18 days in South America Itinerary

18 days in South America Itinerary

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Route & dates

1
Cartagena, Colombia
— 1 night
2
Bogota, Colombia
— 2 nights
3
Lima, Peru
— 2 nights
4
Machu Picchu, Peru
— 1 day
5
Cusco, Peru
— 2 nights
6
La Paz, Bolivia
— 1 night
7
San Pedro de Atacama, Chile
— 1 night
8
Santiago, Chile
— 3 nights

1
night
Cartagena, Colombia

Cartagena ©
The site of the continent's first Spanish colony, Cartagena retains much of its colonial flavor thanks to a World Heritage-listed old town, encircled by old walls and protected by imposing fortresses.
Kick off your visit on the 3rd (Sat): step into the grandiose world of Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas, take an in-depth tour of Museo del Oro Zenu, then see the interesting displays at Caribe Jewelry Museum & Factory, and finally discover the deep blue sea with a scuba or snorkeling tour. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 4th (Sun): contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Convent of Santa Cruz de la Popa, then steep yourself in history at Plaza Santo Domingo, and then steep yourself in history at Walled City of Cartagena.

To find traveler tips, where to stay, ratings, and more tourist information, read our Cartagena travel route planner.

Dubai, United Arab Emirates to Cartagena is an approximately 23-hour flight. You'll gain 9 hours traveling from Dubai to Cartagena due to the time zone difference. In April, daytime highs in Cartagena are 38°C, while nighttime lows are 30°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 4th (Sun) early enough to travel to Bogota.

Things to do in Cartagena

Historic Sites · Wildlife · Outdoors
Find places to stay Apr 3 — 4:
Highlights from your plan
Walled City of Cartagena ©
Walled City of Cartagena
Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas ©
Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas
Plaza Santo Domingo ©
Plaza Santo Domingo

2
nights
Bogota, Colombia

Bogota ©
Colombia's heart and soul, Bogota has earned the nickname "Athens of South America" thanks to its abundance of universities, libraries, and lower-level schools.
On the 5th (Mon), pause for some serene contemplation at Catedral de Sal de Zipaquira, then walk around Parque 93, and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Monserrate. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: view the masterpieces at Barrio La Candelaria, examine the collection at Gold Museum (Museo del Oro), and then explore the galleries of DIBS by Culture Shock Colombia.

To find more things to do, maps, reviews, and tourist information, read Bogota day trip planning app.

Fly from Cartagena to Bogota in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In April, Bogota is cooler than Cartagena - with highs of 22°C and lows of 11°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 6th (Tue) early enough to travel to Lima.

Things to do in Bogota

Museums · Shopping · Neighborhoods

Side Trip

Catedral de Sal de Zipaquira
Find places to stay Apr 4 — 6:
Highlights from your plan
Gold Museum (Museo del Oro) ©
Gold Museum (Museo del Oro)
Catedral de Sal de Zipaquira ©
Catedral de Sal de Zipaquira
Monserrate ©
Monserrate

2
nights
Lima, Peru

Lima ©
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.
Start off your visit on the 7th (Wed): browse the exhibits of Museo Convento San Francisco y Catacumbas, steep yourself in history at Huaca Pucllana, then take a stroll through Miraflores, then get a taste of the local shopping with Shopping Center Larcomar (Centro Comercial Larcomar), and finally get engrossed in the history at Museo Larco. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: take in the spiritual surroundings of San Pedro Church (Iglesia de San Pedro), take in the exciting artwork at Galeria Indigo, and then look for all kinds of wild species at Wildlife Areas.

For reviews, traveler tips, other places to visit, and tourist information, go to the Lima online road trip planner.

Getting from Bogota to Lima by flight takes about 6.5 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. In April, Lima is a bit warmer than Bogota - with highs of 28°C and lows of 22°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Thu) to allow enough time to travel to Machu Picchu.

Things to do in Lima

Historic Sites · Wildlife · Outdoors
Find places to stay Apr 6 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Huaca Pucllana ©
Huaca Pucllana
Museo Larco ©
Museo Larco
Museo Convento San Francisco y Catacumbas ©

1
day
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.
Start off your visit on the 9th (Fri): delve into the distant past at Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu, tour the pleasant surroundings at Mandor, then pause for some serene contemplation at Iglesia Virgen Del Carmen, and finally look for gifts at Mapi Art.

For more things to do, where to stay, photos, and other tourist information, use the Machu Picchu road trip website.

Traveling by flight from Lima to Machu Picchu takes 7 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and taxi. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 9th (Fri) so you can travel to Cusco.

