South America travel guide

Get to know South America a little better with our collection of travel guides

Tuesday, August 13, 2019,
By National Geographic Traveller (UK)
Farming in the Andes near Urubamba
Farming in the Andes near Urubamba
Photograph by Robert Harding

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The mighty Amazon River, and the surrounding rainforest, is South America's calling card. Almost slicing the continent in half, it winds its way through Peru, Colombia and Brazil, its tributaries reaching out like fingers into neighbouring territories. Around this network of waterways, the Amazon Rainforest is a destination for treks amid wildlife, from the elusive jaguars to scarlet macaws, as well as being home to remote communities that have little contact with the outside world. Yet, South America is also a place to visit for its cities, whether it's Rio de Janeiro, which hosts its famous annual carnival, Lima, with its world-class food scene, or Buenos Aires, with its European-style architecture. And then there are incredible natural attractions beyond the Amazon, from the dramatic glaciers and lakes of Argentina and Chile's Patagonia region, to the peaks of the Andes, the world's longest continental mountain range, running almost the entire length of South America.






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