South America has gained a newfound reputation over the past decade as a top destination for solo travel – with its friendly and welcoming cities like Medellin to its natural wonders like Iguazu Falls – At Kuoda, we’re passionate about helping travelers experience luxury solo travel to South America, safely, and on your own terms.
Solo traveling in South America allows you to explore all of the wonders of the region at your own pace, and Kuoda designs an itinerary just for you, leaving you feeling empowered and in control of your travels, without all of the legwork of planning and coordinating logistics. Ready to discover South America on your own terms? Get in touch with Kuoda today to start planning your luxury solo travel to South America. Discover the sample itineraries below to guide your plans.
1. Buenos Aires + Mendoza
Suggested time: 10 days
From metropolitan cities to colonial charm, breathtaking landscapes to delicious cuisine: Argentina is a country blessed with it all, and to no surprise, has a wealth of destinations begging to be experienced by travelers looking for a taste of everything on a luxury tour of South America.
Enjoy Culture, Gastronomy and Art in Argentina’s Capital.
- Explore The Historical Sights: The Casa Rosada, the pink presidential palace, is a must-see. The Recoleta Cemetery, where Eva Perón is buried, is also a popular attraction. The San Telmo neighborhood is full of colonial-era buildings and is a great place to explore on foot.
Experience Tango: Tango is an iconic part of Buenos Aires culture, and experiencing a tango show or taking a tango lesson can be a great way to immerse yourself in the local culture.
- Many tango shows and lessons are available throughout the city, and some are geared specifically towards cultural immersion and meeting others. Buenos Aires is also a food lover’s paradise, and trying the local cuisine is a must-do while in the city.
- Get a taste of Buenos Aires: From Argentine steak to empanadas and dulce de leche, there’s something for every palate. You can explore the food scene on your own, or join a food tour that takes you to some of the best local restaurants and markets.
- Visit the Museums: Buenos Aires also has a thriving art scene, with many museums and galleries to explore. The MALBA, or Museum of Latin American Art, is a popular attraction that features works by some of the most famous Latin American artists. The National Museum of Fine Arts is another must-see for art lovers.
Take in nature, sip on wines and relax in wine country.
In addition to the majestic Andes Mountains and passionate cultural celebrations, Argentina is known and loved for its impressive wine production, historic estancia stays, and wellness offerings – all of which are the perfect opportunity for a solo luxury adventure. The best luxury solo experiences in Argentine wine country are ones that allow you to take your time and soak up every single second in this South American paradise – like wine tasting, horseback riding, stargazing, and spa days.
- Wine Tasting: Picture the luscious green vineyards passing by with the warm Argentinian sun cascading down upon you as you ride through the scenic bike paths of wine country. Of course, the local wineries are excellent places to book a tasting or stay overnight, but one of the best ways to see the raw beauty of this region is with a bike tour.The largest of Argentina’s wine regions is Mendoza, and this is the perfect place if you’re interested in biking along winding roads, stopping for a sip at each vineyard. With roughly 800 wineries decorating the landscapes, you’ll have plenty of options for which vineyards you’d like to explore. Cavas Wine Lodge is one of the best and will be a perfect addition to your bike tour. The luxurious rooms and villas provide you with a comfortable place to rest after a long ride, and their on-site spa will make your stay even more special.
- Staying at an Estancia: Staying at an estancia, or traditional Argentinean cattle ranch can be a truly unique and immersive travel experience on your luxury tour of Argentina. The country is famous for its estancias, or ranches, which are typically located in rural areas and offer visitors a chance to experience the traditional way of life in Argentina. Visitors to an estancia can participate in a variety of activities, including horseback riding, cattle drives, and gaucho demonstrations.Many estancias also offer other outdoor experiences, such as fishing, hiking, and bird watching. Some also provide a variety of wellness experiences and spa treatments. For a list of estancias we recommend – check out this blog.
- Wellness and Spas: Mendoza has a number of wellness centers and spas that offer a range of treatments, from massages to hot springs. Some popular wellness centers include Termas de Cacheuta, which offers hot springs and spa treatments, and the Entre Cielos Luxury Wine Hotel & Spa, which offers a range of treatments and services, including a hammam and vinotherapy.
