It’s well worth squeezing two Latin American countries into one trip – Joanna Booth looks at some of the best twin-centre combinations
When your clients are flying thousands of miles around the globe to Latin America, ensure they get plenty of bang for their buck by taking a twin-centre holiday visiting two destinations, rather than one.
Suggest the trips below for itineraries that showcase two countries and can be done in just two weeks if time is pressing.
Peru and Ecuador
Help adventurers tick two must-visit sights off their list at once with a trip to Machu Picchu and the Galapagos Islands. After flying in to Lima they can overnight if necessary (taking in a couple of museums and some of the world’s best ceviche) before a short flight to Cuzco where the Inca Trail starts.
After they have explored the glories of Machu Picchu, send them on a seven-night cruise around the Galapagos.
If the Inca Trail sounds a bit passé, check out our feature on Inca Trail alternatives.
Peru and Bolivia
After ticking off Machu Picchu, Inca fanatics can take a train from Cuzco to Puno, on the shores of Lake Titicaca. It takes a day to cross the lake to the Bolivian side and reach La Paz, the high-altitude capital. Suggest your clients take a trip out to the ancient pre-Columbian temples at Tiwanaku after exploring the city.
Brazil and Argentina
If your customers are happy to shell out time and money on internal flights (which can cost about £150 per flight) they can take in Salvador, Rio, Iguaçú and Buenos Aires – a glittering itinerary.
For a less ambitious programme, advise clients to miss out northeastern Brazil and spend three days overlanding down the secluded Emerald Coast from Rio to São Paulo before flying to Iguaçú to view the stunning waterfalls and rainforest (pictured above).
From there they can travel by air or land to Buenos Aires and perhaps head out to a nearby estancia for a gaucho ranch experience.
Argentina and Chile
The awe-inspiring landscape of Patagonia spreads across both countries and can easily be experienced in one trip. Fly customers into Buenos Aires and let them discover the city, and add in an estancia trip if they’re ranch fans, before heading down to El Calafate to see the Perito Morino glacier.
Next up, explore the glaciers and lakes in the Torres Del Paine National Park in Chile, a five-hour drive away, before catching a flight from Punta Arenas to Santiago. From there they can fly home or head to neighbouring Bolivia.
Guatemala and Belize
It’s easy to combine Mayan culture with reef and rainforest with these two neighbours. The colonial town of Antigua is just a 45-minute drive from Guatemala City, and from there it’s a short road journey to the very blue Lake Atitlan.
After visiting the markets of unspoilt highland town Chichicastenango, it’s time to head for the impressive Mayan pyramids at Tikal, the gateway to Belize.
Once in Belize, there’s more history in the form of Caracol or Xunantunich, as well as lush rainforest with teeming bird life and the picture-perfect Cayes, where visitors can snorkel and dive over the second largest barrier reef in the world.
Or why not…
- Twin the city and ranch experiences of Argentina with the beaches of Uruguay.
- Couple a visit to stunning El Salvador with a trip to bustling, cosmopolitan Panama.
- Suggest travellers to Costa Rica add on a trip to Nicaragua to explore the colonial city of Granada and the nearby cloud forests and Mombacho volcano.
- Give clients a fix of the Caribbean before hitting Latin America. KLM flights to Quito stop in Bonaire and passengers can stop off and only pay for airport taxes.
- Sell keen naturalists an alternative Darwin experience. Wildlife abounds on the Falkland Islands (and everyone speaks English and uses sterling), and it combines well with Chile.
Get detailed resort information and hotel reviews on the Latin America region from Gazetteers.com, our resort directory for travel agents. Freephone 0800 731 0163 or +44(0)208 652 4526 to subscribe.
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