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  • Bolivia Travel | Places to visit in Bolivia | Rough Guides
    are equally fascinating Three centuries of colonial rule have left their mark on the nation s language religion and architecture but this is essentially little more than a veneer overlying indigenous cultural traditions that stretch back long before the arrival of the Spanish Though superficially embracing the Catholic religion many Bolivians are equally at home making offerings to the mountain gods or performing other strange rites such as blessing vehicles with libations of alcohol And although Spanish is the language of government and business the streets buzz with the cadences of Aymara Quechua and more than thirty other indigenous languages Geographically Bolivia is dominated by the Andes which march through the west in two parallel chains each studded with snowcapped peaks between them stretch the barren windswept expanses of the Altiplano Reached via a series of lush valleys the country s lowlands range from dense Amazonian rainforest to vast plains of dry thornbrush and scrub The geographical extremes are fascinating to explore but can take their toll on travellers This varied topography supports an extraordinary diversity of flora and fauna from condors to pink freshwater dolphins Parque Nacional Amboró for example has over 830 species of bird more than the US and Canada combined The country s underdevelopment has in some ways been a blessing for the environment allowing vast wilderness areas to survive in a near pristine condition Though it covers an area the size of France and Spain combined Bolivia is home to just under ten million people who are concentrated in a handful of cities founded by the Spanish Some of these such as Potosí and Sucre were once amongst the most important settlements in the Americas but are now half forgotten backwaters basking in the memory of past glories and graced by some of the continent

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/destinations/south-america/bolivia/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Brazil Travel | Places to visit in Brazil | Rough Guides
    the journey from Recife in the east to the western border with Peru is longer than that from London to Moscow and the distance between the northern and southern borders is about the same as that between New York and Los Angeles Brazil has no mountains to compare with its Andean neighbours but in every other respect it has all the scenic and cultural variety you would expect from so vast a country Despite the immense expanses of the interior roughly two thirds of Brazil s population live on or near the coast and well over half live in cities even in the Amazon In Rio and São Paulo Brazil has two of the world s great metropolises and ten other cities have over a million inhabitants Yet Brazil still thinks of itself as a frontier country and certainly the deeper into the interior you go the thinner the population becomes Other South Americans regard Brazilians as a race apart and language has a lot to do with it Brazilians understand Spanish just about but Spanish speakers won t understand Portuguese Brazilians also look different In the extreme south German and eastern European immigration has left distinctive traces São Paulo has the world s largest Japanese community outside Japan slavery lies behind a large Afro Brazilian population concentrated in Rio Salvador and São Luís while the Indian influence is still very visible in the Amazon Italian and Portuguese immigration has been so great that its influence is felt across the entire country Brazil is a land of profound economic contradictions Rapid post war industrialization made it one of the world s ten largest economies by the 1990s and it is misleading to think of Brazil as a developing country it is quickly becoming the world s leading agricultural exporter and has several home grown multinationals competing successfully in world markets The last decade has seen millions of Brazilians haul their way into the country s expanding middle class and across the board improvements in social indicators like life expectancy and basic education But yawning social divides are still a fact of life in Brazil The cities are dotted with favelas shantytowns that crowd around the skyscrapers and there are wide regional differences too Brazilians talk of a Switzerland in the South centred on the Rio São Paulo axis and an India above it and although this is a simplification the level of economic development does fall the further north or east you go Brazil has enormous natural resources but their exploitation has benefited fewer than it should Institutionalized corruption a bloated and inefficient public sector and the reluctance of the country s middle class to do anything that might jeopardize its comfortable lifestyle are a big part of the problem Levels of violence that would be considered a public emergency in most countries are fatalistically accepted in Brazil an average of seventeen murders per day in the city of Rio de Janeiro for example These difficulties however don t overshadow

