2. The Holiday-Explorer
You really want to go to Latin America but unfortunately you can’t take more time off from work than a few weeks. You want to experience something and make the most of the time you have. Your favorite way to travel is by rental car and you prefer to sleep in hotels instead of hostels. You have been saving up all year and now is the time to spend some money.
Places to visit
If time is your limiting factor, it can make sense to choose a place that has several interesting destinations within a short radius. Here are three suggestions of tours you could do:
Peru and Bolivia (2-3 weeks): Travel with Peru Hop. It is a company that runs hop on and off buses between Lima, Cusco and La Paz, with several stops in between. If you want to see more of Bolivia, such as Salar de Uyuni, I suggest you travel by public bus. Suggested route: Cusco-Puno-Copacabana-La Paz-Uyuni.
Ecuador (3-4 weeks): Ecuador is the ideal destination if you have three to four weeks and you want to see a little bit of everything that South America has to offer: Spend some time in Quito, the vibrant capital; hike up Cotopaxi, an active volcano in the Andes; explore the Amazon; visit the colonial city Cuenca and hang out in Montañita for some fun time at the beach.
Brazil (1 to 2 weeks): If you only have one week I think you should spend it in Rio de Janeiro. This city is fun and it has a lot to offer. If you have more time I suggest you travel down south along the coast and stop in places like Ilha Grande and Paraty and end your trip in Sao Paulo.
Places to avoid
Countries like Peru, Brazil, Colombia or Argentina are massive and you will spend half of your time on busses and airplanes if you want to see everything they have to offer.