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Chile & Argentina, air/10 nights, from $2,899

Upclose encounters with penguins and a sail along the Seno Ultima Esperanza in Patagonia, plus a few nights in Buenos Aires.
/ Source: ARTHUR FROMMER'S BUDGET TRAVEL

The Real Deal: Round-trip airfare on LAN Airlines, arriving in Santiago and departing from Buenos Aires, plus regional flights; one night at Hotel Cabo de Hornos in Punta Arenas; three nights each at Hotel CostAustralis in Puerto Natales, Hotel Kosten Aike in El Calafate, and the Dazzler Tower in Buenos Aires; nine breakfasts, three lunches, and two dinners; guided sightseeing, including excursions to Torres del Paine Park and Perito Moreno glacier, a boat tour to Los Glaciares National Park, and a tour of Buenos Aires; ground transportation; the services of a director and local guides; and hotel taxes and fuel surcharges, from $2,899 per person — plus taxes and fees of $108.

When: March 5, 2010; add $100 for Dec. 4, 2009, Jan 8, Feb. 5, 12, 2010.

Gateways: Miami; no additional gateways.

The fine print: Taxes and fees are an additional $108 per person. Park fees are an additional $75 per person. Based on double occupancy; single supplement is $599. U.S. citizens must have a passport to enter Chile and will be charged a reciprocity fee of $131 upon entry. Check the State Department's consular sheet for details. Read these guidelines before you book any Real Deal.

Book by: Oct. 30, 2009; add $400 per person for bookings made after that date.

Contact: SmarTours, 800/337-7773, smartours.com.

Why it's a deal: According to a recent search on Kayak, the lowest multicity fare is $1,239 with taxes (LAN). For an additional $1,768, the SmarTours' Incredible Patagonia and Buenos Aires package covers all the flights, as well as 10 nights' accommodations, some meals, sightseeing tours and activities, the services of a tour director and local guides, all ground transportation, fuel surcharges, and all taxes and fees. Plus, you get the convenience and reassurance of having it all planned for you.