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Maria Barciela

Born and bred in Buenos Aires, Argentina I'm are very passionate about what I do. My job is to experience the best South America has to offer and share these hidden places we discover with each of our guests. I'm obsessed with the little things and passionate about helping travelers have incredible experiences!

What places and activities do you specialize in?

"Customized itineraries in South America are my specialization. Each traveler is different! The destinations and places I focus on are Argentina, Uruguay, Chile, Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, and Ecuador. I also really like all the amazing and exclusive expedition cruises in Patagonia and Antarctica that allow me to offer trips to the most beautiful remote places in the world!

Lodging options are also very important to me and a very special part of the trips I offer. I really love the boutique properties that we have in South America; charming, unique and hidden places are my favorites!

I also specialize in the challenge of creating the perfect South American holiday for honeymooners, families and well-traveled couples looking for the "real South America", so I always add an original experience from our exclusive catalogs such as culinary experiences, wines, wildlife, trekking, farm visits, and local culture"

How did you get involved in travel?

"I've lived in different places including Mar del Plata (the Argentine coast), Buenos Aires, Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) and Breckenridge (Colorado, U.S.A.).

I completed my studies in Tourism and Hospitality, specializing in Marketing and Sales. My studies, combined with the diversity of living in different places, has helped me understand and tailor vacations to people from all walks of life – fundamental to the success of Across South-America.

In 2007, I founded Across Argentina & South America with my sister and business partner, Clara. We started with a boutique concept, specializing only in tailor-made trips in Argentina and then with time we began offering combined circuits including other countries that we love; so we became experts in the south of the continent.

I have been living in New Zealand for the past 3 years and from here I work with clients from all over the world who want to experience South America in an authentic way, creating their own fantastic experiences. Having our in-ground operations office in Buenos Aires, Argentina enables me to be sure that the service we provide is really personalized for each customer and absolutely one of a kind. Thanks to our in-depth South American expertise, relationships and extensive firsthand experience we can offer a truly specialized and profound experience. "

Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.

"One of the best trips I did lately started in Salta, Argentina´s northwest region. Salta is a totally overlooked place and it's definitely one of my preferred places in Argentina because of its authenticity. From here, I traveled to Cachi, a small little town in the Calchaquies Valleys. The place and the local people are so warm and unique, I love this place! I then headed to the Atacama, the desert in Chile, full of marvelous landscapes. My trip continued to Peru, where I visited the Colca Valley and its little villages like "Chivay". It's really amazing to see how the local people keep their culture alive, and you can hear them speaking the local Quechan language. Truly unbelievable. Our final stop was, of course, Cusco and Machu Picchu- the ruins were the jewel of the trip! Cusco is a place where I could have stayed longer, it's so magical."

Maria is part of the following groups: Patagonia Travel Agents, Argentina Travel Agents, Chile Travel Agents
Easter Island
Cultural Chile & Easter Island Exploration - 9 Days

Enjoy a cultural adventure through Chile on this nine-day vacation. Start in Santiago to tour the landmarks and markets, and take advantage of the burgeoning restaurant scene. Then, venture to Easter Island to explore the history and moai of the ancient Polynesian destination. Next, return to Santiago, and venture out on day trips to Viña del Mar and Valparaiso, as well as the Casablanca Valley—for a grand finale of wine tasting.

Sunrise at El Tatio Geysers in the Atacama Desert
5 Days in Chile - 6 Unique Itinerary Ideas

Just because you only have five days in Chile doesn't mean you have to limit yourself to one destination. Pair your visit to Santiago with an active adventure in the Lake District or the Atacama Desert, a gourmet excursion to Chilean wine regions, a side trip to the colorful port city of Valparaiso, even a side trip to Easter Island. Find out how with these five unique itineraries.

Mountain scenery and city life in Santiago, Chile
10 Days in Chile - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas

With ten days in Chile, you have time to visit more than one region. On these five unique itineraries, you'll combine a visit to Santiago with active adventures in the Atacama Desert and Torres del Paine National Park, gourmet lunches and tastings in Chile's wine regions, and following the footsteps of poet Pablo Neruda in the port city of Valparaiso.

