Argentina: Soul of South America. A Bit of Brazil, Too.
"There were highlights in every location; no one could be singled out. It was the whole that made the trip so enjoyable."
—Gail S., journey to Argentina
R. Crusoe's foray into Argentina and Brazil begins in Buenos Aires, known as the Paris of the South. You'll soon understand why. Then Mendoza, Argentina’s answer to Napa Valley. On to Iguazú Falls. In comparison, our Niagara is a mere trickle. Examine Iguazú from the Brazilian and Argentinian sides. Fly on to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for some urban exploration and fun in the sun.
This is a 13-day sample itinerary. Remember that R. Crusoe can create an Argentina and Brazil journey of any length to meet your exact specifications.
Day 1: United States
• Fly overnight to Buenos Aires.
Day 2-4: Buenos Aires, Argentina
• Arrive in Buenos Aires.
• Walking tour including Plaza de Mayo, La Boca, San Telmo, Puerto Madero, La Recoleta, Palermo Chico.
• Tango dinner show.
• Day at leisure with options for an arts-and-crafts tour, museum and gallery tour, or a visit to San Isidro and the Tigre Delta.
Overnights in Buenos Aires.
Day 5: Mendoza, Uco Valley
• Fly to Mendoza, wine estate tour, tasting, and lunch, wine tour and tasting at a second estate, drive to Uco Valley.
Overnight in Uco Valley.
Day 6-7: Uco Valley
• Wine tours, tastings, and lunch.
• Day at leisure with options for hiking, biking, spa services, etc.
Overnights in Uco Valley.
Day 8-9: Uco Valley, Mendoza, Buenos Aires, Iguazú Falls
• Drive to Mendoza, fly to Iguazú Falls via Buenos Aires.
• Argentine side touring including Devil’s Throat, options for helicopter flightseeing over the falls, private boat tour, or Macuco boat safari close to the falls (a wet ride).
Overnights in Iguazú Falls.
Day 10: Iguazú Falls; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
• Tour Brazilian side of the falls, including Iguazú River Canyon.
• Fly to Rio de Janeiro.
Overnight in Rio de Janeiro.
Day 11-12: Rio de Janeiro
• Sugarloaf Mountain by cable car, Pereira da Silva favela including the Morrinho Project, Santa Teresa neighborhood.
• “Christ the Redeemer,” market visit with chef, cooking lesson at the chef’s home, leisure time.
Overnights in Rio de Janeiro.
Day 13: Rio de Janeiro; United States
• Fly home, or continue on with R. Crusoe & Son.
Per person sharing room from $9,860 for this 12-day sample itinerary
Internal air per person (estimate) $680
For more information, to book, or to speak to an R. Crusoe & Son tour specialist, please call us at 800-585-8555.
Pre-Tour & Post-Tour Options
Before or after your Argentina and Brazil journey, spend time at the Estancia Vik Jose Ignacio in Uruguay. This outstanding property mixes a traditional ranch experience with gorgeous natural scenery, inviting beaches, and relaxation in the highest style. If you’d like, poke around nearby Montevideo. Or check into its sister property, the elegant Playa Vik Jose Ignacio, also in Uruguay, and get forever spoiled on Playa Mansa. Contact R. Crusoe & Son for details.
Another possibility? Head for Argentina's Lake District, with time in San Carlos de Bariloche. Or continue on in South America to the nation of Chile.
Sample Pricing: Please contact an R. Crusoe & Son travel specialist for pricing information.
Remember that R. Crusoe & Son can create Uruguay, Argentinian Lakes District, and Chile itineraries of any length to meet your exact specifications.
Alvear Palace. An elegant, Old World hotel in the heart of La Recoleta. It is surrounded by some of the city’s best restaurants and shops. 197 guest rooms and suites. Amenities: spa, fitness room, hair salon, 3 restaurants, 2 bars.
Park Hyatt Palacio Duhau. Named to Travel & Leisure’s “It List.” Here’s what the editors had to say: “Walking up the sweeping stone staircase of Palacio Duhau is like walking into a private mansion. Just three blocks from the elder statesman of Buenos Aires elegance, Alvear Palace Hotel, the new Park Hyatt has... carefully restored oak floors and carved wood paneling dating back to the 1930s.” Amenities: spa, fitness center, indoor pool, 4 restaurants, 2 bars, art gallery.
HUB Porteño. A delightful boutique hotel in La Recoleta, close to Teatro Colon and other important sites. Antique furnishings combine with modern pieces to create a unique, elegant ambiance. 11 guestrooms. Amenities: fitness room, sauna, 1 restaurant, 1 bar-lounge.
Mendoza & the Uco Valley.
