South America

A Soul that’s found nowhere in the world can be found in South America, each country has it’s own traditions and cultures and rich in many things from melancholic Argentinean Tango to the ancient lnca ruins of Bolivia.

Brazil and Argentina, the two of the largest countries in the entire continent, are perhaps very diverse, hence most travelers of South America choose to combine the two while planning their itinerary. Where Brazil is a beautiful blend of variant cultures like that of Portuguese, native Indian, African, European, Middle Eastern and Asian, all live together in this wild and furious piece of land. Argentina’s European influences have always dominated and is clearly depicted through its art, architecture, literature and lifestyles.

Apart from such variations both the countries do have something in common, and that is the famous Iguazú Falls, which is a spectacular 275 cascading waterfalls, even taller than the Niagara Falls, hence it is possibly, one of the most unforgettable sights in this world.

Bolivia is the North of Argentina, and is a country nestled between Andes and the Amazon rainforests. Since it is isolated it has retained the ancient traditions of its ancestors, which makes its so fascinating and mysterious place. Peru, is again neighbour of Bolivia, and is just as captivating. It’s history is full of stories about Inca Empire with Machu Picchu, which is its most illustrious symbol. South America’s Northern most end has countries like Colombia, Ecuador and Venezeula, are not backed by a rich historic story as the rest of the South America but what they do have is a scenic natural beauty which includes breathtaking landscapes, tropical rainforest and scenic beaches, all this makes these countries inimitable.

South America is a mixture of four climatic zones: Tropical, Dry, Cold and Temperate. The elevation and weather factors including rain and wind thus, contributes to the climate variations, and hence makes it unpredictable and erratic in some areas. Therefore, Depending on the area of the continent you plan to visit, you might get to face different climates. The elevation and weather factors including rain and wind contribute to the climate variations, making it unpredictable and erratic in some areas.

In the Southern Hemisphere, lies both Argentina and Brazil, though these places can be visited all year round but most people prefer to travel during the peak season – i.e. December to early March as the weather is hot and humid. The best time to travel to South America is in the winters between the months of June and October if you’d rather want to avoid paying higher prices for South America flights and accommodations. Chile, also in the Southern Hemisphere, it has climactic variations from the north to south. The north can be visited at any time of the year while central and southern Chile should be avoided from June to September as the snowfall can get heavy.

Ecuador, Venezuela, Bolivia, Colombia and Peru are the The Andean countries that have two distinct seasons: i.e. Wet and Dry, and depending on the altitude and proximity to the equator of each country that’s located in the map, each country’s peak season will differ slightly.

Of all the Countries in the South America, Bolivia has the most unpredictable weather, thanks to its topography and altitude. Generally the best time to visit Bolivia is during the dry season between May and October. Peru is another country but it has a little complicated weather due to its high elevation and close proximity to the Pacific Ocean and the best time to visit Peru is in summer, i.e. from January to March when days are hot and humid.

South America’s internal flights are the most convenient ones, but not necessarily the cheapest way to get around from one country to the next. While visiting Brazil, for example, internal flights are unnecessarily expensive so it’s a good idea to get air passes which will allow you to take a few internal flights and hence is cheaper than purchasing tickets separately. If you’re planning on traveling between Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, and Brazil, you must consider buying a pass that will allow for two stops in each of the places.

Buses are the next most common form of transport, also, to some, The only form, and as it provides a cheaper alternative to flying and a thus, is a great way to see the country with a different vision and as closely as possible. However it’s not always advisable to take overnight buses especially in Ecuador and Peru where armed robberies on night buses are always warned of.

Renting and driving a car can be dangerous in addition to being expensive and inconvenient but taxis in most major cities are available and can be hired for long journeys at your own convenience.

Though cycling isn’t encouraged in the majority of South American countries – particularly in Colombia and Guyana as the quality of the roads can be poor, thus making it unsafe.

  • Head to the mountainous region of Patagonia in Southern Argentina for an unforgettable trip, Andean national parks or visit Carmen de Patagones, a charming Colonial City can be visited for hiking.
  • Pantanal has the largest flood plain in the world where Brazil’s magnificent wildlife can be seen. Visit the home of the endangered Hyancinth Macaw and watch jaguars, giant armadillos, capybara and the Brazilian Tapir pass you by.
  • Lake Titicaca, the birthplace of the Inca civilization and the highest navigable lake in the world. The lake sits on the border of Peru and Bolivia and on the Bolivian side of the lake is the Isla Del Sol where you’ll find Pilko Kaina and the Chincana complex, both Inca ruins. On the Peruvian side are the Las Islas Flotantes or floating islands, handmade from totora reeds and home to the Uros tribe.
  • Chile has one of the most popular destinations in the world that is a small colonial village of San Pedro de Atacama. Do stop by the archaeological museum here that houses well-preserved artifacts or explore the boiling geysers, sand dunes and canyons.
  • Wander through the cobbled streets of Cartagena on Colombia’s Caribbean coast and explore its colonial mansions, monasteries, 17th century forts and cathedrals.
  • Head to the remote Isla Bartolomé in Ecuador’s legendary Galápagos Islands where you can snorkel with the penguins; swim around the rocks with the sea lions or just watch the mockingbirds from atop Pinnacle Rock.
  • The Iwokrama Forest in Central Guyana is well worth a visit as it is the 916,760 acre virgin rainforest which is a home to some of the world’s largest freshwater fish, otters, freshwater turtle, the Anaconda, caimans, and South America’s largest cat, the jaguar and bat.
  • In Southern Paraguay take a trip to the Jesuit reducción (settlements), Trinidad & Jesús,which have well-preserved Baroque ruins including monuments and churches built in the 18th century.

More useful information about South America

  • The largest flood plain in the world, The Pantanal, is home to the endangered Hyancinth Macaw, jaguars, and caimans.
  • During mid December to early March, most people prefer to book direct flights to South America as it is the peak season.
  • Galeao is the busiest international airport as many one way flights to South America arrive at Galeao International or Jorge Chavez International airport.
  • San Pedro de Atacama's archaeological museum filled with artifacts or explore the town's boiling geysers is a must visit.
  • The Iwokrama Forest is a virgin rainforest which is a  home to some of the world’s largest freshwater fish.
  • Iguazú Falls can be checked by people on last minute flights to South America.

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