Best South American Travel Destinations
By Sean Lannin | Submitted On May 10, 2009
South American travel destinations are growing in popularity, and offer the travel some unique ecological and cultural places of interest. We chose Latin America because we love the food and culture of Latin America.
We began traveling to Mexico in the early 1970's as kids, way before the million dollar condo projects...or roads for that matter. As adults we continued vacationing in Mexico and often traveled with our kids. It was really a natural extension for us to push further south and include Central America and South America in our travel plans.
There are many great South American travel sites, we only include a few here that our family hopes to visit. All of these are easily visited by arranging the trip yourself or tour companies will have these available in their South America travel packages.
Visiting the Amazon is on the list of everyone that travels to South America. Beginning in Peru, the Amazon winds its way out of the Andes through many South American countries and through Northern Brazil before emptying into the Atlantic Ocean.
The Amazon is one of the most exotic places on earth, and is home to a diverse ecosystem that is home for many plants and animals only found there. This is a not to be missed travel destination!
Located almost 600 miles off the Pacific Coast of Ecuador lie the Galapagos Archipelago, a string of some 22 islands that is home to many unique plant and animals only found on these islands.
Giant Tortoises, the unique Marine Iguana, Blue Footed Boobies, flightless Cormorants, and the Galapagos Penguin are just some of the unique creatures you will find on the islands and in the seas around the islands.
Access to the islands is controlled by the Ecuadorian government, and the most popular way to visit is through an approved tour operator. They offer many different tours, and they will have something that fits your interest, time, and budget considerations.
For anyone heading to Peru, Machu Picchu is certainly to be on their itinerary as it is the most visited tourist destination in Peru. These Inca ruins are located at about 8,000 feet, atop a steep mountain overlooking the Urubamba River.
Declared a Unesco World heritage Site in 1983, Machu Picchu is believed to have been built around 1460 and was an important city in the Inca civilization. The remarkable beauty and spirituality of the site draw visitors from all around the world.
Another popular attraction in Peru is Lake Titicaca, the largest in South America and believed to have been the origin of the Inca Empire. The lake is 12,500 feet above sea level, 122 miles long and 35 miles wide.
According to Incan mythology, Manco Capac and Mama 0cllo emerged from the depths of the lake on the sacred rock gate on Isla Del Sol to found the Inca Empire. The best known islands on the lake are the floating reed islands which are maintained by adding fresh reeds to the surface even as the ones on the bottom decompose.
Everyone that I have spoken to that has visited these falls tells me that these are a must see. On the border between Argentina and Brazil, the Iguazu Falls are more than twice as wide as the Niagra Falls and also taller.
The falls are protected by both Argentinean and Brazilian national parks on both sides of the falls, and the falls themselves are part of virgin jungle ecosystem. 2/3 of the falls are on the Argentina side, and where you can also find tours of the national park and jungle hikes.
Whatever your interests, there is a South American travel destination to meet your interests. The next time you are planning a family vacation or extended travel, consider the options that South America provides.