Travel to Latin America and the Antarctica continent offers spectacular adventures, amazing cultures and unspeakable beauty.
Consider a region that includes such archaeological wonders as the fabled Incan city of Machu Picchu, the mysterious Easter Island and the Mayan temple complex of Tikal. This vast area boasts an almost unending diversity of habitats and ecosystems, including the volcanic Galapagos Islands, majestic Iguassu Falls, the icescapes of Patagonia, the great Atacama Desert, and the spectacular spine that is the Andes Mountain range. But it doesn’t stop there. At the heart of South America lies the Amazon rainforest; the realm of one of the greatest rivers and richest ecological zones on our planet. And, at the end of it all… Antarctica, a breathtaking world of white! This southernmost continent contains the geographic South Pole, and is surrounded by the Southern Ocean. Antarctic sea life includes penguins, blue whales, orcas, colossal squids and fur seals.
Add to this dynamic mix sophisticated cities, award-winning wineries, authentic cultural exchanges, luxury resorts, and off-the-beaten-track adventures, and you begin to understand why the last few decades have witnessed an explosive growth in travel to Central and South American and Antarctica.
Whether you are looking for the high adventure of trekking glaciers and exploring ruins or the more sedate pleasures of shopping chic boutiques and staying at historic estancias, you are certain to find the ideal vacation experience with Big Five’s luxury Central and South American and Antarctica tours and travel adventures.
Patagonia, Southern Ice Fields & Northern Chile 13 Days Enrichment Series Interest(s): Sustainable Travel, Adventure Travel
Starting Price: $7,295
Diverse environments offer adventures from ice fields to deserts, to one of the world's highest lakes.
Custom Chile Tour Varied Days Navigator Series Interest(s): Adventure Travel
Starting Price: $4,000
Chile has a vast repertoire of adventure settings from icy Patagonia to far off Easter Island to dramatic Atacama Desert.
Patagonia, Atacama & Easter Island 16 Days Enrichment Series Interest(s): Adventure Travel
Starting Price: $9,490
This adventure takes in some of the most iconic sights in South America, from the staggering Atacama Desert, to Patagonia's ice fields, to one of the world's most mysterious islands.
President’s Picks: Colombia’s Gems 10 Days President’s Picks Interest(s): Safari Tours, Adventure Travel, Recommended
Starting Price: $20,000
“A sleeping giant… that was the nickname Colombia earned 10 years ago as it took the first step towards opening up to international tourism. That was the first time I visited that amazing country and I am proud to say that we were among the first to recognize its potential. Fast forward a decade and that giant is clearly no longer sleeping. Colombia has blossomed and has so much to offer. It still has its doubters, even among its own population, but that leaves Colombia for the rest of us to enjoy.”
Colombia, Ecuador & Peru 14 Days New Reality Interest(s): Sustainable Travel, Adventure Travel
Starting Price: $4,750
This journey explores South America's pre-Incan societies that over the centuries settled along the Peruvian coast and highlands, the highlands of Ecuador and in Colombia. Visit archeological sites in Colombia’s San Agustín Archeological Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site encompassing the largest group of religious monuments and megalithic sculptures in South America. Travel to desert coastal zone of Northern Peru to enjoy special access to see the excavations at the pre-Incan site of the Sipan ruins.
Colombia’s Colonial Cities, Coffee Culture & Coast 16 Days New Reality Interest(s): Sustainable Travel, Adventure Travel
Starting Price: $5,620
Discover Bogota's colonial architecture and museums such as the Museo del Oro with displays that include some 32,000 pieces of gold. Visit the 16th-century Villa de Leyva, one of the area’s most beautiful towns. Tour Colombia’s famed coffee region. Take in the enchanting old Walled City of Cartagena. Go whale watching, kayaking or surfing on Colombia’s Pacific Coast.
Colombia’s Indigenous Trails 16 Days Enrichment Series Interest(s): Sustainable Travel, Adventure Travel
Starting Price: $6,950
Historic Spanish colonial cities and local mountain villages are cultural gems to explore.
Custom Colombia Tour Varied Days Navigator Series Interest(s): Recommended
Starting Price: $2,800
Colombia 13 Days Enrichment Series Interest(s): Adventure Travel, Family Travel
Starting Price: $5,510
Costa Rica Adventure for All 8 Days Days Enrichment Series Interest(s): Romantic Getaways, Sustainable Travel, Adventure Travel, Family Travel
Starting Price: $1,940
Whitewater rafting, forest hiking, horseback riding, exploring caves and rappelling through waterfalls are just the beginning of this rainforest journey. Enjoy stays in the premier eco-lodge in Costa Rica and in the quirky airplane-turned-hotel nestled in the trees. This adventure has something for everyone in the family!
Custom Costa Rica Tour Varied Days Navigator Series Interest(s): Adventure Travel, Family Travel
Starting Price: $2,400
Costa Rica your way. Go off the main track to Turrialba Volcano National Park for a hike up an active volcano; or discover Bajos del Toro and its unrivaled cloud forest, still largely unknown to most travelers. Costa Rica offers so many gems, both well established and lesser known locations, each offering its own brand of adventure.
