PATAGONIA AND IGUAZU TOUR | OCTOBER 28 – NOVEMBER 13, 2018
OUR SPECIAL GUEST: RABBI LORD JONATHAN SACKS
Sunday, October 28th
Arrival in Rio. We will begin the tour with dinner.
An art deco masterpiece, Belmond Copacabana Palace is the crown jewel on the world’s most iconic beach.
Since its doors swung open in 1923, this landmark hotel has entertained the rich and the famous. A hive of activity, this is the spot to mix with Brazil’s elite.
Overnight at the famous Copacabana Palace Hotel
Monday, October 29
Full-day city tour of Rio de Janeiro
The day begins with hotel pickup as you meet your guide and head to visit the main attractions of Rio de Janeiro, enjoying some magnificent places which are internationally recognized for their natural beauty and history, including;
- Corcovado – where the statue of Christo Redentor is located, considered one of the new Seven Wonders of the modern world.
- The Tijuca Forest, where your guide will show the beautiful natural treasures.
- Maracana Stadium.
- Sambodromo - the stadium where the samba schools parade during Carnival in Rio de Janeiro.
- The Metropolitan Cathedral of São Sebastião – the cathedral named for the patron of the city.
- The Sugar Loaf complex / Sugar Loaf cable carride- here, you will also visit Morro da Urca, Praia Vermelha (Red Beach) and the old Cassino da Urca.
- Your Rio de Janeiro city tour ends with a visit to the most famous beaches: Copacabana, Ipanema and Leblon.
Overnight at the famous Copacabana Palace Hotel.
Tuesday, October 30th
We will fly from Rio de Janeiro to Iguaszu (Brazil). Upon landing, our tour bus will take us to the Loi Suites Hotel on the Argentinian side.
The Loi Suites is a five-star hotel is immersed in the Iryapu Jungle. Comfort and luxury close to the Iguaszu Falls in perfect harmony with nature. Built with maximum respect for nature, preserving native vegetation, the hotel is surrounded by magnificent trees and impressive wildlife.
Overnight at the Loi Suites Hotel
Wednesday, October 31st
- Iguaçu National Park - We cross over to the Brazilian side to what are arguably the best views of the tremendous Devil’s Throat waterfall. Watch as 14 falls drop 350 feet (107 meters) over a precipice with impressive, thunderous force. Be sure to bring your foul-weather gear, because the water plummets with such magnitude that it creates a 100-foot (30-meter) cloud of mist that is suspended permanently overhead. This cloud is host to a steady rainbow, so get ready to snap lots of photos.
- For an up-close view of the falls – trek through the forest to the bottom of Salto Floriano.
- Ride the park’s elevator to the top of the falls, or meander out over the falls at Salto Union.
- Itaipu Dam – the world’s largest hydroelectric power plant. Built on the Paraná River, the plant provides part of Brazil’s and almost all of Paraguay’s electricity. View the dam itself up close and learn about the history and logistics of its operation.
Overnight at the Loi Suites Hotel
Thursday, November 1st
Today we visit the Argentian side of the falls.
We will begin a three-part tour.
- Taking the Ecological Train from Cataratas Station (a 15-minute ride on a 2.5 kilometer course.) – Get a view of the upper side of Iguaçu River to the Devil’s Throat Station as you walk over the 1100 meter long catwalk. Take the same path back to Cataratas Station to begin the second portion of the tour.
- Take the Upper Circuit walkways to get a view of several observation points located over the limit of the falls. Get a vertical view above the falls, attaining the largest and best panoramic view of the falls.
- Take your last walk in the Lower Circuit, approximately 2500 meters long. The section overlooks Devil’s Throat and large rock walls. Hop on a boat that will bring you close enough to the falls to take pictures and even get wet!
We will catch a late afternoon flight to Buenos Aires.
Overnight at the Alvear Icon, Buenos Aires
Friday, November 2nd
We start our journey heading towards the political center of the city.
- Historical May Square (Plaza de Mayo)- the place where Buenos Aires was founded. There, we will admire the Pink House (Government House), which houses the mythical balcony from where Evita used to address the people. We will also see the Cabildo, the colonial city-hall, and the Metropolitan Cathedral.
- The spectacular mausoleum of General San Martín, Argentina´s independence hero.
