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Quilotoa Loop: A Guide to One of Ecuador’s Best Hikes!

Quilotoa Loop: A Guide to One of Ecuador’s Best Hikes!

For the past few weeks, backpacker and travel writer, Regina Röder has been hiking the trails and spending time with the indigenous communities of Guayama Grande, a small village close to the spectacular Laguna Quilotoa in the Ecuadorian Andes. Here she describes her unique experience getting to know the women of the community and what it taught her about harsh mountain life…

Top 7 Bars in Buenos Aires, Argentina

Top 7 Bars in Buenos Aires, Argentina

These awesome bars in Buenos Aires are home to good vibes! Whether you’re looking for a trendy wine bar or craft beer is more your thing, make sure you hit up some of these places!

Places to Visit in Peru

15 Amazing Places to Visit in Peru

Looking for places to visit in Peru? Look no further! Our list compiles the top destinations in the country, from world-class attractions to off the beaten track gems!

Unmissable Places to Visit in Ecuador

Unmissable Places to Visit in Ecuador

Heading to Ecuador and looking for the best places to visit? You’re in the right place! From the awe-inspiring Galapagos Islands to the varied mainland, Ecuador has something for all travellers!

Cerro Kennedy, Colombia: DIY Trekking Guide

Cerro Kennedy, Colombia: DIY Trekking Guide

A remote spot that provides amazing views of the highest mountains in the country on the one side and the Caribbean coast on the other. If you love hiking, the mountains and camping, this is your perfect two-day adventure!

Explore More: A visit to Uros, Amantaní and Taquile Islands, Peru

Lake Titicaca Tours, Peru: A visit to Uros, Amantaní and Taquile

Whilst most travellers head to the floating islands from Puno, there is far more to see. Explore Taquile on foot and stay in a homestay on Amantaní island! This tour offers an authentic look at the culture and the lives of those living off the shores of Lake Titicaca.

Sandboarding in Huacachina Peru!

Sandboarding & Sand Skiing in Huacachina, Peru

Sanboarding is a must do activity in Huacachina but did you also know you can sand ski there? Our writers went to check out both of these adventure activities. But how did they measure up? Is this backpacker rite of passage worth the hype?

Swimming with Sea Lions at Palomino Island, Peru

Swimming with sea lions at Palomino Island in Peru is a great activity for backpackers. It is cheaper than a trip to the Galapagos and promises unforgettable memories. Here is everything you need to know about this unforgettable activity close to Lima!

Trekking Laguna 69 in Huaraz: A Comprehensive Guide

Trekking Laguna 69 in Huaraz, Peru

Laguna 69 is one of Peru’s most beautiful natural wonders. This magical lagoon is located at 4,600 m.a.s.l and is one of the main reasons that travellers visit Huaraz. Trek up to the lagoon for breathtaking views and decide whether to visit independently or on a day tour with the help of this article.

Climbing Cotopaxi: Hiking Up & Biking Down!

Cotopaxi, Ecuador – Hiking & Biking Ecuador’s Famous Volcano!

Cotopaxi Volcano is Ecuador’s second largest volcano and the most popular for trekking. Climbing Cotopaxi has become somewhat of a bucket list activity for backpackers and day trips can be easily arranged from Quito. If you are taking on the almighty Cotopaxi, check out this post to help plan your hike!

Hiking the Inca Trail, Peru: A Comprehensive Guide

Hiking the Inca Trail, Peru: A Comprehensive Guide (2022)

Curious about hiking the Inca Trail, regarded as one of the world’s most iconic journeys? Tine Haslam Nielsen heads off, ready to tackle a three day trek through the Andes Mountains of Peru. With blistered feet she climbs, upwards and onwards, working towards the rewarding vistas of Machu Picchu which await at the finish line. Along the way history dances, nature stuns, and a healthy dose of self pride emerges…

Bolivia - One Month Itinerary

Bolivia Itinerary: Backpacking the Highlights!

