Planning a trip to South America and don’t know where to go? Check out this post for The Best Countries to Visit in South America for Spring Break!
As someone who has never been to South America, there are a few countries I have in mind for my bucket list. These countries may or may not be on the top of yours, but, in my opinion, they are the best countries to visit in South America for spring break.
Peru: Best Countries to Visit in South America
Situated on the western side of South America, Peru is a country known for its creative food scene and architectural treasures! You can start your visit at Lima, the country’s capital, as a starting point so that you can travel to other cities as your trip progresses. If you’re not sure of what to do while you’re there, you’ve come to the right place. Here is a list of few things you can do in Peru for spring break:
Hike the Inca Trail
As one of the most famous hiking trails in the world, the Inca Trail is about 26 miles long and it starts all the way from Chillca to Machu Picchu. The trail usually takes about 4 days and 3 nights to complete, but, if you’re with a more experienced group, it could take you a lot less. The scenery from the trail is breathtaking and it offers a LOT of variety. You will pass through several types of Andean landscapes as you make your way through the trail. These landscapes include but are not limited to the lush cloud-forest and the alpine tundra. To hike this trail with a group of experienced trekkers, book a reservation with the Happy Gringo Tours, the TreXperience or the Action Peru Treks.
Discovered in 1911 by the American historian Hiram Bingham, Machu Picchu is one of the most visited Inca settlements in Cuzco, Peru. Built in the 15th century, Machu Picchu is often referred to as the Lost City of the Incas since it has been abandoned for more than 100 years after its construction. In fact, it wasn’t until the arrival of Hiram Bingham that the lost city got rediscovered. If you would like to visit Machu Picchu, you can purchase a train ticket here. You can also purchase an entrance ticket beforehand if you’re not interested in joining a guided small group.
Sandboarding in Peru is one of the most popular activities in the Huacachina Desert. It is quite similar to snowboarding except for the fact that the climate is warmer and the sand texture is different. The sand texture on its own even makes it more faster than snowboarding! So, if you’re interested in booking a Dune Buggy Tour in the Huacachina Desert, you can make your reservation with the Buggy Huacachina or the Extreme Team Huacachina.
Try Cuy “Roasted Guinea Pig”
Cuy is a popular Peruvian delicacy that is well-loved in Peru. The dish is well served with potatoes as well as some traditional sauces. It is a fairly simple dish to make and the process behind it involves:
- Washing the guinea pig
- Preparing the seasoning with pepper, cumin, and salt
- Rubbing the seasoning into the guinea pig
- Breading the guinea pig with flour
- Heating the frying pan with hot oil
- Frying the guinea pig into the pan
- Serving the fried guinea pig with potatoes or creole sauce
Eat Some Ceviche “Fresh Fish”
Ceviche is an essential Peruvian dish that is typically made from raw fish cured in with lime, lemon, or orange citrus juices. The acid in the citrus juice coagulates with the fish proteins and it is usually served in room or cold temperature. Many different kinds of fish can be used to prepare ceviche like snapper, sea bass, halibut, mah-mahi and tilapia. It is a fairly simple dish to make and the process behind it involves a lot of other seafood components like shrimp, scallops, squid and octopus. If you’re interested in trying out “Ceviche” for yourself, you can make a reservation at Costazul Seafood Restaurante or at Restaurante Alfresco.
Brazil: Best Countries to Visit in South America
Known as the largest country in the continent, Brazil is one of the best countries to visit in South America for spring break. In Brazil, you’ll find hearty food, chaotic streets, and beautiful sceneries. However, if you’re still not sure of what to do while you’re there, you’ve come to the right place. Here is a list of things you can do in Brazil for Spring Break:
Visit the Christ the Redeemer Statue
Sitting atop the Corcovado mountain, Christ the Redeemer is one of the most known statues around the world. It is called the Cristo Redentor by Brazilians as well as the Corcovado statue by students of statuary. Named as one of the 7 New Wonders of the World, the statue is about 125 feet tall and it has a small chapel within its pedestal. Resembling Jesus Christ, the statue provides protection for the urban environment as well as protection for the Christian soul. Some Christians would even go so far to say that the statue announces Rio de Janeiro as a Christian city. So, if you’re interested in checking out this religious piece of architecture, you can purchase an admission ticket with Trem do Corcovado or with C2Rio Tours & Travel.
