22 days in South America Itinerary

22 days in South America Itinerary

Created using Inspirock South America travel route maker

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Make it your trip
Fly
1
Lima, Peru
— 2 nights
Fly
2
Cusco, Peru
— 3 nights
Bus to Ollantaytambo, Train to Machu Picchu
3
Machu Picchu, Peru
— 2 nights
Fly
4
Uyuni, Bolivia
— 1 night
Drive
5
Iquique, Chile
— 2 nights
Bus
6
San Pedro de Atacama, Chile
— 2 nights
Fly
7
Puerto Varas, Chile
— 1 night
Bus
8
Pucon, Chile
— 4 nights
+2
Bus to Junín de los Andes, Taxi to Chapelco, Fly to Buenos Aires
9
Buenos Aires, Argentina
— 3 nights
Fly

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Lima, Peru

— 2 nights

City of the Kings

Founded in 1535 by Spanish explorer Francisco Pizarro, Lima represents an interesting blend of modern attractions and preserved colonial architecture, much of it clustered in the World Heritage-listed city center.
Kick off your visit on the 20th (Mon): explore the ancient world of Huaca Pucllana and then take a stroll through San Isidro. On the next day, head outdoors with Balneario La Punta, then contemplate the long history of Basilica y Monasterio de Santo Domingo, then head outdoors with Outdoor Activities, and finally pause for some serene contemplation at Museo Convento San Francisco y Catacumbas.

To find reviews, where to stay, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read our Lima attractions planning website.

London, UK to Lima is an approximately 16-hour flight. The time zone difference when traveling from London to Lima is minus 5 hours. In December, Lima is much hotter than London - with highs of 28°C and lows of 22°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Tue) to allow time to fly to Cusco.

Things to do in Lima

Historic Sites · Outdoors · Neighborhoods · Museums

Side Trip

Find places to stay Dec 19 — 21:

Cusco, Peru

— 3 nights

Imperial City

Capital of the Inca Empire for three centuries, World Heritage-listed Cusco is now a major tourist destination, drawing nearly 2 million annual tourists with its well-preserved colonial architecture and proximity to Machu Picchu.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Tipon and Spas & Wellness. Get some cultural insight at Sacsayhuaman and exploor. The adventure continues: tour the pleasant surroundings at Santuario Animal de Cochahuasi, explore the striking landscape at Cerro Colorado Vinicunca, steep yourself in history at Plaza de Armas, and explore the ancient world of Tambomachay.

To see traveler tips, more things to do, where to stay, and other tourist information, go to the Cusco trip planner.

You can fly from Lima to Cusco in 3.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. While traveling from Lima, expect little chillier days and much colder nights in Cusco, ranging from highs of 24°C to lows of 9°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 24th (Fri) so you can travel to Machu Picchu.

Things to do in Cusco

Historic Sites · Parks · Nature · Spas
Find places to stay Dec 21 — 24:

Machu Picchu, Peru

— 2 nights
A symbol of the Incan civilization, the abandoned city of Machu Picchu represents a must-see on a Peru vacation.
On the 25th (Sat), tour the pleasant surroundings at Mandor and then steep yourself in history at Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu.

To find traveler tips, ratings, more things to do, and more tourist information, use the Machu Picchu attractions planner.

Traveling by combination of bus and train from Cusco to Machu Picchu takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or drive. You will leave for Uyuni on the 26th (Sun).

Things to do in Machu Picchu

Historic Sites · Wildlife · Parks
Find places to stay Dec 24 — 26:

Uyuni, Bolivia

— 1 night
Emptiness surrounds the desert outpost of Uyuni, the gateway to the world's largest salt flats.
Start off your visit on the 27th (Mon): appreciate the extensive heritage of Avenida Ferroviaria.

For ratings, photos, maps, and more tourist information, go to the Uyuni tour itinerary planner.

You can fly from Machu Picchu to Uyuni in 6.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or do a combination of train and bus. The time zone difference when traveling from Machu Picchu to Uyuni is 1 hour. December in Uyuni sees daily highs of 13°C and lows of 13°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 27th (Mon) to allow enough time to drive to Iquique.

Things to do in Uyuni

Historic Sites
Find places to stay Dec 26 — 27:
Highlights from your trip

Iquique, Chile

— 2 nights
Thanks to the city's position on the Pacific coast, vacations in Iquique appeal to beachgoers, paragliders, bodyboarders, nature lovers, photographers, and fans of picture-perfect sunsets.
Start off your visit on the 28th (Tue): stroll through Playa Chanavayita and then make a trip to Paseo Peatonal Baquedano. Here are some ideas for day two: enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Cavancha.

To find reviews, ratings, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read Iquique trip itinerary planner.

Traveling by car from Uyuni to Iquique takes 9 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 29th (Wed) to allow enough time to take a bus to San Pedro de Atacama.

Things to do in Iquique

Beaches · Outdoors · Parks · Historic Sites
Find places to stay Dec 27 — 29:

San Pedro de Atacama, Chile

— 2 nights
Major archeological sites and a renowned museum remain the big draws in San Pedro de Atacama tourism, appealing to visitors interested in learning more about South America's pre-Columbian cultures.
Kick off your visit on the 30th (Thu): identify plant and animal life at On Safari Atacama and then get outside with White And Green International Travel - Day Tour. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: engage your brain at Museo del Meteorito and then explore the ancient world of Pukara de Quitor.