- Explore Mendoza: Safe, clean, and solo friendly – Mendoza is a beautiful city with a rich history and culture, and there are many sights to see in the city itself. Some popular attractions include the Plaza Independencia, which is the main square in the city and is home to many historic buildings and monuments, and the Museo del Area Fundacional, which explores the city’s history.
- Take a Cooking Class: Argentine cuisine is famous for its meat dishes, empanadas, and wine, and taking a cooking class can be a fun way to learn about the local food culture. Some cooking classes are held in vineyards, allowing you to learn about wine and food pairing, while others take place in the city and focus on traditional Argentine dishes.
- Visit Mercado Central: Mercado Central is a bustling market in the heart of the city that sells everything from fresh produce to handmade crafts. It’s a great place to explore and soak up the local culture, and you can also try some traditional Argentine foods, such as empanadas and choripán.
2. Santiago + Atacama Desert
Suggested time: 8 days
With incredible natural landscapes, a laid-back mountain-meets-coastal culture, and miles of coastline, Chile is the perfect destination to lay back and enjoy. Best of all, Chile is generally regarded as one of the safest countries in South America, perfect for solo travelers valuing safety in their journey.
Sip, Spa and Savor in Santiago
Chile’s capital has plenty in store for travelers looking for a mix of culture, shopping, gastronomy, and relaxation. Here are some ideas for your itinerary:
- Wine Tours: Chile is renowned for its wine production, and Santiago is the perfect place to explore the many vineyards and wineries in the surrounding countryside, which rival those in the famed Maipo Valley. Take a luxury tour to visit the top wineries in the region, and enjoy tastings of some of the best wines Chile has to offer.
- Spas: Santiago is home to many luxury spas that offer a range of treatments, from massages to hydrotherapy. Pamper yourself with a luxurious spa day, and relax and unwind in the city’s top spa facilities.
- Shopping: Santiago is a shopper’s paradise, with a range of high-end stores and boutiques to explore. From designer fashion to artisanal crafts, you’ll find it all in the city’s many shopping districts.
- Museums: Santiago, Chile is home to several excellent museums that showcase the country’s rich history and culture. The National Museum of Fine Arts is a must-visit for art lovers, with its impressive collection of Chilean art from the colonial period to the present day. The Museum of Memory and Human Rights is a powerful tribute to the victims of the Pinochet regime, with interactive exhibits that educate visitors on the country’s recent history.The Chilean Museum of Pre-Columbian Art displays an incredible collection of indigenous art from across the Americas, including ceramics, textiles, and gold-work. Finally, the Museum of Natural History is a great place to learn about Chile’s diverse flora and fauna, with exhibits on everything from the Atacama Desert to the country’s glaciers. Whether you’re interested in art, history, or science, Santiago has a museum to suit your interests.
- Fine Dining: Santiago is home to some of the finest restaurants in South America, with a diverse range of cuisines on offer. Treat yourself to a fine dining experience, and savor the city’s top culinary delights. Visitors to Santiago are often big fans of Boragó, a highly acclaimed restaurant in Santiago that focuses on using Chilean ingredients in innovative and creative ways. The restaurant’s chef, Rodolfo Guzmán, is known for his commitment to using locally sourced, seasonal ingredients, and incorporating indigenous Chilean ingredients into his dishes.
Boragó has been recognized as one of the top 50 restaurants in the world and is a must-visit for foodies in Santiago. Another popular dining destination includes Ambrosía, a restaurant located in the historic center of Santiago, known for its seasonal and locally sourced ingredients, creative dishes, and extensive wine list. The menu changes frequently to reflect the best of what’s in season, and the restaurant offers a variety of tasting menus and a la carte options.
Experience thrilling adventures in the Atacama Desert
The Atacama Desert is home to some of the world’s most unique luxury experiences. Here are a few things to add to your itinerary:
- Stargazing: The Atacama Desert is known for its clear skies, making it an ideal destination for stargazing. Some luxury accommodations even offer telescopes and guided tours of the night sky.
- Hot air balloon ride: Take in the stunning desert landscape from a hot air balloon. This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that you won’t want to miss.
- Spa treatments: Many luxury hotels and resorts offer spa treatments using locally-sourced ingredients, such as volcanic mud and medicinal herbs.
