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10 Tips for South America Travelers

In the spirit of being thankful for the many wise travel experts beyond our team at AndesTransit, we decided to take a break and reach out to some of our favorite South America travel gurus. We asked them to condense down for you their most important advice on traveling in South America.

We are grateful for the experience and enthusiasm they so generously share, all right here in one place!

Gretchen Traut

Gretchen Traut
South America
Program Director
Wildland Adventures

Understand that each country, though often recognized for its iconic tourist attractions, is not solely that singular highlight; each country boasts a vast array of architectural styles, historical backgrounds, languages (and accents for that matter), rural towns, transportations, crops, landscapes and wildlife.  It is easy to dedicate a week to a lifetime in each country in South America and continuously stumble upon new sights, sounds, foods and traditions.  I highly recommend, before trying to jump from one well-known place to the next, to take the local transit, attempt a conversation with a local and explore the paths less traveled for a truly unique and enlightening experience.

Gretchen has lived, studied and worked in Thailand, Argentina, Switzerland, Spain and the US, and has traveled extensively throughout Europe, South America and Asia. Though she has strong connections with many other parts of the world, her true love and second home lies in South America, which she shares with a passion and expertise to help other travelers plan their own adventures to the continent at Wildland Adventures.

Blake LiebermanBlake Lieberman - Viventura

Blake Lieberman - ViventuraBlake Lieberman
South America
Travel Specialist
 Viventura

After over 20 years of travel in South America, the number one piece of advice I can offer is to be flexible.  Things don't always operate efficiently or according to plan in South America which can disrupt the best laid travel plans.  Flexibility will allow you to weather any disruptions and may even result in some great, unplanned experiences.

Blake spent much of his life traveling the globe in search of stunning landscapes, adventure and the perfect empanada. Landing in South America in the 1990s, Blake found his milieu: spectacular and diverse scenery; a mix of exotic and ancient cultures; unique adventure opportunities, and, of course, the perfect empanada.   Since his first visit, Blake has traveled to almost every part of South America, and lived and worked for several years in Argentina. Learn more from Blake and his team at Viventura.

Cynthia Ord

Cynthia Ord
Travel Consultant
Southwind Adventures

Take it slow and zoom in! South America is a vast continent, and each country is so rich with its own diverse regions, cultures and treasures. Rather than the whirlwind “see it all” approach, I recommend choosing one or two countries to really focus on and experience more fully.

Cynthia is a travel ambassador for The International Ecotourism Society, teaches an online class on community-based tourism development, and contributes articles to various online publications. With Southwind Adventures, she has explored explored Ecuador’s Avenue of the Volcanoes, Amazon rainforest and the Galápagos Islands by catamaran cruise ship.

Timothy Scott

Timothy Scott
Editor
Luxury Latin America

Spend some time to do it right. Trying to cross things off a list by cramming in Quito, the Galapagos, Lima, Cusco, and Machu Picchu into a week-long trip is a very bad idea. It'll all be a blur and you'll spend half the time in transit. If you're going to combine countries, or even just try to do multiple things within Argentina, Brazil, or Chile, understand that the distances can be vast and the rewards for taking your time can be immense. Give yourself time to soak it all up and have a real adventure!

As the Editor of Luxury Latin America, Timothy Scott stays on top of the trends and news in the luxury travel industry. He has covered the luxury travel industry for over 10 years, writing for various trade magazines and has contributed to several upscale lifestyle magazines. He maintains a vacation home in Mexico and spends much of the year traveling through the Americas. He is the principal writer for the Luxury Latin America blog.

James McDaniel

James McDaniel
Owner
 Amazon Adventures

I would say that the most important tip I can give to travelers to South America is to make sure that they get to mingle with the common people.  They have such straight-forward values and connectedness to the earth that it is refreshing for those who live complicated lives in big cities to “hang” with them.

Jim is owner and travel agent for Amazon Adventures, in business since 1993, which has evolved into specializing in the areas that they love - classic tours and active adventures in South and Central America. They have been featured in International Travel News, National Geographic Adventures, Brandt Guides, Fodors, USA Today and Frommers, among others.

Joseph Olson

Joseph Olson
Marketing Coordinator
 SouthAmerica.Travel

Don't try to do too much in one trip to the continent! (unless you have like 50 days, of course). We hear from people all the time that want to squeeze five or six destinations into just a couple weeks. We often have to explain that it's a very big continent and we don't want to see travelers spending all their time on a plane or bus in transit. So we try to recommend that travelers focus on as many geographically similar locations as their time allows and then save other destinations for a future trip.

SouthAmerica.travel offers 4* & 5* luxury South America tours to Peru, Brazil, Ecuador, Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Paraguay, Uruguay, and Colombia, with discount flights to South America from anywhere. Licensed and bonded in the US, the company has been sharing its love of South America travel since 1999, and is proud of its A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau.

Jessica Festa

Jessica Festa
Editor
 Jessie On A Journey

For a cheap meal, look for local restaurants that offer a set Menu of the Day, or Menú del Día. Depending on the city and country, you can get a multi-course meal -- typically a soup, entree and either a beverage or dessert -- for as low as $1 USD. You'll be very full and satisfied -- without going broke!

Jessica Festa is the editor of Jessie on a Journey as well as Epicure & Culture. She enjoys getting lost in new cities and having experiences you don’t read about in guidebooks.

Melvin Böcher

Melvin Böcher
Founder
 TravelDudes

Dive into the experience! Do not plan everything through and go for it! Think positive and stay spontaneous! That's when you have the most fun and very special travel moments you will never forget again! Stay open for things to happen and stick to the usual rules. So you have to trust your gut's feeling!

Melvin, the founder of http://www.traveldudes.org, is one of the top travel influencers online, as well as partner of the http://iambassador.net, which runs very successful social media marketing campaigns with the best travel bloggers worldwide.

Melissa Mann

Melissa Mann
Community Marketer
Go Ahead Tours

Be prepared for anything! The great thing about South America is how diverse it is—you can go from the hustle and bustle of Rio de Janeiro or the Buenos Aires to the mystical Iguassu Falls and ancient Machu Picchu. South America is an incredible mix of cities and natural wonders, so keep your eyes open in order to best capture all of the sights, sounds and different environments you'll find yourself in.

Melissa Mann is the Social Content & Community Marketer at Go Ahead Tours, EF Education First's global network of travelers in breaking down barriers of language, culture and geography through eye-opening new adventures.

Char Taylor

Char Taylor
Founder
Taylor Hearts Travel

Make sure you visit Peru for the Inca Trek, and Brazil for the Iguazu Falls. Both are such amazing bits of history and nature. You really can't visit South America without seeing them for yourself. You'll definitely be impressed!

Char Taylor blogs at Taylor Hearts Travel. The site showcases stylish, unique and exciting travel. Char has travelled in South America on numerous trips and her site has lots of pearls of wisdom for your own trip.

 


If you're thinking of traveling to South America in 2020, print this article and put it in your own stocking over the mantle this holiday season. We're sure it will be all you need to get you going on your greatest adventure, and we'll see you on the road soon!

Check out our other sites:

andestransit.com   latinbus.com   southamericabuses.com   colombiaschedules.com   ecuadorbus.com   peruschedules.com   boliviaschedules.com




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