Classic: Southern Cross Westbound - Rio to Lima (SZRM)
Trip Style: Classic - Designed for maximum variety, these trips are geared towards travellers searching for a healthy mix of active exploration, uncommon landscapes, amazing wildlife and local cultures.
Service Level: Standard
Physical Demands Rating: 4 - You might encounter a few high-altitude hikes or other more strenuous activities. Pro tip: Put down that pastry, buster.
Group Size: Max 16, avg 12
Meals Included: 32 breakfasts, 9 lunches, 8 dinners
Accommodations: Hotels (26 nts), overnight buses (2 nts), overnight trains (2 nts), camping (3 nts), homestay (1 nt), basic hotels on Uyuni Salt Flats excursion (2 nts, multi-share), tented room with hammocks in the Pantanal (2 nts, multi-share).
Stare in awe at Iguassu Falls, search for wildlife in the Brazilian Pantanal, spend three days exploring the Uyuni Salt Flats by 4x4, settle in with the locals at a homestay on Lake Titicaca, conquer the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu
From the sands of Copacabana to the heights of the Bolivian Andes, this incredible 39-day journey will introduce you to the diverse landscape and people of South America. Explore the wetlands of the Pantanal and the bizarre landscape of the Uyuni Salt Flats, and revel in the mists of thundering Iguassu Falls. Gain greater insight into the culture on the region's public buses and meet locals from the rural towns along the way for an immersive experience that few travellers get to know. Get off the beaten path and experience Peru, Brazil and Bolivia -a vibrant cross-section of South America.
- Tour Operator
- G Adventures
- Offer valid through 3/31/2018
- 39 Days
- Escorted - Yes
|Day 1||Rio de Janeiro||Day 1 Rio de Janeiro|
Arrive at any time. Included Activities: Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting
|Day 2||Ilha Grande||Day 2 Rio de Janeiro/Ilha Grande (1B)|
From Rio, head south along the Atlantic coast to one of the most picturesque, laid-back islands on the coast, llha Grande. Relax and walk the sandy beaches, or bathe in the warm waters of this island paradise. Transport: Local bus (3.50 hour(s), 87km) Ferry
|Day 3||Ilha Grande||Day 3 Ilha Grande (1B)|
Enjoy a free day in Ilha Grande.
|Day 4||Paraty||Day 4 Ilha Grande/Paraty (1B)|
Head down the beautiful Costa Verde to the colonial town of Paraty. Spend the afternoon exploring the cobblestone streets and cafEs. Transport: Ferry (1.50 hour(s)) Local bus (2.00 hour(s), 100km)
|Days 5-6||Paraty||Days 5-6 Paraty|
Enjoy two free days to explore by choosing to go snorkelling or visit a typical fazenda (farm). Opt for a cachaCa distillery visit or boat tour of the bay and nearby beaches.
|Day 7||Foz do Iguacu||Day 7 Paraty/Foz do Iguacu|
Drive to Sao Paulo for a flight to the magnificent Foz do Iguacu, or Iguassu Falls, which border Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina. In order to see the falls properly you need to view them from both the Brazilian and the Argentine sides. The Brazilian side offers the grand overview, and the Argentine side a closer look. Sit back and soak in the stunning beauty and raw power that is Iguassu, or take an optional boat tour directly into the spray of the falls. Transport: Private Vehicle (4.50-5.00 hours) Plane (1.75 hour(s))
|Day 8||Foz do Iguacu||Day 8 Foz do Iguacu (1B)|
Cross the border to Argentina for a new perspective of the falls. With an extensive series of catwalks and optional boat rides to the base of the falls, theres plenty to do before returning to the Brazilian side for the night. Additional Notes: If you have booked the Iguassu Falls Boat Ride Theme Pack, you will do it today on the Argentine side of the falls. Included Activities: Border Crossing (Brazil - Argentina) Iguassu Falls Visit Border Crossing (Argentina - Brazil)
|Day 9||Bonito||Day 9 Foz do Iguacu/Bonito (1B)|
Visit the Brazilian side of the falls and have a free afternoon to visit the bird park, home to species such as the Hyacinth macaw and toucans. In the afternoon, board overnight transport to travel to Bonito. Included Activities: Iguassu Falls (Brazil Side) Guided Tour Transport: Overnight bus
|Days 10-11||Bonito||Days 10-11 Bonito|
Explore nearby underwater caves and waterfalls, go rafting or snorkelling, or simply spend a lazy day by the river.
