Another World Adventures

Trans South America Cartagena To Manaus Inc. Guianas

Duration: 195 days
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Enjoy an epic 27 week overland journey all around South America from Colombia to the southern tip of Argentina and back up to northern Brazil.

Witness some of the most striking landscapes that this part of the world has to offer as you travel through dense rainforests, dry deserts and high altiplano. Experience pristine coastlines and vibrant cities as you get a real feel of the sights, sounds and flavours of the true South America.

Note: From 2025 the itinerary will be extended slightly to 28 1/2 weeks and will include time travelling through both Uruguay and Paraguay

Highlights

Wander the cobbled alleys of the old city amongst churches, monasteries and plazas in Cartagena
3 nights exploring the Amazon Jungle – take guided walks and view the exotic wildlife by land or river
Trek through the Sacred Valley of the Incas reaching the famous UNESCO World Heritage site Machu Picchu
Journey through endless grasslands, stupendous mountains and glaciers in Patagonia
Travel to the most southerly town on earth, Ushuaia
Experience the pulsating and cosmopolitan city of Buenos Aires
Take in the enormity of Iguazu Falls from both the Argentine and Brazilian sides
Explore the vast w

Why you'll love this adventure

  • An incredible way to see so much of South America
  • Perfect for solo travellers or friends travelling together
  • From jungle trips to the Inca Trail and Rio Carnival you'll get a great mix of unmissable experiences
Start
South America, Argentina
Finish
South America, Suriname
Trip Duration
195 Days
Group Size
Min group size 1 and Max group size 10
Activity
Culture, Explorer, Mixed Activity, Overland Road Trip
Style of Travel
Guided Group, Incentive Travel, Private Departure, Solo Traveller

Dates

From

Thursday

24 October 2024

To

Friday

2 May 2025

From

Thursday

2 October 2025

To

Saturday

18 April 2026

This trip can be tailor made for your perfect travel dates. Please make a booking enquiry for more information.

Itinerary

This massive trip includes an action packed itinerary! Please make an enquiry and we'll send you the full itinerary for each day including meals, activities, travel and accommodation.

Enquire Today
Cartagena To Manaus Inc. Guianas (27 Weeks) Trans South America

What's included

  • Accommodation – approx. 50% camping; 50% simple hostels/hotels
  • Playa Blanca boat trip – Cartagena
  • City tour – Cartagena
  • Tayrona National Park – includes entrance & hammock accommodation
  • El Totumo Mud Volcano
  • Coffee plantation tour – Salento
  • 3 night Jungle Trip – includes accommodation & meals (activities are optional extra)
  • Chan Chan Ruins – entrance & guided tour
  • Boat tour and overnight stay with local family on Lake Titicaca
  • Torres del Paine National Park – entrance fee included
  • Pantanal – includes accommodation, meals & activities
  • Iguazu Falls – entrance to Argentina side
  • 5 nights in Rio de Janeiro to celebrate the New Year or Rio Carnival
  • Ferry across the Baia de Todos os Santos
  • Bale Folcorico do Bahia – entrance to the show
  • Pedra Caidra Waterfall & walk – entrance & guide
  • Riverboat from Belem to Macapo
  • Overnight jungle lodge in Guyana
  • Meals – approx. 50%
  • All transport on Oasis Expedition Truck
  • Camping and Cooking equipment
  • Services of Oasis Crew

 

Trip notes

Price

From £9995.00 land only

Who is this trip for?

  • Suitable For Solo
  • Suitable For Couples
  • Suitable For Children
  • Suitable For Groups
  • Suitable For Students
  • Suitable For Business
  • Suitable For Wheelchairs

Additional notes

Itinerary

DAY 1-5: CARTAGENA TO TAYRONA NATIONAL PARK
A highlight of any trip to Colombia is undoubtedly Cartagena. With its colonial past and Unesco World Heritage status, the old city is an ideal place to just wander the maze of cobbled alleys amongst churches, monasteries, plazas and bougainvillea draped balconies. Las Murallas, the thick walls built around the old city to protect it from pirates, are wonderfully preserved and make for an interesting walk, before stopping off in one of the hidden patio cafes. We spend 2 nights here to get a flavour of both the old city and also the trendy area of Bocagrande. We will also include a boat trip Playa Blanca, with it’s turquoise waters and golden sand it is one of Cartagenas most famous beaches.

