The two main gateway cities to South America and onto Antarctica are Santiago and Buenos Aires. LATAM Airlines and Qantas have between them a daily service to Santiago and Air New Zealand has flights to Buenos Aires (via Auckland). Here are just a few recommendations of hotels in which you can break your journey. We can organise all your transfers and city tours as well as accommodation and flights to Ushuaia or Punta Arenas (for Fly-Cruise voyages).
Founded in 1541, Santiago has been the capital city of Chile since colonial times. The Andes Mountains can be seen from most points in the city. The city outskirts are surrounded by vineyards and Santiago is within a few hours of both the mountains and the Pacific Ocean. The city is now home to a growing theatre and restaurant scene, a rising skyline, including the tallest building in Latin America, the Gran Torre Santiago.
Like many other countries in South America, Santiago is now home to several fine restaurants. Boragó was recently voted the world’s 8th best, and with two tasting menus wrought from the finest produce the country has to offer. Boragó offers a sumptuous, ‘edge of the world’ dining experience for those seeking creative, unhurried cooking.
To find out more about travelling to Santiago and in Chile visit South America Travel Centre
A seductive port city with a strong European influence and culture and cosmopolitan residents (porteños – ‘people of the port’), Argentina’s capital is
a combination of the colonial and the contemporary, a dazzling mix of cutting edge design, chic restaurants, old-world cafés, and lively outdoor markets.
Despite its wide boulevards and grand architecture, a blend of Spanish, French and Italian, Buenos Aires is essentially a city of barrios (neighbourhoods),
each with their own highly individual colour and character. You might trawl the many antique shops in bohemian San Telmo or make a precious find in its Sunday market, stop for a street-side coffee in working class La Boca, and stroll the trendy avenues of Recoleta and Palermo.
For more information about Buenos Aires and Argentina please visit our dedicated South America site.
In a tropical region of magnificent rainforest and deep flowing rivers in the far north-east, you’ll see ‘the Great Waters’ – the mighty Iguazu Falls. The thundering waterfalls are an incredible sight-and-sound sensation, 3km wide and plunging 70m into the gorge that divides Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. You can see the wide-angle view of the falls from the Brazilian side and more close-up detail from the Argentine side.
The Singular Santiago, newly emerged in the city’s historic Lastarria neighbourhood, has been designed to embrace the area’s cultural and artistic heritage while adding a cutting-edge modernity. It maintains an old-world feeling with 19th century French influences, while incorporating a contemporary elegance and high level amenities.
Accommodation ranges from small Patio rooms and Asian-styled Classic rooms to the top Singular room category with larger bathrooms and small balconies. All are traditional in styling, with a timeless décor that mixes limited edition prints, hand-crafted furniture and polished parquet floors. The hotel’s restaurant combines European and Chilean cuisines, with a French twist on local dishes, while the lobby bar has the feel of a private members club with its brass lamps, leather armchairs and marble bar. Meanwhile, The Singular’s rooftop bar and terrace, with a plunge pool, offers superb views over the city.
The Legado Mitico Buenos Aires is an urbane 3-storey townhouse in the city’s bohemian Palermo Viejo neighbourhood. The hotel’s style might be called ‘aristocratic Argentine’; and 11 beautiful themed guestrooms are sensitively decorated to evoke the spirit of Argentina’s cultural and historical icons.Refinement is the key word here, with dark tones, period furniture, leather sofas, towering bookshelves and fireplaces featured in the luxurious lounge and dining areas. Rooms have spacious bathrooms, king-size beds and a full range of contemporary facilities. Behind the hotel is a small, outdoor garden area that provides a tranquil retreat.
Belmond Hotel das Cataratas is a graceful Portuguese-colonial residence, set in lush tropical gardens. It is the only hotel inside Brazil’s Iguassu National Park and just a short stroll from the sensational falls – giving guests exclusive access when the park is closed to other visitors. The elegant property has a classic décor that beautifully reflects its colonial era, with polished hardwood floors, traditional blue-tiled bathrooms, dark-wood furnishings and colourful accents.
Guestrooms are distributed across three buildings – the Garden and Forest Wings and the main building that also houses the lobby, lounges, main bar and fine-dining restaurant. The expansive grounds include tennis courts and a beautiful swimming pool bordered by palm trees.