Richard Moor - Jun 5, 2017
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Deserts, glaciers, forests, beaches: when it comes to the richness of natural landscapes, South America can hardly be overcome. The biggest, highest, lowest – various extreme nature sites can be found all around the continent. brings you the top mesmerizing places in South America.

Anavilhanas River Archipelago

Amazonia, Brazil

One of the biggest river archipelagos in the world, Anavilhanas, in Amazonia, was named a National Park in 2009. It encompasses 400 islands scattered all over the Rio Negro and is considered one of the birthplaces of Brazil’s waterways. In this region, the Amazon jungle’s heart, one can find one of the planet’s richest ecosystems and extreme nature experiences.

Cabo Polonio

Cabo Polonio, Uruguay

Isolated by dunes, Cabo Polonio flaunts itself as a unique destination on the Uruguayan coast. What originally was a tiny fishing village, this coastal and picturesque settlement, whose area is protected as a National Park, does not have electricity, but most of its houses do not relinquish their generators. The three islands, laid out along its coast, work as a shelter for a significant monk seal reserve. From its lighthouse, endless sunsets are contemplated by those who are looking for peacefulness and isolation in South America.

The Paraguayan Chaco

Chaco, Paraguay

On the edges of Paraguay, the region dominated by Chaco is the favorite place for those who like to admire extreme nature views. It holds an extensive range of flora and fauna. It is no accident that the name of this biome derives from the original word “chaku”, which in Quechua means “hunting territory”. This natural domain extends itself throughout patches of Bolivian, Paraguayan, Argentinian and Brazilian territories, with the latter giving it the name of Pantanal.


Chimborazo Volcano, Ecuador

With its height of 6.267 meters, the Chimborazo volcano, near Riobamba, is the highest summit in the equatorial Andean mountains. It takes over a region which offers plenty of adventure tourism opportunities in Ecuador, surrounded by the Sangay National Park, named in 1983 a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, the country’s only to receive such accolade, alongside the Galápagos National Park. This legendary volcano’s majesty, now deemed extinct, inspired the liberator Simón Bolívar to write the poem “Mi Delirio sobre el Chimborazo”.

Salar de Uyuni

Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia

It is located in the Bolivian highlands and it is one of those so-called unreal landscapes in South America. The world’s biggest salt flat prolongs itself to where our eyes cannot reach, in a place located 3.650 meters above sea level that covers an area of approximately 12,000 square kilometers. The most visited region is called Isla del Pescado, peppered by cacti that can reach heights of 10 meters.

Salto Angel

Salto Ángel, Venezuela

The world’s highest waterfall can be found in Venezuela, with a height of 979 meters. Located near the border between Brazil and Guyana, this waterfall is in the National Park of Canaima, elected as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1994.

Perito Moreno Glacier, El Calafate

Perito Moreno, Argentina

One of the biggest natural attractions in South America is the most famous glacier in Patagonia. This giant glacier has a width of more than five kilometers and reaches a height of 60 meters. It is the star of the Los Glaciers National Park, which encompasses more than 360 glaciers. Every once in a while, a massive detachment of part of the ice wall takes place, causing a petrifying and enthralling raucous. And then we have icebergs floating loose in the Argentino Lake as the outcome. This cacophonous display, whose date cannot be predicted beforehand, but one that is monitored by scientists, is broadcasted on the national Argentinian TV stations.


Tayrona National Park, Colombia

Amidst its vegetation we can find the Ecohabs, accommodation facilities that properly blended with the nature of the Santa Marta region, in Colombia. Its scenery is something unique in the whole world: you can also glance over the Sierra Nevada de Santa Maria, a mountain range that reaches a height of 5.775 meters above sea level and is only 42 kilometers away from beaches bathed by the Caribbean Sea, which turns it into the planet’s highest coastal mountain range, an extreme nature site for sure.

Valle de la Luna

Valle de la Luna, Chile

Its natural rock formations somehow resemble the moon’s surface, all within an area ruled by dunes and surrounded by volcanoes, entangled inside the Atacama Desert, on Chile’s northern edge. It seems something otherworldly indeed. In this striking landscape, the sunset is a true master of ceremonies for a daily show witnessed by hundreds of tourists.

Wiñay Wayna, Inca Trail, Machu Picchu

Wiñay Wayna, Peru

The beauty and the drama of the ruins of Wiñay Wayna, scattered throughout the Inca Trail, are a proper reward for those who make the effort to walk along the Andean Mountains. Overlooking the Urubabama Valley, in Peru, Wiñay Wayna means “forever young” in Quechua, the language of the Incas. Beyond any shadow of a doubt, this is one of the most breathtaking landscapes that the Machu Picchu trail and South America itself has to offer.

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