We set off in the Truck eastbound with a quick dip in Volcan de Lodo el Totumo before we continue to Taganga where we spend a night in this chilled out Caribbean town with a strong alternative feel. Some of South America’s loveliest coastline lies east of Taganga in Tayrona National Park. We spend 2 days exploring trails to beaches set in deep bays, shaded by coconut palms. We have the option to snorkel and possibly scuba dive in some of the bays. Lack of roads means that we will probably have to hike with our gear to our overnight spots where we sleep in hammocks!

DAY 6-14: TAYRONA NATIONAL PARK TO BOGOTA
We then head south into the heart of Colombia, with a roadside bush camp on the way before arriving in the lively city of Medellin. Here is a good spot to get a few Salsa or Tango lessons in before trying out your moves in the many discos and clubs. For those wanting a little culture there are several art galleries and museums worth visiting or also an option to travel via local bus to the sleepy colonial town of Santa Fe de Antioquia.

Continuing south, our Colombian overland adventure takes us in to the mountains to the pleasantly cool climate of Salento. Here, deep in the heart of the coffee growing area, we have the option to visit one of the numerous coffee farms. Parque Los Nevados, with peaks topping 5000mtrs, and weirdly tall Palm trees making it a great place to spend a day trekking, before checking out some of the town’s funky bars in the evening.Bogota is our next stop and we have 2 or 3 nights to see the different sides of this once notorious capital city. Having had the accreditation in the 80’s and 90’s of being one of the world’s most dangerous cities, things have really turned around for Bogota. The city is cradled by Andean Peaks and great views can be seen from a trek up the Cerro de Monserrate. Pop in to the cobbled historic centre, La Candelaria, and as well as taking in a few cafes and picturesque buildings, enjoy the age old tradition of adding cheese to your hot chocolate!

DAY 15-17: BOGOTA TO PARQUE PURACE
We now travel through the Tatacoa Desert, an arid area of striking eroded cliffs surrounded by distant peaks of over 5000mtrs. The result is a quite unique ecosystem, and due to the dry, clear conditions, the area is an excellent star gazing spot and we will try to camp here to appreciate the view. Turning west through stunning mountain scenery towards the Pan American Highway, and after a gruelling drive, we eventually take an unpaved road into Parque Purace. The park is the only place to see Condors in Colombia, and it is also home to some good walking trails. The adventurous can scale Volcan Purace (4750mtrs), but there are a few other less strenuous hikes to the Sulphur Mine and Termales de San Juan – a spectacular hot spring complete with water slides!

DAY 18-22: PARQUE PURACE TO QUITO
Further west is the beautiful colonial city of Popayan. Nicknamed the white city, some would say only Cartagena surpasses Popayan’s colonial structures. We shall make a small stop to admire the chalk white facades and stock up on supplies, before following the Andes south towards Pasto. Santuario De Las Lajas – a neo-Gothic church built on a stone bridge spanning a gorge – is the main point of interest in our last stop in Colombia, Ipiales. We may choose to camp the night in either Pasto or Ipiales, or possibly continue on to the border with Ecuador.

We cross the equator as we make our way to Quito, a capital city rich in history, surrounded by mountains – a play ground for hikers and mountain bike fans.

DAY 23-28: QUITO TO AMAZON JUNGLE
Departing the largest city in Ecuador – Quito, we cross the Equator on our way to the town of Otavalo famous for its colourful craft market. Heading east on narrow, tortuous roads to the steamy edge of the Amazon basin and our gateway into the Amazon jungle. Here accompanied by experienced guides, we explore on foot this exotic environment.

DAY 29-34: AMAZON JUNGLE TO CUENCA
Further south, perched high in the mountains of Ecuador, lies the outdoor adventure mecca of Banos. This spa town, where Ecuadorians go to relax in the thermal baths, is a favourite amongst those who have undertaken South America travel. With optional activities including rafting, canyoning and treks to waterfalls, you won’t be short of things to do! We hit the road again and drive south along the spine of the Andes towards Peru visiting Cuenca on the way.