Head to Copacabana Beach
Copacabana Beach is one of the most famous beaches in South America. Most people take morning walks along this beach as they enjoy the view of the Sugar Loaf Mountain. The end of the beach, known as Forte de Copacabana, also has a military museum that is located between a Military Outpost and a Lifeguard Training Center. There is also a jutting rock formation 15 minutes west of Forte de Copacabana that was used by the Portuguese to hunt for whales. So, if you do end up visiting this beach, be on the lookout for any whales nearby. You might just spot a Humpback or even a Killer Whale if you’re lucky!
Get soaked by the Iguazu Falls
Bordering Argentina and Brazil, Iguazu Falls is the one of the most largest waterfalls in the world. It is composed of 275 separate cascades that are fed by the Iguazu river. Set amongst lush forests, liters of water from the waterfall tumble down the steps of Parana Plateau as visitors speculate all the way from the Devil’s Throat. Iguazu Falls can also be visited from the Argentinian or Brazilian side if you’re planning to see it. The Argentinian side gives you an awe-inspiring close-up encounter while the Brazilian side gives you exceptional panoramic views.
Drink some Cachaça
Cachaça is a Brazilian rum that’s made from pure sugar-cane juice as opposed to common made molasses. It is usually drunk on a warm summer’s day as the sun is out and shining. It’s name “Cachaça” originates from the foam that is usually seen as the sugar-cane juice is boiled. Many Brazilians have also nicknamed this drink as the “giver of life”, “honey”, and the “water the birds won’t drink”. If you’re interested in trying out this Caipirinha cocktail for yourself, you can purchase one at the Academia da Cachaca or at the Academia Da Cachaca Comercio E Restaurante.
Try Acai na Tigela
Acai na Tigela is a versatile Brazilian dessert that is made from acai berries topped with banana, granola, and other combined fruits. The name “Acai na Tigela” simply means “acai in the bowl” and it is a true summertime staple across Brazil. It can be sold at many juice bars or stands nearby and it is usually served in a bowl or a plastic cup. If you’re interested in trying out Acai na Tigela for yourself, you can purchase it at Casa Do Acai or make it yourself.
Ecuador: Best Countries to Visit in South America
Ecuador, on its own, is one of the best countries to visit in South America for spring break. It’s hot, it’s humid, and, it’s on the equator. Most people tend to visit Ecuador for an alternative spring break, but, there’s nothing with taking the time to visit the country as a tourist. So, if you’re planning on taking a trip to Ecuador, you’ve come to the right place! Here is a list of things you can do in Ecuador for spring break:
Visit the Galapagos Islands
Situated on Ecuador’s coast, the Galapagos Islands are nothing like anything you’ve seen on this Earth. Since the island chain has been untouched for years, visitors will encounter unique wildlife and endemic species on it’s land. Some common wildlife encounters include swimming with sea lions or snorkeling with sharks. So, if you’re interested in snorkeling with some of these endemic species, you can book a reservation with a Galapagos Native Tour Operator here.
Hike Volcán Chimborazo
Like Italy, Ecuador is a country full of volcanoes throughout its territory. Volcan Chimborazo, in particular, is the tallest mountain in Ecuador with the highest point. Most people are able to hike up the volcano within 2 days, while others may need some more time. Hiking to a small pond on the volcano can also be an alternative if the summit seems infeasible. To book a reservation with a tour, you can fill out a form on their website.
