Day 1 – Buenos Aires – Arrival and check-in
Upon arrival to Ezeiza airport in Buenos Aires, your representative will be on hand to escort you to your private motor coach for the transfer to the hotel. Buenos Aires is a marvelous city with wide boulevards, large parks, sidewalk cafes, tango parlors, and ornate buildings with rococo and baroque decorations. After check-in, time to freshen up and then start a special sightseeing tour of the Argentine capital.
The tour will take in all the major sights including Teatro Colón Opera House, the Metropolitan Cathedral, the Government Palace (Casa Rosada), the colorful La Boca district, the tough port barrio and colorful working class heart of Buenos Aires, and San Telmo, home and birthplace of the sultry tango.
Your tour continues towards Buenos Aires most elegant areas: Palermo with its beautiful gardens, designed by French architect Charles Thays, and Recoleta, one of the wealthiest neighbourhoods in the city. Included in this tour will be the Recoleta Cemetery, where “Evita” was laid to rest.
Evening at leisure. Dinner on your own.
Day 2 – Buenos Aires
Located only 120 kilometers from the City of Buenos Aires, in the middle of a unique environment, the Estancia Los Patos is part of a property owned by the Videla Dorna family more than 200 years ago. The Estancia Los Patos was built by Ángel de Estrada in 1969. It has been recycled and enlarged in the last years due to an increasing number of guests, mostly from Europe and the U.S. Presently, the visits to the estancia meet the balance between traditional country customs and modern comforts.
It is located in the Monte District, southeast of the Province of Buenos Aires, on Route 41. which joins the cities of San Miguel del Monte and General Belgrano. The estancia is only at 120 kilometers from the city of Buenos Aires. Presently, with the new highway Cañuelas-Monte, transfer time is less and road security is better.
In the framework of an estancia, Los Patos offers many activities developed in the Argentine countryside, depending on the season of the year and the weather changes. Guests will have the possibility of riding horses, or to ride old carriages through the pasture grounds, observing the various works carried out in the estancia in the different seasons, i.e.: rodeo, sowing, colt breaking in (palenqueada), etc. In the estancia, guests will also have the possibility of playing knucklebones (taba), crocket, sapo, cards, or bowls. In hot days they can use the swimming pool and sunbathe.
Evening return to the Hotel to freshen up after a day of activities. In due time, transfer to Café Tortoni, the most famous cafeteria in Buenos Aires, where you will be surprised with a private Tango Lesson accompanied by professional teachers. After you have mastered the art, you will be transferred to Esquina Carlos Gardel Tango Hall, to enjoy an a la Carte Dinner at the VIP area, followed by a fascinating tango show.
Day 3 – Buenos Aries/Salta
House of Jasmines
After enjoying breakfast in Buenos Aires, your representative will transport you to Jorge Newbery Airport and assist you to board the flight to Salta. Reception at the airport in Salta by the local guide and transfer to your Hotel.
In the afternoon, your guide will take you around the city and different sites, chosen according to your interests. Known as ”Salta la linda” (Salta the beautiful), it is one of the Argentine cities that has kept the colonial architectonic values.
Pick up from the hotel and drive up to the main square 9 de Julio to visit the Cathedral, MAAM Museum (Museum of High Altitude Archeology) and City Council. Then go down Caseros Street visiting San Francisco Church and its beautiful belfry that for many years was the highest tower in South America. Continue on toward San Bernardo Hill, where we will enjoy a panoramic view. Continue by San Martin Street visiting San Martin Park.
Our next visit is Güemes Monument at the foot of San Bernando Hill, towards Tres Cerritos Quarter and the University Camps up to San Lorenzo Ville by Lesser Road.
Tonight dinner will be served at the hotel.
Day 4 – Salta/Cafaye
Hotel Patios de Cafayate
After breakfast your guide will pick you up at your hotel to continue your trip towards Cafayate. Situated at 183 km away from the capital city of the province through Nº 68 National Road. It is the main city in the district of Cafayate and has become the most important site in the Calchaquí Valleys.
Located at 1,660 m above sea level, Cafayate is well known for its famous “Torrontes” wine product. An exquisite combination of temperature and humidity provides the ideal environment to the growth of its sweet and deep fruit flavor.
