Rio de Janeiro, Iguazu Falls, and Salvador da Bahia
10 Days/8 Nights
From $2,159 per person
(Dbl. Occupancy, Not Incl. Airfare)
Experience three of Brazil’s top destinations on this fascinating tour. Starting in Rio de Janeiro, you will visit Christ the Redeemer Statue and Sugar Loaf Mountain and have free time to explore the city. Next, you will head to Iguazu Falls, on the border between Brazil and Argentina, and one of the most beautiful waterfalls on Earth. The last part of the tour takes you to the historic city of Salvador da Bahia, the former capital of the country and the center of Afro-Brazilian culture.
Lodging and Meals: This tour includes accommodations for 8 nights (3 nights in Rio de Janeiro, 2 nights in Puerto Iguazu, and 3 nights in Salvador da Bahia), and 9 meals (8 breakfasts and 1 lunch).
Best Time to Go: October-April.
Day 1: Rio de Janeiro.
Depart to Rio de Janeiro via overnight flight.
Day 2: Rio de Janeiro-Ginga Tropical Show.
After passing through immigration and customs, proceed to the reception area, where our inbound services representative will be holding a sign with your name on it. You will be greeted and then transferred to your hotel.
In the evening, you will see the Ginga Tropical Show at the Teatro Fashion Mall. The show perfectly combines a variety of Brazilian dances that developed from African rhythms via the slave trade and from the natives that lived in Brazil before colonization. Overnight in Rio de Janeiro.
Notes: 1.) Check-in time in Rio de Janeiro is typically 2:00 PM. We can request early check-in for you but cannot guarantee it. 2.) The Ginga Tropical Show is available on Saturday evenings. We can offer an alternative activity for other nights of the week.
Day 3: Rio de Janeiro-Christ the Redeemer Statue (Corcovado)-Sugarloaf Mountain.
Depart from the hotel after breakfast to visit the two most famous landmarks of the city and see the natural beauty of Rio de Janeiro from up above. After a scenic drive along Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon, you arrive at the bottom of Corcovado Hill. You then embark on a comfortable train that ascends the mountain, where the statue of Christ the Redeemer is located 2,300 ft. above sea level. The Christ statue, known as the “Wonder of Rio”, was recently voted one of the 7 New Wonders of the World. Upon arrival at the top, you use the panoramic elevators or escalators to arrive at the foot of the statute. There, you can enjoy a panoramic view of Rio de Janeiro and discover why it is called the “Marvelous City”. Afterwards, you descend the mountain and stop for a delicious Brazilian Barbecue lunch.
Over a million tourists each year visit the world famous Sugar Loaf Mountain, which has become an iconic symbol of the city of Rio de Janeiro. Rising up from a small peninsula at the entrance of Guanabara Bay, its name is said to refer to its resemblance to the traditional shape of a concentrated, refined sugar loaf. The journey to the top is made in glass cable-cars. The first cable-car takes you to the top of Urca Hill, which rises 215 meters above sea level and offers spectacular views of the entire bay and its surrounding islands. From Urca Hill, you continue in a second cable-car to the top of Sugar Loaf which rises 395 meters above sea level and offers a 360 degree view of the entire city including Botafogo and Copacabana Beaches, Corcovado Mountain, and downtown Rio de Janeiro. (Duration: approximately 8 hours. Lunch will be served at Estrela do Sul BBQ). Following the tour, you will be returned to your hotel. Overnight in Rio de Janeiro. (B,L)
Day 4: Rio de Janeiro.
Free day. Overnight in Rio de Janeiro. (B)
Day 5: Rio de Janeiro-Iguazu Falls (Brazilian Side).
Early morning transfer to the airport for your flight to Iguazu Falls. Upon arrival, you will have a 1 and ½ hour tour of the Brazilian side of Iguazu Falls. Located in Iguazu National Park, these spectacular falls are comprised of 275 individual cascades, and are more than 1.90 miles wide and 260 ft. high. You will walk along the main trail (one mile) on a catwalk above the lower Iguazu River to the series of falls that comprise the Devil’s Throat. Then you will take an elevator to an observation deck for a spectacular panoramic view of the falls. At the end of this tour, you will be transferred to your hotel on the Argentinian side. Overnight in Puerto Iguazu. (B)
Day 6: Iguazu Falls (Argentinian Side)-Great Adventure Tour.
In the morning, you will return to Iguazu Falls to view the falls from the Argentinian side and for the Great Adventure Tour. On the Argentinian side of the falls, you will visit the Interpretation Center to learn about the biodiversity of the jungle and the culture and history of the surrounding area. You can also take the Ecological Forest Train to the Garganta del Diable (Devil’s Throat) Station and the Cataratas Station, which will take you to the upper and lower circuits, and other walking trails.
In the afternoon, you will have the Great Adventure Tour. First, you will ride semi-rigid zodiac boats to reach the bottom of San Martin, Bosetty, Tres Mosqueteros and Canon de Garganta del Diablo falls and down the river rapids up to Puerto Macuco (two miles from the falls). Then, you will ride in an open jeep along the rainforest, observing the local flora and fauna with the aid of specialized guides. Overnight in Puerto Iguazu. (B)
Day 7: Iguazu Falls-Salvador da Bahia.
