Active your travel radar for the best cities to visit in South America. These cities offer everything from archaeological sites, misty rainforests to epic festivals where you can have a diverse experience during the visit.
When you create an itinerary to cover the whole South American destinations, make sure to divide them into manageable chunks so you could roll in it better.
Moreover, you can make your travel budget-friendly by choosing South American destinations because they have greater exchange rates and cheap flights without any jet lag.
Let’s get into our prime list of the best cities to visit in South America this year.
1. Cuzco, Peru
The signature destination of Cuzco, Peru is Machu Picchu which is also termed the lost city of the Incas. It was included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1993 and is considered the new wonder of the world.
It’s the best place to visit if you like hiking because it’s 7000 feet height above sea level in the Andes Mountains.
The place is divided into the industrial region and urban as the Sacred Plaza is located in the urban part. On the other hand, you can ascent to the Central Plaza, a roofless structure that lies between the two forestry mountains. It also has agricultural traces in the form of giant staircases.
The dining options at the location are limited to two restaurants Tinkuy Buffett Restaurant and Machu Picchu Snack Bar.
2. Cartagena, Colombia
Cartagena is a port city of Colombia that used to be a colony of Spain and one of the Best Cities to Visit in South America. It’s a famous city for tourists because of its sandy beaches, incredible cuisine, and colonial buildings.
You can visit the San Felipe Castle which is considered the landmark of the city. Meanwhile, the street art on the city walls of the rough neighborhood of Getsemani is enough to leave you speechless for a while.
Don’t forget to buy fruits from palenqueras, the group of women wearing vibrant color dresses and when you visit the beaches, you will be astonished to see the floating hotels that are best to enjoy the humid air of the Caribbean Sea.
3. Salvador, Brazil
The city has the cultural and architectural treasures like the Baroque colonial churches. It presents a real example of cultural harmony between beauty and history.
You don’t need to worry about the accommodation after landing at the Salvador central airport because of the existence of hotels like Bahiacafe Hotel and Fera Palace Hotel.
Moreover, navigation through the city is easy as metro and Uber services always remain at your disposal. You can simply higher a taxi and visit the attractive destination of Salvador including Baia de Todos os Santos, Pelourinho, Cathedral Basilica of Salvador, etc.
4. Rio De Jenerio, Brazil
Rio De Jenerio, Brazil is one of the Best Cities to Visit in South America. You are familiar with the Cristo Redentor (Christ the Redeemer), it’s the giant statue of Christ located at the mountain of Tijuca National Park and is considered the symbol of Rio De Janeiro.
The most amazing thing in the city is to have a cable car from the land to the 394 m high peak of Sugarloaf on the harbor.
That’s not the end, Rio de Janeiro is a city that is blessed with a four km long beach along the downtown, Copacabana where you have the sunset experience while looking at the endless horizon.
It will be an exciting experience for you when you visit Rio at Carnaval when vibrant color costumes, music and dance all reach their climax.
5. Buenos Aires, Argentina
You need to spend at least three days to get the most out of your tour of Buenos Aires. Start your journey from the Plaza de Mayo the magnificent colonial building of the 16th century having Cabildo that served as the seat of the colonial government. Next move to the President’s house of pink color, Casa Rosada. It looks like a pink tulip blooming in the middle of the garden.
If you like to connect with the history of the country, you should visit the famous place of the city including Recoleta Cemetery, and Museums like La Boca & the Caminito Street Museum.
6. Lima, Peru
Lima is Best Cities to Visit in South America to have a walking tour to the destination like San Francisco Church, Cathedral, Circuito Magico Del Agua (Magic Water Tour) in the Park of the Reserve, etc. The magic water lit up with a reddish yellow light with 13 separate mountains that goes to 80 m high.
All of the jets in the fountain are synchronized with each other which changes their flow with the music.
7. Quito, Ecuador
Quito is located at the foothills of the Mountain range of the Andes. It has all the ingredients for the cosmopolitan city where historic and modernist integrate with each other.
You can see the building of neo-Gothic architectural style such as Basilica del Voto Nacional. For recreational activities visit Parque La Carolina which has all the facilities from running tracks, basketball courts, bike lanes, and a soccer field.
8. Bogota, Colombia
Bogota is the capital city of Colombia and has the landmark of Graffiti Street art. It tells the transformative story of the country from history, politics, and culture with vibrant colors.
The heart of the city is the main square, Plaza de Bolivar which is surrounded by neoclassical palaces, the largest churches, and government buildings.
When it comes to traveling to or from Bogota, you’ll likely find yourself at the Bogota Airport, which offers a convenient point of entry to the city. The airport has a wide range of services, making it easy for travelers to navigate and explore Bogota and Colombia overall. However, in addition to air travel, Bogota offers other methods of arrival as well, such as long-distance bus services that connect the city with other parts of Colombia. Thus, Whether you arrive by air, bus, or car, Bogota welcomes visitors with its diverse cultural heritage and captivating street art.
9. La Paz, Bolivia
The biggest tourist attraction of La Paz is a massive cable car termed Teleferico that helps you to see the city from the air. Meanwhile, Plaza Murillo is the government palace that giant building looks incredible with its yellow coating.
For the tourists who like adventure, Urban Rush is the place for your where you jump with rope from the 17-story high building.
10. Medellin, Colombia
Medellin’s top attraction is the El Poblado with the shady streets where you will find all sorts of cafes and boutique shops.
The street is covered with leaves because of several trees that give you a feeling as you are walking in the garden during the autumn season.
The city has the best shipping places where you can get everything that you could imagine.
11. Santiago, Chili
Santiago is the capital city of Chili and full of fun places like Fantasilandia which is the ideal place to enjoy with your family. You can also have a Skiing experience in El Colorado between the Andes Mountains where the ski resort is designed for all types of people with varying skills in skiing and ages.
12. Ushuaia, Argentina
When you make your way to the far-fetched place in southern America, Ushuaia is the top list location where you find penguins on the Lakes Escondido and Fagnanao. You can also find the historical places of 19th century like Estanica Habeton built by Anglican missionaries.
For skiers, Cerro Caster hills are covered with snow the perfect places to travel. They also have ski resorts such as Sierra Alvear northwest of the city.
13. Montevideo, Uruguay
Montevideo is the capital city of Uruguay that has the Jose Gervasio Artigas status in the middle of Montevideo’s main square. He was the person who fought for the freedom of his country from the Spanish crown in 1800.
You can also have the best shopping experience in the Port Market which is filled with local food and restaurants.
14. Sao Paulo, Brazil
Sao Paulo is the most populous city in Brazil and home to the best soccer players in the world.
The country has a deep passion for the sport that is reflected by the establishment of museums like Museo do Futebol. It stretches to 6000 square miles and contains a rich history of the country covered in 15 separate galleries.
15. Paramaribo, Suriname
Paramaribo is the city of River Commewijne and the capital of Suriname. The bank of the river is quite a fascinating place to explore surrounded by coffee trees.
You can also visit the Palmentuim which is an exceptional palm garden with more than 1000 royal palms. The garden is present in great condition even established back in 1600.
Ferona Jose is a passionate travel writer and blogger at Travelistia. She has traveled throughout Europe, Asia and the Americas. Her writing focuses on cheap travel destinations, travel experiences, cultural insights, and travel hacks.