South America, that huge territory of big peaks, impenetrable jungles and outdated civilizations, is the proper vacation spot for any journey traveler.
The Latin-flavored continent has just about every part you would count on: vibrant cities, colonial cities, smoky volcanoes, spectacular lakes, deep traditions and, above all, among the friendliest folks on earth.
In case you journey to South America by yourself, you’ll see that the hospitality and kindness of its inhabitants will not be a fable, however a actuality.
By the best way, I’d prefer to remind you that you just’ll be in nice hazard: you would possibly wish to keep there ceaselessly!
That’s what occurred to me.
Immediately, after 5 years residing round Colombia, Perú, Argentina and Brazil, I made a decision to create a listing of the locations in South America you’ll be able to’t miss to encourage you to go to this glorious land.
20 finest locations to go to in South America
1 – Angel Falls, Venezuela
Salto Angel, often known as Kerepakupai (the deepest fall) to the Pemón tribe, is without doubt one of the most breathtaking locations I’ve seen in my life.
It’s positioned in Canaima Nationwide Park and, at 979 meters excessive, is the best uninterrupted waterfall on the earth.
If you wish to get there, you’ll have to fly to Canaima as a result of there are not any accessible roads. I took the overflight to observe it from above and it was a mind-blowing expertise!
2 – Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia
Sticking with the “data” theme, Salar de Uyuni is the world’s largest salt flat, at over 10,000 sq. kilometers.
I used to be impressed by the area’s limitless white expanses and surreal surroundings. It actually seemed like I had arrived on one other planet by which smoky volcanoes, coloured lagoons and nice deserts create the surroundings.
It’s additionally an important place for watching wild fauna like llamas and pink flamingos all around the lakes. Positively probably the greatest locations to go to in South America!
E book your tour right here by way of Get Your Information.
3 – Machu Picchu, Perú
The sacred metropolis of Machu Picchu was constructed within the 15th century and later deserted. In all probability essentially the most well-known archaeological locations in South America, this Incan citadel is known worldwide for its large stone partitions and mysterious historical past.
I like to recommend visiting Machu Picchu early within the morning to observe the solar rising over the inexperienced peaks.
To get to Machu Picchu, you’ll first have to journey to Cusco, a colonial metropolis by which Spanish structure blends with indigenous traditions.
I cherished Cusco a lot that I stayed there for over three months, volunteering and visiting close by villages.
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4 – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
The most effective locations in South America is Rio de Janeiro – a place that basically touched my coronary heart.
Most individuals prefer it as a result of it affords good seashores and loopy events. That’s true. Nonetheless, Rio affords hidden secrets and techniques as nicely. You’ll have the possibility to take pleasure in an enchanting mixture of African-European tradition and top-class mountain climbing.
The town boasts the world’s largest city forest, which accommodates magnificent mountains and peaks. Rio de Janeiro has dozens of trails, so I like to recommend going as much as the mountains and having fun with town from above.
See finest promoting excursions of Rio De Janeiro
5 – Eje Cafetero, Colombia
Colombia has among the finest espresso on the earth, so I couldn’t resist the temptation of making an attempt a scrumptious cup proper in a espresso plantation! It was nice to study concerning the historical past of the espresso, the method and the varieties grown.
Probably the most well-known getaways are Salento, Filandia and Pijao – all beautiful colonial cities by which it seems like no time has handed.
Furthermore, the plush, inexperienced mountains supply a variety of actions like mountain climbing, horseback driving, kayaking, canopying and extra. One of many highlights of the go to was taking a hike round Valle del Cocora.
Extremely advisable on your South America journey!
6 – Isla del Sol, Bolivia
Positioned within the exceptional Lago Titicaca, the Island of the Solar is at the moment house to the Quechua and Aymara folks, who nonetheless protect their languages and outdated traditions.
Whereas taking the boat to this small island, I felt like I used to be in a sacred place.
The lake is large; while you take a look at it, it appears like you might be surrounded by an ocean. I like to recommend strolling as much as one of many hills to take pleasure in unforgettable sunrises and sunsets.
