Top 10 best places to travel in South America

From modern cities built on ancient civilisations to thriving metropolises and tropical paradises, these are the ten best places to travel in South America.

South America is a treasure trove of bucket-list destinations. So, here are the best places to travel in South America.

Whether you’re a city slicker who loves the hum of busybodies or want to kick back with a cocktail in hand on the beach, perhaps you’re a history buff, or want to see what the underwater world beholds; all of this and more awaits in South America.

The continent comprises some 14 countries, offering diverse local cultures, dynamic cuisines, and varied landscapes. If you’re planning a trip but are not sure where to start, we’ve got you covered. These are the ten best places to travel in South America.

10. Easter Island, Chile – for Polynesian heritage

Check out Easter Island in Chile.
Credit: Pixabay / voltamax

Easter Island is a unique destination. It is often denoted by the 1,000 plus monolithic statues shaped like human heads dotted around the volcanic landmass.

Today tourists favour it for these iconic sculptures, but it is also one of the best places to travel in South America for its natural landscapes and stunning beaches.

9. Iguazu Falls, Argentina – for impressive cascades

Iguazu Falls is one of the best places to travel in South America.
Credit: Pixabay / nanmartinav

For those who want to see one of the most remarkable displays of nature that South America beholds, head to Iguazu Falls in Argentina.

This network of waterfalls consists of around 250 cascades. Together, they prove to be one of the most memorable sights you’re likely to experience when travelling the continent.

A visit to Iguazu Falls is a must-see!

8. Cartagena, Colombia – for culture and colourful architecture

Cartagena is full of culture and colourful architecture.
Credit: Pixabay / enriquelopezgarre

Cartagena in Columbia also finds itself on our list of the best places to travel in South America for its vibrant culture and colourful architecture. For foodies and romantics alike, a trip to this stunning city will prove one not soon forgotten.

It’s also a fantastic shopping destination with independent designers, artisan crafts makers, and one-of-a-kind stores lining its charming cobbled streets.

7. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – for carnival

Rio de Janeiro is one of the best places to travel in South America.
Credit: Pixabay / 12019

Rio de Janeiro is known for many things. Perhaps one of its most dynamic claims to fame, however, is its carnival celebrations that take place around February each year.

It is the biggest carnival celebration globally, attracting up to two million tourists per day each year.

6. Machu Picchu, Peru – for ancient civilisations

Check out the ancient civilizations of Machu Picchu in Peru.
Credit: Flickr / Pedro Szekely

For those who want to explore ancient wonders and discover the immense beauty of what remains of an ancient civilisation, look no further than Machu Picchu in Peru.

This lost city in the mountains is bucket list-worthy without a doubt. And, in case you were on the fence, yes, we can confirm that this is one of the best places to travel in South America.

5. Buenos Aires, Argentina – for performance and the arts

Buenos Aires is one of the best places to travel in South America.
Credit: Pixabay / ArtTower

Commonly referred to as the birthplace of the tango, it’s safe to say a trip to Buenos Aires in Argentina will be as steamy as one can imagine.

The city is renowned for performance and the arts, with some 300 theatres scattered around its streets.

Plus, Buenos Aires is one of the best places for digital nomads in South America.

4. The Amazon – for nature in full bloom

Visit the Amazon for nature in all its glory.
Credit: Pixabay / ncassullo

The Amazon is quite probably the jewel in the crown of natural wonders in the world. Often regarded as planet Earth’s living lungs, it is the most biodiverse region on the globe.

It is also home to ancient cultures and native flora and fauna beyond your wildest imagination.

3. Belize Barrier Reef, Belize – for the underwater world

Belize Barrier Reef is one of the best places to travel in South America.
Credit: Pixabay / MonicaVolpin

Does the thought of underwater adventures surrounded by crystal clear waters and swaying palm trees tickle your fancy? Then head to Belize Barrier Reef.

Perhaps one of the most majestic reefs in the world, this technicolour daydream will be one for the diary, no doubt.

2. Torres del Paine National Park, Patagonia – for outdoor enthusiasts

Torres del Paine National Park is a must for adventure enthusiasts.
Credit: Pixabay / MonicaVolpin

Boasting juxtapositions seldom seen – snow-capped mountains, emerald forests, and clear blue lakes – there’s no finer outdoor destination than Torres del Paine National Park in Patagonia.

With some of the most striking scenery that Earth offers on display here, nature lovers and hikers will be in their element.

1. Galapagos Islands, Ecuador – for an island escape like no other

The Galapagos Islands are one of best places to travel in South America.
Credit: Pixabay / Gonzo1887

Situated off the coast of Ecuador in the Pacific Ocean are the Galapagos Islands – one of the world’s preeminent destinations for unfiltered wildlife experiences.

Home to the Galápagos giant tortoise, amongst other rare species, this is truly an island escape like no other. Thus, making it one of the best places to travel in South America.

Paris Donnatella Callan
Paris Donnatella Callan is an avid writer and traveller. From a young age, nomadic parents placed a strong emphasis on education in real experience and the outdoors - a trait which has carried through her life and into her career. She has travelled Europe, Africa, America, Asia and Australia and still claims that wanderlust tempts her daily. Saying that she believes Ireland - her homeland - is the most enchanting place she has ever been and is passionate about documenting the Emerald Isle. Chances are, you can find her drinking coffee in some hidden gem cafe in Dublin, planning her next big trip.

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