|SANTIAGO - VIŅA DEL MAR - ATACAMA - PUERTO VARAS - BARILOCHE
(15 days, 14 nights)
Day 1: Santiago
Arrival in Santiago, reception and transfer to your hotel.
Day 2: Santiago
City tour of Santiago including a visit to the Government Palace, the Main Square, the Cathedral and a visit to the museum of precolumbian art. An excursion to the Cerro San Cristobal viewpoint for a beautiful panoramic view of the city. Santiago de Chile was founded in 1541 and is in a beautiful setting with only 62 miles separating the Pacific coast from ski resorts in the high Andes.
You will find 17th Century architecture and lively markets set against a backdrop of snow-capped mountains.
Day 3: Santiago tours
Choice of two tours today, with either a full day excursion to the Ski de Portillo, situated at 3000m above sea level and the ski capital of Chile; or a half day visit to a selection of world famous Chilean vineyards.
Day 4: Viņa del Mar
After breakfast, private transfer to Viņa del Mar, the most exclusive beach resort in Chile. Arrival and reception at the fabulous luxury Hotel Del Mar, for a 2 night stay. Hotel del Mar was the first 5 star hotel built in Viņa del Mar. With 8 floors and 60 elegant rooms, all of them afford a spectacular view of the sea. Viņa del Mar is famous amongst many other things for gourmet seafood restaurants, beautiful avenues lined with palm and banana trees and vast stretches of white sandy beaches.
Day 5: Viņa del Mar
Free day of leisure. Unlimited use of the Spa resort (sauna, gym and swimming pool).
Day 6: Viņa del Mar - Santiago - Calama - San Pedro de Atacama
After breakfast, private transfer back to Santiago airport for the flight to Calama, set in the middle
of the Atacama desert. Arrival and transfer to San Pedro de Atacama. Accommodation at
Day 7: Atacama desert tour
Tour of San Pedro de Atacama, cradle of the Atacama Culture during the pre-Columbian period. Followed by a visit to the Cordillera de la Sal (Salt mountain range) and the only view of the massive salt flat with the Licancabur volcano in the background. We will then visit the Pukara de Quitor. In the afternoon, excursion to the Valle de la Luna (Valley of the Moon) which astonishes visitors with its geological formation of salts and carbonates and where nature has shaped an astonishing landscape. Return to your hotel in San Pedro de Atacama.
Day 8: Atacama desert tour
After breakfast, we will visit the Archaeological Museum Padre Le Paige where we will witness an exhibition showing the evolution of Atacamanian life over the last 11,000 years. We will then visit the town church, The Main Square, the house of Pedro de Valdivia (a conquistador and the founder of Santiago). Toconao stands out with its bell tower, alleys and craft workshops. After lunch, a visit to Lake Chaxa to view the three species of flamingoes amongst many other birds.
Day 9: San Pedro de Atacama - Calama - Santiago
Very early morning departure to the Tatio Geysers to experience this spectacular demonstration of volcanic activity. In the middle of the Andean mountains, the El Tatio Geysers at 4,500 metres above sea level gush fumaroles at dawn.
We will also visit the village of Caspana with its fertile terraces, architecture in Liparita stone and characteristic mud-roofs. We will continue with visits to the villages of Toconce and Vegas de Turi on an awe inspiring route which takes us through Chiu-Chiu and Lasana, with their important cultural and historical legacies including one of the oldest and most beautiful churches in Chile. Box lunch on route. Return to Calama in the afternoon for your transfer to the airport and your return flight
to Santiago. Reception and transfer to your hotel.
Day 10: Santiago - Puerto Montt - Puerto Varas
Transfer to the airport for the flight south to Puerto Montt. Transfer from the airport in Puerto Montt to your hotel in Puerto Varas, on the shore of Lake Llanquihue. From here you can enjoy the spectacular views across the lake of the Osorno Volcano. Afternoon visit of the beautiful town of Puerto Varas and Puerto Montt, the capital of the Lake District lying on the shore of the Pacific Ocean.
Day 11: Puerto Varas - Petrohue - Lago Todos Los Santos - Bariloche
After breakfast, a visit to the Vincente Perez Rosales National Park to see the native forests and the Petrohue Falls along with the crystalline waters of the Petrohue River. After you will continue on to the All Saints Lake where the cruise across the lake to Peulla begins. With fabulous views of Osorno Volcano, Puntiagudo and Tronador hills you will arrive at Peulla, a beautiful nature reserve in time for lunch. Continue on to Puerto Blast with a visit to Cantaros Falls
before arriving to Bariloche Argentina by bus. Transfer to your hotel, Hotel Amancay.
Day 12: Bariloche
Free day of leisure to enjoy the beautiful surroundings of Bariloche.
Day 13: Bariloche - Lago Todos Los Santos - Petrohue - Puerto Varas
After breakfast, return by catamaran back to Chile and Puerto Montt. Transfer to your hotel in Puerto Varas.
Day 14: Puerto Varas - Chiloe
After breakfast, a visit to the beautiful and mystical island of Chiloe, the second largest island off South America. Long inhabited by the Mapuche Indians, the island is steeped in mythology and is populated by
strange figures including the troll-like Trauco. Seafood lunch and some free time before returning to Puerto Varas.
Day 15: Puerto Varas - Frutillar - Puerto Montt
After breakfast, a visit to the picturesque lakeshore village of Frutillar, home to an old German colony. Lunch and transfer to the airport for your return flight home.
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