To see more things to do, maps, photos, and tourist information, go to the San Pedro de Atacama vacation planning website.

Take a bus from Iquique to San Pedro de Atacama in 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or fly. In December in San Pedro de Atacama, expect temperatures between 29°C during the day and 6°C at night. On the 31st (Fri), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can fly to Puerto Varas.

Things to do in San Pedro de Atacama

Outdoors · Historic Sites · Tours · Wildlife
Find places to stay Dec 29 — 31:

Puerto Varas, Chile

— 1 night

City of Roses

Overlooking a lake, with a conical volcano looming in the background, Puerto Varas enjoys memorable scenery but retains its authentic atmosphere.
Kick off your visit on the 1st (Sat): head outdoors with Outdoor Activities and then pause for some serene contemplation at Iglesia Sagrado Corazon de Jesus.

For more things to do, where to stay, maps, and more tourist information, go to the Puerto Varas trip itinerary builder app.

Traveling by flight from San Pedro de Atacama to Puerto Varas takes 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. When traveling from San Pedro de Atacama in December, plan for little chillier days and about the same nights in Puerto Varas: temperatures range from 21°C by day to 9°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 1st (Sat) so you can go by car to Pucon.

Things to do in Puerto Varas

Outdoors · Tours · Wildlife · Historic Sites
Find places to stay Dec 31 — Jan 1:

Pucon, Chile

— 4 nights
Nestled in the shadow of the snow-capped Villarrica volcano, Pucon ranks among the world's premier destinations for adventure sports and high-thrills activities.
Take a break from the city and head to Adrenaline & Extreme Tours and Canyoning & Rappelling Tours. Step off the beaten path and head to Horseback Riding Tours and Lago Villarrica. There's still lots to do: find your balance on the water with some of the best stand-up paddleboarding in the area, get impressive views of Parque Cuevas Volcanicas, explore the activities along Lake Villarrica, and walk around Bosque Encantado.

Before you visit Pucon, use our trip planner to discover what you can do and see there.

Getting from Puerto Varas to Pucon by car takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 5th (Wed) to allow enough time to travel to Buenos Aires.

Things to do in Pucon

Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Nature

Side Trip

Find places to stay Jan 1 — 5:

Buenos Aires, Argentina

— 3 nights

Queen of La Plata

Cultural capital of South America, Buenos Aires remains one of the largest cities on the continent, serving as a point of departure for exploring the rest of the country.
On the 6th (Thu), ponder the world of politics at Casa Rosada, don't miss a visit to Plaza de Mayo, visit Puerto Madero, then take in nature's colorful creations at Parque 3 de Febrero, and finally admire the masterpieces at Museo Nacional De Arte Decorativo. On the 7th (Fri), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: contemplate the long history of Palacio Barolo, admire the masterpieces at Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, then stroll the grounds of Cemiterio de Recoleta, and finally take a stroll through Recoleta.

To see reviews, other places to visit, and more tourist information, refer to the Buenos Aires trip planner.

You can do a combination of bus, taxi, and flight from Pucon to Buenos Aires in 10 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. The time zone difference moving from Chile Standard Time (CLT) to Argentina Standard Time (ART) is 1 hour. Expect a daytime high around 33°C in January, and nighttime lows around 24°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Sat) to allow enough time to fly back home.

Things to do in Buenos Aires

Historic Sites · Neighborhoods · Shopping · Museums
Find places to stay Jan 5 — 8:

Peru travel guide

4.6
Historic Sites · Parks · Landmarks
Land of the Incas
In a country renowned for its pre-Columbian archeological sites, no Peru vacation would be complete without an adrenaline-inducing hike to Machu Picchu, World Heritage-listed symbol of the once-mighty Incan Empire. Aside from visiting these spectacular ruins set against the backdrop of photogenic mountain peaks, most holidays in Peru also include an exploration of the country's pretty cities, boasting well-preserved colonial architecture and a slew of modern buildings housing fine museums, galleries, shops, and restaurants. Ideal for active vacationers, Peru trips are also tailor-made for gourmands, as the country's eclectic cuisine blends tasty influences from Africa, Asia, and Europe.

Bolivia travel guide

4.2
Landmarks · Geologic Formations · Specialty Museums
Tibet of the Americas
If you're an adventurous tourist, consider adding a Bolivia vacation to your travel itinerary. A land of rainforests, Andean glaciers, high altitude cities, and rushing rivers, Bolivia remains one of the most remote countries in the Western Hemisphere. With 60 percent of the population made up of indigenous peoples, native cultures permeate thecountry's music, architecture, and arts, as well as local folklore and traditions. Traveling in Bolivia you can experience diverse wildlife and ecosystems, learn about the country's rich history, try out its distinctive cuisine, and practice your Spanish with the locals, known for their clean and easy-to-understand accent.

Chile travel guide

4.3
Landmarks · Parks · Specialty Museums
Land of Poets
Squeezed between the Andes and the Pacific Ocean, geographically diverse Chile is a long, thin stretch of land encompassing some of the world's driest deserts in the north, and some of its largest glacial fields in the south. Though most Chile holidays include some form of adventure in the vast wilderness areas, the country also contains charming cities providing plenty of urban things to do and see. Many tours of Chile include at least a brief visit to the country's lush wine regions, where backyard vineyards compete with sprawling estates producing some of the world's most respected whites and reds.