Breakfast daily, 4 lunches, 4 three-course dinners including a special farewell dinner in Santiago
Inside visits and special features are shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description, including admission charges where applicable.
Day 1 ARRIVE IN BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA
Welcome to the capital of Argentina! This cosmopolitan city with a great European cultural influence has managed to preserve its old traditions and charming corners. Upon arrival, you will be met by your Tour Director, who will help you check into your hotel.
Day 2 BUENOS AIRES
Begin your Buenos Aires CITY TOUR with your Local Guide and Tour Director with a drive on the widest avenue in the world, 9 de Julio, passing the famous Colon Theatre, Plaza de Mayo, La Casa Rosada (the President’s Pink House), and the first City Hall, which was built during Spanish rule. Visit the METROPOLITAN CATHEDRAL, where Pope Francis celebrated Mass when he was Cardinal of Buenos Aires, and also see the mausoleum of General San Martin, Argentina’s national hero. Stop in San Telmo to explore one of the oldest neighborhoods in Buenos Aires before continuing to La Boca with its colorful Caminito Street. End your tour in the glamourous Recoleta district, home to elegant boutiques, distinguished restaurants, and RECOLETA CEMETERY. See one of the most impressive monuments in Argentina, the mausoleum of Eva Duarte, also known as Eva Perón. Tonight, put on your dancing shoes because it is time for a TANGO LESSON at a famous Tango house. After you have learned some Tango steps and tried them out, enjoy dinner and drinks before your professional TANGO SHOW begins.
Day 3 BUENOS AIRES
Today is free to do as you please. Perhaps journey into the pampas for your full-day visit to an estancia to see life in the Argentine countryside. Take a horse ride or carriage ride with the gauchos (cowboys) who live and work on this ranch, and tour the Spanish-Colonial house filled with period artifacts. You will also be treated to a criolla lunch, including Argentine steaks, empanadas, and other specialties, followed by traditional folk dances and a display of typical games played by the gauchos. Return to Buenos Aires for time at leisure this evening.
Day 4 BUENOS AIRES–MENDOZA. EXCURSION TO LUJÁN DE CUYO
Fly to Mendoza, land of sunshine and good wine, where the famous Malbec grape is grown. Travel into an ancient and traditional wine region of Luján de Cuyo, known as the “first wine area” of the Argentine wines that have gained international prestige. Your first stop is at DOMINIO DEL PLATA BODEGA, where you will partake in a COOKING CLASS that teaches different methods of cooking and how to make empanadas. You will also learn about the importance of the tea-like beverage called mate in Argentina’s culture, and how it is infused and consumed. Tour the vineyard that produces varieties of Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Petit Verdot before lunch with a wine tasting. Later, visit CRUZAT, a bodega specializing in sparkling wines made from Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes. Tour the production area and sample their creations with the Andes as a backdrop. Return to the hotel this evening.
Day 5 MENDOZA. EXCURSION TO UCO VALLEY
Today takes you to the UCO VALLEY and BODEGAS SALENTEIN, which consists of three estate fincas. The fincas, where grapes are grown at a range of altitudes among the highest in the world, are irrigated with pure mountain run-off from the Andes, which creates lower pH in the grape. This results in higher acidity, more color in the wine, and greater age-ability. After your tour, enjoy a sampling of wines and visit the incredible art museum. Later, stop at ANDELUNA for a special lunch, locally sourced from nearby farms and orchards and paired with the perfect wine. Continue to DOMAINE BOUSQUET, one of the top exporters of premium wine in Argentina, for a tour and tasting. This evening, dine at the exclusive 1884 RESTAURANTE, considered one of the best restaurants in the world, created by Francis Mallmann, one of the best-known chefs in Argentina.
Day 6 MENDOZA–SANTIAGO, CHILE–SANTA CRUZ
Fly to Santiago, Chile, situated between the soaring Andes and the vast Pacific Ocean. Upon arrival, head to Santa Cruz in the central area of the Colchagua Valley. Known for its warm climate, prolonged dry season, and rain during the winter, this area is an outstanding agricultural center for fruits, wheat, maize, and grapevines. In this long, narrow country the Pacific Ocean is rarely more than 50 miles away, allowing winds to funnel up the valleys, cooling the vineyards, especially at night. There are dramatic diurnal temperature differences, meaning cold summer nights that help grapes maintain acidity, and improve the colors and flavors in red varieties. Dinner is included at the hotel this evening as well as a FOLKLORE SHOW displaying the Cueca dance typical to this region.
Day 7 SANTA CRUZ. EXCURSION TO COLCHAGUA VALLEY
Drive through the rolling hills to VIÑA SANTA CRUZ, a fusion of two ethnicities—Iberian and Native American—and an area that produces Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Carménere, Merlot, Petit Verdot, and Syrah. First, visit the AUTO MUSEUM which houses a collection of antique cars. After your tour of the winery, ride the CABLE CAR to admire the beautiful countryside and visit a recreation of several VILLAGES of indigenous groups found in Chile. Next, enjoy a HOME-HOSTED LUNCH with traditional Chilean dishes. Your last stop is the COLCHAGUA MUSEUM, which walks you through Chile’s history.
Day 8 SANTA CRUZ. EXCURSION TO COLCHAGUA VALLEY
Today’s adventure takes you to VIÑA VIU MANET, where you will see an exhibition of old agricultural equipment and take a carriage ride through the vineyards. After touring the cellars and the laboratories, an expert will explain the processes of wine production. Next, it’s your turn to be the oenologist, or winemaker. Blend your own wine, develop a commercial strategy, and even design your label! After lunch in the gardens of the winery, continue to CASA LAPOSTOLLE, a renowned winery founded by the French family Marnier Lapostolle, owners of the world-renowned Grand Marnier liqueur, and the Chilean family Rabat. Learn how the perfect weather conditions and soils cultivate the French grape vines and produce excellent wine.
Day 9 SANTA CRUZ–SANTIAGO
This morning, return to the bustling city of Santiago to admire its mix of old and new on your city TOUR. Travel through the downtown area, passing by Club Hípico, a thoroughbred horse-racing track in the city’s oldest residential area; and Parque O’Higgins. From here, head along the famous Alameda, Santiago’s colorful main avenue, toward the heart of the city, passing Chilean University, San Francisco Church, and Santa Lucia Hill, site of Santiago’s founding in 1541. A visit to LA VEGA CENTRAL MARKET provides a fascinating overview of typical Chilean food, including steaming pots of cazuela and humitas, similar to tamales. Continue to Plaza de Armas, the cathedral, and the bohemian Bellavista district on the way to San Cristóbal Hill for the finest views of Santiago and the Andes.
Day 10 SANTIAGO. EXCURSION TO VALPARAISO & VIÑA DEL MAR
Travel west toward the coast to colorful VALPARAISO, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and headquarters of the Chilean National Congress. Pass by the main square and view the monument honoring the 1879 Battle of Iquique before driving to the southern side of the city for spectacular views of the bay. A drive along the coastal highway brings you to the seaside resort of VIÑA DEL MAR. Admire some of its famous beaches, the flower clock, casino, and elite summer homes. Return to Santiago and join your Tour Director for a special farewell dinner.
Day 11 SANTIAGO
Your tour ends with breakfast this morning.