Fly west across the Atlantic, via Madrid, straight to the natural wonder of the world that is Iguazú Falls.
Today you'll arrive in Foz do Iguazú, meet your tour manager and transfer to your four-star hotel, where you'll be able to rest and relax after your journey. Make the most of the hotel’s amenities, which include a pool and a rooftop terrace overlooking the Iguazú River, and perhaps dine at the hotel this evening.
Today is a first opportunity to discover the stupendous cascades of Iguazú Falls, a plunging series of cascades at the meeting point of Argentina and Brazil that has to be seen and experienced to be believed.
Begin in the Iguazú Waterfalls National Park, a protected, UNESCO-listed area that is a stunning jungle refuge for big cats, monkeys, tapirs and countless colourful bird species. Enjoy a choice of fascinating guided walks, accompanied by a park ranger, as well as a 25-minute train ride to see the most spectacular of the torrents - the famous Devil’s Throat - from a series of walkways and footbridges.
See the cascades from a different perspective, at a point where a series of pathways leads through the lush foliage nurtured by the constant moisture from the astonishing waterfalls. Walk out over the footbridge, and ride the panoramic lift, to enjoy the sweeping views across Iguazú's 275 plunging cataracts, before returning to the hotel to spend the rest of the day at leisure.
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for the two-hour flight west to Salta. Here, you'll meet your tour manager and transfer to your four-star hotel. Rest and relax after the journey, and perhaps head out to catch a first glimpse of this sophisticated, Spanish colonial city, which serves as gateway to the Argentinian Altiplano, the fertile valleys of the northwest and the towering Andes beyond.
On an astonishingly scenic day, you'll drive into Jujuy Province, following the high-altitude road to the Quebrada de Humahuaca valley. Pass through a landscape lined with spectacular red-rock formations and towering outcrops, and dotted with ancient villages of adobe houses, to Purmamarca, beneath the multi-hued geological marvel of Seven Colours Hill.
This afternoon, having explored the town's colourful market and 17th-century church, you'll drive up the magnificent hairpins of the Cuesta de Lipán road, which snakes its way up through a startling landscape to over 13,000ft, before descending to the dazzling sight of the Salinas Grandes salt flats, the vast, blindingly white geological wonder where sunglasses are a must. Watch out for llamas (and even ostriches) on the slopes as you return to colourful Purmamarca for the evening.
After a relaxing morning in Purmamarca, you'll head to the ancient market-town Humahuaca, where a colourful market sells traditional Andean foodstuffs and authentic crafts that reflect the fiercely independent culture of the region. Passing through other indigenous settlements, you’ll return to Salta for another night. Take the opportunity to wander the colonial town to see its Andalusian-style white-washed, red-tiled houses, pink-hued cathedral and flower-decked balconies, and to dine at your leisure.
A day of extreme contrasts begins as you bid farewell to the desert-city of Salta and fly, via Buenos Aires, to Southern Patagonia. Here, quaint El Calafate is the gateway to the extraordinary wonders of UNESCO-listed Los Glaciares National Park. Prepare yourself for a change in temperature, but not in the level of excitement and scenic splendour. Your tour manager will meet you when you arrive, and you'll be transferred to your spa hotel, at the edge of the Patagonian steppe, to rest and relax after the journey.
On today’s unforgettable tour, you’ll leave El Calafate and head further south, passing stunning Lake Argentino and its breath-taking mountain backdrop. In the National Park, the landscape changes from the yellow "coiron" of the steppe to greener vegetation, but nothing matches the drama of rounding the Curva de los Suspiros (Curve of Sighs) and your first sight of the majestic Perito Moreno Glacier. With a wall of ice reaching down to just 200 metres above sea level, the glacier seems alive, especially whenever great pieces calve from the main icefield, creaking and then crashing into the pure waters below. Enjoy several different viewpoints of this extraordinary work of nature, including from a system of walkways that brings you close to the ice itself.
After a morning soaking up the atmosphere of El Calafate, an almost incongruously colourful and well-appointed outpost at the edge of one of the world’s most pristine wildernesses, you'll board the return flight to the Argentinian capital, Buenos Aires. Your tour manager will meet you when you arrive here, in one of South America's most elegant cities, and you'll be transferred to your hotel for your first, relaxing evening in the city.
Enjoy a guided introduction to "Baires", taking in the Parliament buildings of historic Plaza de Mayo, including the pink Casa Rosada and the 18th-century Cabildo building. The city’s contrasting and colourful barrios will also be brought to life. See the Tango district of San Telmo; the famously colourful La Boca district – home to the fervently supported Boca Juniors football team; the chic Puerto Madero riverside area; and La Recoleta - the capital’s most elegant neighbourhood and final resting place of Eva Perón.
Return to the hotel at the end of a wonderful day, and this evening, crown your stay with the included experience of an authentic Tango Show at famous La Ventana, accompanied by dinner and fine Argentinian wine.
After breakfast, bid farewell to your Argentinian hosts, and transfer to the airport for your flight to Brazil. Arriving in Rio, you'll be transferred to your hotel to spend the rest of the day relaxing and perhaps beginning to explore.
Begin the Brazilian stage of your adventure with an excursion to a wonder of the world, the Christ the Redeemer statue set atop Corcovado Mountain. Drive through lush suburbs to the Cosmo Velho cog-railway station and journey up to the giant figure, then take the lift or escalator – or brave the stairs – up to the viewpoint. Return to Rio via the famous beach districts of Copacabana, Ipanema and Leblon.
Enjoy another included tour that, as well as introducing downtown Rio, includes a cable-car ride up Sugar Loaf Mountain. The views from the care and from atop the mountain are unforgettable. This evening, why not round off your South American tour in town at a Samba show?
Today you'll return to the airport to check in and begin your transatlantic journey home.
You'll touch down in the UK, today, after an overnight flight, and at the end of a marvellous South American adventure.