One of my favorite types of trips to plan is what we at Knowmad affectionately call a “combo trip”, where we pair two countries together so that our travelers can get the most out of their adventure to South America. I specialize in travel in both Peru and Ecuador, and pairing these countries together makes for such a wonderful combo trip, not just because they are neighbors, but because of how they compliment each other. In one trip you can walk along paths taken by Incans, dine with local community members as they teach you about their traditions, see the famed Machu Picchu, snorkel with sea lions, stand amongst the giant Galapagos tortoises, and so much more. Joining both the beautiful culture and majesty of the Incas of Peru with the stunning architecture of Quito and surreal closeness to the wildlife in the Galapagos Islands is most certainly a recipe for an awe-inspiring adventure to South America.
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“We are a group of ‘seniors’ who love to travel, and are considering a South America destination for our next trip,” wrote Kathy when she first approached Knowmad. So, how is it that her group of adventurous ‘seniors’ ended up choosing Patagonia as one of the focal points of what eventually became a unique, 3-week trip to Argentina and Chile? Their route spanned from Buenos Aires to the jungles of Iguazú falls in Argentina and Brazil, down to the lush Bariloche area of Northern Patagonia, onward to the glaciers of Southern Patagonia, crossed through the Andes Mountains over to the jagged peaks of Chile’s Torres del Paine before ending in the Central Chile to explore bohemian ‘Valpo’, Santiago, and wine country. Read on to find out what makes Patagonia an outstanding destination for over 50 travel as well as for younger, adventurers alike.
The central region of Chile offers travelers a balanced blend of culture and scenic vistas where the traditional and modern live side by side. Inside of the artsy and bustling neighborhoods of Santiago, find deep history, green park oases, and caring people. Just outside of Chile’s largest city, find ocean to the west, mountains to the east, and wine valleys to the south. The nearby bohemian port city of Valparaíso draws artists and adventurers to its cascading hills, while the nearby wineries draw aficionados and soon-to-be wine connoisseurs alike.
Chile has become a hub for many travelers planning to visit South America with its stunning natural landscapes, delicious wine, and local culture. The capital city of this diverse country, Santiago, has often been known as just a stop-over city on the way to explore all that Chile has to offer, but this thriving metropolitan city should not be overlooked.
Chile is a country of contrasts, stretching from the desert in the north to the glaciers of the south, and with the natural borders of the ocean to the west and the Andes mountains in the east. There are lush, temperate rainforests and volcanoes, and wine valleys abound. When planning my own first trip to South America with Knowmad I faced the same question that the travelers I work with every day do: how could I make the most of two weeks in Chile?
What makes someone worthy of the Condé Nast Traveler Experience Makers award? This person is not just an expert in their field, but a person that views crafting the perfect trip as an art form. A person who is considerate, taking the time to listen their travelers’ interests, style, and needs; a person who is knowledgable, always on the pulse of new activities, cultural opportunities, and remote lodges; and a person who is passionate, someone who understands that the each trip is a unique reflection of the traveler that ultimately gets to embark on the journey. We’re proud to say that Jordan Harvey, Knowmad’s Co-Founder, is this person.
The Galapagos Islands is the perfect place to charter a small yacht or catamaran expedition for just you and your group of family or friends. This allows for a more private and even personalized experience, where the guide and crew are dedicated entirely to your group. As there are many boats in the Galapagos meant for just 16 – 20 passengers, a Galapagos charter boat is often the best choice for large groups of friends, clubs, and multi-generational family vacations, and it’s easier than some may think. There are also a variety of boat types available: you can charter a private luxury boat, a tourist superior, or a first class boat. Additionally, some nice discounts come into play when you are able to charter a full boat instead of buying the individual cabin spaces. Keep reading to journey alongside this Knowmad group and learn more about Galapagos charter boats.
Peru has been a favorite in the world of cuisine for some time now, and its food only continues to impress and attract patrons from near and far. Part of its charm is that Peru’s culture is so well represented in its cuisine, making each dish a celebration; from fusion blends like Italian-Peruvian and Japanese-Peruvian, to unique incorporations of the fresh fruits, vegetables, and grains harvested locally. Peru’s restaurants and chefs are creating inventive new dishes all the time for fans of food everywhere to enjoy.
Because of the attention surrounding Peru’s food scene, its restaurants are growing in both quantity and popularity: many of them have been favorites for years, some of them are newer and spearheaded by beloved chefs, and there are also the gems that are known only by the locals. As some of the best restaurants in Peru are also the top restaurants in the world, we wanted to create a list of some of Knowmad’s favorites to help you navigate the delectable world of Peruvian dining!
As you read on below, if you are interested in making a reservation for your trip to Peru at any of the restaurant featured here, you can either use the links within each restaurants’ details to reach their website, or you can let your Trip or Operations Specialist know if you would like help, and we would be happy to assist in making those reservations for you.
It’s a series of moments that have lead Jordan to his 7th Travel + Leisure A-List win. It all started with a big dream in a small cabin nestled in the Patagonian countryside. Here, Tara and Jordan spent many hours, days, and weeks developing their travel company. And today we take a moment to reflect on some of the triumphs and challenges that ultimately make Knowmad, Knowmad.
We’re so thrilled that Knowmad was mentioned as the company to call for your Choquequirao trekking plans by Condé Nasts’s Traveler magazine! Traveler explains how the multi-day trek to the the lesser-travelled but equally magnificent Choquequirao indeed stands up to comparisons to Machu Picchu. Our founders, Tara and Jordan Harvey, have journeyed to the archaeological site themselves – affectionately called “Choque” – and came out of it more impassioned than ever, affirming that it makes trekkers feel about as much like Indiana Jones as possible.
Here at Knowmad Adventures, a company dedicated to creating custom travel experiences in South America, one of our greatest joys is hearing stories and seeing photos from our travelers upon their return. Although breathtaking on their own, what makes a photo of Machu Picchu, Torres del Paine or any of the spectacular sight in South America unforgettable is the unique journey each traveler takes to get there. Whether it be a bucket list goal that you’ve finally realized, a trip to celebrate a special occasion, or an intentional way to be with family and friends – each adventure has its own unique story.
Having been to Chile and Argentina previously, Rick and Carol came to Knowmad looking to dive deeper into these countries. Working together with their Knowmad Trip Specialist, Rick and Carol landed on an off-the-beaten path itinerary that combined active travel and incredible landscapes, all while staying at some of the regions’ top luxury hotels.
This past August my colleague Kayli and I traveled to Peru for two and a half weeks, and, for me, it was both a magical and intimidating adventure to embark on.