DAY 35-40: CUENCA TO LIMA
A days drive on the Pan-American highway brings us to the border with Peru. You will notice an amazing transition in one day, from the glush farming country of highland Ecuador, through sub-tropical forest and immense banana plantations, to dry barren desert in Peru. We are rewarded with a couple of days chilling by the beach. Our next stops on our South America travel experience are the Chan Chan ruins, imperial citadel of the pre-Inca Chimu kings which the Incas later conquered. It claims to be the largest mud brick city in the world.
Continuing with the Andes close to our left and the sea on our right, the capital city of Lima will be our next stop on our South America tour. Here you’ll encounter both abundant wealth and grinding poverty, modern skyscrapers next to some of the finest museums and historical monuments in Latin America.

DAY 41-47: LIMA TO COLCA CANYON
Departing Lima our next stop is the Ballestas Islands in the Paracas National Reserve. By boat, you have the opportunity to visit the rare and exotic sea birds and mammals that inhabit these islands. An hour’s drive inland in the heart of the Ica Desert is the Oasis of Huacachina; if its an adrenaline rush you’re after, you have the option to head out on a custom made dune buggy & roar across the desert sands to the top of enormous dunes & then sand board down them – head first on a greased up plank of wood! Then, after an unforgettable desert sunset, we sit around the campfire while our guides cook up a storm, followed by a night sleeping out under the stars. In the morning we make our way to one of the world’s great archaeological mysteries The Nazca Lines. These huge figures and shapes, carved into the desert floor are best viewed from the air – South America travel is not complete until you have seen these unbelievable ancient mysteries.

Still heading south we visit Chauchilla Cemetery with its well-preserved mummies, on our way to Puerto Inca, at this ancient Inca harbour we camp at the beach and enjoy our last night at sea level before beginning our climb back into the towering Andes. The next two nights are spent in Arequipa at 2325m, giving us time to acclimatise, and enjoy this beautiful colonial city with its impressive El Misti Volcano in the background. Arequipa is also the gateway to one of the deepest canyons in the world. Twice as deep as the Grand Canyon, Colca Canyon is an awesome sight. Here, if you get up early, Condors can be seen circling lazily on the thermals rising from the canyon floor.

DAY 48-54: COLCA CANYON TO CUSCO
Widely considered to be the most interesting city for South America travel, our next stop Cusco is surrounded by the Sacred Valley of the Incas and offers a wide range of activities to explore the region. We will base ourselves here for 6 days giving us enough time for the Inca Trail trip and to visit Machu Picchu, which is regarded by many to be the highlight of their South America tour. There are several treks which you can take to Machu Picchu. These are all available as Optional Add Ons which you can add to your booking. When permits are still available, we will organise the Classic Trail trek for those booking the trek option, but great alternative Inca Trail treks, like the Lares or Salkantay can be arranged when the Classic is not available or by your choice (must be pre-arranged at time of booking). These alternatives mean that you still get to visit Machu Picchu. If you do not want to trek, then you can remain in Cusco for a couple more free days, and then we offer an option to visit Machu Picchu by train instead. This must also be booked and paid for in advance. Tours to Machu Picchu are absolutely unbelievable; a trip to this City in the Clouds is an ancient and awe-inspiring part of our South America travel tour. Besides seeing Machu Picchu, you are able to enjoy the architectural uniqueness of Cusco and explore some of the colourful surrounding markets. Please note that for all those visiting Machu Picchu there is now the option to buy a ticket to go up the summit next to Machu Picchu, Huayna Picchu. Tickets for this must be requested at the time of your booking with us, and payment made in advance in the UK.

DAY 55-59: CUSCO TO LA PAZ
Bordering Peru and Bolivia at 3800m lies Lake Titicaca, the home of the Uros Indians who have made their dwellings on floating reed islands. By boat we visit the floating islands during the day and then we go that one step beyond the average tourist and spend the night with one of the Indian families on the lesser known islands Isla Amantani or Taquile. Spending some time during South America travel in these local communities will provide a unique opportunity to learn more about the traditional lifestyle of the Andean people and their customs. From here it is a days drive to the capital of Bolivia – La Paz. This is a great place to visit a ‘peña’ club, dedicated to Andean folk music, and perhaps buy some souvenirs in one of the authentic markets such as the witches market.

