Another annoying, clueless poster here.
I’m at the very beginning of planning a trip to south America next year . I work full time so could probably only book 3 weeks off (could hopefully push for 4).
Peru and Bolivia are definitely on the to do list, also heard some good things about Colombia?Obviously I want to see as much and asmany countries as I can but realise the time constraints. I’m thinking I’ll probably have to fly as opposed to catch trains/overnight buses etc with the time I’ll have.
Also, when is the best time to go?
Any help to start the ball rolling would be beaut.
Have you done any travelling before? Sounds like you have a good idea of what you want to do, so that’s a good start. I’d get down your local library today and see what guidebooks they have on South America. I haven’t been to South America (I fancy doing something similar to yourself at some point; taking time out of work). I think there is a ‘South America on a Shoestring’ Lonely Planet that would give you some route suggestions and time scales, as well as best times to visit (and obviously details on specific places of interest).
In my experience flights can save a lot of time to get you back to your starting point when a circular route doesn’t work or occasionally if there’s somewhere you really want to see a long way off but haven’t got time to travel the bits in between. But most of the time the best experiences are had on the travelling from A to B. I hope that makes sense, so while one or two flights might be appropriate (maybe to allow you to see one region of 3 different countries) you will still need to do a fair bit of overland travel to get the best out of each area you travel to.
Colombia was my favourite country in all of south america( i havent been to the guyanas or venezuela though). You could easily spend a month there and it would be well worth it and you wouldnt run out of things to do at all.
Peru and Bolivia could be done in a month. But you would probably have to miss out the north to save yourself travelling too much.