Coast to Coast Tour
Summary37 Days / 36 Nights
Explore South America’s most beautiful cities and highlights on the Pacific coast as well as the Atlantic on this 37-day tour. Start in Lima and then travel to Puerto Maldonado, Cuzco, Machu Picchu, Puno, La Paz, Uyuni, Salta, Puerto Iguazú, Buenos Aires and Montevideo until you reach Punta del Este on the Atlantic coast. Experience the best cuisine that Lima has to offer on a culinary tour, take a first class train to the mysterious Machu Picchu, marvel at the unique landscapes of the Uyuni Salt Flats and learn to dance the passionate Tango in Buenos Aires. This Coast to Coast Tour shows the best highlights of Peru, Bolivia, Argentina & Uruguay.
|FROM 12390 Per Person||
This tour includes:
Day 1Arrival in Lima
The Coast to Coast tour starts in Lima. Upon arrival in Lima, meet your tour guide and transfer to your hotel to downtown Lima. Spend the evening at your leisure and begin exploring the beautiful neighborhood, Miraflores, close to the Parque Central (Central Park). Get ready for a full day city tour tomorrow.
Day 2Lima City Tour & Culinary Tour at Night
Enjoy breakfast at the hotel and meet your local guide for your half day Lima city tour. The first stop on tour is the Plaza de Armas (main square) to see the main Cathedral, Archbishop’s Palace and Government Palace. Admire the colorful Spanish balconies and architecture. Continue to the Monastery of San Francisco, to see the oldest library in Latin America and walk through the catacombs. Next stop is the Larco Museum, which holds the finest precious metals collection in Peru. Finish the city tour in Miraflores and walk to Lover’s Park to enjoy a magnificent view of the Pacific Ocean.
At night, embark on a culinary tour of Lima and tour some of the top restaurants in the city. Start at an upscale restaurant and lounge, located right on the beach and learn how to perfect the Pisco Sour, Peru’s national cocktail. After a refreshing cocktail, head to Ámaz to try traditional Amazonian cuisine. Ámaz won Best New Restaurant in Peru in 2013 for its lively and inviting design, along with its culinary creations. Learn how to make the Amazonian version of ceviche. Enjoy an explosion of flavors like no other.
Day 3Transfer to Puerto Maldonado & Refugio Amazonas Lodge
Rise early and transfer to the Lima airport for your flight to Puerto Maldonaldo. Upon arrival, a local guide from Refugio Amazonas will welcome and escort you to the lodge. Refugio Amazonas is an authentic open-air lodge run by the local community, offering the best expert guides and naturalists that truly know the region. Spotting wildlife and identifying different species by sound is second nature to the guides. This ensures travelers a unique and authentic Amazon experience.
Refugio Amazonas is a full-service lodge intended to make your stay enjoyable and memorable. Settle into your room and get ready for your first excursion. Head out for a nighttime safari along the river’s edge, scanning the shores with headlamps and flashlights to catch the red gleams from caiman eyes. Listen to the nocturnal animals as they come to life. Please note that excursions offered at the lodge can vary and this lodge is subject to availability.
Day 4Refugio Amazonas Lodge
Get ready for your fist day in the Amazon. Rise early and depart for Oxbow Lake where you will board a small catamaran that will take you along the lakeside in search of flora and fauna. Look for hoatzin, caiman, and horned screamers. If you’re lucky, you might even spot some otters.
Return to the lunch for lunch and a quick break. After lunch walk to the canopy tower for an unobstructed view of the jungle’s canopy. From here your guide will point out any toucans, macaws and raptors.
Return to your lodge and relax for some time before visiting an Amazonian Farm. Travel five minutes downriver to a local farm to see the different Amazon crops, which you might be able to try! Next stop is the Ethnobotanical Tour to see a variety of plants and trees that are used by the locals. Learn about the medicinal (and other) uses of Ajo-Sacha, Yuca de Venado, Uña de Gato, Charcot-Sacha, Para-Para, among several others. Just as the sun begins to set, cruise down the river and return to the lodge in time for dinner. Reflect on your first night in the Peruvian Amazon.
Please note that this lodge is subject to availability.
Day 5Refugio Amazonas Lodge
Rise early and depart for the nearby Parrot Clay Lick. Only a fifteen-minute boat ride away from the lodge is a clay lick used by both parrots, parakeets and sometimes macaws. With luck, you will see the Mealy and Yellow-crowned Amazons, Blue-headed Pionus, and Orange Parrots. Continue to the Brazil Nut Trail and Camp. Just a short hike from the lodge is a beautiful old growth patch of the Brazil Nut Forest that has been harvested for decades. Return to the lodge for lunch and relax before getting ready for kayaking. Enjoy and easy-going paddle downstream, to spot toucans, caiman, river turtles, monkeys and more. Enjoy dinner at the lodge and get ready for a night walk to see and hear more of the nocturnal wildlife. Let your sense relax and enjoy the sounds and smells of the jungle.
Please note that this lodge is subject to availability.
