South America Travel

Mythological Figures Of Easter Island

Much of what we do know of the gods and other mythological figures of Easter Island is derived from oral tradition passed down through the centuries. And, like Easter Island and the Rapa Nui people, much remains shrouded in mystery — and a great deal has undoubtedly been lost. The stories have shifted over the […]

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A Guide To The Main Wine Regions Near Santiago, Chile

Santiago is a fine base for tourists with a taste for wine. Many of the country’s best wine-producing valleys and vineyards lie within a 100-mile radius of the Chilean capital, with some just a short ride away. There’s also an undeniable and appealing sense of history in this New World wine producing region. Vines first […]

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In Ecuador’s Avenue Of The Volcanoes, Hiking Through A Ring Of Fire

I’m standing on the brink—the very brink—of the volcano’s crater.  Below me, in the carbon-rich lake, dark patches streak the green waters, which glisten with minerals.  A lone sheep grazes nearby, impervious to the keening wind.  Overhead, smokelike clouds, moving in off the late-afternoon peaks. Tranquil it might be, but that crater never lets you […]

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Monkeys Of The Amazon Rainforest

The Amazon Rainforest is unrivalled when it comes to biodiversity. Along with millions of insect species, more than 1,000 bird species, and hundreds of amphibian and reptile species, the Amazon is also home to about 430 species of mammal, with more still to be discovered. For adventurous tourists wanting to explore the Amazon — be […]

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Visiting Buenos Aires: Ten Must-Do Experiences

La Paris del Sur, its denizens call it. The Paris of the South. And for a few brief moments, you might actually be taken in. Those wide central boulevards, for example: they certainly feel European, with their Art Deco apartment buildings and dusky ground-floor shops. Likewise those cafes, with their old men waving their endless […]

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The Best Places To See Penguins In South America

Of the 17 species of penguin that occur worldwide, seven can be seen in South America. Their breeding grounds range from the Galapagos Islands along the equator to the Pacific coasts of Peru and Chile and further on down to the continent’s frigid southernmost tip… Galápagos Islands, Ecuador When people think of wildlife in South […]

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A Guide To The Main Structures Of Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu isn’t just an archaeological wonder: It’s also an architectural masterpiece. With more than 200 buildings that we know of, intelligently divided into urban and agricultural sectors and an upper town and lower town, there are no finer examples of Inca planning and construction. As you take a tour of Machu Picchu, you’ll see […]

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The 6 Best Beaches In Rio De Janeiro

If you conjure up a mental image of Rio de Janeiro, even if you’ve never been there before, it’s almost certain that a beach will appear in that image. Brazil’s most iconic city is home to two of the most famous beaches in the world: Ipanema and Copacabana, both of which have inspired internationally-acclaimed hit […]

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Iguazu: The Most Beautiful Waterfall On Earth

Anyone who has visited the great waterfalls of the world – Niagara, the Salto Angel and the Victoria Falls – will tell you that Iguazu, on the Brazil-Argentina border, is hands-down the most incredible. Look at any list of Top 10 Waterfalls and Iguazu will be number one. In 2011 Iguazu was voted one of […]

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The Condor Passes: A Guide To Peru’s Majestic Colca Canyon

On the ledge below the overlook, the three birds huddle: a slate-gray mass.  One stands slightly aloof, gazing into the distance, while a second, officious, pecks under the wing of the third.  Above them the canyon air is warm, with a rising early-morning wind.  Rufflike plumes ripple with the breeze. After a moment, bird three […]

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Genovesa Island, Galapagos: Prime Territory For Birds

To reach little Genovesa, the most northeastern island of the Galapagos, cruise vessels must sail up to eight hours from other more visited islands.  Large cruise ships have to bypass Genovesa – also called Tower Island – because the reef makes it risky for them to enter into and anchor at Darwin Bay, where passengers […]

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Ecuadorian Food: A Boom Waiting To Happen?

It’s Holy Week in Quito, and that means Alberto Alava is looking serious. The dark, mustachioed chef has his cap tilted back, concentrating intently on his work. That work includes peeling a multitude of different grains (including fava beans and chochos, a thick-skinned legume typical of the Andes), soaking strips of salt cod in milk, […]

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In Ushuaia, Argentina, Discovering A Land Of Extreme Beauty

Polar winds whip snow against me as I stand beneath the looming mountain.  Gray afternoon half-light.  It’s the end of the line. Granted, “end” in Ushuaia, Argentina, is a word that long ago passed beyond cliché, considering every empanadería, Claro cell-phone kiosk, and leather-goods outlet in town has seen fit to append “del fin del […]

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Seven Things To Do In Puno, Peru

Puno, Peru suffers from a case of bad PR. Ask most travelers about the windswept Andean town, and you’ll likely get a lot of blank stares. “Puno—where exactly is that?” Those same travelers will prick up their ears at the mention of neighboring Lake Titicaca, or of the Islands of the Sun on the Bolivian […]

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Top Wildlife Viewing On Isabela Island, Galapagos

Isabela Island, by far the largest island in the Galapagos, is also one of the richest in wildlife. Home to more wild tortoises than all the other Galapagos Islands combined, it’s also the best place to spot penguins in the archipelago, which harbors the most northerly penguin colony on earth. (Isabela lies directly on the […]

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