South American wine tour
We're on our way!!!
August 3 - 10, 2013
Join us on this unique wine tour, visiting the spectacular vineyards of Chile & Argentina. You can't miss the opportunity to enjoy, live and be excited with this amazing program that will capture your senses with the majestic Andes range and wine growing valleys of sheer beauty. Let us show you the marvels that we were privileged to experience!
- Experience South America hospitality
- Discover the secrets of the New World wines
- Indulge in Chile breath-taking country
- Dive into the heart of Argentina wine country
Day 01: Welcome to Santiago de Chile – Aug 03rd
01.00pm - Meet and greet at Santiago airport – Check In at Bonaparte Hotel (Providencia Neighborhood). As a group we'll decide where to go for dinner that night.
Day 02: Discover Santiago – Half Day city tour – Aug 04th
Chosen by the New York Times as 2011’s #1 destination to visit, Santiago is a dynamic and contemporary metropolis located in the heart of Chile’s fertile central valley. Chile’s capital is a vibrant city full of character, with a thriving arts culture, trendy restaurant scene, and lively nightlife. Embraced on all sides by mountains – the mighty Andes to the east and the smaller coastal range to the west – on a clear day Santiago boasts one of the most incredible city scenes in the world. Old-world colonial mansions and eclectic neighborhoods transition seamlessly to the skyscrapers of “Sanhattan” in a captivating fusion of tradition and modernity. With world-class skiing, wine tours, biking, and trekking right its doorstep, Santiago is a city full of exhilarating possibilities.
The tour begins with pick up at our hotel. Our bilingual guide will lead us on a tour highlighting Santiago’s most important historical sites, including the downtown area surrounding the Plaza de Armas and the La Moneda Presidential Palace. We will also pass by the Mercado Central, one of Chile’s largest fresh seafood markets and stroll by the many bustling stalls to see the tremendous variety
available from Chile’s bountiful sea. We will visit some of the lesser known barrios of Santiago including República and Concha y Toro, which were historically privileged neighborhoods and home to Santiago's high society. There will be time to walk around and take photos of the varied styles of architecture dating back to the 19th and early 20th century. Continuing through the cobblestoned Lastarria neighborhood, we will walk through the Parque Forestal and pass by the Bellas Artes Museum. For a panoramic vista of the city, we will visit the top of Cerro San Cristobal Hill, 984 feet above the city.
Day 03: Maipo Valley Premium Tour – Aug 05th
Our guide will meet us at your Santiago hotel this morning to begin our tour. We will drive south along the foothills of the Andes and stop by some of the top wineries in the Maipo Valley. Chile’s most traditional wine valley is also one of the most internationally recognized as it is home to such famous wineries as Concha y Toro and Cousiño Macul. Maipo produces many of Chile’s finest red varieties. Maipo is also capturing attention for the exciting new boutique wineries emerging in the region known as the "Alto" Maipo for its vines grown at higher altitude.
Our first stop will be the intriguing small boutique winery, Aquitania. Located just outside Santiago, Aquitania was born from a formidable partnership among four well-respected French and French-Chilean agronomists and oenologists. The idea was to combine the best of French vinicultural practices with the agricultural paradise of Chile to create unique, sophisticated wines. Award-winning labels such as Aquitania, Lazuli, and Sol de Sol are proof of the project’s success. Next we’ll visit the Haras de Pirque Winery. The winery is part of a larger property which combines the owners’ two passions: viticulture and thoroughbred horse breeding. Notable labels include Equus, Haras, Elegance, and Albis. We’ll enjoy a tour and tasting of two wines as well as a bottle of Elegance. For lunch, we will enjoy typical Chilean dishes at the Fundación Origen restaurant, nestled within the traditional wine region of Pirque.
Day 04: Santiago to Mendoza – Aug 06th
After breakfast, we departure for our scenic tour across the striking landscape of the Andes range. The high mountain peaks invite us to enter into a world of giants!
The Andes and Argentina beckon! On our breathtaking route through a gorge hugged by snow-capped mountains we may well see condors soaring against the peak of Aconcagua, the highest peak in the Andes. On the journey we stop for lunch at the border and to view Aconcagua. As we travel away from Chile´s plains there is a dramatic change; green, tropical crops and lush vegetation give way to bare, dramatic mountains and desert scrub of cacti and acacia.
During our trip,we will appreciate the wine area of Aconcagua Valley, Chile´ s smallest wine valley but very well known for its Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah production.
Then, we continue to the International Tunnel "Cristo Redentor", through a meandered path "The Snails of Portillo" that in only 16 Km., it rises 1000 meters and it counts on 32 curves of 180º. It is an exciting experience you can´t miss!
Once in Mendoza, a wonderful viewpoint allows us to see the Aconcagua Mt in all its splendour, which stands at 6,962 meters (22,841 ft.) above sea level. The mountains in the Andes of Mendoza are the highest in the world outside of the Himalayas.
The trip continues towards several other small mountain towns like Puente del Inca, a natural bridge where Las Cuevas river has drilled into the mountains forming this incredible natural attraction. Thermal water emerges from different areas and several pools are being used by the climbers as a free spa.
The following section of the route leads us to Uspallata, framed by mountainous landscapes with changing colours, filled with various geological formations and many tunnels on the road. The famous film "Seven years in Tibet" was filmed in this valley.
The adventure continues towards the tiny lake village of Potrerillos, where we´ll enjoy an unbeatable view of the Potrerillos dam which forms a breathtakingartificial lake.
Check IN at your hotel.