This one month Bolivia itinerary is a great starting point for travellers looking to see the main sites in the country. Detailing the best places to stay, things to do and the suggested duration in each place, you need this itinerary if you are heading to Bolivia!

South America Bus Travel: How to Survive The Trip! 

South America Bus Travel: 9 Tips to Survive The Trip! 

Night buses are a great way to get around South America. However, the journeys can be long and uncomfortable. Check out these tips for making your South America bus journeys as stress-free and pleasant as possible. And remember, never go for a number 2 on the bus!

Coffee in South America - From Beans to Cup!

Coffee in South America – From Beans to Cup!

South America produces some of the world’s best coffee and is a must-visit continent for all caffeine lovers! Learn about coffee production in South America and experience the best of the continent’s coffee without spending loads of money at overpriced gringo cafes.

Safety Tips for Travelling in South America

Is South America safe? We think so, however, travel here does require a bit of common sense and savviness. These South America safety tips will tell you everything that you need to know.

How to Rent a Car & Explore the Salt Flats of Bolivia Without a Tour

In general the costs of renting a car to explore Bolivia’s Salar Uyuni (the largest salt flats in the world) are higher than booking a trip with a tour agency, but the freedom and adventure you will gain are priceless. Driving through the South of Bolivia will leave you speechless and you’ll encounter some of the most stunning scenery known to humans… Sold? Here’s how to do it!

A Mountain View in Maragua

The “Tibet of South America”: 4 Adventurous Bolivian Treks

When it comes to trekking in South America, there are a number of famous hikes that always make travellers’ itineraries, the legendary Inca Trail being the most well known. But whether you’ve dreamed about or have actually experienced some of these South American highlights, you’ve probably never contemplated walking in another country here: Bolivia.

Diving into Bolivian Community-Life: 6 Weeks Volunteering in La Paz

Volunteering has taught me how powerful it can be as an opportunity to come face to face with the reality of life South America. Unlike travelling, where you are often confined to just peering through the grimy bus windows and out into the crumbling adobe of the many communities you pass, when you stop to volunteer, you are invited into those houses, offered a chair, and given a class of refreshing, home-fermented chichi drink. Steph Dyson tells us about her rewarding experience volunteering for six weeks outside La Paz, Bolivia…

Chorrillana-Chile-food

Discovering Chile Through its Food…

While not usually garnering the culinary acclaim reaped upon the hybridization of Peru or the asados of Argentina, Chilean food ranges in variety from the arid Atacama desert in the north to the perfect Patagonian peaks of the south. Traditional food mostly caters to workers and can be traced to humble origins, which results in ample quantities of tastiness at great value. Traveller, Max Nathanson takes us on a foodie journey through Chile…

Local Riverboat Travel in Peru: Yurimaguas to Iquitos to Pucallpa

Backpacker Ian Saberton savours the slow pace of authentic river travel in Peru, travelling from Yurimaguas to Iquitos to Pucallpa. Travelling the way the locals do, Ian watches the river landscape go by, makes friends with his fellow passengers and gets a nasty bout of every traveller’s favourite topic of conversation – traveller diarrhoea!

A Man Uses His Tablet In An Incredible Setting

8 Tips for Being a Tech-Savvy Traveler in South America

While many travellers feel burdened by the influence of technology during their travels, I do not. Although the skill of manoeuvring through a city with no help from technology nor any knowledge of the local language is pretty thrilling, we are actually being quite inefficient with our use of time. Here are some apps and technologies that will help you get the most out of your travels through South America without sacrificing the joys of adventure. These technologies should actually help you find more adventure!

Punta Gallinas, Colombia: Adventure to the Most Northern Point of South America

Visiting the most Northern point of South America and a place where you can slide from a sand dune right into the Caribbean. Sounds pretty good, doesn’t it? However, tours can be expensive and there is little information about traveling to this incredible and remote region independently. That’s why we’re here to help with a detailed guide!

On the Trail of the Seven Lakes in Patagonia, Argentina

Probably the most popular thing to do while visiting Patagonia is the seven lakes trail that goes from Bariloche to San Martin de Los Andes and is roughly 100 km. Showing off landscapes of infinite mountains covered with snow and trees, surrounded by pristine blue-and-turquoise lakes, as well as a surprisingly pumping party scene, it’s a must for backpackers in Argentina!

Casa en el Agua, Colombia.

Casa en el Agua, Colombia – A Hostel Encircled by Tropical Waters!

There are only few hostels that you end up staying while telling yourself… “This is unreal, I never want to leave!” Casa en el Agua is one of those. A little paradise located in the middle of the ocean, the hostel is the first and only one in the San Bernado Islands on the Caribbean Coast of Colombia and a place you should put on your bucket list NOW…

A Magical Stay with the Indigenous Tsachila People, Santo Domingo, Ecuador

Santo Domingo de los Tsachilas, Ecuador, is an industrial hub that draws few visitors, but in its outskirts lies an indigenous people struggling to survive the encroachment of modernization. The Tsachilas are best known for their knowledge of medicinal plants and use of the achiote seed in colouring their hair red. Only 2800 Tsachilas remain, and they comprise one of Ecuador’s 14 officially recognized nationalities. Traveller, Marina Wang visits one of their communities to find out more about their unique way of life…

Mountaineering in South America: Breaking the Ice in Bolivia and Peru

South America offers some of the best mountaineering adventures in the world. With the spine of the mighty Andes stretching along the West coast from Colombia to Chile – the hiking opportunities are endless. 18-year old backpacker, Tomas Aramburu tells us about how he summited Huayna Potosí in Bolivia and Mount Soray in Peru and fell in love with the mountains…

A man sits on a ledge of a heavily graffitied wall in Bogotá

From Ancient Gold Sculptures to Graffiti: A Thriving Art Culture in Bogotá, Colombia

Bogotá, the capital of Colombia was the biggest surprise of my trip to South America. The food, the culture and the people were amazing and an unlikely graffiti tour through the streets of the capital ended up being one of the highlights of my trip… One backpacker tells us about his cram-packed four day visit to the culturally-rich city!

A Sea Bird On The Galapagos Islands

Why a Trip to Ecuador’s Galapagos Islands is Worth Every Cent!

There were two classes of backpackers I met whilst travelling through Ecuador – those who agreed the Galapagos Islands were the highlight of their South America trip, and those who lamented they weren’t going because it was out of their budget… but “one day” they’d get there. Whilst it is true that a trip to Galapagos is bound to burst your budget bubble, I can with complete confidence tell any traveller – do it anyway. You know those “life-changing” travel destinations forcefully touted? Galapagos is it…

A countryside shot in Venezuela

The Truth About Venezuela…

“Don’t go to Venezuela, you will get robbed or even killed – it’s just not safe”… Again and again I heard those words. I chose to ignore them. I crossed the border from Colombia in the back of a beat-up car, my rucksack resting upon my knees. Police patrolled every corner, I was swept through numerous army checkpoints, the traffic relentlessly passing me by in both directions… Join South America Ambassador Will Hatton as he dispels stereotypes on this daring adventure to South America’s most feared country!

Exploring the Medellín Slums, Colombia

Brightly coloured graffiti rippled along the walls. Crowds of children played in the dappled sunlight threading it’s way through the streets. The shiny metal escalator loomed above me, leading upwards and into the slums of Medellin, a former war-zone. Just a decade ago this had been a very different place, gangs of youths armed with kalishnikovs and machetes had wandered the streets killing to control the drug trade. The police had been too scared to enter the slums…

Wild Times with Balu: Volunteering at ‘Inti Wara Yassi’ Wildlife Preserve in Bolivia

For more than 20 years, Comunidad Inti Wara Yassi (CIWY) has been working to provide a safe and healthy environment for rescued animals while educating the Bolivian public to respect wildlife and the environment. Traveller Andrew Marston describes the month he spent walking through the jungle with hisy furry new friend Balu, a beautiful Andean Spectacled Bear that is highly endangered…

Torres-del-Paine

Trek Torres Del Paine National Park, Chile – How to see the Highlights in Just 3 Days!

Situated in Patagonia, Chile’s Torres Del Paine National Park is a must on many travellers to-do lists. Its scenic beauty, glaciers and the imposing Andes mountains tempt even the most timid adventurer. People flock from around the world to complete the famous 5-day W Trek or tougher 9-day Circular route. But what if you only have a few days to experience as much as you can? The two main highlights are a spectacular view of Glacier Grey, and watching the sunrise at Torres Del Paine. Easier said than done as these sites are at opposite ends of the park and seeing both in a short time frame is a challenge, but a realistic one…

money-budget

Saving For Your Next Trip? Make Money From Selling Souvenirs From Your Travels!

Traveling is addictive. If you’re anything like us, as soon as you get home, you start planning your next adventure! The only thing that tends to stop you, is cash for a plane ticket! Perhaps one of the easiest way to make some quick money when you get back home is to sell off some of the weird and wonderful souvenirs you have picked up on your travels. In this interesting article, The Broke Backpacker tells us how to do it!

How to Find an Adventure Buddy!

One of the main reasons some would-be adventurers never leave home is because they are worried they won’t meet anyone. If you are nervous about travelling alone by yourself and you can’t find convince any of your friends to expand their horizons then don’t fret – you don’t have to stay at home! Will Hatton, experienced budget traveller gives us some tips on how to meet that perfect adventure buddy!

The Buenos Aires Skyline At Night

How Buenos Aires Got Under My Skin…

It was the steak that did it. It wasn’t the first steak I’ve ever had. But it was the first time I really got how good steak can be. Cooked to a perfect medium-rare, every mouthful packed with flavour… and I don’t even like meat that much. Then came the wine…

Casa Elemento, Minca, Colombia – Chasing a Whisper into the Jungle!

It started with a whisper. A soft voice calling across the plains of Backpackistan. “Casa Elemento, you should go”. I first heard it in Guatemala, from a plumber by the name of Josh. “I spent five months there man, in the jungle, sleeping in a hammock; building, working, creating something”. I knew then that I would have to travel to this place to see it for myself…

The Inspiring Intag Project: Volunteering in the Remote Cloud Forests of Ecuador

From a remote farm in the cloud forest in north-west Ecuador, Ned Cresswell has set up the Intag Project, a volunteer programme through which he hopes to introduce sustainable tourism to his local community. This is one backpacker’s experience volunteering with the Intag Project at Magdalena Primary School… TV and internet don’t reach here, and there is no hot water or, in many cases, electricity. Flashpackers need not apply.

A surfer in Ayampe

Ilo – The Surf Spot Peru Forgot

We sat on our boards waiting for another set to come in, with the sun bouncing into our eyes off the cold Pacific water as a lone Pelican skimmed the surface just meters from us, pausing momentarily in mid-air like time had stopped, shaking the water from its feathers before beating its giant wings and gliding away again toward the distant fishing boats in search of food. In this exact moment I smiled and thought to myself, ‘I love my life!’

Why Everybody Should Try Couchsurfing!

Couchsurfing is a global online community for backpackers, expats, students, families and pretty much everyone in between! The concept is that you get free accommodation all over the world from a community of hosts. Ultimately however, it goes a little deeper than that, couchsurfing is an exchange of ideas and cultures. Will Hatton, AKA The Broke Backpacker tells us why it will enhance your backpacking experience…

money-budget

The Broke Backpacker’s 7 Secrets To Travelling On A Budget

When it comes to travelling the world on a budget, ‘The Broke Backpacker’, (Will Hatton), one of the first South America Backpacker Ambassadors, knows a thing or two! He’s certainly not broke any more, thanks, no doubt, to the mindset that he laid out for us here.

5 Jobs you can do while Backpacking in South America

If you’re planning on backpacking around South America and are looking to boost your travel funds, or even want to stop and live somewhere for a while, then you’ll probably want to find some kind of work. There are many different options available to you besides volunteering, you just need to know how to find them. Here’s our Top 5 Jobs you can do to keep you going in South America…

A Small Raft in Leticia Colombia

Big Fish, Cold Beer & New Amigos in Leticia, Colombia

When Kristian told friends that he was traveling to more remote parts of Colombia on a backpacking trip, people thought he was crazy! ‘It’s too dangerous!’ They cried. During a solo adventure to Leticia, Colombia, a border town on the Mighty Amazon River where Brazil, Peru and Colombia meet in a humid, tropical and mosquito ridden union, Kristian discovers why people are so very wrong about this incredible country…

Volunteering at an Animal Orphanage in Iquitos, Peru: Saving the Red Faced Uakari

It’s kind of a surreal experience the first time a baby Red Faced Uakari monkey drops out of a tree onto your head. Due to hunting and habitat destruction this species is among the rarest primates in South America. Corey Callahan describes an incredible experience working as a conservation volunteer at Pilpintuwasi Animal Orphanage in Padre Cocha, Iquitos, Peru…

Two Gringos Biking, Climbing and Paragliding Our Way Round South America!

Mila Brill and her boyfriend spent six incredible months mountain biking, rock climbing and paragliding in three countries of South America: Peru, Chile and Argentina. Through their encounters with local people they discovered amazing roads, scenery, secret climbing Meccas, awe-inspiring places to pitch their tent and along the way found ultimate freedom of life on the road and learnt some very important life lessons…

Wilman Matty, Indigenous Farmer in Rurrenabaque

Interview with Indigenous Farmer, Wilman Matty – Proud to be Indigenous

We travel to connect. To become inspired by one another. Whether they are locals or other foreigners, travelers quickly learn the power of a conversation, the power that a new perspective can add to our own lives. Check out this interview of indigenous farmer, Wilman Matty conducted by Belinda Grasnick in Rurrenabaque, Madidi National Park, Bolivia…

A Bunch Of Grapes On The Vine

The Perfect Day of Cycling and Wine Tasting in Maipú, Mendoza, Argentina

It seems ridiculous to go to Argentina and not sample some wine. The country is renowned for its Malbec, so ordering a glass of the red stuff to wash down your thick slab of steak is surely a rite of passage. Traveler Helen Davey discovers the perfect day trip as she cycles from one vineyard to the next, sampling Mendoza’s finest in the hot sunshine…

Buen Provecho Sucre: The Culinary Capital of Bolivia

Unknown to many, the colonial city of Sucre in Bolivia is a food-lover’s heaven, where backpackers can enjoy a Top Class four course meal for less than $4 US! Colonial influence has brought German, French and Belgian cuisine; some incredible edible delights for vegetarians and not forgetting the street food in the local market, as well as buzzing night life! RTW traveller Niamh Ní Shúilleabháin went on a culinary exploration of the ‘White City of the Americas’ to see what has hungry backpackers sweet on Sucre.

A Mountain And A Lake in Altiplano, Bolivia

A Beach Bum Gets High in Bolivia’s Altiplano Region – The Salt Flats

Leaving the beach behind for a more rugged adventure, travel writer Claire Berry, heads to Bolivia’s famous salt flats. Four days of vistas that have inspired artists, hot springs to melt away altitude induced aches, and enough salt to dress up even the blandest pasta dish. Find out why this sun worshipper was more than happy to accept being landlocked for a bit!

Home is Where the Hammock is: Iquitos to Pucallpa Via Cargo Carrier – Peru

Travel writer Andrew Digges shares his experience traveling down the Amazon river via cargo boat. With monkeys as neighbors, a hammock for a bed, and a colorful cast of characters to help pass the time, we are transported into a world rarely visited by backpackers. Read about this unique and exciting adventure and get inspired to step far off the gringo trail!

Graffiti in Valparaíso, Chile.

