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“Let’s go somewhere for the holidays” isn’t an uncommon request. But for some reason, you may not have considered holiday travel. Why? Is it because you’ll feel guilty about leaving your extended family and close friends behind? You could invite them to travel with you. Or maybe you don’t know where to go. That’s easy. Travel to and explore South America – the continent has something for everyone!

Joyce Metz Winterstein, CTC, ACC, from Preferred-Travel, suggests going to Iguazu Falls during a full moon because you may experience what’s called “moon beams” – a rainbow at night.

If you love ancient cultures, you’ll love learning about the Incas, Nazca, and other civilizations. Can you imagine seeing ancient ruins that are thousands of years old? As you walk around, you may feel energy or a presence that you can’t explain.

Read on to learn more about holiday travel below the equator – South America. Once you visit, you may want to come back every year.

You Will Want to Discover These South American Destinations

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Buenos Aires is like a European city but with a Latin twist. At first glance, the locals may seem opinionated, yet passionate. Once you strike up a conversation, you’ll realize they’re warm and friendly. They may even suggest you see and explore Cementerio de la Recoleta, a cemetery. It’s the city’s number one and must-see attraction. Wander the streets and you’ll see marble mausoleums and extraordinary statues. If you dare, peek inside the crypts and try to guess who’s resting in the dusty coffins. You may find past presidents, politicians, and more.

The Amazon in Brazil

Give the outdoor and nature lovers in your life the gift of exploring The Amazon. Keep in mind that it’s divided between the states of Acre, Rondônia, Amazonas, Roraima, Pará, Amapá, and Tocantins. But with advanced planning, you can have an experience of a lifetime. For example, you may choose river travel so you and your family can explore an area like a local and gain a deeper understanding of the Amazonian culture and nature. Imagine admiring exotic goods at the Ver-O-Peso market in the city of Belém and eating Amazonian delicacies such as whole crab (caranguejo toc-toc) with lemon and garlic, tapiocas (crisp crepes made from manioc flour) with sweet and savory fillings, and more.

The Lake District in Chile

The Mapuche Indians call the Lake District (from Temuco in the north to Puerto Montt in the south) in southern Chile home. However, you may think you’re in Austria because of the broad valleys and snowcapped volcanoes that seem to emerge, disappear, and then reappear. Because of Austrian, German, and Swiss immigrants to the area, the architecture reflects these countries in addition to the Mapuche Indians’ culture. The Lake District boasts a dozen lakes, forested national parks, easy access to roads and public transportation, and upgraded hotels and restaurants. Try the seafood. It’s delicious!

Machu Picchu in Peru

For most travelers visiting the ancient city of Machu Picchu, discovered by American historian Hiram Bingham who stumbled upon it in 1911, is a must-see and do experience. It’s one of the most awe-inspiring archaeological sites on the continent. Depending on your excursion, you may have the option to have lunch at a nearby restaurant. You and your fellow travelers can discuss whether or not Machu Picchu was a ceremonial center and royal retreat.

Do Something Different and Travel to South America for the Holidays

Imagine the experiences you and your family can have when you travel to South America for the holidays, from exploring ancient sites to meeting and having conversations with locals as you dine on cuisine native to their region.

If you’re worried about the change in altitude in South America, Joyce Metz Winterstein, CTC, ACC of Preferred-Travel says, “Request a room on the lower or ground floor as many of the hotels don’t have elevators. Climbing stairs could contribute to altitude sickness. I know this from experience when a hotel assigned rooms on the third floor in Puno on Lake Titicaca. It was one of my worst nights ever!”

Are you ready to book your holiday travel to South America?

Contact your Travel Planners International agent today! Keep in mind that once you travel during the holidays, it may become a yearly tradition. The only decision you’ll have to make is where to go and what to see and experience.

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