- May Avenue – that joins the Pink House with the Congress, with its Art Nouveau buildings, old hotels, theaters and cafes.
- Café Tortoni, inaugurated in 1858, much frequented by intellectuals and artists.
We continue our journey towards the
- San Telmo neighborhood – bohemians, artists, antiques shops and cobbled streets. We will pass around Dorrego Square, where each Sunday thousands of tourists and porteños visit the antique fair that is held there.
- La Boca neighborhood – with its colourful tenements, artists’ studios and workshops. We will walk along the mythical street of Caminito to breathe the characteristic atmosphere of the area, with its love for tango and soccer.
- Puerto Madero neighborhood – totally redesigned in the 90’s, this new residential area, very close to the river houses three design hotels, chic restaurants and exclusive apartment buildings.
- Retiro. – we will visit San Martín Square, surrounded by elegant buildings with French architecture, where we begin our journey along the most aristocratic areas of Buenos Aires.
- The Palermo neighborood – strolling along its large parks, rose gardens and lakes, the porteños favorite place to practice sports or give long walks.
- We end our tour in Recoleta, where we find the colonial style church of Our Lady of Pilar, the second oldest in the city, and we enter the legendary cemetery to visit Evita´s tomb.
Shabbat, Nov. 3rd
We will spend a relaxing Shabbat in our magnificent hotel.
- Saturday Night – A MUST!!
The Tango Show – you can’t leave Buenos Aires without this experience.
A tango show in Buenos Aires is a must-do. Watching Tango in Buenos Aires can show insight into the Argentine cultural personality; its passion, sensuality, and reverence for history.
Sunday, November 4th
We will take an early morning flight to El Calafate.
We will experience the majestic icy expanse of the Perito Moreno Glacier on this full-day tour from El Calafate.
- Trek among the pristine streams, gullies and peaks of Los Glaciares National Park with a professional guide,
- Get an up-close perspective on the fantastic formation with a 1-hour boat ride through a glacial lagoon.
- You might even witness the glacier’s signature movement and cracking sounds from detaching icebergs!
- Explore the paths and lookout points of Perito Moreno Glacier
- Visit the famous glaciers in the Parque Nacional los Glaciares including Upsalla, Onelli and Spegazzini.
- Stretch your legs and take an easy hike along park pathways for diverse views of Perito Moreno’s 200-foot-(60-meter)-high, blue-tinged walls.
Overnight at Design Suites Hotel, El Calafate
Monday, November 5th
We will take a flight from El Calafate to Ushuaia– the Southernmost city on the planet – to begin our 4 night cruise on the Stella Australis to the heart of Patagonia.
The Stella Australis Cruise Ship
CRUISE DAY 1: Monday, Nov. 5th
- Check in at 409 San Martín Ave. in downtown Ushuaia (?)
- Board the Stella Australis at 18:00 (6 PM). After a welcoming toast and introduction of captain and crew, the ship departs for one of the most remote corners of planet Earth.
- During the night we traverse the Beagle Channel and cross from Argentina into Chilean territorial waters. The lights of Ushuaia disappear as we turn into the narrow Murray Channel between Navarino and Hoste Islands.
CRUISE DAY 2: Tuesday , Nov. 6th
Cape Horn – Wulaia Bay
- Around the break of dawn, Stella Australis crosses Nassau Bay and enters the remote archipelago that comprises Cape Horn National Park.
- Weather and sea conditions permitting, we shall go ashore on the windswept island that harbors legendary Cape Horn (Cabo de Hornos). - Discovered in 1616 by a Dutch maritime expedition — and named after the town of Hoorn in West Friesland — Cape Horn is a sheer 425-meter (1,394-foot) high rocky promontory overlooking the turbulent waters of the Drake Passage.
- Sailing back across Nassau Bay, we anchor at fabled Wulaia Bay – one of the few places in the archipelago where the human history is just as compelling as the natural environment.
- A visit to the Australis-sponsored museum in the old radio station — which is especially strong on the Yámana people and European missionaries in the area.
- A choice of three hikes (of increasing degrees of difficulty) that ascend the heavily wooded mountain behind the bay. On all of these you stroll through an enchanted Magellanic forest of lengas, coigües, canelos and ferns to reach panoramic viewpoints overlooking the bay.
