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Updated by Soubin Nath on Jul 03, 2017
Headline for 20 Most Exciting Travel Destinations in South America
Soubin Nath Soubin Nath
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20 Most Exciting Travel Destinations in South America

South America is very much unique in its geography and culture. People from all around globe adore to visit south american countries. here is the list of 20 most exciting travel destinations in South America.


The Amazon, Brazil

Named after female warriors of Greek mythology, the Amazon is itself a place of nearly mythical status. What traveler hasn't imagined a trip to the Amazon, not only to admire the towering trees and awesome river, but to enter, in a real sense, the very life spring of the planet, the source of so much of the air we breath, the water we drink and the weather we rely on? To be sure, expecting a Discovery Channel–like experience (jaguars in every tree, spear-toting indios around every bend) is a recipe for disappointment. In fact, the Amazon’s quintessential experiences are more sublime than superlative: canoeing through a flooded forest, dozing in a hammock on a boat chugging upriver, waking to the otherworldly cry of howler monkeys. On a river whose size is legendary, it’s actually the little things that make it special. Give it some time, forget your expectations, and the Amazon cannot fail to impress.

Salto Ángel, Venezuela

Salto Ángel is the world’s highest waterfall and Venezuela’s number-one tourist attraction. Its total height is 979m, with an uninterrupted drop of 807m – about 16 times the height of Niagara Falls. The cascade pours off the towering Auyantepui, one of the largest of the tepuis. Salto Ángel is not named, as one might expect, for a divine creature, but for an American bush pilot Jimmie Angel, who landed his four-seater airplane atop Auyantepui in 1937 while in search of gold. In the local Pémon language the falls are called Parakupá Vená, or 'waterfall of the highest place'.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Rio's beaches have long seduced visitors. Copacabana Beach became a symbol of Rio during the 1940s, when international starlets would jet in for the weekend. Hogging the spotlight these days is Ipanema Beach, its fame and beauty unabated since bossa nova stars Tom Jobim and Vinícius de Moraes introduced the world to its allure in the 1960s. For cariocas (residents of Rio), the beach is Rio's backyard – a playground that's free and open to all, offering endless enjoyment in the form of football, volleyball, surfing, snacking, drinking or simply relaxing amid the passing parade of people.

Machu Picchu, Peru

For many travelers to Peru, a visit to the lost Inca city of Machu Picchu is the whole purpose of their trip. With its awe-inspiring location, it is the best-known and most spectacular archaeological site on the continent. Despite being swamped by tourists from June to September, it still retains an air of grandeur and mystery. Alejandro Toledo, the country's first indigenous Andean president, impressively staged his inauguration here in 2001.

Lake Titicaca, Bolivia

Everything – and everyone – that sits beside this impressive body of water, from the traditional Aymará villages to the glacier-capped peaks of the Cordillera Real, seems to fall into the background in contrast with the shimmering opal jewel set into the spare altiplano earth. It is not hard to see how Inca legends came to credit Lake Titicaca with the birth of their civilization.

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Buenos Aires combines faded European grandeur with Latin passion. Sexy and alive, this beautiful city gets under your skin.

Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia

An evocative and eerie sight, the world’s largest salt flat (12,106 sq km) sits at 3653m (11,984ft). When the surface is dry, the salar is a pure white expanse of the greatest nothing imaginable – just blue sky, white ground and you. When there’s a little water, the surface perfectly reflects the clouds and the blue altiplano sky, and the horizon disappears.

Parque Nacional do Iguaçu , Brazil

You can’t miss the shiny entrance to the Parque Nacional do Iguaçu, which houses bathrooms, ATMs, lockers, souvenir shops and vast parking facilities. You can purchase your ticket in advance on the web site and pick it up in the preferential line at the ticket windows. Once ticketed, you will be directed to board a free double-decker bus.

Glaciar Perito Moreno, Argentina

Among the Earth's most dynamic and accessible ice fields, Glaciar Perito Moreno is the stunning centerpiece of the southern sector of Parque Nacional Los Glaciares. Locally referred to as Glaciar Moreno, it measures 30km long, 5km wide and 60m high, but what makes it exceptional in the world of ice is its constant advance - up to 2m per day, causing building-sized icebergs to calve from its face.