Day 05: To Mendoza Wine Country – Aug 07th
Transfer to domestic airport and check-in assistance for Mendoza flight; airport meet and greet and transfer to our hotel. In the afternoon, sightseeing around Mendoza city, visiting one of the most
beautiful cities in the country, a real oasis in the desert.
We will appreciate the irrigation ditches and its green open spaces, which are its main characteristic. At night, enjoy a special dinner at one of Mendoza´s top restaurants 1884. Run by the well known chef Francis Mallmann, the restaurant is located in the historic Escorihuela winery, in the heart of the country’s thrilling wine region.
Last year, 1884 rated seventh among the world’s most desirable restaurants in a London Times list.
Day 06: Uco Valley wine tour & Cooking Class – Aug 08th
We deeply believe that food is a very good way to learn about the culture, traditions and customs of the locals and what can be better than a cooking class. Today, live a unique cuisine experience at La Tupiña Bistró. Located in Tupungato, Uco Valley, which presents the highest altitudes at which wines are produced in the province of Mendoza (up to 1,700 meters above sea level), this intimate and exclusive restaurant run by chef Lucas Bustos invite us to live an unforgettable cooking experience that put together regional recipes, products from the Uco Valley and above all, its people hospitality. Empanadas, chivito a la cacerola, huevos quimbo, ambrosia, among others, are some of the dishes that will show you our traditions.
After whetting our appetite, we visit Bodega Salentein. Respectful of the land’s vibrantly textured past, Salentein is equally inspired by the land’s remarkably promising future. It is this delicate balance of old and new- of blending the tradition of long-celebrated European winemaking methods with the bold ingenuity of the New World- that defines the Salentein style. At night, savor an authentic Argentinean “parrillada” at Q Grill, one of Park Hyatt’s restaurants. A dining experience you can’t miss!
Day 07: Full day wine tour visiting the Luján de Cuyo region – Aug 09th
Today explore the different microclimates in the region of Luján de Cuyo to better get to know Argentina’s most beloved grape—Malbec.
Our first stop will be at Bodega Dante Robino. This family company, 100% owned by Argentine shareholders, was founded 90 years ago, and it still keeps the same compromise and passion for quality as envisaged by its founders.The vision of the Squassini family is base on history, performance and strong future aspiration. The next destination is Bodega Kaiken. Just as Kaikenes (wild geese, indigenous to Patagonia) fly over Patagonia, criss-crossing the land between Chile and Argentina, so have Montes Wines crossed over the Andes and into Argentina, with the firm purpose of producing fine wines, resulting from a perfect combination of the exceptional conditions given in the Mendoza area, plus the work of talented professionals, both Chilean and Argentine.
For the grand finale, we break for lunch at Cava de Cano. Served in their cozy barrel cellar, we’ll savor their silky hand-crafted Syrah wine, paired by simple gourmet dishes. The appetizer course is fit for a king, with every Argentinean vegetable dish you could imagine plus a big selection of meats and cheeses. Beans, rice, squash, fruits, olives, tomatoes, salamis and sausages are just a small sample of what is served. This first course is then followed by four additional courses with two different empanadas, a beef stew, and pasta. There is no way a normal person could finish all the food that is served. Bring a camera to document this feast!
Late in the evening, dinner is included at Florentino Bistró. This nice restaurant is located right in the center of town and is well-known among travelers because of their international inspired cuisine but with fresh local ingredients. Dig into creamy goat cheese, juicy vine-ripened tomato pebre, and bread baked in a mud oven, as you wait for the simple and fresh full course meal. Absolutely delicious!
Day 08: Departure from Mendoza – Aug 10th
Check OUT from the hotel and transfer to Mendoza airport. Fly back to Santiago, Chile. In case of flying to Buenos Aires domestic airport, transfer to Ezeiza International airport is included. Ask about optional add-on trips to Chile or Buenos Aires. Extra days must be arranged in advance. End of our services.
SANTIAGO DE CHILE
- Transfer IN
- 3 nights ´accommodation in double base with breakfast included at Bonaparte hotel
- Half day city tour (Include: private transportation from and to your hotel, bilingual tour guide, entrance to the main attractions)
- Full day Maipo wine tour (Include: private transportation from and to your hotel, visits and Premium tastings at wineries, gourmet lunches with top wines, specialized bilingual guidance, bottled mineral water during the trips, Travel Insurance during the activities)
- Private ground Transportation from Santiago de Chile to Mendoza
- Transfer IN/OUT
- 4 nights´ accommodation in double base with breakfast included
- Half day city tour (Include: private transportation from and to your hotel, bilingual tour guide, bottled mineral water)
- Full day wine tours around Mendoza´s hottest wine regions: Luján de Cuyo & Uco Valley (Include: private transportation from and to your hotel, visits and Premium tastings at wineries, gourmet lunches with top wines, specialized bilingual tour guide, bottled mineral water during the trips, Travel Insurance during the activities)
- Three dinners at top restaurants (Includes: private transportation from and to your hotel, gourmet dinner. Beverages are not included)
- Flight tickets. Airport taxes, reciprocity fees ($160. and $140)
- Tips and gratuities for guide, driver, restaurant.
- Personal expenses.
- Meals and drinks not specified.
Price per person:
- Double occupancy: USD $2199
- Single occupancy: USD $2595
The deposit is $1100. The final payment is due July 27th. All payments can be made via Paypal or wired directly to the travel agent. I would like to get a firm committment from people by May 1st if possible. If you get this info after that date, email me to see if we are still adding travelers.
I am planning on heading there a couple of days early, if possible. It is $110 per day/per room which only includes breakfast.
(airfare not included approx $1500)
August weather in Argentina:
Come escape the Houston heat and humidity!