Things to do in Machu Picchu

Historic Sites · Parks · Wildlife
Find places to stay Apr 9 — 10:
Highlights from your plan
Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu ©
Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu
Mandor ©
Mandor
Mapi Art ©
Mapi Art

2
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.
Kick off your visit on the 10th (Sat): visit San Blas, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Museo de Vida Monastica - Monasterio de Santa Catalina del Cusco, then explore the world behind art at Museo de Arte Precolombino, and finally delve into the distant past at Sacsayhuaman. Keep things going the next day: view the masterpieces at Centro de Textiles Tradicionales del Cusco, then browse the eclectic array of goods at Mercado Central de San Pedro, and then get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour.

To find traveler tips, other places to visit, reviews, and other tourist information, refer to the Cusco trip itinerary builder app.

Do a combination of train and bus from Machu Picchu to Cusco in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or drive. In April in Cusco, expect temperatures between 23°C during the day and 7°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 11th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel to La Paz.

Things to do in Cusco

Historic Sites · Shopping · Wildlife
Find places to stay Apr 9 — 11:
Highlights from your plan
Sacsayhuaman ©
Sacsayhuaman
Nature & Wildlife Tours
Museo de Arte Precolombino ©
Museo de Arte Precolombino

1
night
La Paz, Bolivia

Take a moment to catch your breath as you commence your holiday in La Paz.
On the 12th (Mon), get the adrenaline pumping with an extreme tour, tee off at Golf Tours Bolivia-Day Tours, and then see the interesting displays at Museo de Textiles Andinos Bolivianos.

To see maps, reviews, ratings, and other tourist information, read our La Paz online trip planner.

Getting from Cusco to La Paz by flight takes about 4.5 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. You'll lose 1 hour traveling from Cusco to La Paz due to the time zone difference. In April, La Paz is little chillier than Cusco - with highs of 17°C and lows of 1°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 12th (Mon) to allow time to travel to San Pedro de Atacama.

Things to do in La Paz

Outdoors · Tours · Museums
Find places to stay Apr 11 — 12:
Highlights from your plan
Adrenaline & Extreme Tours
Museo de Textiles Andinos Bolivianos ©
Museo de Textiles Andinos Bolivianos
Golf Tours Bolivia-Day Tours ©
Golf Tours Bolivia-Day Tours

1
night
San Pedro de Atacama, Chile

San Pedro de Atacama ©
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 13th (Tue): look for all kinds of wild species at Río Putana and then identify plant and animal life at Salar de Tara. On the next day, explore the ancient world of Pukara de Quitor, take in the natural beauty of Geyser del Tatio, explore the striking landscape at Valle De La Luna, then browse the eclectic array of goods at Feria Artesanal San Pedro de Atacama, and finally see the interesting displays at Father Le Paige Museum.

To see photos, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read San Pedro de Atacama tour itinerary builder website.

Traveling by flight from La Paz to San Pedro de Atacama takes 12.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. When traveling from La Paz in April, plan for a bit warmer days in San Pedro de Atacama, with highs around 28°C, while nights are about the same with lows around 4°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Wed) so you can travel to Santiago.

Things to do in San Pedro de Atacama

Parks · Nature · Wildlife
Find places to stay Apr 13 — 14:
Highlights from your plan
Salar de Tara ©
Salar de Tara
Valle De La Luna ©
Valle De La Luna
Geyser del Tatio ©
Geyser del Tatio

3
nights
Santiago, Chile

Santiago ©
Santiago tourism thrives largely thanks to the city's big selection of cultural and entertainment options, including museums, theaters, restaurants, bars, and giant malls.
Get outdoors at San Cristóbal Hill and Region IX Ltd. Do your shopping at Central Market (Mercado Central) and E.N.D. Espacio Nacional de Diseno. When in Santiago, make a side trip to see Concha y Toro in Pirque, approximately Pirque away. Next up on the itinerary: examine the collection at La Chascona, steep yourself in history at Centro Cultural Palacio de la Moneda y Plaza de la Ciudadania, buy something for everyone on your list at Costanera Center, and admire the masterpieces at Museo Chileno de Arte Precolombino.

For photos, traveler tips, where to stay, and tourist information, read Santiago online sightseeing planner.

You can fly from San Pedro de Atacama to Santiago in 5.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 17th (Sat) to allow time to travel back home.

Things to do in Santiago

Parks · Museums · Shopping

Side Trips

Region IX Ltd, Concha y Toro
Find places to stay Apr 14 — 17:
Highlights from your plan
San Cristóbal Hill ©
San Cristóbal Hill
La Chascona ©
La Chascona
Concha y Toro ©
Concha y Toro

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