|Day 12||Pantanal||Day 12 Bonito/Pantanal (1B, 1L, 1D)|
Journey into the Pantanal, a perfect place to experience the wildlife of Brazil. Additional Notes: Please note, while on the rustic excursion in the Pantanal the nights will be spent in hammocks. Transport: At the entrance of the Pantanal, change to a truck that can better handle the terrain for the trip to the lodge. Private Vehicle (4.00-5.00 hours)
|Days 13-14||Pantanal||Days 13-14 Pantanal|
Enjoy an excursion into the wetlands of the Pantanal with a local guide. Opportunities to spot wildlife such as monkeys, macaws, giant otters, and caiman abound. Included Activities: Pantanal Wildlife Excursion
|Day 14||Santa Cruz de la Sierra||Day 14 Pantanal/Santa Cruz de la Sierra (1B)|
From the frontier town of CorumbA, Brazil, cross into Bolivia. From here, an overnight train heads to Santa Cruz. Occasionally, this train may be replaced with an overnight bus. Included Activities: Border Crossing (Brazil - Bolivia) Transport: Overnight train (airplane seats) (14.00 hour(s))
|Day 15||Santa Cruz de la Sierra||Day 15 Santa Cruz de la Sierra|
Spend some time exploring Santa Cruz.
|Day 16||Sucre||Day 16 Santa Cruz de la Sierra/Sucre|
Optional activities include a visit to dinosaur footprints, an old tin baron's mansion, mountain biking, and hiking. Transport: Plane (0.50 hour(s))
|Days 17-18||Sucre||Days 17-18 Sucre|
Free time to explore the city, the former capital of Bolivia. For more active options opt to go hiking in the surrounding area or mountain biking.
|Day 19||Potosi||Day 19 Sucre/Potosi (1B)|
Travel by bus to Potosi. Spend free time exploring the city. Transport: Private Vehicle (4.00 hour(s), 185km)
|Day 20||Uyuni||Day 20 Potosi/Uyuni (1B)|
Travel through the Bolivian landscape to the town of Uyuni, the jumping off point for the three day 4x4 excursion to the Uyuni Salt Flats. Additional Notes: During the rainy season the locations visited may change due to some routes being covered by water. Transport: Private Vehicle (4.00-5.00 hours, 230km)
|Day 21||Salar de Uyuni||Day 21 Uyuni/Salar de Uyuni (1B, 1D)|
Enjoy a three day 4x4 excursion to the Uyuni Salt Flats and surrounding desert altiplano with spectacular scenery. Additional Notes: We offer unique accommodation in the Uyuni Salt Flats. Instead of very basic refuges and homestays most operators use, we have upgraded to simple hotels that are equipped with solar panels to provide electricity and hot water. Rooms are multi-share and each have a private bathroom. Meals are made from local ingredients, most of which are grown on-site. Included Activities: Salt Flats Excursion
|Day 22||Salar de Uyuni||Day 22 Salar de Uyuni (1B, 1L, 1D)|
Continue exploring the Uyuni Salt Flats on a 4x4 excursion. Admire the spectacular scenery while passing red and blue lagoons along the route. Spot wild llamas, alpacas and even flamingos deep within the desert. Included Activities: Salt Flats Excursion
|Day 23||La Paz||Day 23 Salar de Uyuni/La Paz (1B, 1L)|
Rise early to cover more ground of the unique landscape of the Uyuni Salt Flats. Continue to see incredible scenery, including volcanoes, salt lakes and geysers. Travel back to Uyuni to catch an overnight train to La Paz. Included Activities: Salt Flats Excursion Transport: Stretch out and get some well-earned rest en route to the next stop. Due to scheduling the train may be replaced with an overnight bus. Overnight train (airplane seats) (7.00-8.00 hours)
|Day 24||La Paz||Day 24 La Paz|
Enjoy the afternoon in La Paz. Opt for a city tour or to explore the markets and winding streets. Transport: Local bus (4.00-5.00 hours)
|Day 25||La Paz||Day 25 La Paz (1B)|
Use another free day to explore La Paz. Opt to visit Iglesia de San Francisco, Chacaltaya, the Valley of the Moon, or the Witches Market.
