46 days in Colombia, Ecuador & Peru Itinerary

46 days in Colombia, Ecuador & Peru Itinerary

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1
Cartagena, Colombia
— 3 nights
Fly
2
Medellin, Colombia
— 4 nights
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Bogota, Colombia
— 3 nights
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Quito, Ecuador
— 3 nights
+2
Fly to Baltra Island, Fly to San Cristobal, Ferry to Puerto Ayora
5
Puerto Ayora, Ecuador
— 4 nights
Ferry
6
Puerto Villamil, Ecuador
— 4 nights
Fly to Baltra Island, Fly to Cuenca
7
Cuenca, Ecuador
— 4 nights
Fly
8
Lima, Peru
— 3 nights
Fly
9
Iquitos, Peru
— 2 nights
Fly
10
Cusco, Peru
— 5 nights
Train
11
Machu Picchu, Peru
— 3 nights
Fly
12
Arequipa, Peru
— 5 nights
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Cartagena, Colombia — 3 nights

The site of the continent's first Spanish colony, Cartagena retains much of its colonial flavor thanks to a World Heritage-listed old town, encircled by old walls and protected by imposing fortresses.
Cartagena is known for historic sites, sightseeing, and museums. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: steep yourself in history at Walled City of Cartagena, contemplate the geological forces at Volcan de Lodo El Totumo (Mud Volcano), take an in-depth tour of Museo del Oro Zenu, and make a trip to Plaza de Bolivar.

To find maps, where to stay, traveler tips, and tourist information, use the Cartagena day trip planning tool.

Panama City, Panama to Cartagena is an approximately 4.5-hour flight. October in Cartagena sees daily highs of 90°F and lows of 78°F at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 4th (Tue) so you can catch the flight to Medellin.
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Historic Sites · Spas · Nature · Parks
Find places to stay Oct 1 — 4:

Medellin, Colombia — 4 nights

Nestled between rising hills in a narrow valley, Medellin serves as an energetic melting pot of people from all socio-economic classes.
Step out of Medellin to go to Guatape and see Piedra Del Penol, which is approximately 1h 50 min away. And it doesn't end there: explore the activities along Laguna de Guatape, don't miss a visit to Plaza Botero, observe the fascinating underwater world at Parque Explora, and take in nature's colorful creations at Jardin Botanico de Medellin.

To see ratings, maps, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our Medellin visit planner.

Fly from Cartagena to Medellin in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Plan for a bit cooler temperatures traveling from Cartagena in October, with highs in Medellin at 81°F and lows at 64°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Sat) to allow enough time to fly to Bogota.
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Parks · Nature · Zoos & Aquariums
Side Trip
Find places to stay Oct 4 — 8:

Bogota, Colombia — 3 nights

Colombia's heart and soul, Bogota has earned the nickname "Athens of South America" thanks to its abundance of universities, libraries, and lower-level schools.
Go for a jaunt from Bogota to Zipaquira to see Catedral de Sal de Zipaquira about 54 minutes away. There's still lots to do: take in the awesome beauty at Monserrate and explore the world behind art at Museo Botero del Banco de la Republica.

To find reviews, where to stay, traveler tips, and other tourist information, refer to the Bogota trip itinerary planning site.

You can fly from Medellin to Bogota in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In October, Bogota is a bit cooler than Medellin - with highs of 67°F and lows of 47°F. You will leave for Quito on the 11th (Tue).
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Nature · Parks · Historic Sites · Museums
Side Trip
Find places to stay Oct 8 — 11:

Quito, Ecuador — 3 nights

High in the Andean foothills, Quito remains one of the world's most photogenic capital cities, featuring two dramatic mountain ranges as its backdrop.
Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: appreciate the extensive heritage of Quito Old Town, pause for some serene contemplation at Iglesia y Convento de San Francisco, and then take an in-depth tour of Museo Templo del Sol Pintor Ortega Maila.

To find maps, ratings, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the Quito trip planner.

Traveling by flight from Bogota to Quito takes 5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Plan for a bit warmer nights when traveling from Bogota in October since evenings lows in Quito dip to 58°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 14th (Fri) early enough to travel to Puerto Ayora.
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Historic Sites · Museums
Find places to stay Oct 11 — 14:

Puerto Ayora, Ecuador — 4 nights

The largest settlement in the Galapagos, Puerto Ayora offers visitors to the islands an array of facilities and things to do.
Puerto Ayora is known for parks, nature, and wildlife. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: tour the pleasant surroundings at Charles Darwin Research Station, kick back and relax at Galapagos Beach at Tortuga Bay, walk around El Garrapatero, and wander the wide-open spaces of Rancho Primicias.

