South America has long offered tourists a lot to do. But in 2018, it’s time to explore beyond just Rio and Machu Picchu, and instead check out of some of the other incredible places to visit in South America. From lounging on a beach in Uruguay, to visiting cities miles in the sky, to exploring village marketplaces, there is a lot to do in these incredible destinations in South America.
I’ve asked some of the world’s best travel bloggers to help me pick the top travel destinations for 2018 and beyond. These are people who spend their entire lives traveling the globe, so they know what destinations are poised for a big tourist boom.
So be sure to check out these awesome places to visit in South America before everyone else does!
This is part of a series on the Best Places to Travel in 2018 for each continent around the globe. Be sure to stay on top of future posts by liking Travel Lemming on Facebook. And if you sign up for email updates at the end of the post, I’ll send you a copy of my free e-book: “99 Tips for Traveling the World Like a Pro”!
2018’s Top Places to Visit in South America
Florianópolis, which sits on the Island of Santa Catarina just off the Brazilian coast, has all the ingredients to become the next “it” spot but – fortunately for you – it hasn’t gotten a ton of international attention yet. The city boasts beautiful beaches, mountains, and a giant lagoon but the real reason to come is for the surf. It’s the perfect spot to learn – or perfect – your wave-catching skills. Follow that long day on the beach with fresh seafood and a cold beer while watching the perfect sunset and you’re living the good life. Get here by plane or bus, plan to stay in a posada, and make this low-key ocean paradise your next destination.
-Scott from The Line Trek
La Paz, Bolivia
La Paz is like a modern-day city in the clouds — literally. At almost 12,000 feet in elevation, the city of two and a half million residents sits at a dizzying height. What’s more, it’s surrounded by snow-capped mountains, including the mystical Illimani mountain, which towers at a staggering 21,112 feet above sea level. Visitors to La Paz will be greeted by an energetic city filled with endless parks, towering skyscrapers, and incredible culture. And, at a fraction of the cost of nearby Peru, your wallet will thank you as well.
Though daring visitors can take a day trip to try their luck cycling down the world’s most dangerous road, you don’t have to leave the city — or risk your life — to get a thrill in La Paz. The city’s excellent transportation network includes a number of commuter cable that allows you to take in the stunning vista of the city while whizzing overhead. Just be sure to get in line before rush hour, when lines for the cars can queue up!
Read the full series: Best Places to Travel in 2018
Nestled on the north-west coast of Peru is the sleepy, rural fishing village of Pacasmayo. Whilst it may not yet have rated a mention on the list of the ‘must-sees’ in Peru, it has a huge amount to offer any traveler who wants to be see something outside of the stereotypical. For a fraction of the price you will pay in other South American countries, you get long sandy beaches; fresh fish and seafood to die for; gorgeous weather; welcoming, friendly people; and a vibrant live marketplace. This, coupled with the fact that accommodation is easy to come by and great cuisine is readily available, make this little slice of heaven a wonderful place to spend some of your time in the region. Don’t miss this off-the-radar gem if you’re planning a visit to Peru.
-Kerry and Eldon from Expert Traveller
Bogotá is hipster gritty, incredibly diverse, and surprisingly cosmopolitan; it’s also increasingly safe, making it almost certain to become one of South America’s most sought-after destinations in the near future. Get here before that happens! The city is huge – 8 million people over 685 square miles – at an elevation of 8,681 feet (sorry Denver). It offers a massive urban terrain to explore with fantastic street art, beautiful museums, a great restaurant scene, and hopping nightlife. Plus, it’s nestled in the Andes with easy access to hikes that will make you feel far away from all of Bogotá’s bustle. So, what are you waiting for?
-Scott from The Line Trek
Hidden between two tourism giants — Buenos Aires and Brazil — lies tiny and relatively unexplored Uruguay. The beach resort of Punta del Este has long beckoned sunseekers, party goers, and top-notch performers (some call it the Ibiza of South America). But, as many travelers are quickly finding out, there is a lot more of Uruguay to visit than just its stunning beaches.
For starters, those seeking just a taste of Uruguay can visit the country as part of a day trip via ferry from Buenos Aires to the charming colonial town of Colonia del Sacramento. But, if you’ve come all that way, you should stay and explore further. The capital city of Montevideo is peaceful and serene, while still offering the amenities you’d expect from other top-notch cities destinations in South America. And if city life isn’t for you, head into the Uruguayan countryside to sample life on a ranch, take a dip in one of the countryside’s many hot springs, or head north to the rugged beach town of Punta del Diablo. No wonder it’s poised to be one of the top destinations in South America next year!
What do you think will be the best places to visit in South America in 2018?
So what do you think are the top places to visit in South America in 2018? Let me know what you think in the comments!
And be sure to read the full series: Best Places to Travel in 2018
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