General Information About Latin America
South America manages to attract the attention of the world with its huge deserts, different climates, warm people, large and small islands, long beaches, and archaeological sites waiting to be discovered. South America, also known as Latin America, is a continent full of beauty to discover. Thousands of tourists visit this happy tropical continent every year and enjoy each other.
This region, which forms the southern part of the American continent, has the Pacific Ocean in the eastern part and the Atlantic Ocean in the western part. Located in the north of Antarctica, this continent spreads over an area of 17,480,000 square kilometers in total. It is known that the continent has a north-south direction of a total of 7,200 kilometers. It has a length of 5,300 kilometers from east to west. The South American continent, which is spread over such a wide area, draws attention as the 4th largest continent in the world in terms of surface area.
1. Las Lajas Temple, Colombia
At the top of the list of places to visit in South America is Las Lajas Temple in Colombia, a place that is flooded by thousands of tourists every year. This temple, which is located close to the Ecuadorian border, is very crowded as it is a pilgrimage site.
This temple in the village of Las Lajas in the city of Ipiales is in the canyon created by the Guaitara River. With its stunning architecture and natural beauty, Las Lajas Temple is considered among the must-see places in South America. Since it is in the canyon, waterfalls flow around the temple.
Las Lajas Temple, which is flooded by pilgrims every year on September 16, was built in gothic style. It stands out as a very interesting basilica with its high towers, aqueducts, imposing stone walls, and decorated mosaics. The temple with the Virgin Mary painting on its walls is very popular thanks to this feature it has. Thousands of pilgrims come here to see the Virgin Mary picture in question.
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2. Urubamba, Peru
Urubamba is located in the Andes of Peru. It is considered the Sacred Valley of the Incas on the Ant Mountains. We can say that it is very close to the world-famous Machu Picchu and Cuzco in terms of its location. You can come here to explore the most mysterious places in Peru.
Urubamba has a river of the same name and a sizable valley. When you come to the valley, you can see how rich the Inca civilization is. The valley has both fertile lands and a climate suitable for agriculture. There are many large and small rivers in this region. The rivers that run down the valley have divided the land into small parcels. Each piece of land drawn by the natural boundary constitutes a separate village. You can witness the Inca civilization when you come to Urubamba.
You can spend your holiday by staying in hotels and other accommodation facilities here. You can eat delicious food in this town where friendly people live. When you come to Urubamba, we recommend you to see other touristic places named Chinchero and Ollantaytambo.
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3. Pucon, Chile
Pucon is a town that you will come across when you travel 780 kilometers south of Santiago, the capital of the country. You can reach Pucon by train. The Villarrica Volcano is located in the immediate vicinity of the town. This is one of the features that make Pucon touristic. There are many tours for tourists coming to Pucon that cover the area around Villarrica Volcano. It is possible to encounter many tourists who climb this mountain, especially in summer.
If you want to experience this way, there are many places where you can provide both guidance and necessary equipment for climbing the mountain. Walking tours are mostly organized under the leadership of a local expert. If you are interested in outdoor sports, you should definitely come to Pucon. You can participate in hiking, rafting, skiing, and many other outdoor sports activities on your trip here.
There is also a ski center at the foot of the Villarrica Volcano. From July to September, you can enjoy skiing at the foot of this volcano. This ski center has a total of 20 tracks and a huge cable car. After skiing, you can spend time with your family at the restaurants in the ski center.
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4. Tayrona National Park, Colombia
Tayrona National Park, one of the most beautiful places in Colombia, spreads over an area of 12 thousand hectares. There are long green areas and hundreds of endangered animals in the park. It is known that the Tairona natives lived here until the 15th century.
Behind the Tayrona National Park, which was protected by the Colombian State in 1969, the gigantic Sierra Nevada Mountains lie. You can see that some of the Tayrona natives still live in huts around the national park.
If you wish, you can explore the park by riding a horse. There is a small facility at the entrance where you can rent a horse. You can wander the rugged terrain of the national park on horseback. Then another side of Tayrona National Park, which is the mountain range, opens to the beach. Cabo San Juan, the nudist beach Playa Brava and La Piscina are some of the beaches located here.
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5. Isla del Sol, Bolivia
One of the most beautiful places in South America stands out as Isla del Sol, which is included in almost all Bolivia-Peru-Chile tours. Tikitaka Lake, located in this region, is flooded by many tourists. In this part of South America, there are many lakes and small islets near Lake Tikitaka. One of these islands is Isla del Sol with its unique view and natural beauties. You can easily reach the island from the city of Copacabana.
Isla del Sol, located approximately 14 kilometers from the city, is a place that attracts much attention in the Tikitaka region. It is known that the island, which was considered sacred by the Incas, was dedicated to the sun god. The image of the island resembling the temple of the sun virgins fascinates those who see it.
In Isla del Sol, apart from tourism, people earn their income from shepherding and handicrafts. In addition to the Incas who lived in the past, it is known that Aymara and Quechua natives live here today. The island is rich in archaeological terms. The artifacts found as a result of excavations here are exhibited in the Challapampa Museum.
Tourists who come to the island visit the museum after enjoying the sea and the sun. Isla del Sol is one of the places that conquers the hearts of tourists with its lush green plains, clear blue waters, and long paths. It is possible to see the Andes Mountains beyond the island. It must be invaluable to spend a pleasant time here looking at the snowy hills of the Andes, especially in winter.