7 – Cotopaxi Nationwide Park, Ecuador
This conical-shaped stratovolcano has turn out to be one of many greatest sights in Ecuador, and it’s no shock why.
As a mountain climbing lover, I made a decision to climb to the highest (virtually 6,000 meters excessive), and it was really a novel expertise.
Remember that it’s a difficult ascension towards the darkness, the peak and the freezing wind. In case you try the climb, you’ll want to rent an excellent information and produce particular gear akin to crampons and ice axes.
In case you don’t assume the climb is such an important concept, you’ll be able to take a jeep tour to the refuge, which affords wonderful views of neighboring volcanoes.
Full day tour from Quito
8 – Iguazú Falls, Argentina and Brazil
The identify Iguazú means “huge water” within the indigenous Guarani language, and little doubt they’re proper!
One of many new seven wonders of nature and probably the most well-known South America landmarks, these imposing waterfalls could be visited from both Brazil or Argentina.
As most individuals do, I visited the falls from the Argentinian aspect as a result of it provides entry to “Paseo del Diablo”, a path that takes you proper over the falls of Devi’s Throat, the best fall within the park.
You’ll want to put Iguazú Falls in your bucket listing of finest locations to go to in South America!
Day journey to either side of the falls
9 – Cartagena de Indias, Colombia
In case you are on the lookout for colonial structure, Colombia affords among the finest preserved colonial cities on the continent.
Cartagena de Indias is a beautiful metropolis filled with power, Caribbean vibes and pleasant folks.
It was one of many greatest slave ports within the Spanish colony, and you’ll really feel it while you take a look at its folks and study their historical past.
It was nice to spend just a few days strolling its colourful streets, outdated church buildings and splendid castles, imagining that I used to be in one in all Gabriel García Marquez’s tales.
10 – Mount Roraima, Venezuela
Mount Roraima is an impressive table-shaped mountain positioned within the south of Venezuela. It’s the best tepui within the area, and likewise serves because the triple border level of Venezuela, Brazil and Guyana.
I took the five-day hike to the highest and loved the loopy surroundings of unusual rock formations, a whole bunch of waterfalls descending from large cliffs, and vertigo views in all instructions.
It’s thought of probably the most stunning hikes on the earth, and I promise it’s a type of locations in South America that’s nicely well worth the effort.
11 – Torres del Paine, Chile
Torres del Paine is a very fashionable vacation spot amongst vacationers visiting the Chilean Patagonia. Puerto Natales is the getaway to this nationwide park, by which you’ll discover a number of day hikes and longer multi-day trails.
The park can get fairly crowded throughout the excessive season. Happily, I visited Torres del Paine on the finish of the season, when there have been only some different hikers.
I took the Torres W trek, which could be accomplished in 5 days, however you may also strive the well-known O circuit, which normally takes from seven to 10 days.
The area’s color-changing bushes, large glaciers and dramatic peaks make it probably the most engaging locations to go to in South America.
Torres del Paine Nationwide Park full day tour.
12 – Tayrona Park, Colombia
Tayrona Nationwide Park, house to the indigenous Tairona folks till the 15th century, is without doubt one of the most genuine locations within the nation. One of many issues that struck me most was the place’s wild nature.
The seashores are not like another Caribbean seashores you’ve seen. It’s all surrounded by lush inexperienced mountains and peaks, giving it an untamed character.
As well as, you’ll be able to go to a number of archaeological websites hidden within the thick forest, or scuba dive within the clear waters round Cabo San Juan.
Be part of a Snorkeling Tour within the Nationwide Park
13 – El Chaltén, Argentina
The Argentinian Patagonia is an actual paradise for mountain climbing lovers and probably the greatest locations to journey in South America.
El Chalten might be the perfect start line for exploring the area. Don’t miss the path that takes you to Fitz Roy Mount and Cerro Torre.
One of many nice benefits there may be that you could take day excursions to discover the mountains, lakes and glaciers, then return to city later to take pleasure in a sizzling bathe and comfortable mattress.