- Hiking: The Atacama Desert is home to some of the most beautiful and unique hiking trails in the world. Take a guided hike to the top of a volcano, or explore the stunning Valle de la Luna.
- Sandboarding: If you’re feeling adventurous, try sandboarding on the massive sand dunes of the Atacama Desert.
- Wildlife watching: The Atacama Desert is home to various unique wildlife, including flamingos, vicuñas, and foxes. Take a guided tour to see these amazing animals up close.
3. Lima + Cusco + Sacred Valley
Suggested time: 14 days
With astonishingly varied landscapes, stunning scenery, compelling history, and a legacy of fascinating cultures, Peru has gained notoriety as the crown jewel of South America’s travel destinations for good reason. From the ancient Incan city of Machu Picchu, tucked away in the majestic Andes Mountains to the bustling city of Lima, the gastronomical capital of the Americas – Peru is a destination for travel lovers, foodies, and nature enthusiasts alike.
Experience the best of the coast in Lima
- Sample local cuisine: Lima is known for its incredible food scene and is often considered the gastronomic capital of South America. Be sure to try traditional Peruvian dishes like ceviche, lomo saltado, and ají de gallina, as well as the city’s famous street food like anticuchos and picarones.
- Learn to surf: Lima is a popular destination for surfers, and there are several beaches where solo travelers can take surfing lessons or rent a board and hit the waves.
- Explore the Barranco district: Barranco is a trendy neighborhood in Lima with a bohemian vibe. The neighborhood is known for its colorful houses, street art, and lively nightlife. Walk through the neighborhood’s winding streets to discover hidden cafes, boutiques, and art galleries. It’s a great place to wander around, take photos, and get lost exploring the beauty of the city.
- Explore the Larco Museum: The Larco Museum is home to an extensive collection of pre-Columbian art, artifacts, and ceramics from ancient Peru. The museum is housed in an 18th-century mansion and features beautiful gardens, a restaurant, and a gift shop.
- Visit the Huaca Pucllana: The Huaca Pucllana is an archaeological site located in the heart of the city. The site features an ancient adobe pyramid that dates back to the 5th century and offers a glimpse into Lima’s pre-Columbian history.
- Take a day trip to the nearby beaches: Lima is located on the coast, and there are several nearby beaches that are worth a visit. Some of the most popular options include the beaches of Miraflores and Barranco, where you can enjoy water sports, relax on the sand, and sample local seafood.
Visit the Heart of the Incan Empire in Cusco and the Sacred Valley
Cusco is a city full of history and culture, with a rich Inca heritage and a vibrant modern-day atmosphere.
- Explore the Inca ruins: Cusco is the gateway to the famous Inca ruins of Machu Picchu, but many other Inca ruins in the region are worth exploring. These include Sacsayhuaman, Ollantaytambo, and Pisac, among others.
- Go on a trek: The region surrounding Cusco is home to some of the most beautiful trekking routes in the world, including the Inca Trail, Salkantay Trek, and the Lares Trek. These treks range in difficulty and duration, but all offer stunning views of the Andes Mountains and the surrounding landscape.
- Attend a festival: Cusco is known for its vibrant festivals, which feature colorful parades, traditional music and dance, and delicious food. Some of the most popular festivals in Cusco include Inti Raymi, Corpus Christi, and the Lord of the Earthquakes.
- Enjoy the journey in style and comfort: Getting to the heart of the Sacred Valley from Cusco is an unforgettable journey that offers incredible sweeping views of the Andes. The Belmond Hiram Bingham is one of the most famous luxury train options, offering a truly luxurious experience for travelers. The journey begins in Cusco, where passengers are welcomed aboard the train and served a welcome drink. The train then departs from Cusco and travels through the picturesque Sacred Valley, passing through scenic landscapes and stopping at several notable locations along the way.
In addition to the visit to Machu Picchu, the Belmond Hiram Bingham offers several other activities and experiences along the way. These may include a visit to the Ollantaytambo ruins, a tour of a local market, or a traditional Peruvian dance performance on board the train.
4. Medellin + Guatape + Cartagena
Suggested time: 14 days
From Caribbean beaches to world-renowned nightlife, vibrant culture, and some of the friendliest locals you’ll ever meet – get ready to be awestruck by the breathtaking beauty and diverse experiences of Colombia.