Day 6Transfer to Cuzco & Dinner Show
After an early breakfast, say goodbye to Refugio Amazonas and your local guide. Journey back to Puerto Maldonado for your flight to Cuzco.
Upon arrival in Cuzco, a guide will be waiting to escort you to the downtown area. Settle into your hotel and then head out for one of Cuzco’s spectacular night shows. Enjoy traditional Andean and international food while you watch a local group, in native costumes, play fabulous folk music and perform typical dances.
Day 7Cuzco City Tour & Nearby Ruins
Discover the fascinating historical and cultural legacy of the Incas in the capital of the Inca Empire on this private 4-hour Cuzco city tour. Visit Korikancha, known as the “Temple of the Sun” and now the site of the Santo Domingo Convent. Tour the Cathedral, which faces the Plaza de Armas (main square) in the heart of downtown Cuzco.
Venture outside the city to nearby ruins, Sacsayhuaman, here you will also enjoy a spectacular aerial view of Cuzco. Just up the road are several other Inca stone ruins, including Q’enqo, Puca Pucara and Tambomachay. At the end of the tour, your guide will take you back to your hotel in Cuzco.
Day 8Pisac Market & Ollantaytambo
A must-see full day tour of the Sacred Valley of the Incas takes you from Cuzco along the Urubamba river to the towns of Pisac and Ollantaytambo. Visit the Pisac market, where local farmers and craftspeople bring their goods to town to sell and trade. Here is the perfect place to buy some fun souvenirs including, handmade creches, alpaca wool sweaters, carved handicrafts, and watercolor paintings.
After lunch at a local restaurant, continue to Ollantaytambo, known for its impressive cliffside ruins built by the Incas. Ollantaytambo is the only town that has been in continuous operation since the time of the Incas. Tour the ruins and admire the breathtaking valley, before checking into your hotel for the evening.
Day 9Train to Machu Picchu & Ruins Tour
Enjoy an early breakfast at your hotel before departing for Machu. Board the first class Vistadome train, complete with its glass ceiling, allowing ample opportunities to take in the unbeatable scenery as you take the 3-hour journey to Machu Picchu. The train will take you to Aguas Calientes, the town at the foot of Machu Picchu. A shuttle will whisk you up the mountain to the entrance of Machu Picchu where you will quickly realize why it is a new wonder of the world. The stonework at Machu Picchu was so well engineered that many of the walls have been intact since the days of the Incas in the 15th and 16th centuries. After the guided tour, wander around the ruins on your own and return to Aguas Calientes at your leisure.
Day 10Machu Picchu Visit
Your guide will pick you up from your hotel and take you to the bus stop for your round trip transfer from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu. If you have opted to hike Huayna Picchu, you will either from 7am-8am and 10am-11am. Entrance to the mountain is only allowed during these times and require a special pass.
Once you return to Machu Picchu, snap a few final photos before of the mysterious ruins. Take in your last moments before transferring back to your hotel in Cuzco.
Day 11Cuzco to Puno
Today, take a private transfer from Cuzco across the Altiplano to Puno. Depart in the morning for your first stop in Andahuaylillas. Here, find a colonial village with a charming plaza shaded with red-flowered trees and the adobe church of San Pedro, built on a foundation of the early Inca Empire.
Then, continue en route to Raqchi, a ceremonial center. Raqchi is a fascinating glimpse into the ambition and organization skills of the empire. Rising above the peaceful village is the “Temple of Viracocha” a wall of adobe bricks nearly 14m high and 83m long carved by the Incas. Later, visit the town Sucuani for a delicious local lunch. Next, visit the pre-Inca ruins of Pucara, a ceremonial center, built by the Pucara, one of Titicaca’s earliest cultures (300 BC to 300 AD). Continue to the banks of Lake Titicaca and arrive in the city of Puno in the late afternoon.
Day 12Uros & Taquile Islands
Soak in the beauty of this high altitude lake, known in Incan history as the birthplace of the Inca Empire. The lake dwellers of Lake Titicaca are expert reed craftsmen who build reed islands and boats, which you can see during your Lake Titicaca tour. Visit the floating Uros Islands, which are made completely from reeds. Then visit the island of Taquile, home to about 1500 Quechua-speaking inhabitants known for their incredible textile skills.
In the evening, return to your hotel in Puno.
Day 13Catamaran Cruise Lake Titicaca
Transfer to Copacabana in Bolivia where you will board the Catamaran Cruise Ship. Sail to Sun Island, the legendary birthplace of the Incan Empire. There will be a buffet on board for lunch. Visit Challapampa Village and interact with the indigenous Titicaca Village through an innovative program organized with the local community. Explore the museum, chapel, school, a traditional house and sail to an Inca Holy Temple.
At night, indulge in a romantic candlelit dinner. Stay overnight aboard the Catamaran inside cabins with lake views.
Day 14Sun Island, Copacabana & La Paz
The Catamaran Cruise will continue sailing across the lake while you enjoy a delicious breakfast. Travel to Inti Wata Cultural Complex and enjoy panoramic views of the lake. Explore the complex as well as the Ekako Underground Museum, Pachamama agricultural Inca terraces, the handicraft center and more. Snacks will be available at the Complex.