DAY 60-65: LA PAZ TO UYUNI
Leaving La Paz we enter real Bolivia, where the Aymara and Quechua Indians scrape a living from their small plots of land in the harsh climate and paved roads are virtually non-existent. A days drive brings us to Potosi. At over 4000m it is the highest city of its size in the world and 400 years ago it was the largest city in all the Americas. Vast amounts of silver were extracted from Potosi and shipped to Spain in years gone by. The adventurous who have undertaken South American travel will appreciate the opportunity to go down one of these mines where mining techniques have remained unchanged for centuries. Visiting the ancient mint or having a tour around the Casa Nacional de Moneda (National Money House) also provides a good look into Potosi’s and Bolivia’s past. Leaving the bleak Altiplano we arrive at the shimmering white Salt Flats of Uyuni.

DAY 66-69: UYUNI TO SALTA
It is possible to venture out into the salt lakes for a 1 day excursion. With no roads and only vague tracks to follow it makes for an unforgettable experience. Our descent through the Andean passes is spectacular as we cross into Argentina towards the colonial city of Salta where we have a couple of free days.

DAY 70-75: SALTA TO SANTIAGO
After Salta, we head south winding around lakes and weaving through baked cliffs until we reach Cafayate, the first wine region of Argentina. Famous for its white wines, you can explore some of the wineries on foot or by bicycle. Continuing south we join the route 40, the longest route in Argentina, to Mendoza, the biggest wine region in Argentina. Here you can indulge in more wine and good steak! From here we head for Chile as we cross the Andes past the Inca Bridge and San Martin’s pass and into the modern capital, Santiago.

DAY 76: SANTIAGO
We have a free day to explore Santiago, with famous Chilean Steak houses, Casillero del Diablo winery, Skiing available in the winter, you will find it easy to pass the days away.

DAY 77-82: SANTIAGO TO BARILOCHE
If you are travelling on the trip that travels through Patagonia from July to September, please be aware it will get very cold at times with temperatures well below zero, and you can expect snowfall. Please be prepared for cold conditions, with thermal clothing and the correct sleeping bag.

On our July to September trips in Patagonia, this section of the trip is subject to change en route. Please see our ‘Winter in Patagonia’ notes below for further details.

Leaving Santiago, we pass small villages and deep blue lakes with mountains towering above us as we wind through Chile’s Lake District. Pucon, an outdoors centre in its own right, will be our base for the next few days from where it is possible to organise whitewater rafting, water sports, horse riding and one day hikes up nearby Villarrica Volcano. Ascending the Andes via some spectacular mountain passes we arrive in Bariloche, Argentina. This very popular holiday destination for Argentinians is the top ski resort on the continent and also has several hiking trails and a great nightlife.

DAY 83-98: BARILOCHE TO USHUAIA
Heading further down through Argentina into the deep south on a good dirt road we enter the vast wilderness of Patagonia. The perpetual wind makes it difficult for trees and plants to grow, so for a while we are faced with endless grassland. However our long drive will soon be rewarded with the stupendous views that Los Glaciares National Park provides – it also has the largest glacier in the world and here we have the option to take a boat ride up close to Perito Moreno Glacier, almost 200 ft high. Torres del Paine NP is another area of outstanding beauty where huge granite cliffs dominate the landscape. A good way to explore the area is either hiking or by horseback. Here there is the option to complete the famous W-Trek (bookable as an Add on). Please note that spaces on this trek are subject to availability. For those who do not want to complete the W-Trek there are options of shorter day hikes in the park which do not need to be booked ahead and you are free to do as you choose once there.

We continue south towards the wild and hauntingly beautiful land at worlds end, the island of Tierra del Fuego. We cross by ferry to the most southerly town in the world Ushuaia, from where you can view the green waters of the Beagle Channel and the snow clad peaks beyond.

Winter in Patagonia – Please note that the trips which travel through this part of Patagonia between July and September will coincide with winter in Patagonia. This will give us the opportunity to see the Andes at their most impressive, driving past towering snow-capped peaks and experiencing this rugged wilderness at a time of year that not many other travellers get to see! We will hopefully have the chance to ski or snowboard in Bariloche and Ushuaia, ice-climb across glaciers in El Chalten, and hike in national parks at the most dramatic time of year. However, weather conditions can be unpredictable, and there is a chance that certain roads will not be passable, so we cannot guarantee following our planned itinerary to Tierra del Fuego; changes may have to be made with little or no notice. But if this is required we will make a new plan and find a different route that will be sure to offer its own attractions and experiences, so come prepared for an adventure!