Explore the most transformational city in South America
- Visit one of the city’s many museums: Take a walking tour of the city to learn more about its history and culture, or visit some of the city’s museums, such as the Museum of Antioquia, a significant cultural landmark, showcasing an extensive collection of Colombian art and artifacts or the Botero Museum, a must-see attraction for art lovers, featuring an impressive collection of Fernando Botero’s famous oversized sculptures and paintings, as well as works by other renowned artists.
- Discover the surrounding nature: Medellin is surrounded by stunning natural beauty, and there are plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities, such as hiking, paragliding, and rock climbing. The city is also home to a number of beautiful parks, such as Parque Arvi and Parque Explora.
- Explore street art in Medellin: Medellin has a thriving street art scene, with colorful murals and graffiti adorning many of the city’s buildings. From Poblado to Comuna 13, taking a street art tour is a great way to learn about the artists and their work.
- Visit the Comuna 13 neighborhood: Comuna 13 is a neighborhood that was once known for its violence and crime but has undergone a remarkable transformation in recent years. Today, it’s a vibrant and colorful area with a strong community spirit. Taking a walking tour of the neighborhood is a great way to learn about its history and see the street art and murals that have transformed the area.
Explore the vibrant town of Guatapé
Guatapé is a small town located about 2 hours east of Medellin in the heart of the Antioquia region of Colombia. Known for its colorful architecture, stunning lake views, and outdoor activities, Guatapé has become an increasingly popular destination for visitors to Colombia.
El Peñol Rock: One of the most iconic landmarks in Guatapé is the towering El Peñol Rock, which offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside. Visitors can climb the 740 steps to the top of the rock, which stands 200 meters tall.
Explore around town: Visiting the town is a highlight of any solo trip to Colombia. Guatapé is known for its vibrant, brightly painted buildings, which make for great photo opportunities. Visitors can wander around the town’s narrow streets, checking out the local shops and restaurants along the way.
Visit Lake Guatapé: The nearby lake is a popular spot for boating and water sports. Visitors can rent a boat or join a guided tour to explore the lake and take in the surrounding scenery.
Explore, dine, shop and dance in Cartagena
- Warm Caribbean waters hug the white sand beaches of Cartagena’s coastline, the vibrant Colombian city that makes a perfect vacation spot for friends. Here, you’ll be treated to historic gems, delicious food, and one of the best nightlife scenes in all of South America. Here are some ideas for your trip:Explore the Old Town: Cartagena’s Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the most popular tourist destinations in the city. Visitors can wander through the charming cobblestone streets, admire the colorful colonial architecture, and visit historic landmarks like the San Felipe de Barajas Castle, the Cathedral of Cartagena, and the Palace of the Inquisition.
- Visit the Rosario Islands: Just off the coast of Cartagena, the Rosario Islands are a cluster of small islands that are perfect for day trips. Visitors can take a boat tour to the islands, swim in the crystal-clear waters, and relax on the beaches.
- Take a street food tour: Cartagena is known for its delicious street food, which is a must-try for any visitor to the city. Join a local food tour to sample some of the best dishes and learn about the history and culture behind them.
- Take a salsa lesson: Salsa dancing is a big part of Colombian culture, and Cartagena has many dance studios that offer lessons for both beginners and advanced dancers. Join a class to learn the basics of this energetic and passionate dance.
- Walk along the city walls: The city walls of Cartagena were built in the 16th century to protect the city from pirates and other invaders. Visitors can walk along the walls and take in the stunning views of the city and the Caribbean Sea.
Relax on the beaches: Cartagena has several beautiful beaches, including Bocagrande, Playa Blanca, and Castillo Grande. Visitors can rent chairs and umbrellas and spend a day soaking up the sun and enjoying the warm Caribbean waters.
When traveling with Kuoda, each trip is a one-of-a-kind travel experience that caters specifically to your interests and preferences. From the moment you book your trip, you’ll work with a team of dedicated travel experts who will listen to your needs and desires, and then create a bespoke itinerary that includes everything from luxury accommodations to exclusive experiences.
Whether you want to explore the ancient ruins of Machu Picchu, sample the finest wines in Argentina, or relax on the beaches of Cartagena, Kuoda can make it happen. Reach out to us about your luxury solo travel to South America and let our team of experts handle all the details.
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