30 days in Central America & South America Itinerary

30 days in Central America & South America Itinerary

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Route & dates

Start: London, United Kingdom
Fly:  15 h
1
San Jose, Costa Rica
— 4 nights
Fly:  10 h 15 min
2
Cusco, Peru
— 3 nights
+2
Bus + Foot + Train:  3 h 45 min
3
Machu Picchu, Peru
— 1 night
+2
Bus + Shuttle + Bus:  30 h
4
El Chalten, Argentina
— 2 nights
Drive:  3 h 30 min
5
El Calafate, Argentina
— 1 night
Fly:  5 h 15 min
6
Buenos Aires, Argentina
— 4 nights
Fly:  3 h 30 min
7
Iguazu National Park, Argentina
— 2 nights
Drive:  45 min
8
Foz do Iguacu, Brazil
— 1 night
Fly:  5 h 15 min
9
Santos, Brazil
— 5 nights
Drive:  5 h 45 min
10
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
— 3 nights
Fly:  7 h 45 min
11
Fernando de Noronha, Brazil
— 1 night
Fly:  22 h 15 min
End: London, United Kingdom

4
nights
San Jose, Costa Rica

San Jose ©
A trip to San Jose, the capital, commercial center, and cultural hub of Costa Rica, gives you a chance to experience the lively atmosphere and rich cultural past of this vibrant country.
You'll find plenty of places to visit near San Jose: Jaco (Mirador de Jaco, Zipline, &more) and Jardins da Cachoeira de La Paz (in Vara Blanca). There's still lots to do: take a memorable drive along Top Travel Costa Rica, admire the masterpieces at Museo de Arte Costarricense, pause for some serene contemplation at Iglesia La Soledad, and take an in-depth tour of Museo Nacional De Costa Rica.

For maps, photos, and more tourist information, use the San Jose trip planning tool.

London, UK to San Jose is an approximately 15-hour flight. The time zone difference moving from Greenwich Mean Time to Central Standard Time is minus 6 hours. Plan for much warmer temperatures traveling from London in November, with highs in San Jose at 30°C and lows at 22°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 11th (Wed) to allow enough time to travel to Cusco.

Things to do in San Jose

Museums Tours Outdoors

Side Trips

Jaco, Jardins da Cachoeira de La Paz
Find places to stay Nov 7 — 11:
Highlights from your plan
Top Travel Costa Rica ©
Top Travel Costa Rica
Zipline
Museo de Arte Costarricense ©
Museo de Arte Costarricense

3
nights
Cusco, Peru

Cusco ©
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.
Cusco is known for historic sites, museums, and wildlife. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: steep yourself in history at Sacsayhuaman, delve into the distant past at Centro Historico De Cusco, admire the masterpieces at Museo de Arte Precolombino, and contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Qorikancha.

For reviews, other places to visit, photos, and other tourist information, refer to the Cusco road trip planner.

Fly from San Jose to Cusco in 10.5 hours. Traveling from San Jose to Cusco, you'll lose 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Traveling from San Jose in November, you will find days in Cusco are little chillier (26°C), and nights are colder (8°C). Finish up your sightseeing early on the 14th (Sat) so you can travel to Machu Picchu.

Things to do in Cusco

Historic Sites Museums Shopping

Side Trip

Sacred Valley of the Incas
Find places to stay Nov 11 — 14:
Highlights from your plan
Ekekos San Blas  - Arte  & Colores ©
Ekekos San Blas - Arte & Colores
Sacsayhuaman ©
Sacsayhuaman
Sacred Valley of the Incas ©
Sacred Valley of the Incas

1
night
Machu Picchu, Peru

Machu Picchu ©
A symbol of the Incan civilization, the abandoned city of Machu Picchu represents a must-see on a Peru vacation.
On the 15th (Sun), pause for some serene contemplation at Iglesia Virgen Del Carmen, thenmake a trip to Plaza Manco Capac, and then take some stellar pictures from Intipuncu.

To see maps, where to stay, ratings, and more tourist information, read Machu Picchu travel planner.

Getting from Cusco to Machu Picchu by combination of bus and train takes about 4 hours. Other options: take a train; or drive. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Sun) early enough to travel to El Chalten.