|Day 26||La Paz||Day 26 La Paz (1B)|
Little is known about the Tiahuanaco people who constructed the great ceremonial centre on the southern shore of Lake Titicaca over 1000 years ago. Spend most of the day visiting these mysterious ruins-a cradle of Incan civilization-before returning to La Paz. Included Activities: Tiahuanaco Ruins Visit Transport: Local bus (2.00 hour(s), 70km) Local bus (2.00 hour(s), 70km)
|Day 27||Puno||Day 27 La Paz/Puno (1B)|
Peru is made up of three main geographical areas: the Andes, the Amazon, and the desert coastal area. Enjoy spectacular views of the countryside on a full day of travel from La Paz, around Lake Titicaca, and on to Puno. Included Activities: Border Crossing (Bolivia - Peru) Transport: Local bus (2.50 hour(s)) Local bus (3.50 hour(s))
|Day 28||Lago Titicaca||Day 28 Puno/Lago Titicaca (1B, 1D)|
Head out by boat across Lake Titicaca. Visit the community on the Taquile Islands and stop at a restaurant and enjoy a local lunch with spectacular views. After, cruise to the another village (this can vary based on community availability) for an overnight homestay on the shores of the lake. This experience provides an opportunity to learn more about rural life in the Peruvian highlands and to participate in local traditions. Eat with the family, pick up some Quecha and Spanish language skills, try on traditional costumes, and help out with daily chores around the village. Included Activities: Lake Titicaca Guided Boat Tour Day 1 Lake Titicaca Homestay
|Day 29||Puno||Day 29 Lago Titicaca/Puno (1B, 1L)|
Leave the homestay families late in the morning and visit the Uros Islands on the way back to Puno. A popular optional activity in Puno is a visit to the spectacular chullpas (funerary towers) of Sillustani, a pre-Inca archaeological site only a short drive away. Included Activities: Uros Floating Islands Visit Lake Titicaca Guided Boat Tour Day 2
|Day 30||Cusco||Day 30 Puno/Cusco (1B)|
The bus trip from Puno to Cusco takes the better part of the day, with stark, beautiful scenery en route as you travel through the high Altiplano region. Check out a bit of Cusco, find a spot for dinner, or get prepared to head into the Sacred Valley. Transport: Local bus (7.50 hour(s), 389km)
|Day 31||Cusco||Day 31 Cusco (1B)|
While most ruins are just outside of the city, the main ruin within is that of the Coricancha, once the Inca Empires richest temple. It forms the base of the colonial church of Santo Domingo. There are several good museums in Cusco, including the Archaeological Museum, which also houses a small art museum, the Regional History Museum, and the Religious Art Museum.