To find traveler tips, reviews, and other tourist information, go to the Puerto Ayora trip planner.

You can do a combination of flight and ferry from Quito to Puerto Ayora in 9.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and ferry. Prepare for somewhat warmer weather when traveling from Quito in October: high temperatures in Puerto Ayora hover around 79°F and lows are around 70°F. On the 18th (Tue), you'll travel to Puerto Villamil.
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Parks · Beaches · Outdoors · Wildlife
Side Trip
Find places to stay Oct 14 — 18:

Puerto Villamil, Ecuador — 4 nights

Located in the southeast of Isla Isabela, Puerto Villamil is home to the majority of the island's 2,200 inhabitants.
Puerto Villamil is known for nature, parks, and sightseeing. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: learn about wildlife with up-close encounters at Centro de Crianza Tortugas Gigantes Arnaldo Tupiza Chamaidan, head off the coast to Las Tintoreras, contemplate the geological forces at Sierra Negra, and tour the pleasant surroundings at Concha de Perla.

To find maps, ratings, reviews, and other tourist information, use the Puerto Villamil day trip planning tool.

Getting from Puerto Ayora to Puerto Villamil by ferry takes about 3.5 hours. The time zone changes from Ecuador Time (ECT) to Galapagos Time (GALT), which is usually a -1 hour difference. On the 22nd (Sat), you'll travel to Cuenca.
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Parks · Nature · Zoos & Aquariums · Wildlife
Side Trip
Find places to stay Oct 18 — 22:

Cuenca, Ecuador — 4 nights

Packed with impressive colonial architecture and a historic town center, Cuenca stands as perhaps the most charming city in the nation.
Cuenca is known for nature, museums, and historic sites. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: explore the wealth of natural beauty at El Cajas National Park, learn about wildlife with up-close encounters at AMARU Bioparque Cuenca Zoologico, get engrossed in the history at Pumapungo Museum and Arqueological Park - MCYP, and pause for some serene contemplation at Mirador de Turi.

To see photos, maps, reviews, and more tourist information, go to the Cuenca driving holiday planning website.

Getting from Puerto Villamil to Cuenca by flight takes about 8 hours. Other options: do a combination of flight and taxi. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 1 hour traveling from Puerto Villamil to Cuenca. Expect a daytime high around 73°F in October, and nighttime lows around 52°F. You'll have a few hours on the 26th (Wed) to wrap things up before traveling to Lima.
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Parks · Nature · Historic Sites · Zoos & Aquariums
Find places to stay Oct 22 — 26:

Lima, Peru — 3 nights

Founded in 1535 by Spanish explorer Francisco Pizarro, Lima represents an interesting blend of modern attractions and preserved colonial architecture, much of it clustered in the World Heritage-listed city center.
Lima is known for museums, parks, and historic sites. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: take an in-depth tour of Museo Larco, steep yourself in history at Basilica y Monasterio de Santo Domingo, ponder the design of Plaza de Armas (Plaza Mayor), and take a leisurely stroll along Miraflores Boardwalk.

For ratings, maps, more things to do, and more tourist information, read our Lima trip planner.

Fly from Cuenca to Lima in 8 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Plan for a bit warmer nights when traveling from Cuenca in October since evenings lows in Lima dip to 61°F. On the 29th (Sat), you're off to Iquitos.
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Neighborhoods · Parks · Historic Sites · Museums
Find places to stay Oct 26 — 29:

Iquitos, Peru — 2 nights

The largest city in the Peruvian Amazon and the world's largest metropolis unreachable by road, Iquitos represents a major starting point for river and rainforest adventures.
Here are some ideas for day two: get to know the resident critters at Quistococha Zoo and then tour the pleasant surroundings at La Isla De Los Monos.

For traveler tips, more things to do, other places to visit, and other tourist information, read Iquitos road trip site.

Traveling by flight from Lima to Iquitos takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus, ferry, and taxi; or do a combination of bus and ferry. Expect much hotter weather when traveling from Lima in October: highs in Iquitos hover around 91°F, while lows dip to 72°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 31st (Mon) early enough to fly to Cusco.
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Parks · Wildlife · Zoos & Aquariums · Museums
Side Trip
Find places to stay Oct 29 — 31:

Cusco, Peru — 5 nights

Capital of the Inca Empire for three centuries, World Heritage-listed Cusco is now a major tourist destination, drawing nearly 2 million annual tourists with its well-preserved colonial architecture and proximity to Machu Picchu.
Cusco is known for historic sites, sightseeing, and museums. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: contemplate the long history of Sacsayhuaman, pause for some serene contemplation at Cusco Cathedral, admire the masterpieces at Museo de Arte Precolombino, and contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Qorikancha.

