Hi, myself and a friend (or 2) are planning on going to south america in 2010. We have no preference for dates, but, september/october is probably good as I understand it's not the most expensive time to visit the continent. We want to do the whole cultural so partying, etc is not what we are going there for.... We want to visit as much as possible given the time limitation and so are prepared to travel by train, plane, bus.... My definate must sees are Machu Picchu (and the inca trail if time permits), Buenos Aires, Igazu Falls, the Amazon Rainforest & river and we would also like to visit Brazil. We are just beginning to think of itineries and need some advice from people that know the continent and where is best to go..
I am currently thinking..
Arrive in Lima...
1 Day in Lima
Bus/train to Cuzco - A few Hours??
train from Cuzco to Inca trail - A few hours??
Inca Trail - 3 Days
Machu Picchu - 1 Day
Train/Bus back to Cuzco
Flight to Buenos Aires - A few hours???
2 Days in Buenos Aires
Bus to Igazu Falls 1 Day
1 Day in Igazu
Bus to Brazil - Wheres good to visit???
Fly back to Lima for flight home
Please help!! As you can see, the itinery is still in its infancy and needs some serious development!! Do you have any recommendations as to how this can be refned? Our starting and ending cities can be anywhere in mainland South America so Lima is not a must...
Thanks in advance...
Well... your itinerary really needs more thinking lol
From Lima you can take a bus (20 hours) or fly to Cusco (45 minutes) - there are great places to visit in Lima!!!
In Cusco you should spend at least 2 days to adjust to altitude and visit the Sacred Valley etc
The Inca Trail is a 4-days tour! You can spend one night in Aguas Calientes... (great tour options in Cusco)
From Cusco you can go to Bolivia via Puno/Lake Titicaca:
. Cusco - Puno by bus (10 hours - tour bus visiting sites), train [backpacker - 12 hours] or plane Cusco - Juliaca)
Once in Puno you can go to bolivia via Copacabana etc (there are nice places to visit in Bolivia)...
From La Paz you can take a flight to Buenos Aires, spend your 2 days there and go to Iguazu Falls. You should visit both the Argentinean and the Brazilian sides.
Once in Brazil (Foz do Iguaçu), you can visit southern Brazil (beaches, culture etc) and head up to São Paulo and Rio.
You could leave South America from São Paulo!
As a start, I hope it helps!!!
Best of luck!
I would most definitely spend more time in BA. It is such a vibrant colorful city and it should not be overlooked on your itinerary. You will not regret it.Also, be sure to go to Rio de janiero. Visit Illha Grande on the way there. Sao paolo is a large financial city that you may find interesting as well.
Have look at my blog if you want to know some more activites to do in each city. You can search by location
Try to fly from LIMA TO CUSCO , its just one hour , and the tickect are no so expensive http://plane.lan.com/index-es-pe.html ..
Give yourself 5 days in Buenos Aires - nothing less!!!