Things to do in Machu Picchu

Historic Sites
Find places to stay Nov 14 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Intipuncu ©
Intipuncu
Plaza Manco Capac ©
Plaza Manco Capac
Iglesia Virgen Del Carmen ©
Iglesia Virgen Del Carmen

2
nights
El Chalten, Argentina

El Chalten ©
Nestled up against the hills of the Los Glaciares National Park, El Chalten serves as one of the nation's most bustling hubs for hikers and backpackers heading out into the wild landscape of southern Patagonia.
On the 17th (Tue), head outdoors with Patagonia Magica and then take in the awesome beauty at Fitz Roy. Keep things going the next day: contemplate the waterfront views at Laguna Capri, stroll through Laguna de los Tres, thenget great views at El Mirador De Los Condores, and finally stroll through Laguna Torre.

To see other places to visit, photos, more things to do, and other tourist information, read El Chalten itinerary maker site.

Traveling by combination of bus and shuttle from Machu Picchu to El Chalten takes 30 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or drive. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 2 hours traveling from Machu Picchu to El Chalten. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 18th (Wed) so you can go by car to El Calafate.

Things to do in El Chalten

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

Laguna de los Tres
Find places to stay Nov 16 — 18:
Highlights from your plan
Laguna de los Tres ©
Laguna de los Tres
Fitz Roy ©
Fitz Roy
Laguna Torre ©
Laguna Torre

1
night
El Calafate, Argentina

El Calafate ©
El Calafate tourism thrives mostly thanks to the city's proximity to a World Heritage-listed national park, famed for containing over 40 large glaciers.
Kick off your visit on the 19th (Thu): explore the activities along Lago Argentino and then examine the collection at Glaciarium Museo del Hielo Patagónico.

To find reviews, maps, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read El Calafate trip planner.

You can drive from El Chalten to El Calafate in 3.5 hours. Another option is to take a bus. In November in El Calafate, expect temperatures between 14°C during the day and 13°C at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 19th (Thu) early enough to travel to Buenos Aires.

Things to do in El Calafate

Museums Nature Parks
Find places to stay Nov 18 — 19:
Highlights from your plan
Glaciarium Museo del Hielo Patagónico ©
Glaciarium Museo del Hielo Patagónico
Lago Argentino
Lago Argentino

4
nights
Buenos Aires, Argentina

Buenos Aires ©
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.
Buenos Aires is known for historic sites, nightlife, and parks. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: stroll the grounds of Cemiterio de Recoleta, admire the natural beauty at Parque 3 de Febrero, don't miss a visit to Plaza de Mayo, and admire the masterpieces at Museo de Arte Latinoamericano de Buenos Aires.

To see traveler tips, maps, other places to visit, and more tourist information, go to the Buenos Aires trip itinerary builder site.

Fly from El Calafate to Buenos Aires in 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. While traveling from El Calafate, expect warmer days and somewhat warmer nights in Buenos Aires, ranging from highs of 28°C to lows of 19°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 23rd (Mon) to allow time to travel to Iguazu National Park.

Things to do in Buenos Aires

Historic Sites Museums Neighborhoods
Find places to stay Nov 19 — 23:
Highlights from your plan
Puerto Madero ©
Puerto Madero
Cemiterio de Recoleta ©
Cemiterio de Recoleta
Parque 3 de Febrero ©
Parque 3 de Febrero

2
nights
Iguazu National Park, Argentina

Iguazu National Park ©
Iguazu National Park contains 672 sq km (259 sq mi) of fertile subtropical forests, but its main attraction is the majestic Iguazu Falls.
Start off your visit on the 24th (Tue): take in the dramatic scenery at Iguazu Falls. On the 25th (Wed), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: take in the dramatic scenery at Salto Bernabe Mendez, thentake in the dramatic scenery at Salto San Martin, thenhead off the coast to Isla San Martin, and finally discover the riches below the earth's surface at Wanda Mines.

To see more things to do, where to stay, photos, and other tourist information, read Iguazu National Park tour itinerary planner.

You can fly from Buenos Aires to Iguazu National Park in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Expect somewhat warmer weather when traveling from Buenos Aires in November: highs in Iguazu National Park hover around 34°C, while lows dip to 20°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 25th (Wed) so you can go by car to Foz do Iguacu.