On the way up to this town we will explore the towns of Cerrillos, La Merced and El Carril. We will also visit Coronel Moldes to appreciate colonial architecture of XIX century very near of Dique Cabra Corral (Cabra Corral Dam). After this visit we will keep on up to Posta de las Cabras and then continue to Alemania where we will stop for a snack under an Algarrobo Tree with a wonderful view and visit the old train station.
We will then visit Quebrada de las Conchas (Conchas Gorge). The majesty of its colorful landscape and the interesting geological and cultural history make this route a classic for travelers. Recent archaeological research carried out by researchers in Las Conchas Gorge proved the existence of a beautiful Inca path stretching a few meters away from the national road 68.
After lunch in Cafayate, we will visit a winery and walk around the main square.
Dinner will be served at the Hotel.
Day 5 – Cafaye/Salta
House of Jasmines
After breakfast we will continue up to Estancia & Bodega Colome, visiting San Carlos town towards Angastaco and Molinos by Quebrada de las Flechas (Arrow Gorge). This gorge, just south of Angastaco is formed by the Rio Calchaqui and remarkable for its formations and colors. It is named after the arrow-shaped rocks found in the gorge.
Our next stop before Colome is Molinos. This pre-Hispanic town, that was soon the feudo of Mills or “Calchaqui,” was an historically important commercial route of Jumps towards Chile.
We will lunch at Colome and keep on towards Salta, visiting Cach — a beautiful town in the Calchaquí Valley of Salta on the east slope of Nevado Hill at 6,720m above the sea level. Nature, as well as colonial aristocracy from the XVIII Century, can be admired in this environment.
In this legendary town, there are white buildings, adobe houses, paved streets and impressive architectural and cultural constructions. We will depart from Colome to visit Seclantas and the Craftsman Trail. On the Cuesta del Obispo natural balcony we will make an stop to contemplate the view and the flight of Condors (if they are there), and enjoy some snacks (in case it is too cloudy, we will offer the snack over Tin Tin stretch or in Los Colorados).
Day 6 – Salta/Purmamarca
Hotel la Comarca
8:00am departure from the hotel to head to the Quebrada del Toro, the road that will lead us up to the Puna. This road runs alongside the rails of the famous train to the Clouds, an incredible work of steel.
Stop at the Santa Rosa de Tastil ruins, and then on to San Antonio de los Cobres, a little mining town where you will have lunch at the hostel. An hour’s drive north across the vastness and solitude of a high mountain plateau brings us to Salinas Grandes, an otherworldly salt flat.
Drive down the Cuesta de Lipán, where the scenery changes very fast, until we arrive at the small town of Purmamarca, a small village of the XVII century suspended in the time, at the foot of imposing hills . Its church dates from 1648. Made of adobe walls, with a unique cardon roof, it is a National Historic Monument.
Dinner will be at the hotel.
Day 7 – Purmamarca
Hotel la Comarca
Departure at 9.00 am. During this day you will enjoy driving along the Humahuaca Gorge. Important sites are Tilcara, a Pucará or fortified lookout: the Posta de Hornillos, used in colonial times to connect Perú with Buenos Aires by horse; and the Church of Uquía. Humahuaca is an important colonial centre, originating from the transformation of the pre-existing, “omaguaca” village from the Inca time. It conserves its historic physiognomy in its building and in its narrow cobbled streets. The Church (1641), consecrated to our lady of Candelaria (11 and 22 of February), contains works of artistic value such as the sculpture of Patro Virgin and the Twelve Prophets, by Marcos Sapaca, from the Cusco School. The Independence Monumento (1950), at the top of the outside steps that depart from the square, is used as an imposing amphitheatre where Tantnakui meets every year: it is a non-commercial, musical meeting that gathers great figures such as Jaime Torres and many artists from the region.
At the top of the hill, visitors will find the remains of Santa Barbara Tower, used as a fort by Spaniards in the XIX century and also a combat site (1837) during the war against the Peruvian-Bolivian Confederation. Required stops are the Archaeological Museum and the Folkloric Regional Museum, in which different traditional customs are shown: chicha-making method, remedy elaboration, amulet meaning, and witchcrafts, carnival burial and exhumation rites, disguises, typical suits, and handmade objects. Humahuaca-based, and abandoning asphalt, you can access (9km) Coctaca, with impressive cultivation terraces, 35km x 12.5km in extension, and ruins of an aboriginal population. The circuit is completed with a visit to Leandro Lake (60km from Humahuaca, at 4,600 meters above sea level), legend place, Chorcan and Arpazo.
