Here are the details of the route that we followed in 2011 for our first trip to South America. Vida vacations South america trip deals We wanted to visit Peru, Bolivia and reach the end of travel in Patagonia, to go at the end of the world but also to see with our own eyes the famous Perito Moreno glacier. We had the idea of seeing when we realized that the flight Antofagasta> Ushuaia did not add 100 $ to our flight budget.
Peru to Bolivia (15 days)
For each of these paths, the reservation is made the day before or the day in the local agency. Buses from all qualities exist in Peru, those stamped VIP are generally excellent for very affordable rates. In Bolivia, it was more roots but without major problems (always allow water and if in case of failure or sinking in the sand that can last six hours!):)
Bolivia to Chile (15 days)
Initially Uyuni, Vida vacations South america trip deals we shared renting a 4x4 and driver with two Brazilian and one Dutch to cross the South Lipez and join the Chilean border that leads to San Pedro de Atacama. We booked the 4x4 from a local agency in La Paz but in the end we could have done from Uyuni. Especially since this ghost town offers a unique experience, people are stuck in this city transit between La Paz and the Salar where people are just passing through. Take the time to stop by and visit the market, going out at night, talking with local..
In San Pedro de Atacama, we took a shared bus to Calama for the sole purpose of renting a 4x4 with the company Europcar, interesting for a rental from point A to point B. So 4X4 we have completed the journey from Calama to Tarapaca (Oasis de Pica). Pica was one of the highlights of the trip (see inset below)
After our heavenly break at Oasis we went along the coast to reach Antofagasta. The coast from Iquique to Antofagasta has little interest in itself, but we enjoyed the unusual character. A monumental dune welcome you when you arrive on the industrial city of Iquique, and later you cross a huge dog cemetery overlooking the Pacific. In Antofagasta, you'll wonder why the Mall and the MacDonalds were placed on the beach so badly and you will not attempt wild swimming because the water is very polluted (we tested it was... tacky).
Tierra del Fuego and Patagonia (10 days)
We then flew to Ushuaia by plane with a bonus night in Buenos Aires because the call lasted 7:00, more than enough to go out to a restaurant and a bar in the center before returning to the airport. We soon got bored after two days in Ushuaia, not having the means to embark for Cape Horn or another cruise around..
We then traced to El Calafate to see the Perito Moreno the show. We stayed three days to see other glaciers and découvir Patagonia. We went down (through the Torres del Paine National Park) by minivan to Puerto Natales. Vida vacations South america trip deals Small charming fishing village with a beautiful restaurant: the Afrigonia (see below for places)...
From there we took a bus to Punta Arenas where we zoned a day or two (very strange city, especially as we were staying in the poorly lit street sex shops crados, having made the mistake of following a Reel at the exit of a bus...) and finally, we took our plane back to Paris!
Below is the schedule of the trip. I hope that this page will help you build your own itinerary. For addresses that we recommend to see the bottom of the page.
Initially Uyuni, we shared renting a 4x4 and driver with two Brazilian and one Dutch to cross the South Lipez and join the Chilean border.
We drove on Mars, the Moon, on paintings of Dali and so on...
The oasis of Santa Rosita, Tarapaca Desert
During our tour in South America, we improvised renting a vehicle to reach Calama Pica Oasis inaccessible because lost in the desert of Tarapaca.
We had the amazing opportunity to meet Gonzalo, Poncho and Pablo at the restaurant ALPHAPLANICO Oasis de Pica.
These young Chileans have led us to places that no travel guide is talking about... In fact, a few kilometers from Pica we discovered the tiny oasis of Santa Rosita, like a mirage cartoon.... And that's where we were able to refresh a long swim in this unlikely cistern... under a blazing sun in the middle of nowhere... Vida vacations South america trip deals Thanks to them and if you go there, go to see the ALPHAPLANICO, fully outdoor restaurant (installed in a garden), to enjoy a great cocktail around the campfire after your panini...
Partner services in South America
Throughout the trip, we noted in our notebooks places through which we passed, and some deserve special mention.
Our best hotels and restaurants in Lima, Cuzco, Puno, Copacabana, Pica, Antofagasta, Ushuaia and Puerto Natales..:
Lima, L'Auberge D'Osma Bed & Breakfast: Ask the back room overlooking the courtyard. Excellent home
Cuzco, L'Auberge Samay Wasi: Very simple, very friendly, cheap and great views through the roof terrace
Puno, Hotel Intiga Grand hotel if you want a king size bed, a luxurious bathroom and a small dèj incredible. About $ 40 double room in 2011.
Sun Island, Hotel Taluri: We stayed in Yola and daughter Monikaka. No need to addresses on the Island of the Sun, everything is so wonderful... But avoid the hostel, you will be much more quiet homestay..
Copacabana and La Paz Hotel Gloria: A Bolivian friend told us, my grandmother runs the place, I propose a suite for the price of a double... One night at $ 40 with luxury dèj little crazy...ça did not refuse:) Excellent hotel so!
Pica, Rancho San Carlos: Go absolutely. Vida vacations South america trip deals A little old lady welcomes you like family, fruit basket in the oasis each morning, clean rooms and cheap
Pica, Alphaplanico Restaurant: A restaurant outdoor unforgettable. You seem to spend an evening in the garden of friends. Gonzalo serves amazing cocktails and fine snacks around the fire.
Antofagasta, Oceano Restaurant: Hard to find some nice and romantic restaurant with a terrace in the middle of fast food Antofagasta. This did the trick, great food! Avenida Angamos 1309 - Antofagasta, Chile
Ushuaia, Restaurant Darwin: Our HQ in Ushuaia, we did not find more fun. This restaurant is definitely the best Ushuaia. Especially for lovers of seafood...
Puerto Natales Hostel Marry: As at home, in a very decorative in English, at home unless there is lint and kitschy accessories in every corner
Puerto Natales, Restaurant Afrigonia (Africa meets Patagonia): People still talk about their Ceviche Malindi (salmon / mango), their marisco masala (seafood coconut) and MacLean cordero (lamb ribs) A great couple African-Patagonian takes this magical place
Buenos Aires Restaurant Sarkis: We spent one night in this magical vile and what a night! A chic and popular restaurant at a time that left us great memories.