From Argentina’s majestic Iguazu Falls to Brazil’s colorful Salvador and Chile’s eerie Easter Islands to Peru’s breathtaking Machu Picchu, we bring you the best of South America in our epic world travel guide series.
Arriving in Buenos Aires will leave you feeling overwhelmed. The city life simply whizzes by so make sure to make the most of your time here. The buzzing metropolis comes alive with busy sidewalk cafes during the day and tango infused bars when the sun sets. In addition, the World Travel Guide highly endorses a pit stop at The Grand Splendid bookstore. This opulent 1919 theater is widely regarded as the most beautiful bookstore in the world.
If you are seeking peace and quiet, a visit to the little town of Salta fits the bill. Charming museums, plaza-side cafes and a live folk music tradition promises to keep you entertained all day long. Similarly, Mendoza offers the ideal rest and relaxation, albeit with gorgeous mountains and canyons. Just be sure to take in these views with a bottle of Argentina’s finest wine and a hearty serving of melt-in-your-mouth steak.
If powdery beaches, rich marine life and colorful cities are your goal, then do yourself a favor and head to Brazil. Our World Travel Guide recognizes the endless travel possibilities in this South American party nation. The southeast is the country’s most populated parts, thanks to the electric Sao Paulo and Rio.
The latter needs no introduction to samba. The cariocas living here know how to celebrate life and the annual Carnaval celebrations are a testament to this. Held for a week in the early months of February or March, this thrilling street festival is one of the grandest celebrations one could ever be a part of. Top it off with a trip to the legendary Copacabana beach and a healthy dose of caipirinha, and you have yourself one amazing travel tale to tell your grandkids.
Next, head up to Brazil’s northeast and set foot in Salvador. A sublime combination of stunning colonial architecture and pounding Afro-Caribbean music allows you to truly hymn to the rhythms of this land. Pelourinho is arguably the best place to stay in this town. This UNESCO Heritage Site is home to brightly colored historical buildings, cobblestone streets and grand churches, making this city an intoxicating fusion of cultures. A tagline perhaps best suited for no other land other than Brazil.
This land of extremes accommodates landscapes from your wildest dreams. Jagged mountains touch fairy-tale forests, soaring glaciers meet fierce volcanoes and stunning coastline drives lead to arid deserts. Often overlooked for the glamorous neighbor, Argentina, it is now time to give Chile its due respect. Santiago perfectly embodies the nation’s evolution. The capital city is now all arts, cafes and trendy hotels. Additionally, Santiago’s excellent location allows for access to the picturesque vineyards and to the beaches of Vina del Mar.
Meanwhile, our World Travel Guide ranks the splendid Parque Nacional Torres del Paine as the continent’s best national parks. The magical experience is evident from its teal lakes to emerald forests and sky blue glaciers to white snow capped mountains. For those looking to take a step back into Chile’s historic past, a trip to Easter Island is worth considering. The head and torso stone carvings offer an intriguing insight into the lives of the fascinating Polynesian people.
Colombia is buzzing. And it’s time for the world to take notice. Bogota’s boom surely has had a major hand in this. The town is now thriving with a revolving culinary scene, quirky cafes and exceptional street art. However, Colombia also brilliantly retains its nostalgic charm with Cartagena. The jewel in the nation’s crown is one of the most beautiful colonial cities in the continent. The town’s bougainvillea balconies, brightly colored buildings, pretty plazas and a maze of cobbled alleys promises to serenade you like a smooth Latin lover.
Additionally, Colombia’s allure runs deep into earth’s core with a subterranean salt cathedral. Situated in the quiet town of Zipaquira, this one time salt mine is now a Catholic religious sight. The nation also homes one of the prettiest national parks in its northern wilderness. The Tayrona National Park has everything you want from a Caribbean getaway – sandy beaches, clear waters and inviting lagoons. Finally, we recommend ending your stay on a high note by spending a night or two in Escobar’s lavish penthouse!
The tiny country has four worlds packed into one. The soaring mountains of the Andes, the charming beaches of the Pacific Coast, the lush Amazon rainforest and the exotic wildlife of the Galapagos Island. Where do we even begin?
The Galapagos was popularized by Charles Darwin and his theory of Natural Selection. Situated in the Pacific Ocean and some 1000 km away from Ecuador’s coast, the island’s sheer isolation makes it a living museum and showcase of evolution. The biodiversity here is unlike anywhere else. From marine iguanas to giant turtles, the Galapagos ranks as the world’s best wildlife sanctuary for our World Travel Guide.
Ecuador’s stunning landscape also takes us to Quito. Seated high in the Andes, few cities have a setting as dramatic as Quito. This UNESCO World Heritage City is famed for its Old Town. The Plaza de la Independencia is the town’s heartbeat serves as as the meeting spot for anyone with a pulse. Meanwhile, the Capilla del Hombre represents the country’s finest architecture. If the shear altitude fails to take your breath away, then you bet the city’s TeleferiQo would do just that.
Peru does not do ordinary. So trust your instincts and immerse yourself into this country, because you will be handsomely rewarded with a step into Peru’s enchanting past.
For first time travelers, our World Travel Guide recommends heading straight to Machu Picchu. Set in the hills and soaring above the mist, one of the world’s most popular archaeological sites is adorned with timeless features like the Temple of the Moon and the Huayna Picchu.
Next, continue your Peruvian adventure with a pit stop at Lima. This capital city is home to the magnificent 16th century Saint Francis Monastery and the Huaca Pucllana, an ancient temple set dead in the center of the city. Additionally, do check out the birthplace of the Incas in Lake Titicaca. This huge body of water accommodates the floating islands of Islas Uros. Made from tortora reeds, these buoyant building blocks support the life of the Uros people and are perfectly edible too!
Looking for more travel inspiration? Remember to watch this space as we give your the best of the world’s adventures!