Iguazu Falls
7 Days in Argentina - 7 Unique Itinerary Ideas

If you have a week to spend in Argentina, it makes sense to visit more than one destination. On these seven unique itineraries, you'll start in cosmopolitan Buenos Aires, then venture to the trekking and skiing hub around Bariloche, the wildlife paradise of Puerto Madryn, and the colorful landscapes of Argentina's northwest—between the city and the great outdoors, you'll get the best of both worlds.

Corcovado Hill in Rio de Janeiro
Highlights of Argentina & Rio de Janeiro - 12 Days

This exciting 12-day itinerary combines the best culture and scenery in Argentina and Brazil for a real South American adventure. After a taste of Buenos Aires with a tour and tango performance, you'll fly south to Patagonia to experience massive glaciers. Then, fly to the Brazilian border to hike around hundreds of waterfalls before finishing in Rio de Janeiro for its iconic views and nearby tropical islands.

Patagonia's Mt. Fitz Roy at sunrise
Argentina for Adventurers – 14 days

Travel from Buenos Aires to Iguazú Falls with this itinerary filled with Argentina's natural wonders. Start in the cosmopolitan capital with dinner and dancing before traveling south to Patagonia. You'll explore glaciers, hike with views of Mt. Fitz Roy, and finish in the far north—at the Brazilian border—to explore hundreds of waterfalls for a real taste of adventure.

Recent trip reviews for Maria

Bruce

Chile March 2020 · Chile - Mar 5 - Mar 12, 2020

Traveler: Bruce R. - Local specialist: Maria Barciela

This is the 14th day of my isolation. I left Santiago. a city then filled with smiling friendly people going about their chores and lives. to return to a place filled with fear and going deeper in civic shutdown, where some are even being encouraged to tell on one another for alleged breaches of the new normal. And I am so thankful for the ten wonderful days we spent in Chile with all of you looking out for us.

I can truly say that our visit owes much of its magic to the care and... read more

This is the 14th day of my isolation. I left Santiago. a city then filled with smiling friendly people going about their chores and lives. to return to a place filled with fear and going deeper in civic shutdown, where some are even being encouraged to tell on one another for alleged breaches of the new normal. And I am so thankful for the ten wonderful days we spent in Chile with all of you looking out for us.

I can truly say that our visit owes much of its magic to the care and thoughtfulness of our handlers and hosts. So I want to thank Maria and Lilia and Across Argentina for planning and organizing our Desert and Wine Tour. Your itinerary and accomodation selections were spot on . The local Tour operators Chile Roads and CI Mundo were very professional and always prompt. The tour guides were very friendly and so very helpful. We learned so much from them all, But I want to especially recognize Nelson Silva, a warm and caring person. We came to appreciate his efforts greatly, In general the tour guides (four guides) were enthusiastic about their work and very knowledgeable Their employers should be very pleased with their work Without the guides and drivers such as these, a tour is empty. And ours were full of life and captivating.

Thank You all Please be sure that you share our gratitude with them all

Exceptional organisation - thank you! · Patagonia - Dec 29 - Jan 11, 2020

Traveler: Sophie W. - Local specialist: Maria Barciela

The team at KimKim ensured that travelling around South America went as seamlessly as possible. My partner and I went from el Chalten, el Calafate and then into Chile for the W trek. It was all the thought that was put into the little details that really made a difference, for example being picked up after every bus with a transfer to our hotel rather than waiting outside for a taxi.
Each part of the trip was planned perfectly working with the local travel agencies on the ground to provide the best services.

I would highly recommend!

Wonderful! Plain and simple, our trip to Arg... · Argentina - Nov 22 - Dec 2, 2019

Traveler: Mark A. - Local specialist: Maria Barciela

Wonderful! Plain and simple, our trip to Argentina met and exceeded my expectations. The planning and the execution was nearly perfect. The guides could not have been more informative and accommodating. Gabie, in Bariloche was simply amazing! Her background and knowledge was very impressive. In summary........Viva Argentina!

We just returned home from a 10 day trip to A... · Argentina - Nov 22 - Dec 2, 2019

Traveler: Lilly A. - Local specialist: Maria Barciela

We just returned home from a 10 day trip to Argentina, visiting Buenos Aires, Bariloche, and Mendoza. From the beginning to end, starting with the planning, guides, accommodations, and even to our drivers who could not speak English but smiled trying, it was a memorable experience.
Thank you.