Day 1 UK - Santiago
Today you'll fly to Chile's capital, Santiago, via São Paulo.
Day 2 Santiago
On arrival in Santiago we will transfer you to your hotel, and after time to freshen up your sightseeing will begin. We'll start with a walking tour downtown, taking in the main square, Plaza de Armas, the cathedral and the ornate façade of the Presidential Palace. Continuing by coach, we'll enjoy panoramic views of the city from San Cristóbal Hill, before driving through Santiago's modern quarter, with its chic neighbourhoods and glitzy shopping malls.
Day 3 Santiago - San Pedro de Atacama
We're heading to the Atacama Desert today. We'll fly north to Calama and then transfer to San Pedro de Atacama, a village set amid scenery you won't see anywhere else on earth.
You'll be keen to start exploring straightaway, so this afternoon our sightseeing begins at Salt Mountain. We'll also visit Mars Valley, where the dunes and sculpted rock formations are nothing short of breathtaking. Then we'll make our way to Moon Valley in time to watch the sun set over the red lunar-like landscape. As the light fades the rocks appear to change colour – a truly incredible sight.
Day 4 San Pedro de Atacama
Our first stop today will be in the town of Toconao. Most of the buildings here are made from local white stone and the bell tower dates from 1750. Next we'll visit the little village of Socaire, before heading to the vast Atacama salt flat. The surface of this salt plain is covered by a hard white crust, and turquoise lagoons create the perfect habitat for birds. We'll head first to the tranquil Chaxa Lagoon, where pink flamingos can often be seen feeding in the shallow waters. Next we're going to visit the Miscanti and Meñiques lagoons, which are located more than 4,000 metres above sea level. Set against a backdrop of volcanoes, the landscape here is simply spectacular and it's another great spot for birdwatching – don't forget your binoculars!
Day 5 San Pedro de Atacama - Santiago
You've a real treat in store today, a visit to the remarkable Tatio Geysers. Sunrise is the best time to view them, so we'll be setting off early and will enjoy a picnic breakfast before our guided walk around the geothermal field. Surrounded by volcanoes, there are more than 80 geysers and around 100 steaming fumaroles here. If you wish, you'll also have a chance to take a dip in one of the natural pools and bathe in the warm thermal waters. We'll return to San Pedro de Atacama later, a journey which gives us spectacular views of the Torcopuri and Sairecabur volcanoes. Spend some time at leisure in San Pedro before we fly back to Santiago this afternoon. We'll stay at an airport hotel overnight.
Day 6 Santiago - Puerto Natales
After breakfast your adventure continues as we fly south to Chilean Patagonia. We'll arrive in Punta Arenas and then transfer to Puerto Natales, gateway to the Torres del Paine National Park.
Day 7 Puerto Natales
Your day begins with a cruise along the beautiful Última Esperanza Fjord. We'll sail to the 1,000-year-old Balmaceda Glacier, where you might be lucky enough to spot cormorants and sea lions. Then, when we reach the end of the fjord, we'll step ashore and walk through a forest to the foot of the Serrano Glacier. This immense natural wonder is an incredible sight, so be sure to have your camera at the ready. On our way back we'll stop at an estancia – a ranch - for a traditional lamb barbecue.
Day 8 Torres del Paine National Park
Today's the day we explore the impressive Torres del Paine National Park, a wilderness of lakes, forests, rivers and glaciers. An array of wildlife lives in the park, including large herds of guanacos, llama-like creatures which can often be seen grazing on the open steppes.
Our first stop will be at the 30-metre-high Milodon Cave, where the partial remains of an enormous extinct animal, the ground sloth, were discovered in the late 19th century. Continuing our journey we'll drive into the national park and visit the Salto Grande, a thundering waterfall on the Pehoe River. Next we'll take in the scenic beauty of Lake Pehoe and Lake Grey, and you'll see the magnificent Grey Glacier in the distance.
Day 9 Puerto Natales - Santiago
After breakfast we'll return to the airport and fly back to Santiago.Meals included: B
Day 10 Santiago - UK
This morning we're going to take a tour of the Undurraga winery. Located in the Maipo Valley, it was founded in 1885 and is one of the oldest in Chile. During our tour we'll learn about the winery's history, take a walk through the vineyards and visit the underground cellars for a tasting.
Later we'll transfer you to the airport for your flight home.
Day 11 UK
You'll arrive back in the UK today.
Please note: During this tour you will travel to altitudes of over 14,000ft where altitude sickness can occur. Simple measures, such as eating light meals and drinking lots of fluids can help to alleviate the symptoms. If you suffer from high blood pressure or respiratory conditions, or have any other concerns, please consult your doctor.