To see where to stay, reviews, more things to do, and more tourist information, use the Cusco online driving holiday planner.

You can fly from Iquitos to Cusco in 4.5 hours. Other options are to fly; or do a combination of taxi, ferry, and bus; or do a combination of ferry and bus. In October, Cusco is much colder than Iquitos - with highs of 70°F and lows of 43°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 5th (Sat) early enough to go by car to Machu Picchu.
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Historic Sites · Museums
Side Trip
Find places to stay Oct 31 — Nov 5:

Machu Picchu, Peru — 3 nights

A symbol of the Incan civilization, the abandoned city of Machu Picchu represents a must-see on a Peru vacation.
Machu Picchu is known for historic sites, nature, and sightseeing. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: steep yourself in history at Santuario Historico de Machu Picchu, explore the ancient world of Winay Wayna, take some stellar pictures from Intipuncu, and take in the natural beauty of Hot Springs (Aguas Calientes).

For photos, other places to visit, ratings, and more tourist information, read Machu Picchu trip planner.

Traveling by train from Cusco to Machu Picchu takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and train; or take a train. On the 8th (Tue), you're off to Arequipa.
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Historic Sites · Nature · Parks
Find places to stay Nov 5 — 8:

Arequipa, Peru — 5 nights

In an area dominated three imposing volcanoes, Arequipa vacations allow visitors to admire well-preserved colonial architecture in a dramatic setting.
Arequipa is known for museums, sightseeing, and historic sites. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: examine the collection at Santa Catalina Monastery, make a trip to Plaza de Armas, and steep yourself in history at Historic Centre of Arequipa.

For other places to visit, reviews, ratings, and more tourist information, read our Arequipa visit planner.

Fly from Machu Picchu to Arequipa in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of train and bus; or drive. In November in Arequipa, expect temperatures between 70°F during the day and 49°F at night. On the 13th (Sun), you're off to home.
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Historic Sites · Museums
Find places to stay Nov 8 — 13:

Colombia travel guide

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Historic Sites · Landmarks · Beaches
Diverse in terms of landscapes, climates, and cultures, Colombia remains one of South America's least explored tourist destinations, overshadowed by its more popular southern neighbors. Combining the best of what the continent has to offer, a vacation in Colombia allows you to blend outdoor adventures with tours of picture-perfect cobblestoned towns dating back to the colonial era. Tourists on a Colombia holiday can easily hop from sun-kissed coastal spots to the hilly coffee-growing region, where thriving plantations quickly give way to a landscape of snow-covered volcanic peaks and the paramo--alpine ecosystems sheltering some of the rarest plants growing above the continuous forest line.
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Ecuador travel guide

4.5
Architectural Buildings · Landmarks · History Museums
With abundant opportunities to discover fascinating World Heritage Sites, a holiday in Ecuador remains among the most culturally enriching travel experiences. Home to the world's highest active volcano, this little country packs a big punch when it comes to tourist activities. Some of the most popular things to do in Ecuador include visits to its astonishingly biodiverse wilderness areas, home to some 1,500 bird species, 840 species of amphibians and reptiles, and nearly 20,000 plant species. Of course, the highlight of many Ecuador vacations is bound to be the Galapagos Islands, made famous by naturalist Charles Darwin. Aside from the stunning nature, Ecuador also boasts many historic cities filled with photogenic colonial-era churches, mansions, and plazas.
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Peru travel guide

4.6
Historic Sites · Parks · Landmarks
Land of the Incas
In a country renowned for its pre-Columbian archeological sites, no Peru vacation would be complete without an adrenaline-inducing hike to Machu Picchu, World Heritage-listed symbol of the once-mighty Incan Empire. Aside from visiting these spectacular ruins set against the backdrop of photogenic mountain peaks, most holidays in Peru also include an exploration of the country's pretty cities, boasting well-preserved colonial architecture and a slew of modern buildings housing fine museums, galleries, shops, and restaurants. Ideal for active vacationers, Peru trips are also tailor-made for gourmands, as the country's eclectic cuisine blends tasty influences from Africa, Asia, and Europe.
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