Costa Rica 8 Days Enrichment Series Interest(s): Safari Tours, Adventure Travel, Family Travel
Starting Price: $3,450
Sample Costa Rica's rich menu of adventure offerings from whitewater rafting and canyoning to nature hikes, kayaking and thermal hot springs. Glide through the rainforest canopy in Manuel Antonio National Park and take a guided horseback trip through the Pacific Lowland Rainforest Reserves. All this and more make Costa Rica a stellar destination.
President’s Pick: Mainland Ecuador 13 Days President’s Picks Interest(s): Sustainable Travel, Adventure Travel, Recommended
Starting Price: $7,150
1 in 4 - That is the ratio of people in Ecuador that still have indigenous blood lines, very few of whom live in the Galapagos Islands. This program highlights the rich heritage, the amazing nature and the tremendous beauty of mainland Ecuador. This adventure focuses on the lesser known areas and people such as the Huaorani community deep in the Amazon jungle. Big Five launched its South American division several years ago, beginning with Ecuador, and I believe the future goes through the past.
President’s Pick: Ecuador & Galapagos 14 Days President’s Picks Interest(s): Romantic Getaways, Sustainable Travel, Safari Tours, Adventure Travel, Family Travel, Recommended
Starting Price: $11,200
“Remember 25… That represents roughly the percentage of Ecuador’s population on the mainland who are indigenous. For years, I have been concerned that Ecuador was seen only through the lens of the Galapagos Islands. Virtually all travelers were being funneled into the islands, putting pressure on the island’s resource while bypassing the rest of the nation. Yes, the islands are genuinely amazing and worth exploring, but there is more to the country. The pre-Incan cultures of Ecuador, which were later unified in the interior, all exist in areas outside the few gateway cities. These cultures still exist today, but for how much longer? Many are leaving their communities and often their traditions behind to find work in the cities. This has the effect of disrupting, sometimes permanently, their heritage for future generations. By including these traditional communities in the tourism equation, we create a win-win for all, and help us fulfill our sustainable promise. In the Galapagos, we bring the African experience to the islands using a family-owned luxury tented camp deep inside Santa Cruz National Park combined with a small vessel cruise through the outer islands. What results is a perfect marriage.”
Amazon Rainforest of Ecuador & Peru 11 Days Precious Journeys™ Interest(s):
Starting Price: $3,860
This family exploration of the Amazon Rainforest Basin delves deep into two countries, where you engage with traditional communities to understand how they live in today’s world. Explore the lush jungle and its rich wildlife. Travel rivers by traditional dugout canoe. Children have the opportunity to meet other kids on this remarkable journey.
The Galapagos Islands: Of Fish & Fishermen 7 Days Precious Journeys™ Interest(s): Sustainable Travel, Adventure Travel, Family Travel
Starting Price: $3,450
The Galapagos Islands: Of Fish & Fishermen is geared towards families with young children, and is full of engaging and fun educational experiences for both parents and children. Hand-picked naturalist guides understand the need for flexibility, patience and down time. Experiences include going out with local fishermen to learn about sustainable fishing, snorkeling with some of the marine creatures and spotting wildlife including tortoises, iguanas and blue-footed boobies.
Ecuador: From Machalilla to Zuleta 10 Days Precious Journeys™ Interest(s): Sustainable Travel, Adventure Travel, Family Travel, Recommended
Starting Price: $2,880
This Precious Journeys adventure takes your family into the heart of Ecuador's mainland to experience its landscapes, wildlife and people. Discover the thrill of working with an archeologist on a dig; snorkel and swim in clear waters of Drake’s Bay; and explore Zuleta's culture and search for the endangered Ecuadorian condor.
Private Sanctuaries of Ecuador 14 Days Enrichment Series Interest(s): Sustainable Travel, Adventure Travel, Family Travel, Recommended
Starting Price: $9,580
Explore the old-world city of Quito. Enjoy the peaceful sanctuary of Ecuador's private reserves of Mashpi, Zuleta and the Galapagos Safari Camp. Go bird watching for the endangered condor in the Andean Condor Reserve; and learn about the traditional Zuleta community. Discover the Galapagos Islands on a five-night cruise as well as in the relaxed atmosphere of a luxury tented camp.
Ecuador’s Classic Cuisine 6 Days Enrichment Series Interest(s): Sustainable Travel, Adventure Travel, Family Travel
Starting Price: $6,350
From colonial capital of Quito to the highland countryside, discover Ecuador's culinary traditions.
Ecuador & Peru Culinary Treasures 16 Days Enrichment Series Interest(s): Romantic Getaways, Adventure Travel, Family Travel
Starting Price: $14,085
These two countries combine to make a fascinating adventure in food and history - from Ecuador's Hacienda Zuleta, a colonial working farm dating from the 16th century, to Peru's Suquillo Market, you are in for an experience that will delight all the senses.