National Geographic Traveller (UK)
SOUTH AME R I CA
Peru, Ecuador and Chile: together, they’re one of the most traversed tourist circuits in South America — but with this Hurtigruten trip, expect a less-trammelled side of the Andean big-hitters. Even better, you’ll start in Panama, seeing that world-changing canal, before crossing the Equator (complete with a ceremony asking for the ocean’s blessing) and arriving in Ecuador on day four.
As well as major cities like Lima, Guayaquil and Arequipa, the tour visits more remote spots rich in South American history and culture. In Ecuador, you’ll see pre-Columbian art and stroll through the Puyango Petrified Forest. Crossing into Peru, swap the Inca ruins of Machu Picchu for remnants of even earlier civilisations: the crumbling desert city of Chan Chan, once the capital of the Chimú Kingdom, and the Sun and Moon temples of the Moche civilisation. You can fly over the mysterious Nazca Lines, explore uninhabited Peruvian islands and see where the desert meets the beach in Arica, one of the world’s driest cities, just over the border in Chile. The cruise ends in boho Valparaíso, where an optional trip to Easter Island can be added on. JB
Hurtigruten offers 16 days from £3,867, including transfers, a pre-cruise night in Panama City, breakfast, lunch and dinner (including house alcoholic drinks), wi-fi, tea and coffee, some excursions and a ‘Citizen Science’ programme. Departs 8 October 2021. hurtigruten.co.uk