Travelrific® Travel Journal

Picture postcards in prose.™ Check out the blogroll on the front page for official merchandise and other resources!

Archive for south america

A Tough Trek in Rio

By Linda Tancs

Pedra da Gávea is Rio de Janeiro’s most imposing monolith. The trek to the top is also the most arduous, commanding at least three hours. The hardest leg of the trail, known as Carrasqueira, is a steep climb leading to rewarding, bird’s-eye views of Sugarloaf, Corcovado, the beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema and even the Serra dos Órgãos mountain range. Hire an experienced guide for the safest experience.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

The City With Four Names

By Linda Tancs

You might think that Sucre, Bolivia, suffers from an identity crisis, considering that it’s known as “The City With Four Names.” But the reason for its name changes is rooted in history. The area was originally named Charcas after the indigenous inhabitants. Later, its Spanish conquerors named it La Plata (silver) in recognition of the rich natural resources there. When the Spanish later took control over Buenos Aires using a similar designation, the name was changed again to Chuquisaca, a version of the original indigenous Charcas settlement of Choquechaca. Unrest over economic conditions imposed by the governing forces resulted in an independence movement famously led by Antonio José de Sucre. The city was renamed in his honor. Casa de la Libertad is where, in 1825, the republic was created with the signing of the Bolivian declaration of independence and is one of the most important museums in the city.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Chile’s Oldest Park

By Linda Tancs

Chile’s Vicente Pérez Rosales National Park is the oldest park in the country. Created in 1926, it’s located in Chile’s pristine Lake District, featuring Lago Todos los Santos (All Saints Lake). Its fabulous emerald-green color makes it one of the most popular attractions in the park. Boasting over 600,000 acres, the park also features the turquoise waters of the Petrohué Waterfalls as well as Osorno Volcano. Travel up the volcano to a ski resort for striking views of the Petrohué River Valley.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Scissor Hands in Peru

By Linda Tancs

Evocative of the movie Edward Scissorhands, dancers in Peru wield a large pair of iron blades as they jump, dance and tumble on the ground. The ritual is known as La Danza de las Tijeras, an energetic and costumed presentation that has taken place for more than 500 years. It’s inscribed on UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. Performances occur around Christmastime, coinciding with the summer solstice celebration of the Andean indigenous people, as well as during agricultural festivals at other times of the year.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

The River of Silver

By Linda Tancs

Río de la Plata (river of silver) is an estuary of the Paraná and Uruguay rivers and forms part of the border between Argentina and Uruguay. The major ports and capital cities of Buenos Aires and Montevideo grace its shores, one of the most densely populated areas of both Argentina and Uruguay. One of its many charms is the small island of Isla de Flores. It was once named Seal Island by visiting sailors for its vast number of South American fur seals. It’s perhaps better known for the historic lighthouse. Established in 1828, it’s still an active aid to navigation with two white flashes every 16 seconds, visible for 19 nautical miles.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

A Grand Canyon in Argentina

By Linda Tancs

Argentina has many canyons that are grand. One of them is Atuel Canyon, in the heart of Mendoza Province. Formed millions of years ago from the winds and waters of the Atuel River, it’s a popular tourist attraction near San Rafael, offering activities like river rafting, hiking, climbing, horse riding and mountain biking. At the Valle Grande Dam riverside base you’ll find breathtaking views of the canyon as well as along the Atuel River, south of San Rafael and before Valle Grande Dam.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Rainbow Mountain

By Linda Tancs

If Matisse could’ve applied his color palette to an actual mountain, the result would likely resemble Peru’s Vinicunca Mountain. Also known as Rainbow Mountain or the Mountain of Seven Colors, these peaks in the Ausangate Mountain region of the Peruvian Andes offer an impressionistic portrait filled with turquoise, lavender, gold and other colors. You can thank the sediment and atmospheric conditions of the region for the rainbow-like appearance of this growing tourist attraction. A day trip from Cusco, there are plenty of bus tours offering treks, which is best done between March and November.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Gateway to the Amazon

By Linda Tancs

Known as the Gateway to the Amazon, Belém is the capital of the Brazilian state of Pará. Founded by the Portuguese in the 1600s, the city boasts well-preserved, Portuguese-colonial architecture along the riverfront district. The docklands also feature South America’s largest outdoor market, Mercado Ver-o-Peso, a site offering not only foods and vegetables but also crafts and antiques. A big highlight this time of year is the city’s religious festival known as Círio de Nazaré (The Taper of Our Lady of Nazareth), inscribed by UNESCO on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. The event culminates in a procession on Sunday, when a wooden image of Our Lady of Nazareth is carried from Sé Cathedral to Sanctuary Square, accompanied by hordes of pilgrims from around the country.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Where Old Trains Go to Die

By Linda Tancs

Most tourists visit the region of Uyuni, Bolivia, for its impressive salt flats. But the area has another unusual attraction, a Great Train Graveyard bearing silent testimony to a once burgeoning rail system designed for the transport of the area’s rich mineral resources to Pacific Ocean ports. The salt air has not been kind to these British-built trains of the early 20th century, their skeletal remains lending an eerie feel to the place. An easy cab ride away, it’s better to pay your respects in the early morning or evening to avoid the hordes of tourist buses.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

The Aristocracy in Argentina

By Linda Tancs

In the shadow of the bustle of Buenos Aires is the well-to-do suburb of San Isidro. It’s regarded as the capital of rugby because it houses two of the historical clubs of the sport in Argentina: Club Athletic San Isidro and San Isidro Club. You’ll also find the Hipódromo there, one of the largest horse racing tracks in the Americas, flanked by busy restaurants. Art, class and culture merge at Villa Ocampo, the riverside mansion of the late Victoria Ocampo, a prominent Argentinian writer and intellectual. Her estate is one of many in this wealthy enclave, one of the most aristocratic in the country.

*************

As coronavirus proceeds, it is likely that the vast majority of us will be limited in our travels. But this, too, shall pass. Our love for travel remains, so Travelrific will continue offering travel inspiration in this medium. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

%d bloggers like this: