Filled with endless destinations to discover and long lines of waters to explore, South America is a haven for many travelers looking for a new cultural experience, nature exploration, and extreme adventure with a space for rediscovering the history of the world. The region is composed of 12 sovereign states, including Argentina, Brazil, Venezuela, Colombia and Ecuador. Travelling in South America can be a lifetime addiction; the amount of adventures and exploration possible are just so endless that if feels almost impossible to stop.
However, travelling alone in this region requires plenty of preparation, as to where you plan to do, safety tips to survive, and more guidelines to come home safely after a vacation in an unknown territory. Here are some tips to help you travel safely even when you’re all alone in South America:
Plan ahead where you want to go
Since South America is made up of 12 countries, often tourists just choose a particular location to visit. But, what if you have the resources and time to visit all of them? Where will you go? Each state comes with must-visit destination every traveller must visit during their stay. Don’t worry as we’ve come up with a list of the best places to see and visit in South America.
- Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia is the largest salt flat in the world. This 10,582-square kilometer salt flat is a major breeding ground for several species of flamingos.
- Santurio de las Lajas in Colombia is a basilica church that is built inside the canyon of the Guitara River. A miraculous event in 1754 inspired the construction of the Gothic Revival style church. The first shrine was built in the middle of the 18th century and soon replaced with a larger and stronger shrine in 1802.
- Lake Titicaca in Peru is a large and deep lake in the Andes, where one can see the Milkyway over its silent water. It is the largest lake in South America.
- Mount Fitzroy in Argentina is the most technically challenging mountains to climb on Earth. French alpinists Lionel Terray and Guido Magnone were the first to climb the mountain in 1952 and name it in honour of Rober FitzRoy, the captain of HMS Beagle that sailed in the Patagonian coast.
- Galapagos Island in Ecuador is an archipelago of volcanic islands that is home to an active marine life form and endemic species in fact, Charles Darwin took his voyage here to conceptualize the theory of evolution. The island only has a population of slightly above 25,000.
Green signal from GP
Even though South America comes with plenty of exciting destinations every traveller wish to visit, tourists need to follow pre-cautionary health measures suggested by their local GP. First, visit your doctor for a regular checkup. Get their go-signal that you are fit to travel and ready to embark on any extreme adventures you plan to take. Second, get the appropriate vaccinations weeks ahead of your planned trip. A health guide on travel diseases and vaccination mentioned that many nations in South America are plagued with numerous diseases, including the Zika virus. Lastly, health care is not as apparent and extensive in South America compared to many developed countries, so it’s ideal to get a dentist’s checkup as well to ensure no toothache will ruin your vacation.
Hire a tour guide
Even the most adventurous traveller needs a tour guide, especially if they plan to visit remote destinations in South America. Since these guides know the destinations very well (climate, off-limit places, etc.), there is less room for mistakes and problems. When exploring South America’s vast wilderness it is definitely a possibility that one could get lost, and due to the lack of connectivity on devices, there is a chance ‘lost’ can be a lot longer than expected. Even with GPS and technology around, you can never rely on anything when you get lost in a foreign territory but the experts alone to take you to the right path and get back safely.
Conceal your wealth
Whilst you may not consider yourself rich, being a traveller who can afford to travel and ride a plane from your home country to the other side of the world, you will be perceived by locals as goldmine. South America is just like other parts of the world, crime and scams can be apparent anywhere you go, especially in tourist spots. The best way is to be street smart and be able to blend with the locals. Present yourself similar to how the locals act, think, talk, and walk. You can start by looking less of a tourist by wearing comfortable clothes that fit the weather of the said destination.
*This is an affiliate post written by Henry Blake*