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6. Los Roques, Venezuela
It’s called the tropical paradise of Venezuela for Los Roques. This place stands out as the largest of the marine parks in Latin America. Los Roques islands consist of 42 islands and 250 coral reefs. This island team has a beautiful view that will impress those who see it. We can say that you need a few days to explore Los Roques, which has a total area of 22 thousand hectares.
There are many activities to be held on the islands called capos by the locals. When you come here, you can explore the area by canoe and boat. If you are interested in diving, Los Roques awaits you with its unique underwater world. Windsurfing is one of the best options for those who do not get out of the water while under the water. 7 days a week you can see the beaches on the island full of people surfing, swimming and sunbathing.
There is one main island within the islands in Los Roques and its name is called Gran Roque. There is also a small-scale airport in Gran Roque. When you come here, you can shop as much as you want. Los Roques islands community is a favorite of nature lovers with its white beaches, long coastline, and coral reefs.
Here, in addition to the unique coastal scenery, a rich underwater world welcomes tourists. You can see almost all of the coral species all over the world on the Los Roques islands. In addition, 2 festivals are organized on the island. The festivals are called the Virgin Mary Festival held in September and the Lobster Festival held in November. If you arrange a trip to the island on the date of these festivals, you can be sure of a lot of fun.
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7. Seven Lakes Road, Argentina
Seven Lakes Road is one of the places with the most beautiful views of Argentina. This road has a total length of 107 kilometers. The road in question connects San Martin de Los Andes with Villa La Angostura. Along the way, you will dive into Patagonia’s unique and beautiful landscape.
Although its name is Seven Lakes, there are actually 9 lakes along the way. Some of the lakes on this route are Escondido, Falkner, Correntoso, Espejp, Lacar, Machonico and Villarino.You can explore this road either by tour bus or by renting a car from the nearest city. Renting a car stands out as a more economical choice compared to the tour buses. By renting a car, you can spend less budget and take a break wherever you want, and spend the journey in the most enjoyable way.
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8. Cabo Polonio, Uruguay
Cabo Polonio, a place famous for its sea lions, is located in Uruguay. This place is known for having quite different conditions unlike other routes in Latin America. It is not possible to benefit from the blessings of the modern world in Cabo Polonio. Because there is no internet and electricity here, transportation is also provided via dirt roads. If you want to go on an adventure in nature and away from civilization, you should definitely set foot here.
Cabo Polonio has such a beautiful and peaceful environment that we are sure that you will not miss any element of civilization. Cabo Polonio, which is within the borders of Uruguay, is located at a distance of 260 kilometers from the capital of the country. From the moment you come here, you will feel yourself in your natural environment. The town has a long coastline. You can spend a peaceful time on these deserted beaches covered with white sands.
The beaches are famous for their sea lions in addition to their calmness. Wherever you look at the beach, you may encounter a lazy sea lion. Here, you can take beautiful pictures by watching the sunset. The dunes behind the beach can be seen almost everywhere in Cabo Polonio.
Cabo Polonio is in a very virgin state. For this reason, transportation to the town is very limited. The closest road to this town, where transportation is provided by dirt roads, is located about 7 kilometers away. Since the roads in the town are primitive, you can see those who get on 4 × 4 land vehicles. If you want to act like the locals, you can get around on horseback. If you want to spend a holiday in touch with nature, Cabo Polonio is just for you.
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9. Encarnacion, Paraguay
An incarnation is a prominent place in Paraguay, one of the most colorful countries in South America, with the remains of Jesuit missionaries. Encarnacion is known as Paraguay’s third-largest city. This place has such an important place in the country that it is called the new Rio de Janeiro among the people. In addition to its natural beauties, it also hosts many cultural and touristic places. The reason why this place is the third important city in Paraguay is that it has very rich commercial and industrial opportunities.
It is possible to cross to Posadas in Argentina by a bridge from Encarnacion. The bridge in question is located on the Parang River and is called the San Roque Gonzales de Santa Cruz Bridge. Encarnacion hosts a large number of carnivals. For this reason, it is also called the carnival capital among the people. Carnival Encarnaceno, held in February every year, stands out as the liveliest and most attended carnival here.
When you come to the city, you can stay in one of the luxurious and comfortable hotels. You can go to the best restaurants and taste the local cuisine. Another point that Incarnation is important in terms of tourism can be explained as hosting the Jesuit missions in Parana, the Temple of Virgin Mary of Itacua, and a ruin named Jesus de Tavarangue.
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10. Paramaribo, Suriname
Paramaribo stands out as the capital city of Suriname. This city is known for hosting the Keizerstraat Mosque. We can mention Paramaribo as one of the places that attract little attention but must be seen in South America. Suriname is located at the far northeastern tip of Latin America. For this reason, it is known as a deserted place compared to the other part of the continent.
Paramaribo has a very cosmopolitan population distribution. You will encounter a rich colonial architecture in this capital, where people of many ethnic backgrounds live together. It is known that Paramaribo has a population of 250 thousand people. The population consists of Indians, Africans, Javanese, and Dutch. In this capital, you can encounter the cultural texture of each ethnic element.
Paramaribo is home to a variety of cultural landmarks, including those that have entered the UNESCO World Heritage list. You should definitely see the Basilica of St. Beter and St. Paul, the largest wooden building in the western hemisphere. There are also Fort Zeelandia, Neve Shalom Synagogue, and Keizerstraat Mosque. The inner parts of the city are also adorned with many historical elements.