Why I Fell In Love With Valparaiso, Chile

Just a 90-minute drive from the capital of Santiago, this gritty but enchanting city was one of Chiles best kept secrets until recently. Valparaiso is packed top to bottom with its own unique but enchanting personality. Nobel prize winning poet, and native Valparaisian Pablo Neruda described the city better than anyone: ‘Valparaiso, how absurd you are…you haven’t combed your hair, you’ve never had time to get dressed, life has always surprised you’. Travel writer Carrie Alice- Patrick tells us just why this ‘absurd’ city is so captivating.

Rio De Janeiro in the mist

Beaches, Beef, and Babes… Getting Comfortable in Rio!

The World Cup 2014, taking place in Rio de Janeiro, starts this week meaning most of the world has got Brazil on the brain. Travel writer and enthusiast, Jennifer Seiser, was lucky to be in Rio this February for Carnival and gives us the inside scoop of how to get comfortable in this larger than life location. A must read for anyone headed to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil this month!

Inti Raymi, Photo Credit - Cyntia Motta

Inti Raymi: A Whole New Way to Welcome the New Year in Bolivia…

In Andean cities such as Cusco and Copacabana June 24th marks an important day. The beginning of the New Year, also known as Inti Raymi, when offerings and thanks to mother earth are given at sunrise. For travelers it is an incredible opportunity to partake in an Incan celebration that still holds as much importance as it did 500 years ago. Backpacker Helen Davey tells us about her experience at Inti Raymi…

Cacao Beans Roasting In A Pan

Cultivating Cacao on an Organic Farm in Ecuador

Recently traveler Shakia Stewart dove into the world of chocolate to learn everything she could about the process from cocoa bean to bar. She made sure to sample plenty, but also saved time to document the process for all of you curious chocolate loving backpackers out there…

Ecuador-Peru-Border

The Long Haul: Overland From Cuenca, Ecuador to Mancora, Peru

We recently traversed ‘the most dangerous border crossing in South America’ from Ecuador to Peru. What did we find? A whole lot of nothing, the process was actually quite easy. Read our account of the trip so that your experience is equally unspectacular!

I Came Here For the Rhythm, Embracing Dance in South America

You come to South America and are instantly met with energy, a buzzing rhythm that pulses down the city streets. Your only option is to jump in and dance, standing on the sidelines and watching as the party carries on without you simply isn’t an option. Traveler and writer Joey Bilyk introduces us to the feeling of South America through it’s dance culture.

The beach at Cabo Polonio

Cabo Polonio, Uruguay: A Lost Haven Far from Civilization

Nothing is better than finding a place where every day hassles are left behind, where one can simply appreciate the present time by “going back to their roots.” Cabo Polonio in Uruguay is one of those places. Travel writer Gaetan Biduad tells us about one of his favorite off the beaten path destinations in South America!

A view across Medellin from high up

The Truth about Colombia – A Day on Medellin’s Free Real City Walking Tour

Colombia is without a doubt one of the most misunderstood countries on the planet, a place that has gotten it’s fame from violence, drugs, and extreme tragedy. As travelers passing through this incredible country we yearned to know the truth, to understand the past and appreciate all the progress that Colombia has made. So, we joined the city of Medellin’s free walking tour in order to learn as much as we could.

The Lost City 'La Ciudad Perdida' in Colombia.

La Ciudad Perdida: The Lost City Trek, Colombia

In the midst of the famed, dense jungle of Tayrona national park lies Ciudad Perdida, quite literally ‘the Lost City’. Not discovered until the 1970’s, Ciudad Perdida is a pre-Hispanic ancient city that predates Peru’s popular Machu Picchu by around 650 years. To witness the ruins of Cuidad Perdida, there is no other option but to hike the four or five days through dense jungle, deep rivers and steep ascents. After having spent a month in Colombia searching, we’d finally found our adventure…

24 Hours on the Island of Taquile, Peru

Located on the Peruvian side of Lake Titicaca, Taquile is one of those rare places that remains remarkably untouched by globalization. From hearty bowls of Quinoa soup to fortunes told by coca tea leaf formations, we realize just how much you can soak up in a mere 24 hours.

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