We are flying into Buenos Aires in early November and intend making our way up to Lima or Cuzco. As its our first time in SA can anyone advise us on the best way to travel up. How long would it take over land and what would be the best route to take ? Should we maybe look into booking an internal flight instead ?
(We only have seven weeks in total as we are due to leave Rio on the 15th December)
Any advise would be greatly appreciated
7 weeks for Buenos Aires to Lima and then on to Rio is a bit short, so you might need one flight. Don't know if you want to visit a lot in Brazil, otherwise you can take a flight to Rio from Lima.
There are lots of routes you can take, one will take you from Buenos Aires to Salta and on to Bolivia and southern Peru across the Altiplano and Saltflats. You can even fit northern Chile in it.
A more adventurous one is first to the Iquazu Falls and than through Paraguay (gran chaco) to Bolivian amazone area and to the Altiplano from there.
There are lots of threads about this area and travelling through this part of south america. Just search a bit.
[ Edit: Edited on Jun 6, 2007, at 2:00 AM by Utrecht ]
It's short all right, but it can be done in 7 weeks, esp. if you just rush the last part (beats flying from an environmentalist perspective).
I don't recommend Utrecht's alternative through Paraguay; while that is very nice, it's also VERY cumbersome during summer, due to rainfall the Paraguayan roads will turn into mudpools.
Here's what you could do (I posted similar suggestions for comparable routes throughout this forum; just browse back a few pages and you're likely to find one); underlined places are worth visiting, the other ones are just for reference:
BsAs - Salta - La Quiaca/Villazon - Salar de Uyuni (Bol) - S Pedro de Atacama (Chile) - Tacna (Peru) - Arequipa - Nazca - Cusco/MP - Puno (Bolivia) - Copacabana - La Paz - Cochabamba - Sta Cruz - train to Corumbà (Brazil) - Campo Grande - SP - Rio
This is pretty tight; esp. the last part through Brazil will be rushed. But this is the nicest route I can think of without backtracking.
Why don't you do the same as Che Guevara in a movie "Motorcycle diaries"?
That is: Buenos Aires - Mendoza - Santiago - Antofagasta - Arica - Tacna - Nazca - Lima
On that trip you have argentinian inland with nice towns and countryside, crossing over the Andes, Santiago and Valparaiso (with possibility to stay day or two in Vina del mar), Antofagasta - coastal desert town, Arica, possibility to visit San Pedro de Atacama, then in Peru Nazca lines (maybe a turn into Arequipa), Ica with its wine cellars, islands Ballestas (from Paracas), and many more things described in many guide books.
Think that you have enough time to do it easily.
In any way - enjoy.
There is enough time even to visit Cuzco and to fly to Rio.