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Argentine Explorer: Experience Buenos Aires, Iguazu Falls, Patagonia & the Lake District

Days: 12 | From: $5,390/per person

Start in the vibrant metropolis of Buenos Aires, then see natural wonders at magnificent Iguazu Falls. Discover Patagonia's stark, sweeping vistas and unique wildlife, and finish your trip in the lush beauty of Argentina's Lake District.

  • Includes accommodations at first class hotels that reflect the best of local culture
  • Includes excursions and tours with superb private guides
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We tailor itineraries to your dates and interests, adjusting hotels, excursions and length as desired.

We consistently receive 5 star reviews from our discerning clients.

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At a glance

  • Buenos Aires
    3 nights: explore Argentina's bustling capital city
  • Iguazu Falls
    2 nights: one of the world's largest waterfalls in all its stunning majesty
  • El Calafate
    3 nights: stay in a unique estancia in picturesque Los Glaciares National Park
  • Bariloche
    3 nights: enjoy outdoor adventures in this charming town on Lake Nahuel Huapi

  • All itineraries are fully customizable. We will send you a personalized variation that reflects your interests and travel dates at no extra cost. Call to discuss your travel plans with one of our Specialists who know this region firsthand.

Customize this trip
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Sample itinerary

Day 1

Welcome to Buenos Aires

Arrive to Buenos Aires, Argentina’s colorful capital, where your private guide will take you to your boutique hotel in the fashionable Palermo district. This is one of the best areas of town for walking around, with charming boutiques and top restaurants.

Accommodations: Mine Hotel, 3 nights

This small, modern boutique hotel has an excellent location in the vibrant Palermo SoHo neighborhood, with many cafes and restaurants right outside the front door. The 20-room hotel offers a restaurant and a private green space with a garden and small pool; most rooms overlook this quaint backyard area.

Upgrades available: Legado Mitico, Alvear Palace, Palacio Duhau Park Hyatt, and others
Day 2

Get to Know Vibrant Buenos Aires

Explore Buenos Aires with your private guide, an engaging bilingual local who will take you through the city’s unique neighborhoods and help you get to know this fascinating metropolis. Discover the charms of Palermo, the Recoleta, the Teatro Colon, the Plaza de Mayo, San Telmo, and La Boca. With your private guide, you have the flexibility to explore at your own pace and make detours and stops along the way.

After your tour, you are free to spend the rest of the day exploring on your own, trying out one of the city’s excellent restaurants and taking in a tango show (we are happy to arrange tango shows and can help you choose the best one based on your interests).

Accommodations: Mine Hotel, 3 nights

*Includes: Breakfast

Day 3

Relax and Explore the City

Argentina - Buenos Aires

Enjoy a day at leisure to delve into the city’s offerings; we’ll give you some of our favorite suggestions for things to see and do. We can also arrange additional privately guided tours, such as half day tours of the famous bodegones (classic old cafes and bars), or private tours focused on tango, art, architecture, Jewish history, soccer (including a visit to the Boca Junior stadium), polo, and more.

Accommodations: Mine Hotel, 3 nights

*Includes: Breakfast

Day 4

The Natural Wonder of Iguazu Falls

Fly north to Iguazu, on the border of Argentina and Brazil. Your private guide will take you to your hotel, which is located right within the national park and next to Iguazu Falls. You can explore the walking trails directly from your hotel, either on your own or with a private local guide. The trails form walking circuits that offer spectacular views of the falls from various angles.

Accommodations: Meliá Iguazu Resort & Spa, 2 nights

We don't generally recommend international chain hotels, but this is the only hotel inside Iguassu National Park on the Argentine side and the only hotel on either side with a view directly to the falls, so it would be a disservice not to recommend it. It has a pleasant atmosphere and very good service. You can visit the main viewing areas of the national park by walking directly from the hotel, or taking the transportation options provided within the park.

