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South America

Image of guanacos in the foreground with the iconic Torres del Paine in the background in Chilean Patagonia in South America - KILROY
Image of a woman in traditional Caribbean dress - KILROY

Travel to South America - as good as it gets

South America stretches from the border with Panama in the north all the way down to the Tierra Del Fuego (the "Land of Fire") in the south. The continent's most southerly point, Cape Horn, faces out towards Antarctica. It's therefore not so strange to imagine that there is, quite literally, something for everyone here. It is a truly wild and wonderful continent, and a journey to South America is an absolute must for every adventure-seeking backpacker.

Brazil and Copacabana

Brazil is South America's largest country and definitely worth a visit, thanks not least to its fantastic beaches. The entire length of the huge coastline of this beautiful country is dotted with inviting beaches, and one never gets tired of hopping from one to the next. Many of these beautiful beaches offer comfy hammocks in the cool shade of a palm tree, which for a modest sum could be yours!

The Amazon: The world's largest rainforest

Should you, against all odds, tire of Brazil's beaches you could of course pay a visit to the Amazon, the world's largest rainforest, which extends over large parts of Brazil, Venezuela, Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, and Colombia. With its exciting animal and plant life, it is one of the highlights of South America. A trip around Amazonia is hot, humid, grimy, tough, long, primitive and at times very, very demanding - ingredients that make it even more exciting and fascinating. The chance of seeing alligators, parrots, monkeys and pink river dolphins in their natural environment makes the experience even more special. A trip by riverboat down the Amazon River is truly an unforgettable experience!

The Andes Mountains

The Andes mountain range stretches the entire length of the continent, which means there are loads of fantastic places to visit. Machu Picchu in Peru, the experience of trekking along the famous Inca Trails and being able to watch the unforgettable sunrise over the ruins of this ancient city is in another class. The world's highest lake, Titicaca, lies at the border of Peru and Bolivia and is well worth the trip. For those of a more energetic disposition there are also adrenalin-filled activities, including white-water rafting, climbing, and mountain biking.

Southern South America: Attractive Argentina

Make sure your trip to South America includes a visit to Argentina, a country that is a little more European than the rest of South America – but in a good way! In the capital, Buenos Aires, you can experience the famous tango, watch a game of football, and eat some of the biggest steaks you'll ever find, all whilst being charmed by the city's totally unique and romantic atmosphere. The nightlife here is also fantastic.

In the northern part of Argentina, close to the borders of Brazil and Paraguay, lie the Iguaçu Falls, one of the world's greatest natural "watery" wonders. The area is literally "flooded" with streams of bubbling, foaming water and huge rainbows form where the cascading water meets the sun's rays, while butterflies the size of your hand flutter about.

Galapagos Islands: possibly the world's most fantastic wildlife experience

Even though it is more expensive than other attractions in South America, your trip ought to include a visit to the Galapagos Islands. The islands are part of Ecuador but are located around 1000km from the mainland in the Pacific Ocean. The animal and plant life here is unique and totally incredible. This is where Darwin took a lot of his inspiration.

Don’t forget

Good skiing can be found in the Andes Mountains either close to Santiago in Chile or the Mendoza ski parks - Las Lenas, Los Penitentes, Bariloche and Portillo in Argentina. Bariloche in Argentina with its untamed natural beauty, turquoise lakes, evergreen pine forests, colossal glaciers, beautiful mountain peaks and charming villages. Do not forget Chile's impressive Torres del Paine National Park, the Atacama Desert or the beautiful fjords and glaciers. Nor should one overlook Bolivia's surreal salt flats of Salar de Uyuni or the Pantanal tropical wetlands of Brazil. Peru's Nazca Lines in the desert, and well…..the list goes on and on.

Best places to visit in South America

Maybe you don't know where to go in South America yet, and we don't blame you! With so many options, make sure you figure out at least some of your itinerary before leaving home.

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