All our lives there is an overpowering urge to have a world view, honeymoon in London, shopping in Paris, holiday in Hawaii. In a generation where the time is limited and work is unlimited, hence shopping malls and supermarkets fulfilling the desire to obtain everything at one place, wouldn’t it be nice if we could get the flavor of numerous European cultures together? Latin America is a place where one experiences a concoction of Spanish and Portuguese culture at large while simultaneously getting the French, Dutch and Italian touch ,bit by bit.
Here’s a list providing you with top 10 reasons why you should consider Latin America as your next travel destination!
10. Discover the wilderness
The Huaorani are native Amerindians from the Amazonian Region of Ecuador. In the last 40 years, they have shifted from a hunting and gathering society to live mostly in permanent forest settlements and avoid communication with the outside world .After watching movies such as Tarzan and the Blue Lagoon ,there was a suppressed desire to be a part of the rugged ,natural beauty and roam around with no tension of office work or family problems .The experience of personally connecting with these people while trying to know their ancient history and culture will be a unique and memorable experience for many .One can learn hunting techniques and survival skills. Canoeing along the Shiripuno River, camping in the Nenquepare community, and enjoying traditional meals will bring genuine happiness.
9. The Chocolate factory
Having loved ‘Charlie and the chocolate factory’ for a single reason of getting to see the omnipresence of chocolate ,simultaneously imagining the existence of a similar place and your visit there can become a reality .Founded in the 16th century , Chuao is a small village located in the northern coastal range of Venezuela , famous for its cacao plantations, where some of the finest cocoa beans in the world are produced .Also, The village is surrounded by mountains and dense rainforests to the south Caribbean Sea near the Henri Pittier National Park the oldest national park in Venezuela created in 1937.So,the lush, green country bathed in glorious tropical sunshine with fresh sea breeze has several plantations ready to give you tours and accommodation ,not to mention the presence of irresistibly delicious chocolate.
8. Do the Tango
Romance and passion flood the streets of Buenos Aires during the annual Tango festival which draws all the big names in the world of tango. The melodic music starts, two dancers join in a close embrace, rhythmic footwork ensues, and expressive faces act as silent storytellers. Considered the birthplace of the dance, the city hosts concerts, exhibitions and shows in various venues during the two week extravaganza. For the elite traveler wishing to brush up on their feisty footwork, there are dance lessons held all over the city, or you could relax and enjoy the dance in its finest form at the World Dance Championship.
7. Potpurri of adventure and fun
There’s no better cultural experience than to embrace the ethinicity of the families on Amantani Island who graciously open their homes to give travelers a glimpse into life on Lake Titicaca .Apart from that, rafting on the Upper Urubamba River, mountain biking at village Chinchero, hiking in the Quenua Sundur Valley, camping , will grant an extremely active experience in Peru. After all of this exertion, your reward is a beautifully scenic train ride to Machu Picchu and a full day to explore the ruins!
6. Valley of moon and the wine country: Chile is delightful
What Rann of Kuchchh is to India , Valle de la Luna is to Chile .If you want to experience the unending expanse of silver studded space which is the exact replica of the surface of Moon ,Valle de la Lune is the right place for you. The valley is also considered one of the driest places on earth, as some areas have not received a single drop of rain in hundreds of years. A prototype for a Mars rover was tested there by scientists because of the valley’s dry and forbidding terrains.
It is considered to be the driest place on Earth ,but the river valleys are fertile enough to enjoy the perfect climate for growing wine grapes. Though there are many such valleys ,the highlight amongst them is Valle del Maipo near Santiago. This valley is best known for its cabernets and merlots. Valle del Maipo’s central location makes it an excellent point of departure for exploring more of Chile’s wine country as well.
5. Guatemala travel adventure
The Easter Festival is just the beginning of this inexpressibly amazing experience. Words simply cannot describe the vibrant, intricate “carpets” gorgeously blanketing the processional route during Semana Santa. During this “Holy Week”, sober mystery envelopes the city of Antigua while an underlying celebratory spirit can still be felt. Arrive in Antigua in the middle of the festival, when the streets come alive in celebration of this Holy Week. Journey into the highlands and explore the commanding temples and other remnants of the Mayan past. Wander through rows of vendors at Chichi’s magnificent market, and spend a few nights along the shores of the volcano-fringed Lake Atitlan. Explore the colonial Antigua.
Outrageously amazing is this popular festival with it’s humongous crowd and grand celebrations. Salvador, with its charming pastel colonial architecture and strong African influence, is host to the largest Carnaval in the world. Every February the city comes alive with parades, music and dancers in over-the-top costumes. Some two million revelers dance to the deafening Reggae and Reggaeton music in various Samba styles .It’s definitely an overwhelming event giving you the kind of experience you can carry with yourself for the rest of your life.
3. Revolutionary Nicaragua
A determining period of revolution in Nicaragua occurred only a few decades ago. Former guerillas and civilians contribute their personal accounts of these recent uprisings, regime changes, and other monumental events .Once a hotbed of guerilla activities during the Sadinista revolution is the bustling capital of Managua with its intensely engaged town of Esteli which never knew of the nearby peace and tranquility of the mountains. The mountains are the abode of some of the finest coffee plantations. Enjoy the rugged beauty of rural life with no hotels ,ATMs and internet connection .Primitive accommodation can be expected. Ride horses or hike in the mountains and nap in a hammock to the calls of tropical birds, stroll leisurely through charming towns, and climb the Masaya Volcano!
2. Burst of culture
The city which once housed Hemingway and his veritable menagerie of pets is by far the leading cultural centre of Cuba offering a wide variety of features ranging from museums ,palaces ,public squares ,avenues ,churches ,fortresses ,ballet and from art and musical festivals to exhibitions of technology .There was a time when the Renaissance man Titian used to walk through the corridors of old Havana ,having spent more than 20 years in the country. His favorite haunts have since become well-known landmarks in the city, which has changed very little since his death in 1961.The city’s Chinatown (Barrio Chino) ,once Latin American’s largest and most vibrant Chinatown ,is an offbeat and interesting place, booming with restaurants, theatres, exotic destinations and neon-bathed alleyways. The place offers innumerable reasons for tourists to pay her a visit which results in the influx of over a million tourists annually.
1. The ultimate food court
The epicenter of all your joy is primarily your stomach. Being in Latin America and not tasting the Mexican flavor is like being in New York and not seeing the statue of Liberty. The utterly delicious and irresistible Mexican cuisine is as complex as any of the great cuisines in the world, such as those of India, China, France, Italy and Turkey.It is created mostly with ingredients native to Mexico as well as those brought over by the Spanish conquistadors, with some new influences since then.Since the regions outside Mexico doesn’t maintain the quality and authenticity of the cuisine ,one cannot expect any alternative .The Mexico City is a great place to start with where Street cuisine is very popular, with taco stands, torta (sandwich) shops, and lunch counters on every street. End your tour with amazing Afro-Carribbean inspired shellfish dishes in the port city of Veracruz, also home to nice beaches and charming colonial architecture.