DAY 99-107: USHUAIA TO BUENOS AIRES
We now cross to the Atlantic coast of Patagonia and visit one of the marine sanctuaries. Penguins, Sea Lions, Elephant Seals, Sea Birds and sometimes Whales can be seen. Following the excellent paved roads north along the coast we pass through some quite affluent towns. One, Puerto Madryn, was the landing place over a century ago for the first group of Welsh settlers that subsequently colonised and now farm the surrounding area. We traverse the vast Pampas grasslands, South America’s cowboy country, where gun-toting gauchos on horseback look after vast herds of cattle.

Travel to Argentina is not complete without a visit to the country’s capital, and so we follow the coast to Buenos Aires.

DAY 108-109: BUENOS AIRES
Renowned for it’s steaks, fine wines, tango dancing, ice cream and great nightlife! A few days in this smart cosmopolitan city and you could be forgiven for thinking you were back in Europe.

From here you will also have the opportunity to travel across the Rio Plata by ferry to Montevideo & Colonia de Sacramento to visit Uruguay.

DAY 110-115: BUENOS AIRES TO IGUAZU FALLS
We depart Buenos Aires and start making our way north towards Brazil. Continuing through Argentina, we visit the region between Argentina and Paraguay that is home to many Jesuit Missions built in the 16th century to convert the Guarany Indians. We visit the ruins of San Ignacio before crossing the border into Brazil, where we also cross from Spanish to Portuguese, and it is time to get our tongues around a new linguistic challenge! The Iguazu Falls form the natural border between Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil, higher than Niagara and wider than Victoria Falls they are an awe-inspiring place to spend the next three days before we continue on with travel to Brazil. The lush tropical forest surrounding the falls has many walking trails leading to smaller hidden falls, ideal to refresh from the steaming heat and abounding with parrots, toucans, woodpeckers and colourful plants. Here you can also undertake a number of optional activities such as rafting, helicopter flights and mountain bike riding.

Note: Starting from our October 2025 departure, the route for this section will be extended to include time visiting Uruguay and Paraguay. From Buenos Aires we will cross into Uruguay and travel through Colonia, Montevideo, Punta del Este and Salto before returning to Argentina briefly to visit the Esteros del Ibera wetland area. We will then cross into Paraguay and visit Trinidad and Asuncion before arriving at the Iguacu Falls.

DAY 116-121: IGUAZU FALLS TO PANTANAL
Next stop is Bonito where we can swim and snorkel in some of the clearest rivers and lakes in the world. Spectacular walks in the mountainous forests may reveal wildlife that includes monkeys, alligators and anaconda. We begin our travel to Brazil in earnest as we journey on to the Pantanal region where we organise treks and horserides out into the vast wetlands which is home to over 600 species of birds and 350 kinds of fish, piranha being common, as well as an abundance of reptiles and animals. Try your hand at Piranha fishing too!

DAY 122-126: PANTANAL TO PARATI
We now head to the coastal village of Parati. This unspoilt and picturesque town has remained fundamentally unaltered for three centuries. Cars have been banned from its cobbled streets that run down to the seashore, instead mountain bikes are used and are a good way to get around. Another great way to explore the secluded islands of this pristine coastline is taking a sailing trip in one of the traditional schooners.

DAY 127: PARATI TO RIO
Our final drive takes us to the hedonistic playground of Rio de Janeiro, where the folk are raring to party out of their minds and live purely for the moment. Your adventure finishes on arrival into Rio. The Carnival and New Years Eve celebrations are always chaotic, crowded and fun and a must during any stint of travel to Brazil! We have Carnival and New Year packages available if you would like to join us for the celebrations.

DAY 128-131: RIO
In Rio we have time to ring in the New Year along with five million other revellers on Copacabana beach. Or to spend time taking in the sights and sounds of the Rio Carnival (subject to the departure date from Cartagena). We spend a total of five nights here, with plenty to fit in; so as well as the festive celebrations, why not take in the sights on optional city and favela tours, try your hand at hang-gliding or just relax on one of Rio’s white sand beaches.