Later, visit the Inca Garden and the Inca Fountain. You may also opt for a sailing experience at the Inti Wata Complex on Sun Island, aboard a traditional vessel. A lunch buffet will be available on board while you sail to Chua Harbor.
In the evening transfer to La Paz and check into your hotel.
Day 15La Paz City Tour
Rise early and enjoy breakfast at your hotel before your guided city tour of La Paz. First stop is the “Witch Doctor’s Market”, where you can find herbs, aphrodisiacs and magic charms. Continue to San Francisco Colonial Church, Plaza Murillo, Cathedral, Government Palace and the National Congress. Walk along the cobblestone Jaen Street, which has kept most of its colonial charm. Enjoy lunch at a nearby local restaurant before transferring to the Moon Valley, located just outside of La Paz. Here you will see lunar rock formations that have been naturally carved by wind and rain. Visit a ceramic workshop and watch a pottery demonstration.
Finally, transfer to the cable car station and enjoy a scenic ride with excellent views of La Paz and the surrounding mountains. La Paz cable cars are a modern and efficient system that has become the pride of the city.
Day 16Tiahuanaco Ruins
For archaeologists and history enthusiasts, a tour of the Tiahuanaco Ruins should is a must. About an hour’s drive outside of La Paz are the ruins of the Tiahuanaco; this was one of the oldest American civilizations that dominated the region and were famous for constructing some of the largest temples in the world. Also note the indigenous Aymara people living in the area, especially in Laja.
Lunch is included today.
Day 17Transfer to Uyuni Salt Flats
Transfer to the La Paz Airport for your flight to Uyuni! Prepare yourself and your camera for the most amazing experience of your life. Upon arrival at the airport, transfer to the Incahuasi Island. This island is a central tourist attraction. Follow an array of paths to the top of the island, for an amazing 360-degree view of the natural wonder and enjoy a boxed lunch.
Continue north to the vast white landscape. As you travel, begin to distinguish the feminine silhouette of the magical Thunupa Volcano. Once there, ascend onto the volcano by car and visit the Coquesa Mummies Museum. From the viewpoint of the museum, you will be able to enjoy the monumental spectacle of the Uyuni Salt Flats.
On the way to the quaint village of Tahua, stop at the Chantani Museum. Check out its pottery exhibition, famous for its precious stones. Spend the night at the Tayka Salt Hotel.
Day 18Tahua & Ojo de Perdiz
Today will be dedicated to the northern area of the Salt Flats, unknown to mass tourism. First, head towards Ch’jini very rarely visited despite its unique beauty. Ascend to the “Cathedral”, where the ruins of heaped stones rest. Next, visit the cave of Ch’jini, resultant of an underwater geologic formation with calcareous bodies and meteoric waters, formed in the previous stage of the glaciations 16,000 years ago.
Later, cross to the most beautiful part of the white desert, the Sensual Salt Flats. Head to the bay of Campanas Islands dominated by the image of the Volcano Caltama forming unique landscape surroundings. Leave the Salt Flats to Pueblo Quemado de San Pedro de Quemes, where you’ll exit the car to go through its small streets and buildings. Lunch at the Tayka de Piedra Hotel.
In the afternoon, head to the Canapa, Hedionda, and Chiarkota lagoons. lagoons. Marvel at the color of the lagoons as well as the flamingoes that dance in them and other bird species.
Overnight stay at the Tayka del Desierto Hotel.
Day 19Ojo de Perdiz & Uyuni Tour
Rise early and depart for a full day tour. Start the tour with a short stop to see the Stone Tree, an impressive standing stone in the shape of a tree. Continue to the Morning Sun Geysers. The best time to see the geysers is early in the morning when they are most active. Walk past the boiling mud, smoky and noisy vapor springs and snap a few photos of the impressive feat. Here marks the highest point of the trip (5000 m above sea level). It can be cold, so be sure to bring a warm jacket.
The desert and Salt Plains of Chalviri are some of the most incredible landscapes. The mix of colors in the desert and the blue waters of the lagoons are sure to leave an everlasting impression on even the most seasoned traveler. The adventure continues to Polques, where you will have the option to take a bath in the Polques hot springs. Continue to the Valley of the Ladies Desert, majestic site showing how the winds sculpt the rocks into interesting shapes. Continue to the Green Lagoon, in the foothills of the Licancabur Volcano and watch as the waters change colors from emerald green to deeper shades of green.
Next stop is the Laguna Colorada (Colored Lagoon) a common nesting area for flamingos. The red lagoon comes from solar radiation and algae that. On the way back to Uyuni, stop at the town of San Cristobal to see and bear witness to a strange social-economical occurrence. You see, this whole town, along with the church, was literally lifted from the original site and put into place in a different area to permit the exploitation of minerals that belong now to one of the biggest mining endeavors in the world, the San Cristobal Mine.
In the late afternoon, arrive in Uyuni and proceed to Colchani. Enjoy dinner and spend the night at the Salt hotel.