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/destinations/south-america/brazil/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Places to Visit in Chile | Where to go in Chile | Rough Guides
    narrow sliver of land clinging to the edge of a continent Chile has often drawn attention to itself for its wholly implausible shape Seen in the pages of an atlas the country s outline strikes you as aberrant and fantastical 4300km in length the equivalent of Norway to Nigeria and with an average width of just 175km the very idea of it seems absurd Once you re on Chilean soil however these boundaries make perfect sense and visitors quickly realize that Chile is a geographically self contained unit The Andes the great mountain range that forms its eastern border are a formidable barrier of rock and ice that cuts the country off from Argentina and Bolivia The Atacama Desert a 1000km stretch of parched wasteland separates it from Peru to the north And to the west only a few islands dotted in the Pacific Ocean break the waves that roll onto Chile s coast from Australasia All this has created a country distinct from the rest of South America and one that defies many people s expectations of an Andean country It is developed relatively affluent and non corrupt and with the exception of the infamous military regime of the 1970s and 1980s boasts a long tradition of political stability and orderly government It is without doubt one of the safest and most relaxing places to visit within South America Its buses are comfortable and run on time its people polite respectful and discreet and its indigenous minorities in the main coexist peacefully alongside the rest of the population A country of geographical extremes Chile s diversity is reflected both in its people from the alpaca herders of the altiplano and the gauchos of Patagonia to the businessmen of Santiago and its cuisine which encompasses the tropical fruit of the

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/destinations/south-america/chile/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Colombia Travel | Places to visit in Colombia | Rough Guides
    a Budget View Guide Sao Paulo Rough Guides Snapshot Brazil View Guide Buenos Aires Rough Guides Snapshot Argentina View Guide Rough Guides Snapshot Chile Santiago View Guide Rough Guides Snapshot South America on a Budget Uruguay View Guide Rough Guide Audio Phrasebook and Dictionary Latin American Spanish View Guide Rough Guides Snapshot Brazil Rio de Janeiro View Guide The Rough Guide to Brazil View Guide Rough Guides Snapshot South America on a Budget Paraguay View Guide Home to a traumatic but rich history stunning scenery and some of the continent s most welcoming and sophisticated people Colombia is a natural draw for travellers to South America Despite its four decade long civil war and reputation for violence improved security conditions have led to a sharp increase in tourism Foreigners and Colombians alike are now far more able to explore this thrilling paradise of cloudforested mountains palm fringed beaches and gorgeous colonial cities The only country in South America to border both the Pacific and the Caribbean Colombia offers a huge range of ecosystems from the Amazon rainforest near Leticia to the snowcapped mountains of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta and the tropical islands of San Andrés and Providencia Read

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/destinations/south-america/colombia/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Ecuador Travel | Places to visit in Ecuador | Rough Guides
    Quito its jewel of a capital The steamy jungle wilderness of the Oriente and the mist shrouded lowland cloudforests hold and protect just some of the country s mind boggling array of flora and fauna there are more bird species per square mile in Ecuador than any other South American country and more orchids than anywhere else on the planet The country s greatest draw though are the captivating Galápagos Islands nearly 1 0000km from the mainland whose extraordinary wildlife inspired Charles Darwin and changed the world Ecuador s mainland divides neatly into three distinct regions running the length of the country in parallel strips In the middle is the sierra formed by the eastern and western chains of the Andes which are punctuated by more than thirty volcanoes and enclosed by a series of high plateaux at around 2800m above sea level themselves divided by gentle nudos or knots of hills This is the agricultural and indigenous heartland of Ecuador a region of patchwork fields stately haciendas and remote farming villages as well as the country s oldest and most important cities including Quito East of the sierra is the Oriente a large sparsely populated area extending into the upper Amazon basin much of it covered by dense tropical rainforest an exhilarating exotic region though under increasing threat from the oil industry and colonization West of the sierra in the coastal region banana sugar coffee rice and cacao crops line a fertile alluvial plain that is bordered on its Pacific seaboard by a string of beaches mangrove swamps shrimp farms and ports Almost a thousand kilometres of ocean separate the coastline from the Galápagos archipelago famed for its wondrous endemic birds mammals reptiles and plants Ecuador s regions provide a home to almost fifteen million people the majority of