DAY 132-136: RIO TO OURO PRETO
We leave the stunning views of Rio behind and head north to the mountain retreat of Teresopolis. The road winds up the hillside through the jungle, with dramatic peaks towering overhead. We have a free day where we can visit the Parque Nacional Da Serra Dos Argaos and walk trails to waterfalls, with stunning views of obscurely shaped mountain tops.

Continuing north we make a short stop in Congonhas to see 12 lifelike Old Testament figures sculpted from soapstone, which stands proudly outside the Basilica do Bom Jesus de Matosinhos. Our journey takes us to quite possibly the most significant and beautiful colonial town of the area, Ouro Preto. Even vehicles are not able to navigate the narrow and winding cobbled streets. The biggest attraction is the Minas de Passagem (Gold Mine) – antique cable cars take you underground into the mine which was originally opened in 1719.

DAY 137-143: OURO PRETO TO CARAVELAS
We explore the coastline, home of some of Brazil’s best and least known beaches and far less populated with tourists than the resorts of Recife and Rio. We will either stay in locally owned Pousadas (guesthouses) or camp under the stars, as we pass through Linhares to Itaunas. Time can be spent exploring this sleepy fishing village or wandering the dune trails and relaxing on the beach.
Calaveras is our next destination, on the mangrove-lined Rio Caravelas. We have the option to take a day trip to the nearby reefs in Parque Nacional Marinho de Abrolhos, where there is the chance to swim with sea turtles. Alternatively, the day can be spent on the beach or wandering along the riverfront.

DAY 144-150: CARAVELAS TO ELEVADO LACERDA
Venturing further north, we pass by some of the more remote beaches, where we may either camp or stay in local Pousadas. If time allows, we may also stop off in Parque Nacional Monte Pascoal which is controlled by the local Pataxo (pa-ta-sho) Indians. Here we can walk the trails to try to spot the endangered spider monkey, sloths, porcupines, capybara, deer, elusive jaguar and numerous species of bird.

Porto Seguro is our next stop and is the region where Portuguese sailors first landed in the New World over 500 years ago, and where you can still see relics from those early settlement days. A steep climb up to Cidade Historica will be rewarded with sweeping views, colourful old buildings and museums. Porto Seguro is also known for its nightlife and ‘beach action!’

We then take the ferry across Brazil’s largest bay, Baia de Todos os Santos, and arrive in the Afro-Brazilian city of Salvador. Around 40% of all African slaves transported to the new world, came to Salvador and this has left a very particular vibe – tropical, soulful and intoxicating, that is unique to this corner of Brazil. The centre is separated by a steep bluff, into the Cidade Alta (Upper City) and Baixa (Lower City) and access is gained in the beautifully restored art-decoelevator – Elevado Lacerda. We have a few days to wander and take in the music, cuisine and religion of the region. You can also stop off in the Praca da Se and watch locals practising the dance fighting known as Capoeira.

DAY 151-156: ELEVADO LACERDA TO SERRA GERAL
Heading west, we come to the quaint town of Lencois. With its cobbled streets and brightly painted 19th Century buildings, it’s the prettiest of the old diamond mining towns. The mighty Fumaca waterfalls, various caves and idyllic rivers and panoramic plateaus set the stage for some fantastic adventures. Or maybe just wander the streets, grab a coffee, take in the local life and enjoy some of the excellent cuisines.

After a night quite possibly spent under the stars, we continue into the interior where roads start to become more arduous, and we make a stop in Navidad, in the green and wooded valley of Serra Geral. More cobbled streets and prettily painted, tile-roofed 18th and 19th Century houses await and we have a day to explore the town and possibly relax in nearby small waterfalls and refreshing natural bathing pools.

DAY 157-160: SERRA GERAL TO TAQUARUCU
Following highway north, we reach the confusing layout of Palmas. The Tocantins state capital was only constructed in 1989 and has a sort of ‘planned weirdness’ about its streets. We move on to the cosy town of Taquarucu, some 30kms South East of Palmas, where we spend the next few days.

The local tourism boards have worked together to try to create Taquarucuas an eco-tourism mecca. In the area, there are some 80 waterfalls, caves and pools, which we’ll have time to explore. For those that want to go wildlife spotting, several optional tours are available to the nearby parks of Estadual do Jalapao and Ilha do Bananal. In the latter, there is a good chance to see dolphins, caiman, giant river turtles and lots of birdlife. Although difficult and unpredictable, we may also catch a glimpse of a Tapir or Jaguar!