Crafts Market (Otavalo), Ecuador

Plaza de Ponchos, the nucleus of the crafts market, is filled every day with vendors selling woolen goods, such as rugs, tapestries, blankets, ponchos, sweaters, scarves, gloves and hats – as well as embroidered blouses, hammocks, carvings, beads, paintings, woven mats and jewelry made from tagua nut (also known as vegetable ivory). But it metastasizes on Saturday, official market day, swelling into adjacent roads and around half of the town center.

Parque 3 de Febrero, Argentina

Also known as Bosques de Palermo (Palermo Woods), this sweeping open parkland abounds with small lakes and pretty gazebos. Stands rent bikes and in-line skates, and joggers and power walkers circle the ponds – if you don't have the energy to join them, lie back under a tree and people-watch. There's also a monument to literary greats called El Jardín de los Poetas (the Garden of Poets), and the exquisite Rosedal (rose garden).

Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay

On the east bank of the Río de la Plata, 180km west of Montevideo, but only 50km from Buenos Aires by ferry, Colonia is an irresistibly picturesque town enshrined as a Unesco World Heritage site. Its Barrio Histórico, an irregular colonial-era nucleus of narrow cobbled streets, occupies a small peninsula jutting into the river. Pretty rows of sycamores offer protection from the summer heat, and the riverfront is a venue for spectacular sunsets (it's a Uruguayan custom to applaud the setting sun). Colonia’s charm and its proximity to Buenos Aires draw thousands of Argentine visitors; on weekends, especially in summer, prices rise and it can be difficult to find a room.

Parque Nacional Torres del Paine, Chile

Soaring almost vertically more than 2000m above the Patagonian steppe, the granite pillars of Torres del Paine (Towers of Paine) dominate the landscape of what may be South America's finest national park. Before its creation in 1959, the park was part of a large sheep estancia, and it's still recovering from nearly a century of overexploitation of its pastures, forests and wildlife.

Cementerio de la Recoleta, Argentina

This cemetery is perhaps BA's top attraction. You can wander for hours in this incredible city of the dead, where the ‘streets’ are lined with impressive statues and marble mausoleums. Peek into the crypts and check out the dusty coffins and try to decipher the history of its inhabitants. Past presidents, military heroes, influential politicians and the just plain rich and famous have made it past the gates here.

Old Town in Cartagena, Colombia

Without doubt, Cartagena's old city is its principal attraction, particularly the inner walled town, consisting of the historical districts of El Centro and San Diego. It is a real gem of colonial architecture, packed with churches, monasteries, plazas, palaces and mansions with their overhanging balconies and shady patios.

Central Suriname Nature Reserve

One of the biggest swaths of Suriname's protected regions, covering 12% of Suriname's land area, this nature reserve covers 16,000 sq km and was established in 1998 with a US$1 million donation from Conservation International. Around 40% of Central Suriname Nature Reserve's plants and animals are found only in the Guianas.

Casa Rosada, Argentina

On the eastern side of Plaza de Mayo stands the Casa Rosada (Pink House), named for its distinctive color. It was from the balcony here that Eva Perón famously addressed the throngs of impassioned supporters packed into Plaza de Mayo. The building houses the Argentine President's offices; the presidential residence is in the suburb of Olivos, north of the center.

Museo Benito Quinquela Martín, Argentina

Once the home and studio of painter Benito Quinquela Martín (1890–1977), this fine-arts museum exhibits his works and those of other Argentine artists. Quinquel…

Teatro Colón, Argentina

This impressive seven-story building is one of BA’s most prominent landmarks. It’s the city’s main performing-arts venue and a world-class forum for opera, ballet and classical music with astounding acoustics. Occupying an entire city block, the Colón can seat 2500 spectators and provide standing room for another 500. The theater's real beauty lies on the inside, so if you can't get hold of tickets to a performance, take one of the frequent 50-minute backstage tours to view the stunning interior.

Encarnación, Paraguay

Encarnación, 'La Perla del Sur', is Paraguay's most attractive city. It's also known as the 'Capital de Carnaval' and, following the completion of the new costanera (riverside promenade) with its fabulous river beach, is sometimes referred to – rather ambitiously – as the new Rio de Janeiro. It has very quickly metamorphosed into the place to be seen in Paraguay during the stifling summer months