If you’re looking for thrills, chills, and hopefully not too many spills, South America tours should be on your radar. This remarkable travel destination is full of soaring mountain peaks, deep ocean depths, and plenty of desert paths. If you’re the type that thinks a luxury tour should lean more toward high quality guides and trekking equipment rather than sipping cocktails on the beach, here are several South America vacations ideas fit for the adventure seeker.
1. Diving in the Galapagos. Most people know the Galapagos Islands are full of crazy creatures like lava lizards and giant tortoises. But did you know the surrounding seas are also full of interesting animals? And one of the best ways to see them is by taking a diving trip. The highlight of many people’s Galapagos tour is diving with hammerhead sharks, which is truly an experience of a lifetime. You enter the water far from where they commonly swim, and then dive below them, so you look up at them from below.
2. Trekking in Patagonia. Many South America luxury tours take you to Patagonia where you stay in warm cozy lodges. This is certainly a great way to spend part of your vacation, because who doesn’t enjoy some hot chocolate in front of the fire, but if you truly want to experience the vast icy planes of Patagonia, the only way is to get out there an experience it yourself. Day treks in Patagonia are common, and several take you to glaciers, but if you’re looking for something more intense, you can take a trek that lasts several days and camp out overnight, or trek between basic lodges.
3. Rafting in Peru. Peru is mainly known for Machu Picchu, the massive Inca city that was built on mountain peaks outside of Cuzco. Hiking the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is a great adventure experience, but if you’re looking for something slightly different, consider taking a rafting trip. The Andes run through Peru, and the mountain runoff water creates plenty of exciting rapids to get wet on.
4. Jungle explorations in Brazil. Did you know that there are entire tribes of people living in the Amazon Rainforest that have never made contact with modern civilization? That is how deep and dense the Amazon Rainforest is: a true marvel and mystery of nature. Experience some of its immenseness by taking jungle exportations. Brazil has the largest portion of the Amazon, but the rainforest also grows into Peru, Bolivia, and Columbia. It is easiest visited in Peru from the town of either Iquitos in the north or Puerto Maldonado in the South (which is closer to Cuzco and Machu Picchu, and therefore easier to add onto a longer Peru vacation).