President's Pick - The Passions of Chile and Argentina by Robert Craig | Craig Travel

President's Pick - The Passions of Chile and Argentina by Robert Craig

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If you are looking for a warm winter getaway and a delightful, leisurely-paced itinerary, this is the journey for you. For two glorious weeks, you will be captivated by the relaxed culture and easy going styles of South America.

Chile’s long, narrow shape stretches alongside the Pacific Ocean on the west and the magnificent Andes Mountains along the east. Our journey will take us from the Colchagua Valley past miles of lush vineyards and farmlands. In Santiago, there will be visits to stunning wineries to taste the fine wines that have made Chile a world-renowned centre of wine production. With every good wine, there must be an opportunity to taste fine cuisine, so delicious lunches and dinners will be unforgettable highlights. A cooking class at a popular restaurant will begin with choosing the ingredients at a colourful local market and learning how to prepare them.

Crossing the awe-inspiring Andes Mountains, every twist and turn in the road presents one spectacular view after another as we head to Argentina and the desert city of Mendoza. Mendoza is the wine capital of Argentina and it is here that we will attend the famous Mendoza Wine Festival, a spectacular show featuring over 1,000 performers on stage. Mendoza is a beautiful city and its historic centre is a lively place, with restaurants, cafes, shopping and a mix of architecture that showcases Art Deco alongside ’60s modern. There will be some time to explore on your own.

From Mendoza, we will fly to spectacular Iguassu Falls. Iguassu National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is said to be one of the most unique sites in the world. It’s an experience you must see to appreciate. Move over Niagara and Victoria Falls; you are no match for Iguassu! The “Devil’s Throat” section of the falls has water crashing into it from three sides and the mist rises to as high as 150 metres! The surrounding forests are brimming with flora and fauna. There are over 350 species of birds including colourful tucans and vultures. Howler monkeys swing playfully and stunning orchids flourish in the tropical mist.

Last stop is vibrant, modern Buenos Aires, our home for three nights. The city is a seductive world capital located on the banks of the Rio de la Plata. It was built by European immigrants and has a resemblance to parts of Madrid, Barcelona, Paris and Rome. No visit to Buenos Aires would be complete without visits to Eva Peron’s balcony, a passionate tango show and a visit to a gaucho ranch!

This is an amazingly delightful adventure; one not to be missed. With only a two-hour time difference between Toronto and our starting point in Santiago, jetlag is a non-issue. 

Experience the contrasts of Santiago, Chile.  From the ultramodern centre to its colonial past,Chile has become a world-renowned producer of fine wines,Visit one of nature’s most spectacular sights, Iguassu Falls,The colourful La Boca district, the haunt of artists.  Buenos Aires, Argentina.,Enjoy the excitement at Estancia Santa Susana with the beautiful countryside and Argentine cowboys!