El Chalten and Viedma Glacier Full Day Tour.
14 – Iquitos, Perú
No go to to South America could be full with out an expedition into the Amazonas.
I like to recommend that you just use Iquitos as your base. This metropolis, accessible solely by boat or airplane, deserves just a few days spent wandering round its markets and studying concerning the historical past of rubber.
You’ll discover excursions to get you into the jungle and see the wild natural world.
In my expertise, a three-day tour was good for attending to know the jungle. We went to a conventional village, navigated rivers, visited a beautiful lake and walked by way of the rainforest.
Throughout that point, we had been fortunate sufficient to see numerous animals, together with monkeys, tarantulas, caimans, piranhas, sloths and a whole bunch of birds.
15 – Buenos Aires, Argentina
Probably the most European of cities in South America, Buenos Aires is a cosmopolitan hub with numerous museums, artwork galleries, theaters and cultural facilities.
I spent just a few days wandering round Sant Telmo, Puerto Madero, La Boca, Palermo and town heart.
I cherished La Boca as a result of it’s a colourful neighborhood filled with historical past. It was one of many major settlements of the Italian migrants, and it has a novel character.
That is additionally an excellent place to see the well-known tango dances, and even take some classes in the event you really feel prefer it.
16 – Chapada Diamantina, Brazil
Throughout my first go to to Brazil, Chapada Diamantina was the primary spot on my South America bucket listing. The complete park is fashioned by big valleys, deep canyons and, above all, a whole bunch of spectacular waterfalls.
Probably the most well-known one is Cachoeira da Fumaça, at 353 meters excessive. I noticed it from one other mount within the entrance, however there’s additionally a path that takes you proper to the highest, the place the autumn begins – that should be improbable!
17 – Cayo Sombrero, Venezuela
Cayo Sombrero is by far essentially the most interesting of seashores in South America I’ve seen in all my travels.
First, it’s small; there are not any roads or inns, and no one lives there. Second, the sand is pure white, the water is turquoise and there are many reefs with tropical fish. It’s good!
To get there, you’ll have to journey to Chichiriviche. From there, it will likely be simple to discover a boat that may take you to any of the cays.
Take a full day to relax out and revel in this pristine paradise.
18 – Perito Moreno, Argentina
It could be a sin to journey to South America and to the Argentinian Patagonia with out together with this glacier in your itinerary.
The Perito Moreno glacier appears to have been made to be admired; I can’t discover one other clarification for it.
This large mass of ice is 5 kilometers lengthy and about 70 meters above the water degree. Nonetheless, what actually impressed me was catching a glimpse of the ice blocks falling away from the glacier and collapsing into the lake under. Unforgettable!
Get your tickets for the Perito Moreno glacier tour right here.
19 – Salvador de Bahia, Brazil
Salvador was the primary capital and the principle slave port of the Portuguese empire in Brazil. Subsequently, most of its inhabitants are African descendants whose traditions and beliefs are fairly related with Africa.
Most guests keep in Pelourinho, a captivating (though touristy) neighborhood of colourful streets and steep slopes. I feel it’s essentially the most fascinating Brazilian metropolis when it comes to tradition, colonial structure and historical past.
The African-influenced meals is scrumptious, and I’m already lacking these good “acarajés”.
Don’t miss the Salvador historic strolling tour.
20 – Atacama Desert, Chile
Atacama, the world’s driest desert, is a “must-visit” vacation spot within the north of Chile. Its major sights are salt flats, geysers, spring waters and large volcanoes.
I rented a bicycle and visited Valle de la Luna, which is barely 13 kilometers from San Pedro de Atacama. The unusual rock formations and desert expanses make you assume you have got flown to the moon. As well as, the sundown is spectacular.
One other place I cherished was Piedra del Coyote, a giant stone on which you’ll be able to stand upon a rocky precipice. Don’t miss Atacama!
Which of those finest locations to go to in South America would you prefer to see first?
I hope this listing of South America landmarks has made you wish to pack your baggage and journey to South America? I promise you gained’t be dissatisfied!