South America stretches from the border with Panama in the north all the way down to the Tierra Del Fuego (the "Land of Fire"). 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 Brazils' 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, hippos etc 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 sun rise 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 such as 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; huge rainbows form where the cascading water meets the suns rays, while butterflies the size of your hand flutter about.
Galapagos Islands: possibly the worlds' 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 literally absolutely unique and totally incredible. This is from where Darwin took a lot of his inspiration.
The unspoiled islands of Los Roques in Venezuela, or the island paradise of Fernando de Noronha in Brazil. 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 Chiles 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. Venezuela is home to some of the finest tepui or tabletop mountains. Peru's Nazca Lines in the desert, and well…..the list goes on and on. If you are looking to experience something different alltogether, we recommend you to visit some of the countries in the northern end of South America: Guyana, French Guiana, or Suriname. They are less frequented by tourists, but offer their own unique vibe.