Travelling through South America was one of the best experiences of my travels to date; it’s like no other place I’ve been before. There are captivating landscapes, age old traditions and people full of passion every where you look.
If you are a music lover, like myself, South America is perfect for you! It is one of the greatest music destinations in the world (for me it’s even better than Ibiza or Berlin). I began my journey in Buenos Aires, where the music and parties never stop. This city has one of the best clubbing scenes in the world, with a different club to go to every night of the week. I spent time listening to music blaring out of the favelas in Rio, being spun around the dance floor in various Colombian salsa clubs until the sun came up and even attempted to join Rio Carnival parades. With Argentine tango, Colombian salsa and Brazilian samba, there is something here for everyone.
Although the distance between destinations is vast in this continent, the (sometimes 24hr) bus journeys offer views of incredible landscapes that seem to change at least 2 or 3 times during each stretch. Whether you’re passing a stunning beach, travelling over and even through mountains or speeding by boat into the Amazon rainforest…there is never a dull moment whilst travelling South America.
One key problem I encountered as I landed was the language barrier. Like many brits my language skills are not terribly good (apologies), however I have never been anywhere that not a single person speaks English. This was one of the best aspects of travelling South America. One of the reasons I love to travel is the fact that I’m constantly learning and developing in myself. Therefore having to attempt to speak the language in these countries was one of the greatest gifts South America gave me. Without the basics it can be a challenge here.
One little tip: Try to learn some Spanish or Portuguese before leaving for your travels or get booked into a Spanish school when you arrive. Most hostels will be able to help you organise this upon arrival.
Although you will probably have heard from people of the dangers of South America, do not let this put you off your trip. Of course there are dangers and you should always research areas that you could be at risk before travelling, however this is no reason not to visit. A lot of places have become less corrupt in recent times and are perfectly safe to travel.
One little tip: Travel light, don’t take your valuables out of the hostels here (including cameras and phones) many of the crimes committed are simply petty theft. However, having your camera stolen could mean you lose more sentimental items, such as the photographs you have stored on the device. As a solo, female traveller I would always take my money in my bra and not carry a bag, especially in the bigger cities and tourist areas.
Main Languages spoken
Spanish and Portuguese
Budget per month
£1,500 (Based on staying in hostel dorm rooms)
Best time to go
I have been through from October to March and this is the ideal time to travel. The high season is from December to March and can cost a little more, however for me this is the best weather and most exciting time to visit. Obviously this does depend on your budget, however personally I think if you’re going to do it, you may as well do it properly. Spending a little more to go during high season for me is worth it.
I will be posting more detailed articles of each country in South America soon, to receive these as soon as they are posted, subscribe today.