Things to do in Iguazu National Park

Nature Parks Wildlife

Side Trip

Wanda Mines
Find places to stay Nov 23 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Iguazu Falls ©
Iguazu Falls
Salto San Martin ©
Salto San Martin
Salto Bernabe Mendez ©
Salto Bernabe Mendez

1
night
Foz do Iguacu, Brazil

Foz do Iguacu ©
A gateway to the world-renowned Iguacu Falls, which spectacularly divide Brazil and Argentina, the modern, high-rise city of Foz do Iguacu can't help but play second fiddle to the natural wonder in its vicinity.
On the 26th (Thu), see human ingenuity at work at Itaipu Dam, take in the spiritual surroundings of Buddhist Temple, and then get to know the resident critters at Parque das Aves Bird Park.

To find maps, where to stay, other places to visit, and tourist information, read Foz do Iguacu trip itinerary planner.

Traveling by car from Iguazu National Park to Foz do Iguacu takes an hour. Alternatively, you can take a bus. In November, daily temperatures in Foz do Iguacu can reach 34°C, while at night they dip to 22°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 26th (Thu) so you can travel to Santos.

Things to do in Foz do Iguacu

Parks Zoos & Aquariums Historic Sites
Find places to stay Nov 25 — 26:
Highlights from your plan
Parque das Aves Bird Park ©
Parque das Aves Bird Park
Itaipu Dam ©
Itaipu Dam
Buddhist Temple ©
Buddhist Temple

5
nights
Santos, Brazil

Santos ©
A lively coastal city, Santos has become known for its sea, soccer, and sand.
Get out of town with these interesting Santos side-trips: Guaruja (Tombo Beach & Enseada Beach). Next up on the itinerary: take in nature's colorful creations at Orla e Jardins da Praia de Santos, get lost in a book at Martins Fontes Library, don't miss a visit to Calcadao da Orla de Santos, and take in the spiritual surroundings of Shrine of St. Anthony of Valongo.

To see where to stay, reviews, ratings, and other tourist information, refer to the Santos day trip planner.

You can fly from Foz do Iguacu to Santos in 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Expect little chillier weather when traveling from Foz do Iguacu in November: highs in Santos hover around 30°C, while lows dip to 23°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 1st (Tue) so you can travel to Rio de Janeiro.

Things to do in Santos

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trips

Guaruja, Instituto Historico e Geografico de Sao Vicente
Find places to stay Nov 26 — Dec 1:
Highlights from your plan
Orla e Jardins da Praia de Santos ©
Orla e Jardins da Praia de Santos
Coffee Museum ©
Coffee Museum
Tombo Beach ©
Tombo Beach

3
nights
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Rio de Janeiro ©
Bustling with samba music and all-night street parties, no city encapsulates the spirit of Brazil better than Rio de Janeiro.
Rio de Janeiro is known for beaches, nightlife, and museums. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: appreciate the history behind Corcovado - Christ the Redeemer, take in nature's colorful creations at Jardim Botânico do Rio de Janeiro, don't miss a visit to Carioca Aqueduct, and explore the activities along Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon.

For traveler tips, where to stay, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Rio de Janeiro online itinerary planner.

You can fly from Santos to Rio de Janeiro in 5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In December, daytime highs in Rio de Janeiro are 36°C, while nighttime lows are 27°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 4th (Fri) to allow enough time to travel to Fernando de Noronha.

Things to do in Rio de Janeiro

Parks Beaches Outdoors
Find places to stay Dec 1 — 4:
Highlights from your plan
Corcovado - Christ the Redeemer ©
Corcovado - Christ the Redeemer
Copacabana Beach ©
Copacabana Beach
Praia de Ipanema
Praia de Ipanema

1
night
Fernando de Noronha, Brazil

Fernando de Noronha ©
With 21 lush islands scattered among pristine waters in the Atlantic Ocean, a Fernando de Noronha holiday is well worth the effort it takes to get there.
Kick off your visit on the 5th (Sat): head outdoors with Baia dos Porcos, thentour the pleasant surroundings at Praia do Sueste, thenkick back and relax at Atalaia Beach, and finally take in the pleasant sights at Trilha Atalaia.

For reviews, maps, and tourist information, read our Fernando de Noronha trip planning tool.

You can fly from Rio de Janeiro to Fernando de Noronha in 8 hours. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 1 hour traveling from Rio de Janeiro to Fernando de Noronha. In December in Fernando de Noronha, expect temperatures between 35°C during the day and 29°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 5th (Sat) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Fernando de Noronha

Outdoors Beaches Parks
Find places to stay Dec 4 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Baia dos Porcos ©
Baia dos Porcos
Praia do Sueste ©
Praia do Sueste
Atalaia Beach ©
Atalaia Beach

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