|Day 32||Ollantaytambo||Day 32 Cusco/Ollantaytambo (1B, 1L)|
Travel through the stunning Sacred Valley of the Incas, visiting a G Adventures-supported womens weaving co-op. Meet the women who work here and learn about traditional weaving and dyeing. Opt to pick up some handmade souvenirs right from the source. Take a guided tour of the impressive Pisac ruins, the colourful artisan market (on market days only), and a small indigenous village of Huchuy Qosco. Here, have lunch at the G Adventures-supported Parwa community restaurant. Learn about the project and eat a delicious buffet-style lunch, the proceeds from which go directly back to the remote community. Continue on to the town of Ollantaytambo. Go for a guided tour of the large ruin site just adjacent to the town. Ollayntaytambo is the first taste of what lies ahead in Machu Picchu. Included Activities: Ccaccaccollo Community and Womens Weaving Co-op visit Pisac Ruins Guided Tour Parwa Community Restaurant the Sacred Valley Ollantaytambo Ruins Guided Tour Transport: Make stops along the way as you pass through this gorgeous valley, descending in elevation the whole way. Private Vehicle (95km)
|Day 33||Inca Trail||Day 33 Inca Trail (1B, 1L, 1D)|
Trek through beautiful scenery, with a variety of flora that changes with the seasons, passing several smaller ruin sites like Llactapata. Additional Notes: A crew of local porters, cooks, and guides will take care of all the details for the duration of the hike. Porters carry the majority of the gear so you'll only need to carry a small daypack with water, rain gear, snacks, a camera, etc. Included Activities: Inca Trail Hike Transport: Private Vehicle (0.75 hour(s))
|Day 34||Inca Trail||Day 34 Inca Trail (1B, 1L, 1D)|
Start early to climb the long steep path to WarmiwaNusca, better known as Dead Woman's Pass. This is the highest point of the trek at 4,198m (13,769 ft). Most hikers reach camp by early afternoon, with ample time to rest and relax. Included Activities: Inca Trail Hike
|Day 35||Inca Trail||Day 35 Inca Trail (1B, 1L, 1D)|
Cross two more passes and ruins along the way. The first pass is Runquraqay at 3,950m (13,113 ft) where, on a clear day, hikers can catch a glimpse of the snow-capped Cordillera Vilcabamba. Hike through cloud forest on the gentle climb to the second pass of the day, walking through original Incan constructions. The highest point of the pass is 3,700m (12,136 ft). On a clear day, enjoy the spectacular views of the Urubamba Valley. At 3,650m (11,972 ft), reach the ruins of Phuyupatamarca, the "town above the clouds." Camp here or go another 1.5 hrs to the WiNay Wayna ruins ("forever young") located at 2,650m (8,694 ft). Included Activities: Inca Trail Hike
|Day 36||Cusco||Day 36 Machu Picchu/Cusco (1B)|
The final day of the hike starts pre-dawn to reach the Sun Gate before sunrise. Catch the first views of the breathtaking ruins of Machu Picchu on a clear day. Hike down to Machu Picchu for a guided tour of the site and free time to explore until noon as permitted by the tourist ticket. Opt to visit the Inca Bridge, if time allows. Catch the bus to Aguas Calientes to meet any non-hiking members of your group. Eat and relax before your train back to Cusco in the afternoon. Included Activities: Inca Trail Hike Machu Picchu Guided Tour Transport: Train (1.50 hour(s), 118km) Private Vehicle (2.00 hour(s))
|Day 37||Cusco||Day 37 Cusco (1B)|
Enjoy a free day to explore Cusco or relax. Active options include whitewater rafting, horseback riding, and mountain biking.
|Day 38||Lima||Day 38 Cusco/Lima (1B)|
Take a short flight to the coast and the capital city of Lima. This vibrant city has a fantastic main square, tons of shopping, and incredible eating. Opt to join the group for one final evening out. Transport: Plane (1.25 hour(s), 572km)
|Day 39||Lima||Day 39 Lima (1B)|
Depart at any time.
Local Flights: All local flights are included in the cost of your tour unless otherwise noted. It is important that we have your passport information at the time of booking in order to process these tickets. Internal flight tickets are issued locally and will be given to you prior to the flight departure.
Dossier Disclaimer:The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary.
VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.
Itinerary Disclaimer: While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Aboard expedition trips visits to research stations depend on final permission.
Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.