Hike the Devil’s Nose
As one of Ecuador’s most famous train routes, Devil’s Nose or Nariz del Diablo is the most difficult railway ever built. It was constructed over a 100 years ago to connect Ecuador’s coast with Quito. The most challenging thing about its construction was that many engineers had to find a way to lay its tracks on a vertical cliff. The engineers were only able to pull this off by building a series of switchbacks on the tracks. The Devil’s Nose can now overshoot the tracks and reverse as it zigzags up the side of a mountain cliff. You can purchase a private hiking trip on the Devil’s Nose in advance by booking a reservation with the Cuenca Bestours here !
Drink some Pinol
Pinol, made with barley flour, panela (unrefined sugar), mixed spices and milk, is the national drink of Ecuador. It was created by Rafael Emilio Madrid of Ecuador after he got inspired seeing some workers sucking on pieces of panela. He ended up grinding the panela on his own as he mixed it with toasted barley flour and spices. If you’re interested in trying out this drink for yourself, you can purchase it at a shop or an ice-cream parlor in Salcedo, Ecuador.
Try Guaguas de Pan
Guaguas de Pan is an Ecuadorian delicacy prepared during the Day of the Dead. As sweet pastries, they can be filled with jam, caramel or chocolate as they resemble infants wrapped in swaddling clothes. These pastries can also be consumed or left on the tombstone of the dearly departed. They can be served with Colada Morada, a thick sweet purple beverage made with cornflour, sugar, spices, and blueberry, blackberry and pineapple rind. So, if you’re interested in trying out Guaguas de Pan for yourself, you can order it at San Honore or at Casa Gangotena Restaurant.
Argentina: Best Countries to Visit in South America
As the third most populous country in South America, Argentina is one of the best countries to visit in South America for spring break. As a large Spanish-speaking country, Argentina is known for its distinct geography, beautiful cultural and unique local cuisine. So, if you’re planning on taking a trip to Argentina, you’ve come to the right place. Here are the best things to do in Argentina for spring break:
Visit La Boca in Buenos Aires
Located in Buenos Aires, La Boca is the most colorful neighborhood in the city. It is home to a quirky Caminito Street Museum which is an open-air museum with a splendid pedestrian zone. The museum on its own is popular for its brightly painted houses, amusing sculptures, and music. If you need directions to this brilliant neighborhood, I have attached a Google Map here:
Learn the Argentine Tango
Learning the Argentine Tango is one of the most cultural things you can do in Argentina for spring break. You can find Argentinians dancing the tango in the streets, the dancing halls or even at a dinner show. So, if you’re interested in learning more about the Argentine Tango, you can sign up for classes with Lucia & Gerry or take a a private tango lesson with Immersion Tours.
Hike Mount Fitzroy
The hike to Mount Fitzroy offers stunning views of glaciers, Laguna de Los Tres and the Fitz Roy Valley. If you’re interested in doing this hike, the route will take you through some campsites, forests and rivers. Since the route also goes up and down slopes, go with an experienced hiking guide who knows the area. Southroad and Tangol El Calafate offer some great hiking tours.
Drink some Yerba Mate
Yerba Mate is one the most popular beverages in Argentina. It is made from dried and crushed out leaves that are placed in a gourd and sipped through a straw. The drink itself has a very distinct flavor and it mostly resembles raw green tea. Most locals drink Yerba Mate has an appetite suppressant and pour hot or cold water over it. If you’re interested in trying Yerba Mate for yourself, you can book an experience with Tours Buenos Aires or Signature Tours.
Try some Asado
In Argentina, asado or barbecue is a popular style of cooking that’s prevalent around the country. Argentinians love asado because it gives them the opportunity to spend a leisure morning afternoon by the warmth of a grill or open fire. Grilling copious meats is a national dish in Argentina that originates from the country’s cowboys. In an asado, you can expect to find beef, pork, ribs, sausages, and sweetbreads on the grill. If you’re interested in trying out some asado for yourself, you can do an experience with Belen Richards Donnelly or AsadoAdventure!
Overall, I really hope you enjoyed this post on “The Best Countries to Visit in South America for Spring Break! Feel free to let me know in the comments down below your opinion on “The Best Countries to Visit in South America for Spring Break! I would love to hear from you!