What is one of the hottest emerging destinations for South Africans? South America. With direct flights into Buenos Aires and Sao Paulo from South Africa, getting there is convenient. From these entry points, taking a trip to countries like Chile or Peru is simple and efficient. And just what is it that travellers love about these South American destinations? The answers vary. Those who flock to Buenos Aires love the sophistication of the city, coupled with its old-world charm - the winding cobblestone streets, the grand-scale Colonial architecture and its quaint neighbourhoods. This is, of course, the place to tango. Whether you're a first time dancer or an experienced veteran, the tango moves your body and your soul with sensual moves and romantic songs. Take a dance class to learn the basic steps, then head to a local tango hall where you can practise until the wee hours of the morning.
Brazil's Sao Paulo is an urban masterpiece of fine architecture by some of the world's best talents (like Oscar Niemeyer). But it's the culture that makes it come alive. As South American's most populated city, there is a richness and diversity that feeds its spirit. It is home to a world-class opera house, symphony, art museums, affordable fashion designs and festivals. The mix of ethnic groups has created a cuisine scene like no other - more than 62 different types, spread over more than 12,000 restaurants, from inexpensive bistros to Michelin-starred eateries. South Africans also share Sao Paulo's love of football. It's an experience of a lifetime to see one of the major teams play in Morumbi or Pacaembu Stadium.
Further afield, Peru is a fascinating country that holds natural wonders like the Amazon River, Lake Titicaca, and the Andes mountains. Plus it has man-made, iconic destinations like Machu Pichu, a pre-Columbian Inca site, and the Nazca Lines. To the south, Chile's unspoiled beauty draws visitors from all over the world to sights like the Valley of the Moon, Easter Island, and San Pedro de Atacama. If you haven't explored South America yet, put on top of your places to visit list. It won't disappoint.
What we love about South America
Its seamless blend of new and old, where snowboarding and the tango co-exist in harmony.
The great value for the money is attractive, on everything from leather goods to boutique hotels.
South American nations throw a party unlike anyone else, especially at Carnival time
Thursday 1st April 1999
Travel Counsellor: Claudine Hoines
Travelling 3 months through South America and Central America was one of the best experiences of my life. We spent 2 months travelling through Brazil, Bolivia, Peru and Ecuador and then the last month through Mexico. We spent a minimal amount of our budget on accommodation as you spend a minimal amount of time in one's room, so we stayed in very basic accommodation and enjoyed experiencing each place and the food instead.
Brazil, was a friendly vibrant country. We stayed in Rio de Janeiro for a couple of nights, resting on the beaches of Copacabana and doing the sightseeing thing up Sugar Loaf Mountain and Corcovado, both impressive. We then moved down south to an Island off the coast of Sao Paolo, called 'Ilha Grande', where one will find cheap but clean and central accommodation. The main road is just lined with loads of local restaurants and the rest looked like lush vegetation throughout.
We then took a day trip into the Argentian side of the Iguazu falls, one of the better... view full story
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