While many of us may have the curiosity and temptation to visit South America, it can seem like a somewhat daunting idea to travel there independently. Thankfully though, many cruise lines offer fantastic itineraries in this destination which include stops in all the most exciting places. So if there’s anything left stopping you, get the inspiration you need with these 5 great things about cruising in South America.
Peru certainly has a lot to offer its visitors. With Machu Picchu, Lake Titicaca, the Nazca Lines, and the Ballestas Islands among the top attractions, it’s easy to forget the more matter-of-fact aspects that the country has in store – one of which is the food. Peruvian food is among the best in South America, and capital Lima boasts some of the world’s top restaurants. Here are some must-try dishes:
Ceviche – probably Peru’s most famous dish, ceviche is made with raw fish, lime juice, and chilli Lomo Saltado – similar to a beef stir-fry, this hearty, flavoursome dish will certainly satisfy your appetite Papa a la Huancaína – boiled potatoes served with an egg, in a creamy yet spicy yellow sauce
The world famous Rio carnival has given this capital a reputation it certainly deserves. While the event goes on for only around 10 days, the fun, party atmosphere is evident year-round. You’ll find that both residents and visitors like to spend their days sipping on cocktails and sunbathing on a beach like Copacabana or Ipanema, before heading to the vibrant streets of the city for food, drink, and dancing in the evenings. The friendly attitude of the locals is infectious, as are the sounds of musicians, whose tunes will stay in your head for days.
On many South American cruises guests will get the opportunity to experience part of the beautiful Amazon rainforest. Stretching around 5.5million km over 9 countries, this incredible part of the world is home to thousands of species of plants and animals, many of which can be seen along its river banks. Sit back as you glide along one of the many rivers, and watch as the wildlife begins to reveal itself. Spot howler monkeys and sloths in amongst the trees, caimans on the edge of the water, and swooping macaws overhead. A cruise in the Amazon is among the best options for a wildlife cruise.
At 2,500 miles from North to South, Chile is the longest country in the world – and as such all kinds of climate can be found across the country. Find extremes like the driest desert on earth – Atacama – in the North, to the impressive ice fields in the south. On a cruise to Chile, passengers will see scenery like never before, including some incredible fjords in the labyrinth of land that makes up the southern tip of the country, and the majestic glaciers in the Patagonian ice fields. Watch in awe as you sail past some of the most stunning views you will ever encounter.
South America has a vast and interesting cultural history, having been home to a number of different ethnic groups throughout the years. Incas, Mayans, Aztecs, Quechuas, and Muiscas – to name just a few of the more well-known civilisations – have all had a huge influence on today’s South America, and there is plenty of evidence of this all over. From famous sites like Machu Picchu and Chichen Itza, to the continued use of the ancient Quechuan language, and the traditional recipes still seen in rural areas, it’s clear to see that the significance of these cultures lives on.