Return to hotel at 7:30pm. Dinner on your own.
Day 8 – Purmamarca/ Jujuy/ Iguazú
Hotel Sheraton Internacional Iguazú
Transfer from Purmamarca to Jujuy airport to embark on a flight to Iguazú.
Located near the junction of Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay, Iguacu Falls (pronounced eeh-gwa-SUE) is a must-see: It may be the greatest waterfall in the world. There are 275 cataracts in all, stretching 2 miles from bank to bank and reaching a height of 300 ft. The falls, on the Parana River, are best seen October-December and March-May.
The Sheraton Internacional Iguazú Resort is a three-story resort with a spectacular view of the magnificent Iguazú Falls. The hotel features 176 guest rooms and 4 suites, all complete with private balcony, cable television, minibar and in-room movies.
Day 9- Iguazú Falls
Hotel Sheraton Internacional Iguazú
Enjoy a full day for exploring the Iguazú National Park with your local guide.
Enjoy a walk along the upper and lower trails around the spectacular Iguazú Falls, admiring the whole system of more than 270 different falls. Boat trip to San Martin Island and along the canyon of the river.
This afternoon, visit to the Devil’s Throat, the main fall of the Iguazú system, where you will see many species of wildlife such as toco toucans, parakeets, coatis, capuchin monkeys and several species of tropical butterflies.
Day 10 – Igazu/ Ibera Marshlands
Estancia Rincon del Socorro
Morning departure in your private vehicle to Posadas, accompanied by your bilingual guide. Full day land transfer through a magnificent landscape enjoying the scenery and some stops in route (9 hours approximately).
Arrive Posadas, in the subtropical northeastern region of Argentina, close to the border with Paraguay. You are met and driven through savannahs to the Estancia Rincon del Socorro.
The region of the little-known Esteros de Iberá, in the province of Corrientes, has a complex system of aquatic environments of more than 5,000 square miles (1,300,000 hectares) that includes wetlands, marshes, lagoons and water currents alternating with firm land. It is a unique and majestic natural ecosystem, practically virgin and savage, ideal for observing wildlife.
El Iberá, which in the Guaraní language means “shining waters,” is one of the largest fresh water systems in the world, following the Brazilian Pantanal in order of importance on this continent.
Estancia Rincón del Socorro is a 12,000-hectare former cattle ranch on the edge of the Iberá wetlands in Northeastern Argentina that has been made into a nature reserve. The orientation is to give guests and visitors a good understanding of the local ecosystem and an appreciation for the importance of wetlands and savanna landscapes.
Hostería Rincón del Socorro is a small, refined eco-tourist hotel in the ranch’s recycled main house. Meals are predominantly prepared with organic fruit and vegetables, most from the kitchen garden. Meat is all free-range. The hostería is equipped with a professional kitchen and offers a full bar service. It specializes in fine organic cuisine and honors the Argentine barbecue tradition in with a wide variety of free range meat, grilled vegetables, good Argentine wines, homemade breads and special deserts. When the weather is good, lunch and dinner can be served outdoors. Special diets can be accommodated with prior notice.
Days 11 & 12- Ibera Marshlands
Estancia Rincon del Socorro
Enjoy two full days of exploration of the Ibera Marshlands with your local guide. Birdwatching, horseback riding, boat & canoe trips, nature walks and fly fishing are some of the activities available to enjoy during the stay, with a diverse range of fauna of the area.
There are few regions in Argentina that can compare to the richness and diversity of species that are found in the Esteros del Ibera. In the last twenty-five years biologists are beginning to understand the importance of this vast fresh-water system to the biological community of Latin America. Though there are notable species that have been lost to over-hunting or loss of habitat because of ranching and forestry plantations, there is a movement toward reintroducing these lost species and there are still hundreds of species of fauna and plant life left to be seen. At Estancia Socorro visitors can easily see wildlife such creatures as carpinchos, freshwater otters, alligators, marsh deer and with a little patience and good luck, one just might see the illusive Maned wolf, howler monkey or the sprocket deer.
The crown jewel of the Esteros–the jaguar–hasn’t been seen in the area since the 1930’s but biologists are hoping that it can make a comeback one day.
Day 13 – Ibera Marshlands/ Posadas/ Buenos Aires
Morning transfer to Posadas airport for flight to Buenos Aires and connect to International Ezeiza airport for international departure.