RW Thomas Inc.
P 519 633 2390
Starting in 2000, I have been taking small groups of farmers from Canada, USA and Europe to experience firsthand the many backroads and best kept secrets of Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Galapagos and Colombia. In response to your requests, we are now taking groups for ag-ventures into Europe, the UK, Israel and Africa too.
You're warmly invited to join us: to travel paths less trodden, to meet good friends and farmers on other continents, and to return home with a suitcase full of unforgettable experiences.
In February 2018, we tour Chile: starting in stunning Santiago, we tour wineries, fruit and cash crop farms, tourist attractions and the Elqui Valley .....one of my favorite places in South America.
Sat Feb 17 Toronto Meals on flight
Depart Air Canada at 23:45 for overnight flight direct to Santiago, Chile
Sun Feb 18 Canada – Santiago (-/-/D)
Arrive Santiago 12:05 (Sunday) 10 hr flight. Meet our local guide and transfer to the Hotel Four Points (www.fourpointssantiago.com in the commercial & residential Providencia district for 3 nights. Rest, a Welcome cocktail & light supper.
Mon Feb 19 Santiago (B/L/-)
We start with a morning tour of the historical city center. Lunch will be at the old Mercado Municipal in “El Galeon” restaurant, which specializes in seafood. Then, we wind our way into the new part of town, the “Sanhattan” district. Some shopping time. Next, a (tentative) visit for Q&A at the Canadian Embassy; this is always a highlight of our ag tours. Return to hotel
Tue Feb 20 Santiago – Maipo Valley - Pomaire (B/L/D)
We head south out of the city into the Maipo River Valley to visit an export fruit grower. Next a tour & tasting at the Undurraga winery (www.undurraga.cl ), one of Chile's oldest wine producers. Lunch is at a popular country restaurant where we can try some favorite local foods. On the way back to Santiago, we stop in the old town of Pomaire, famous for its local pottery. We return to the hotel to freshen up before the dinner/show at Los Adobes de Argomedo (www.losadobesdeargomedo.cl to experience true Chilean culture in song and dance.
Wed Feb 21 Santiago – Ovalle (B/-/D)
Early breakfast and a tour of the huge Lo Valledor veg / fruit market. Then check out of the hotel and depart on the one-hour flight to La Serena in the north. We then travel to Vicuña, a small town in the heart of the Elqui Valley, unique for grapes & avocados on irrigated mountainsides … one of my favorite locations in Chile. Check into hotel in Vicuña for 3 nights. Enjoy a group dinner. But, after dark, get ready to be amazed by the stars with a narrated tour of Mamalluca Observatory; Chile has the cleanest air in the world and there are many international observatories atop the Andes in this region. Return to hotel.
Thu Feb 22 Vicuña (B/L/-)
We make a tour farther up the valley to see the processing of the\ grapes that are grown all around us. We have a guided tour of Pisco Capel Distillery to see how this popular liquor and national drink of Chile is made. Followed by a visit to Cavas del Valle Organic Winery. www.cavasdelvalle.cl Lunch nearby. Stay same hotel.
Fri Feb 23 Vicuña, Elqui Valley (B/L/-)
A morning farm visit, tentatively to Hacienda La Compañia, Prohzan farm operated by Ulisses Contador, who has an exceptional production / marketing program for citrus, grapes, etc. He is also a director of the Agricultural Society of the North and can give insights on policies and projections. We then visit with a small farmer who is producing vegetables for the domestic market and have some free time in afternoon to enjoy the sub-tropical vegetation and the pool in the hotel gardens.
Sat Feb 24 Vicuña - Ovalle (B/-/D)
We come back down the Elqui Valley and swing south toward the Limari Valley, touring the Dole packing plant which exports all over the world. Check in at Hacienda Santa Cristina in Ovalle, (www.haciendasantacristina.cl) a very nice rural boutique hotel with pool, gardens, etc., where we will enjoy a farewell barbecue dinnerprepared while you watch. Stay Hancienda 1 night. Sun Feb 25 Ovalle - home (B/L/-) Breakfast in the hotel and an easy going morning. After check out of the hotel, we travel back to the city of La Serena for a farewell lunch and a bit of sightseeing in this historic town before catching the afternoon flight back to Santiago and the overnight connection to home. Air Canada: Dep Santiago 21:00 to arrive Toronto 05:35 (Monday) 10 hr 20 min. Easter Island Option
Approximately 5 ½ hr flights daily from Santiago to Easter Island, a Chilean territory, originally called Rapa Nui. It is famous for archaeological sites, including nearly 900 monumental statues called moai, created by inhabitants during the 13th–16th centuries. The moai are carved human figures with oversize heads, often resting on massive stone pedestals called ahus. You may never be closer to this much history. Inquire about pricing & details.
For more information visit our website www.rwthomastours.com