CRUISE DAY 3: Wednesday , Nov. 7th
Pía Glacier – Garibaldi Glacier
- Overnight we continue our Patagonia glacier tour around the western end of Tierra del Fuego via the very narrow Gabrial Channel, Magdalena Channel and Cockburn Channel. After rounding the remote Brecknock Peninsula, Ventus Australis tacks eastward and enters the Beagle Channel again.
- By morning we are entering Pia Fjord and boarding the Zodiacs for a shore excursion to Pia Glacier.
- After disembarking we take a short hike to gain a panoramic view of the spectacular glacier, which extends from the mountaintops down to the sea or a longer much more difficult walk up a lateral moraine of the old Pia Glacier.
- We will enter another long fjord and drop anchor near Garibaldi Glacier for another shore excursion. Garibaldi is one of only three glaciers in Patagonia gaining mass rather than staying the same or slowly shrinking.
- A hike through virgin Magellanic forest to a glacial waterfall – a towering wall of ferns and moss, and spectacular viewpoints looking down on the glacier and fjord. The walk is demanding — very steep, negligible trail, rough footing — and not for everyone. For those who choose to stay onboard, our captain will point the bow towards the beautiful sky blue Garibaldi Glacier so everyone can enjoy the panoramic view from the upper decks.
CRUISE DAY 4: Thursday, Nov. 8th
Agostini Sound – Águila Glacier – Cóndor Glacier
- Early in the morning, we will sail through the Cockburn Channel and enter Agostini Sound. – From there it is possible to see the glaciers that descend from the middle of the Darwin Mountain Range – some of them reaching the water.
- We will disembark and go for an easy walk around a lagoon, which was formed by the melting of the Águila Glacier. We will reach a spot right in front of that glacier with stunning views.
- In the afternoon, we will approach the Condor Glacier via Zodiac — and hopefully see some of the abundant Andean Condors in the area.
CRUISE DAY 5: Friday , Nov. 9th
Magdalena Island – Punta Arenas
- After an overnight cruise through Magdalena Channel and back into the Strait of Magellan, we anchor off Magdalena Island.
- At the break of dawn, weather permitting, we go ashore and hike a path that leads through thousands of penguins to a small museum lodged inside the vintage 1902 lighthouse.
- After a short cruise south along the strait, disembarkation at Punta Arenas is scheduled for around 11:30 AM.
Friday, November 9th
After disembarkation, we will travel to our hotel for the next 3 nights, the amazing and truly “singular’ Singular Patagonia Hotel.
The Singular Santiago Patagonia Hotel, located at the heart of the artistic and urban of the city with neoclassic architectural style was designed as a tribute to the cultural and historic surroundings.
- Check in and then an afternoon of kayaking -
- We will set out from the shore in front of the hotel and row through the waters of the Señoret Canal. This tour is recommendable for both first-time kayakers, as well as those with more experience.
- The trip takes 1-2 hours, depending on expertise.
- If the winds are blowing in our favor, we will head towards Puerto Natales, cross to the Peninsula or head towards Puerto Condor. Beautiful pictures of the hotel can be taken from the bay.
Overnight at The Singular Patagonia Hotel
Shabbat, November 10th
We will spend a relaxing Shabbat in this truly unique and deluxe hotel.
Overnight at The Singular Patagonia Hotel
Sunday, November 11th
Torres del Paine National Park
We will spend today exploring this, one of the World’s famous national parks. In 1978, Unesco declared this Park a Biosphere Reserve. It is also the Eight Wonder of the World.
- We will head northward to the Park, passing through several lookouts with breathtaking views of the Paine Massif.
- We will see fauna typical of this area: nandus, or American ostriches, foxes and guanacos;
- Visit lakes such as the Nordenskjold, Sarmiento, Pehoé and Grey.
- We will take a short walk to the Big Falls (Salto Grande) where you can see the Horns (los Cuernos).
- At Grey Lake Beach, you will have the chance to watch icebergs that were once part of the glacier.
- Choice of easy, medium and difficult treks will be available for today.
Overnight at The Singular Patagonia Hotel
Monday, November 12th
We fly to Santiago, our last stop.
Overnight at Plaza El Bosque Hotel
Tuesday, November 13th
After breakfast, a half- day tour of Santiago…and HOME.