*Includes: Breakfast

Upgrades and alternatives: Belmond Hotel das Cataratas, Aldea de la Selva(a first class boutique-style jungle lodge not far from the national park)
Day 5

Iguazu Falls: Another Perspective

Enjoy a trip to the Brazilian side of the falls, where your private guide will take you along trails that showcase the scale and grandeur of this magnificent natural site. There are also options for hiking and other excursions, such as zodiac boat tours. (Please note that you will need a Brazilian tourist visa to visit the Brazilian side of the falls.)

Accommodations: Meliá Iguazu Resort & Spa, 2 nights

*Includes: Breakfast

Day 6

Fly to El Calafate, Land of Towering Glaciers

Fly to El Calafate, gateway to Los Glaciares National Park in Argentine Patagonia. Head deeper into the scenic countryside to your traditional estancia, a favorite among our travelers. Bordering the national park, this estancia offers a view into traditional Patagonian life and access to some rarely-visited and beautiful areas of Argentine Patagonia.

Accommodations: Estancia Nibepo Aike, 3 nights

Nibepo Aike was established as a functioning ranch at the beginning of the 20th century. Located on the southern bank of Lake Argentino, it has a privileged location inside Los Glaciares National Park. The estancia offers easy access, on horseback or via hiking or biking, to places with magnificent, off the beaten path views of the surrounding glaciers and mountains. The estancia has 10 guest rooms: eight double rooms and two triple rooms, all with private bathrooms. The dining room serves traditional meat and vegetable dishes made mostly from home produce.

*Includes: Breakfast, Dinner

Alternative lodging options: Estancia Helsingfors, Eolo
Day 7

Up Close and Personal on Perito Moreno Glacier

Enjoy a unique excursion to the iconic Perito Moreno Glacier. You won’t just view the glacier from a distance – you’ll take a catamaran ride to the front of the glacier and do a short hike on the ice itself. (Crampons will be provided; this is a non-technical and non-strenuous walking excursion. We can also arrange more challenging and strenuous treks on the glacier.) Afterward, visit the viewing areas for great views of the glacier before returning to your estancia for a traditional Patagonian asado dinner.

Accommodations: Estancia Nibepo Aike, 3 nights

*Includes: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8

Free day on the Estancia: Hiking, Horseback Riding, Ranching Activities, or Relaxation

Enjoy a day to explore your estancia. This is an outstanding area for hiking and horseback riding, and the staff at Nibepo Aike will take you riding or help you find the best trails to hike. There are also typical ranching activities that vary by day, such as sheep-shearing.

Accommodations: Estancia Nibepo Aike, 3 nights

*Includes: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9

Head to the Lovely Lake District

Fly to Bariloche, on the shores of scenic Lake Nahuel Huapi. The area offers a range of activities for nature lovers, including hiking, horseback riding, biking, rafting, swimming, fly fishing, and boating. Your first class boutique hotel, located right on the lake, reflects the charm and style of the area and offers magnificent views.

Accommodations: Hotel Aldebaran, 3 nights

Surrounded by lush forest, the 10-room Hotel Aldebaran overlooks the turquoise-blue waters of Lake Nahuel Huapi. Hardwood floors and traditional wood beams blend with subtle modern touches in this intimate, San Pedro Peninsula mountain lodge. The hotel offers a gourmet restaurant with a wide selection of regional wines, a heated pool, spa, and sauna. Aldebaran is somewhat remote, about 12 miles outside downtown Bariloche, providing a relaxing, tranquil environment.

*Includes: Breakfast

Day 10

Explore the Famous Circuito Chico

Skip the typical tourist stops and discover the charms of Bariloche with your private local guide. Get to know the Circuito Chico in a unique way, combining the area’s highlights with less-visited areas and hiking options. You’ll have total flexibility to make the most of the day and to do as much or as little hiking as you want. For the active traveler, a nice extension to this excursion is an afternoon of kayaking with your guide.