DAY161-164: TAQUARUCU TO BELEM
Now we start a long drive north towards Belem on the Atlantic coast. Upon its completion, in the 1960s this road was heralded as a feat of engineering as it overcame the unforgiving Amazon to allow people and goods to be transported from the Brazilian interior to the ports of Belem for exportation. Now the rainforest has given way to further development and we pass through vast stretches of farmland, camping overnight in remote Posts before arriving in Belem.

DAY 165: BELEM
We have a free day to enjoy Belem and wander the riverside walkways of the mighty Amazon.DAYS 35 – 37AMAZON DELTAToday we board our boat and hang up our hammock ready for the journey across the mighty Amazon delta. Nothing can prepare you for the sheer size of this area, as it will take us 24 hours to journey from Belem on the south bank to Macapa on the north.

Macapa is an overnight stop as we wait for our Overland Truck to arrive on a separate ferry from Belem. This gives us time to explore this commercial hub where gold, iron, timber, oil and tin ore pass through on its way to neighbouring Santana. The Equator also runs through the centre of the city, which has lead residents to call it ‘ The capital of the middle of the world&rsquo.

We journey north on dirt roads, quite often having to use our sand mats to make it through the mud and to reconstruct wooden bridges!

DAY 166-168: AMAZON DELTA
Today we board our boat, and hang up our hammock ready for the journey across the mighty Amazon delta. Nothing can prepare you for the sheer size of this area, as it will take us 24 hours to journey from Belem on the south bank to Macapa on the north.

Macapa is an overnight stop as we wait for our Overland Truck to arrive on a separate ferry from Belem. This gives us time to explore this commercial hub where gold, iron, timber, oil and tin ore pass through on its way to neighbouring Santana. The Equator also runs through the centre of the city, which has lead residents to call it ‘The capital of the middle of the world’.

We journey north on dirt roads, quite often having to use our sand mats to make it through the mud and to reconstruct wooden bridges!

DAY 169-173: OIAPOQUE TO ST LAURENT
Oiapoque is the gateway to French Guiana. A bridge across the Oyapock River was completed in 2011, but has still not been opened! We therefore may have to go looking for a barge to take us across to our destination of Saint George.

Once in French Guiana, we find ourselves in Europe! On completion of our immigration and customs duties, we continue on to the Capital of Cayenne where we will apply for our Suriname visas.

Cayenne is full of colonial architecture that just has to be explored. The two most impressive are the town hall, built by the Jesuits in 1890, and St. Saviours Roman Catholic Cathedral. The city’s botanical gardens are also worth a look, or just chill out on the mail square with a beer, watch the world go by and try some of the fantastic street food.Depending on the timing of our visa applications, and when we can collect our passports, the order of the following destinations may change around.

Kourou is a real highlight of our journey, as we visit the European Spaceport where we can take a tour of the site. A large percentage of the worlds satellites are launched from here aboard the famous Ariane rockets. More recently Russian Soyuz rockets have also used this facility and if we’re lucky we may even see a launch! Time allowing we will also visit Devil’s Island, prior home to one of France’s most notorious prisons.

Nothing can compare coming up close and personal to a giant leatherback turtle. April is normally the start of nesting time, where turtles make the journey up the beach to deposit their eggs in the warm sand. We head to an area on the coast which is a nesting site for 4 of the world’s most famous turtle species.
We return to Cayenne to collect our passports and spend another night in the vibrant city, before journeying back west to St Laurent.

DAY 174-177: ST. LAURENT TO PARAMARIBO
Founded in 1880, the penal town of St. Laurent du Maroni was inhabited almost entirely with guards or liberated prisoners from the nearby Transportation Camp. Here the famous writer Henri Charriere, who went on to write Papillon, spent some of his days before being moved to the ‘inescapable’ Iles du Salut prison. An informative optional tour takes us in to the camp and gives us a snap shot of quite how hard life would have been here.

Leaving French Guyana behind we take another ferry and cross into Suriname, where we feel the atmosphere and culture palpably change from French to Dutch. Suriname was a colonial outpost of the Netherlands from the seventeenth century until it achieved full independence in 1975; the country retains much of its Dutch character, while also having the distinctly Caribbean and African feel that permeates the whole region. Throw in some indigenous cultures and you have a unique and intoxicating mix!