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/destinations/south-america/ecuador/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Places to Visit in Peru | Where to go in Peru | Rough Guides
    with pink dolphins or paddle your way down the Amazon in a dugout canoe or all of the above this is a country that s ripe for exploring Wherever you go Peru s vibrant Andean culture one of the most exciting in the Americas will brighten your travels tucked away highland towns explode into colour on market day and local fiestas are celebrated with unbridled enthusiasm This immense wealth of sights and experiences has its roots in one of the world s richest heritages topped by the Inca Empire and its fabulous archeological gems not to mention the monumental adobe temples and pre Inca ruins along the desert coast Magical Machu Picchu may be the big gun in Peru s archeological arsenal but there are plenty of other fascinating sites too and important new discoveries are constantly being unearthed Boasting access to the highest tropical mountain range in the world as well as one of the best preserved areas of virgin Amazon rainforest Peru s wildlife is as diverse as you d expect and sights such as jaguars slinking through the jungle caimans sunning themselves on riverbanks and dazzling macaws gathering at Amazon clay licks are all within the visitor s grasp For those looking for adrenaline fuelled fun a host of outdoor activities are on offer from trekking ancient trails and whitewater rafting to paragliding and hurtling through the desert on dune buggy rides Equally a trip to Peru could focus on more restful pursuits Widely touted as one of the world s culinary hotspots the country and Lima in particular offers an array of exotic tastes to appeal to curious palates as well as a laidback vibrant dining scene ranging from backstreet cevicherías to gourmet restaurants And in the big cities you can expect buzzing nightlife too Despite

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/destinations/south-america/peru/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Map of South America |South America Countries | Rough Guides | Rough Guides
    a land of rich treasures stretching from the frozen glaciers of Patagonia through dense equatorial jungle and up into the northern hemisphere Our map of South America will help you get your bearings With enough time to spare you can marvel at the world s highest waterfall venture into the planet s most diverse rainforests and road trip across roof of the world deserts that will quite literally take your breath away Modern metropolises sparkle on the continent s Pacific and Atlantic coasts while further inland remote tribes observe traditions rooted in ancient history Dance the tango seek spiritual enlightenment with a shaman explore Inca ruins and see the plazas and churches built by the first Europeans When it s time to wind down make a beeline for the beach from Ecuador to Brazil there s no shortage of sandy spots to choose from Find out more about South America Interactive South America Map South American Countries Click the links below to view a map of your chosen country 1 Argentina 2 Bolivia 3 Brazil 4 Chile 5 Colombia 6 Ecuador 7 Suriname 8 Paraguay 9 Peru 10 Uruguay 11 Venezuela Related Ebooks Rough Guide Audio Phrasebook and Dictionary Latin

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/maps/south-america/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Places to Visit in South America | Where to go in South America | Rough Guides
    Brazil Chile Colombia Ecuador Peru Latest South America Features View By Destination Argentina Bolivia Brazil Chile Colombia Ecuador Guyana Paraguay Peru Uruguay Venezuela 8 must visit places in South America you ve probably never heard of Why Uruguay is South America s best beach destination 6 reasons to visit Bogotá South America s underrated capital 6 incredible journeys in South America The man who accidentally picked up a pet penguin in Uruguay Bolivia s most beautiful journeys Your South America itinerary 7 ideas for exploring the continent Bolivia make time for South America s most misunderstood country Behind the scenes of the best restaurants in Lima See all South America features Travel Guides The Rough Guide to Colombia Rough Guides Snapshot South America on a Budget Uruguay Southern Brazil Rough Guides Snapshot Brazil Rough Guides Snapshot South America on a Budget Venezuela The Rough Guide to South America On a Budget Rough Guides Snapshot South America on a Budget Paraguay Rough Guides Snapshot Brazil Rio de Janeiro Rough Guides Snapshot Chile Santiago The Rough Guide to Peru See all South America travel guides Gallery See all pictures of South America 20 off ebooks Subscribe to the Rough Guides newsletter and

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/destinations/south-america/?wpfpaction=add&postid=6251 (2016-02-16)
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