Accommodations: Hotel Aldebaran, 3 nights

*Includes: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 11

Time to Relax and Explore Bariloche

Enjoy a variety of options for your time in Bariloche: hiking, horseback riding, rafting, kayaking, fly fishing, boating, and biking, among others. You might consider a drive via the Route of the Seven Lakes to the town of San Martin de los Andes, or a scenic horseback ride with a renowned local riding guide.

Accommodations: Hotel Aldebaran, 3 nights

*Includes: Breakfast

Day 12

Depart for Home or Your Next Destination

Today you will say goodbye to your local guide and head to the airport for your flight home or to your next destination.

*Includes: Breakfast

More Photos From This Trip

Buenos Aires - city view through windowBuenos Aires - Colored BuildingsBuenos Aires BridgeBuenos Aires - National Congress buildingArgentina - Buenos Aires - Puerto MaderoIguazu FallsPatagonia - Perito Moreno GlacierPerito Moreno Glacier at DuskHotel Aldebaran (Bariloche) - Room

Popular Ways to Customize This Itinerary

  • Add a few extra nights in Buenos Aires or Bariloche. We can arrange a variety of activities, including city tours, culinary excursions, visits to historical sites, and active options such as hiking, biking, boating, and horseback riding. We can also arrange activities that cater to special interests, such as a Jewish Heritage Tour, architecture tour, visit to the Boca Juniors Stadium, tango class, or wine tours. In Buenos Aires can also arrange privately guided day excursions to nearby sites, such as the town of Colonia, Uruguay (a well preserved 17th century Portuguese colonial town that is a UNESCO World Heritage site), or up to Tigre and the Delta (there are also biking excursions up to Tigre).

  • Take part in a day of polo at an estancia outside Buenos Aires: Spend the morning on a horse learning the basics of this popular equestrian sport, enjoy a traditional lunch, then put your new skills to use in a relaxed polo match in the afternoon. Great for beginners and experienced riders alike!

  • Visit one of the traditional estancias of San Antonio de Areco, about 1.5 hours from Buenos Aires. This is an area that has preserved gaucho traditions more than any other in Argentina, and the estancias offer an in-depth experience in this fundamental aspect of Argentine culture and history.

  • Visit El Chalten, the land of legendary climbing peaks Fitzroy and Cerro Torre. You can even take a one-night camping trip out of El Chalten to experience the Patagonian mountains in a unique way.

  • Enjoy an extra day or two in El Calafate. There are plenty of great excursions and beautiful places to visit, such as the isolated Estancia Cristina, located next to the spectacular Upsala Glacier and only reachable by boat.

  • Spend some time at Estancia Helsingfors, a first class boutique property in Los Glaciares National Park. The estancia has a stunning location and remote feel, and is a great option for those who prefer to explore Patagonia with a higher emphasis on luxury.

  • Include some downtime for rest and relaxation! Some free time to unwind or have a massage will allow you to feel refreshed and ready for the remainder of your trip. Many of our properties include excellent spas or wellness centers. We can help arrange these services or include properties that offer health & wellness amenities.

  • Contact us to learn about more options for designing and customizing your trip. 

Reviews From This Trip

5 stars

  • Bariloche was just incredibly beautiful and I was also awed by the Perito Moreno glacier.
    Eunice Silver
  • The guides are all young to middle age and skilled (educated), friendly, interesting, and caring.
    Nancy Cary
  • Wonderful trip that was well planned each step of the way.
    Anne Lowe
  • My husband and I enjoyed this exquisite vacation. This trip was thoroughly planned out.
    Karla Demirozu

Call us to start planning your journey today:

1-(800)-342-1796

Inquire About This Trip

Why Travel with Vaya?

We're TRUE specialists

South America is the only place we do trips, and no one knows our destinations better. Our smart and engaging specialists are all current or former U.S. expatriates with years of experience in the region.

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From the first phone call to after you get back, we’re here for you every step of the way. We listen, create, customize and advocate for you, and design experiences that go beyond the expected.

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Our discerning sensibility and good taste go beyond just choices in hotels and top guides; we have a walk the walk commitment to the environment and are genuine leaders in conservation efforts.