Casa de Uco. Integrated into the topography of the valley, this hotel has a sophisticated atmosphere, an inviting ambience, and spectacular views. Also here: excellent cuisine and access to a good selection of outdoor activities. The hotel features seven guestrooms and nine suites with private terraces, and 10 lavish bungalows with inner courtyards and private rooftop terraces. Amenities include a full-service spa, pool and Jacuzzi, driving range with putting green, tennis courts, cycling and trekking trails, horse stables, a gourmet restaurant, and a wine cellar.
The Vines. Laid-back luxury at the base of the Andes Mountains. Named to Condé Nast's 2014 Hot List of the 33 best new hotels in the world. The 22 luxurious villas include one- and two-bedroom units, all with exquisite panoramic views and all built from natural locally sourced stone and wood. Amenities include a spa, fitness center, pool and hot tub, bike paths, vineyards, and the Siete Fuegos restaurant by internationally acclaimed Chef Francis Mallmann.
Belmond Hotel Das Cataratas. Within Iguazú National Park on the Brazil side of the falls, just a two-minute stroll from the cascades. Guests enjoy exclusive access to this magnificent sight in the evening and at dawn, when the park is closed to other visitors. 177 guest rooms, 16 guest suites. Amenities: spa, fitness center, two swimming pools (one for children), tennis court, 2 restaurants, 1 bar.
Awasi Iguazú. Just a 15-minute drive from the falls themselves, Awasi’s exceptional new 14-room lodge opens in late 2017. Situated on the banks of the River Iguazú, each villa is assigned a private guide and vehicle, allowing guests to explore at their own pace, where they want, when they want, and for as long as they want. Amenities include a private plunge pool at each villa, a main lodge, and one restaurant.
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Belmond Copacabana Palace. The grande dame of Rio. Since its art deco doors swung open in 1923, the Copacabana Palace has been welcoming the rich and famous. This truly iconic city hotel is just steps away from world-famous Copacabana Beach. Amenities include pool, beach, tennis court, fitness center, boutiques, three restaurants, and one bar.
Tango: A Brief History.
The word “tango” actually refers to two distinct things: the music and the dance. There is much that is not known about the origins of either, though both are acknowledged to be native to Argentina.
As dance historian Christine Denniston explains in her article “Couple Dancing and the Beginning of Tango,” “Tango was created by the kinds of people who generally leave no mark on history except by dying in wars—the poor, the uneducated, the underprivileged.”
The first piece of music written and published in Argentina describing itself as a tango appeared in 1857. It was called Toma Maté, Ché. The word Tango at that time probably referred to what is now known as Tango Andaluz, Andalucian Tango, a style of music from the area of Spain which is also the home of Flamenco, among the most popular music in Buenos Aires in the 19th century.
In the mid-19th century, the British arrived in Argentina to develop a railway system. They needed a work force, so the Argentine government advertised in Europe. The response was nearly overwhelming. Men flooded to Buenos Aires, alone, with the idea they’d work for a few years, then return to the Continent with their wealth and begin families back home.
In fact, few immigrants earned enough to return home, and there was a marked scarcity of available women in Buenos Aires. In order to attract a wife, these men felt they had to distinguish themselves in some way, and being a great dancer was one of them.
Denniston again: “It was not in the brothels that Tango was born, but in the courtyards of the tenement blocks where the poor lived. With so many people living together in one building, it was very likely that someone might play the guitar, perhaps someone else might play the violin or the flute, and that from time to time they would get together to play the popular tunes of the time. And other people in the building would take the opportunity to dance, to have a moment of joy. It was here that the different music and dance styles brought by immigrants from different countries, and by the people already in Argentina, blended together, and what emerged slowly became Tango.”
The tango caught on Buenos Aires, then caught fire in Paris, likely landing in the French port city of Marseilles, where Argentine sailors danced with the local women. Once again, Denniston on the tango scene in Europe: “Nineteen-thirteen was the Year of the Tango all over the world. Tango was the couple dance everyone wanted to learn. In this year the Tango Teas began at the Waldorf Hotel in London, picking up the fashion of Tes Dansants from Paris, and a grand Tango ball held in the Selfridges department store was declared the event of the season. All of Europe was dancing the Tango. It is said that women in Paris abandoned the corset in order to dance it. The feathers in women's hats moved from horizontal… to vertical [to allow] a couple to dance without the feather getting in the Tango partner's way. Tulip skirts, which opened at the front, made dancing easier. Women were sold not just Tango shoes, but Tango stockings, Tango hats, Tango dresses, and anything else that manufacturers could think of.”
By the mid-20th century, Argentinians danced several styles of tango, styles defined by the shapes that the dancing couple trace on the dance floor. There's the basic ocho cortado step; long straight lines punctuated by a sudden, complicated movement; or no straight lines at all, but rather multiple curves and arches. Improvisation is key to tango as well.
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