We follow the road west and cross the Suriname River on the Jules Wijdenboschbrug (bridge) and arrive in Suriname’s capital, Paramaribo. Positioned where the Surname river meets the Atlantic Ocean, Paramaribo is a typically relaxed Caribbean city, with a long waterfront ideal for sitting back and relaxing in the cooling winds while watching local life go by.

The historic inner city of Paramaribo is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and walking the streets here the fusion between colonial, Caribbean and local architecture is pronounced as European styles were combined with local materials to produce a style of construction that is only found in this city.

Throughout the city there are many signs hinting at Paramaribo’s multicultural history and present day, and it is possible to visit the Suriname Mosque, Neveh Shalom Synagogue, St Peter and St Paul Cathedral and Arya Dawaker Hindu Temple, as well as the grand presidential palace. In the evenings head for the river, and join a river cruise to hopefully spot rare freshwater dolphins.
We will spend a few nights in Paramaribo to relax and recharge our batteries before we continue our adventure – we have a busy final few days ahead!

DAY 178-182: PARAMARIBO TO GEORGETOWN
Following the coastal road west we reach the banks of the Courantyn River, which forms the (contested) border between Surname and Guyana. We cross by ferry and continue to travel along the coast to Georgetown, Guyana’s capital.

As a former British colony, Guyana offers something different again to the previous countries we have visited so far, but still has a distinctly Afro-Caribbean feel; strolling around Georgetown you could be forgiven at times for thinking you were in one of the many other past British territories in the region, such as Jamaica or even Barbados!

Guyana, which was granted independence in 1966, is the only English-speaking country in South America, and is to many an unknown entity, relatively untouched by mass tourism. For a small and often forgotten country, however, it punches well above its weight, offering some of the most pristine and ecologically diverse and plentiful rainforest found anywhere, the world’s highest single drop waterfall, and a rich and established cultural history, with many noted poets, musicians and literary figures coming from its small population. Rhianna is half-Guyanese, too, should that be of any interest.

We will spend a few nights in Georgetown, from where it is possible to take an optional overnight excursion to visit Kaieteur Falls in Kaieteur National Park in the Amazon rainforest. At 221 metres, Kaieteur Falls is the world’s highest single drop waterfall.
Set in a stunning location, the falls and surrounding area are for many visitors to Guyana the highlight of their travels, as their remoteness and obscurity make you feel that you are really visiting a part of the world that very few people have ever been to.

DAY 183-186: GEORGETOWN TO BOA VISTA
After free time in Georgetown, we then head south, away from the coast, and into the dense rainforest of Guyana. The main road has been massively improved in recent years following investment provided by the Brazilian government, but we will allow four days to fully explore the area and if the opportunity presents itself take some ad hoc detours down jungle tracks to see what we can find and bush camp in the wilds of the jungle; the area is full of unique flora and fauna and travelling through is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, so we won’t want to rush. This part of the trip is very exploratory in nature, and it is impossible to predict exactly what will happen, but the region has a reputation for being the best places to spot the elusive jaguar, so if we keep our eyes peeled we may be lucky!

We will also spend one night in a comfortable jungle lodge, nestled in the rainforest, and visit a high canopy walkway to view the rainforest from an elevated perspective and come eye-to-eye with some of the plentiful tropical bird life. After an unforgettable few days travelling through the Guyanese Amazon we reach the border and re-enter Brazil.

DAY 187-188: BOA VISTA TO MANAUS
Boa Vista is our overnight stop back in Brazil, where we can take a well earned shower and enjoy some locally caught fish in one of the riverside restaurants.

We drive southwards through an Indigineous Wairmiri Reserve to rejoin the Amazon River at Manaus.

DAY 189: MANAUS
Your adventure will finish after breakfast. Why not stay a little longer and explore ​this large city on the banks of the Amazon; check out the Teatro Amazonas (Opera House) and barter for dinner at the local fish market.

Note: From 2025 the itinerary will be extended slightly to 28 1/2 weeks and will include time travelling through both Uruguay and Paraguay

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Trans South America Cartagena To Manaus Inc. Guianas

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