Transfer to the airport for your flight to Salvador da Bahia. Upon arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel. Salvador, the capital of the state of Bahia, was at one time the capital of Brazil, and is now the center of Afro-Brazilian life. It is divided into two parts. The “Lower City” is at sea level and is where the city´s original port and commercial area, including Mercado Modelo, are located. The “Upper City” is reached through the Lacerda elevator. This part of the city is where most of the museums, churches and modern architecture are located. The city, without a doubt, keeps in touch with its African roots and traditions with respect to its cuisine, religion, and artwork. Overnight in Salvador da Bahia. (B)
Day 8: Salvador da Bahia-Historic Center Walking Tour-Bahia by Night Folklore Show.
In the morning, you will have a walking tour of Pelourinho, the historic center of Salvador da Bahia, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You will appreciate the well-preserved colonial architecture and can visit the area’s shops, art galleries, and churches, including the São Francisco Church, with its extravagant gold leaf baroque designs. The tour finishes at the Largo do Pelourinho, the triangle-shaped heart of the neighborhood. Note: This tour is only available on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.
In the evening, you will visit the Miguel Santana Theatre in Pelhourinho, for a folkloric show presented by the Bahia Folklore Company (Balé Folclórico da Bahia), one of the most respected folklore dance troupes in the world. The performance includes a presentation of multiple African dance traditions that heavily influenced the Bahian culture. You will see the Candomblé (dance in honor of the gods); Puxada de Rede, a song by fishermen in honor of Yemanjá, the goddess of the sea; Maculelê, an acrobatic stick and sword dance with its origins in the cane fields; Capoeira, a martial art/dance of Angolan origin and the Samba de Roda, a spinning, swirling version of the exuberant national dance. Optional dinner at a local restaurant (not included). Overnight in Salvador da Bahia. (B)
Notes: 1.) On Sunday, the Historic Center Tour is only available in the morning. 2.) The Miguel Santana Theatre tour is only available on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.
Day 9: Salvador da Bahia-Panoramic City Tour.
In the morning, you will have a panoramic tour of the Lower City, which offers another perspective of Salvador da Bahia. You will drive by the Itapagipe Peninsula, where life moves at a slower pace, and the Bonfim Church, one of the most important pilgrimage churches in Brazil, deeply influenced by the Candomblé beliefs.
The tour continues to the Monserrat district with its panoramic view of the city and then on to the Mercado Modelo, a thriving market for local goods and souvenirs. This is also where you can test your bargaining talents! After the tour, you will be returned to your hotel. Overnight in Salvador da Bahia. (B)
Note: The Bonfim Church is closed on Mondays.
Day 10: Salvador da Bahia.
Transfer to the airport for your return flight to your final destination. (B)
B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner
- South American Vacations’ expert pre-departure planning services and documentation.
- Airport/hotel transfers including baggage handling.
- Hotel accommodations including taxes and service charges.
- Excursions as indicated on the itinerary including all applicable entrance fees.
- Meals as indicated on the itinerary.
- Local, English-speaking tour guides.
Price Does Not Include
- International airfare.
- Domestic airfare.
- Meals not indicated on the itinerary.
- Gratuities, gifts, and personal items.
- Travel insurance.
We will be happy to quote the cost of airfare and travel insurance and to make these arrangements for you.
Group Private: All airport/hotel transfers are private. In Rio de Janeiro, the Corcovado and Sugarloaf Mountain excursion is a group tour for single passengers and 3 Star accommodations, and private for 4 Star, 5 Star, and Deluxe accommodation. In Iguazu Falls, the tours of the Brazilian and Argentinian side are group tours for single passengers and 3 Star accommodations and private for 4 Star, 5 Star, and Deluxe accommodations. The Great Adventure Tour is a group tour.
Passport/Visa: For Brazil, U.S., Australian, British, and Canadian citizens require a passport valid for at least six months from date of entry, an onward or return ticket, and proof of sufficient funds to cover their stay. Citizens of other countries are advised to contact the Brazilian embassy in their country before traveling. For Argentina, U.S., Australian, Canadian, and EU citizens require a valid passport (for the duration of your visit) and return ticket for stays of up to 90 days. Australian and Canadian citizens are required to pay a reciprocity fee of $100 and $75 respectively (subject to change without notice due to currency fluctuations or other reasons) online, and must show proof of payment prior to arrival. The reciprocity fee for U.S. citizens has been suspended until further notice. For citizens of Australia, this fee covers unlimited entries to Argentina for 10 years, while citizens of Canada are charged the fee every time they enter the country (or $150 for multiple visits within five years). The fee can be paid online at ProvinciaNet.com.ar. You will need to register in order to make the payment. Citizens of other countries are advised to contact the embassy of Argentina in their country before traveling.
Travel Insurance: In order to protect your travel investment from unforeseen circumstances that may arise before or during your trip, we strongly recommend that you purchase travel insurance. We offer Allianz Global Assistance’s Classic Comprehensive and other plans. The Benefits and Coverage Limits are summarized on our Travel Insurance page. Call your travel counselor if you have any questions or to purchase a plan.
To Book This Trip: We require a non-refundable deposit of $500 per person plus the cost of the international airfare (if we make the arrangements for you). The balance of the trip cost is due 60 days prior to departure.
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