as “Garganta del Diablo” (Devil's Throat). Hundreds of metres wide, the Iguazu River flows placidly until it reaches the precipice of the canyon. Then the mighty flow plunges over the rim into a deep crevasse.

    Lunch will be served at a restaurant on the Argentine side of the park, before returning to the hotel. Evening is at leisure.

    Overnight: Sheraton Iguazu
    Meal Plan: B,L



    Day 5: Iguazu - Buenos Aires

    After breakfast, venture out to visit the Brazilian side of the national park, including the spectacular Itaipu Dam. This side of the falls offers by far the best panoramic views, and arguably the most spectacular jungle landscapes. Created in 1939 and covering 170,000 hectares, the Brazilian National Park embraces four municipalities, including Foz do Iguaçu, a name of indigenous origin meaning big water. Even today, the legend of how the falls were formed is part of local folklore. The Naipi and Taroba Indians were a sort of Romeo and Juliet and were pursued by the irascible serpent of the waters, M' Boi, who transformed himself into the various cataracts.

    After lunch at a restaurant on the Brazilian side of the falls, continue to the incredible Itaipu Hydroelectric Dam. Itaipu is the largest power plant on Earth, and generates some 12.6MW of power, enough to supply a staggering 38% of Brazilian and Paraguayan demand. Through this fascinating visit, one can grasp the magnitude of the efforts involved in creating this miracle of engineering.

    Later, transfer to Iguazu Airport for the afternoon flight to Buenos Aires.

    Overnight: Park Hyatt Palacio Duhau
    Meal Plan: B,L



    Day 6: Buenos Aires - El Calafate

    This morning transfer to the airport for the flight to El Calafate. Upon arrival, you will be transferred toyour hotel. There will be a short briefing given by the guide about the activities planned for the next three days.

    El Calafate is known for the scenery of imposing glaciers descending from the continental ice field. Thirteen glaciers on the Atlantic side break into huge ice towers onto the waters of the lakes Viedma and Argentino. The front faces of the glaciers Perito Moreno, Mayo, Spegazzini and Upsala fall upon the latter, at a short distance from the shores of the glaciers Agassiz, Onelli, Ameghino and Frías. Tertiary granite elevations covered with thick Andean forests are part of this spectacle. You can go sailing across the lakes to appreciate more closely the front face of the glaciers, or go trekking and climbing.

    The rest of the day is at leisure.

    Overnight: Los Notros
    Meal Plan: B



    Day 7: El Calafate

    This morning visit the famous Perito Moreno glacier. After a 90 minute journey, you will arrive at the embarkation area where you will board a small boat to Lago Argentino. Once on the other side, and after a short walk you will put on the crampons for a spectacular walk across the glacier. After a box lunch, head back to the boat to get a front view of the glacier. There will be plenty of free time to contemplate the unique scenery, before heading back to the hotel.

    Overnight: Los Notros
    Meal Plan: B,L,D



    Day 8: El Calafate

    Today’s excursion is on the “Upsala Explorer”, and includes a visit to the largest glacier in the area. A 40 minute drive connects the hotel and the embarkation point, where you will board the vessel which will take you within touching distance of the Upsala Glacier.

    After 45 minutes or so, head for the Estancia Cristina where a typical, Patagonian lamb barbecue will be served. Later on, there will be a trip by unimog to an observation point over the glacier for some spectacular views.

    Overnight: Los Notros
    Meal Plan: B,L,D



    Day 9: El Calafate - Depart Buenos Aires

    Mid-morning transfer to El Calafate Airport for your flight to Buenos Aires. Upon arrival, a local representative will be waiting to transfer you to Ezeiza International Airport for your flight home.

     

    To book or customise this itinerary call: 01227 671 154


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