a VirtualTourist member
We are planning a 7 week trip to South America in August/ September 2013. We plan to visit Peru and do a 4 day Macchu Pichu walk,Amazon trip and lake Titicaca, Ecuador and Galapagos Islands, Bolivia ( Uyuni, Lakes,La Paz) , Brazil ( Rio )and Argentina ( Iguazu and Buenos Aires).We are not sure the best route to take and the best ways to get from place to place......plane, bus or train.
We are flexible about where we start and finish and but don't want to be back tracking if possible. Coming from Australia we can fly into Santiago( hadn't planned to do Chile) or Buenos Aires.
Any advice or suggestions greatly appreciated. Thanks Deb
I would say start with Ecuador Galapagos, down to Peru, Bolivia, then Rio, Iguazu and finally back to BA. 7 weeks is not much so some of them u have to fly. U may want to check LAN pass that allow u to fly to few cities at a discounted price. Between Peru and Bolivia u can easily bus/ boat over.
Yes, i agree 7 weeks is not long. Don't forget to book your Machu Picchu trek well in advance as they limit the number of trekkers that wish to hike the Inca Trail.
As for the route i would also start in Ecuador, then into northern Peru for the Amazon adventure at Iquitos, down to Machu Picchu, then explore Titicaca, La Paz, Uyuni. Air travel can be expensive in S America but from La Paz maybe you can catch a flight to B A then head to Iguazu then Rio.
Start studying transport options, and look for cheap airfares between the most distant destinations, and do the rest by bus.
This page gives you a list of South American Airlines and Skyscanner is quite a good site for doing your research as you can see the fares for the entire month for months in advance.
I can take a stab at the Peru part of your trip. Lima is the air hub and international and domestic links go through that airport. We spent about a week in the Amazon through Iquitos and then went to Cusco. Our routing was Iquitos - Lima - Cusco, and the flights were infrequent; with the bulk of the air traffic in the morning, nothing over mid-day and then flights in the afternoon. That was a few years ago, so things might have changed.
Machu Picchu can only be reached by train. You can take a train from Cusco directly or work your way through the Sacred Valley to Ollantaytambo and catch it there.
I personally think you are trying to cram far too much into 7 weeks. We spent 3 weeks just in Peru; Amazon out of Iquitos, Cusco, Machu Picchu, Puno / Lake Titicaca and a day in Lima. Think about cutting down your itinerary to something more reasonable.
In this type of trips i can recommend you to search for lodging companies that can give you a lot of choices for short periods of time! I`ve done trips like this and i allways trust a website called www.ailolaplaces.com ! I hope you have a lot of fun in your trip! Byeee