I am planning an extensive trek and I would like to stop in the following countries in South America, I would like suggestions for routes overland by bus mostly (when safe), stay times will be flexible as I have plenty of time to spare and this is a leisure trip and any things that are worth experiencing along the way please suggest. Keeping in mind that during this trek its the culture and people that I want to experience not sights. Heres what I have planned so far:
1. fly from Miami to cartagena/barranquilla stay 1 month
2. because of guerillas fly to Quito/Guayaquil stay 1 month
3. Bus cross the border from Quito - Iquitos 2wks
4. Bus to Trujillo 2 weeks
5. bus Lima 3 months
6. bus to Arequipa 2 weeks
7.bus to La paz Bolivia 2 days
8. bus to salta stay??
9. bus to B.A. Argentina stay 2 months
I do not know the bus times or the companies so any suggestions are welcomed, the airplane stuff is fairly simple so Ive got that figured out. Is this a good route by bus? Also I will be travelling alone. I would like to get an apartment for the month long stays so if you know of any apartment web sites great.
Thanks in advance
From what I know I think it should be safe to take a bus from Colombia to Ecuador; there was some stirring earlier this year in the border region, but it seems to have settled (still, better check this in advance).
You have an interesting map of Ecuador; Quito isn't exactly near the border. What you could do, is travel south through the Andes via Baños, Riobamba and possibly Cuenca, and from there try to cross into Peru. This is a poorly documented and little travelled route; I have tried hard to find out about it before, but haven't been successful so far. As the jungle in northern Peru has poor infrastructure, this might be tough, but certainly very interesting.
Once you're there, why not dip into Brazil? There's regular boat services to Manaus you could consider; Iquitos per se isn't very worthwhile.
And, you seem to be skipping Cusco and Machu Picchu?? Better include those, you sort of need to travel via Cusco and Puno anyway to end up in La Paz.
And, don't run straight through Bolivia either. It's a beautiful country, very much worth exploring; depending on whether you decide to keep the Iquitos-bit in your trip, I'd recommend travelling east to Santa Cruz de la Sierra, and do a jungle trip there. Also, the dried salt lakes near Uyuni are worth a visit, plus a myriad of other spots.
Salta, yeah. Definitely include Salta. You'll love it. Also consider San Miguel de Tucuman, Jujuy and Santiago del Estero; all interesting towns. 2 months BsAs is also good, although you might want to take a bit more time for your travels.
please contact me if you want more feedback on your plan, regards,
[ Edit: Edited on Dec 11, 2006, at 12:51 AM by bentivogli ]
vaughnyb, i sent you a private message about your trip Colombia-Argentina.