Most Underrated Destinations in South America

Girls from South America

South America has some of the most beautiful places on Earth. It is no surprise that it attracts so many tourists worldwide every year. It consists of only twelve countries, but each of them is equally charming and interesting in its own way. Some tourist locations on this continent are very well known, such as the Inca citadel Machu Picchu in Peru, the statue of Christ “Christ the Redeemer” in Brazil, Iguazu waterfalls in Argentina, and so much more. But besides all these famous places, there are so much less familiar destinations that are as gorgeous but not talked about enough. We are here to show you the most underrated destinations in South America that you should check out if you love traveling.

Los Roques Archipelago

Los Roques Archipelago is one of South America’s more expensive and lavish destinations. It is perfect for various activities. If you are looking for sandy beaches, crystal clear water with lots of coral riffs for diving and snorkeling, then this is a place to go. This place is truly Heaven on Earth; It is located in the Caribbean Sea, not far away from the coast of Venezuela, and it has around 350 islands and numerous animal and plant species, some of them which are endangered. The main occupations for visitors are, of course, swimming and exploring marine life. Some people are fond of fishing, which is very rewarding here since there are at least 270 species of fish. Kitesurfing and windsurfing are options as well.

There are only two ways to travel here. By plane, which is the way most people do it, or by boat. We should warn you that hotel accommodation is costly here, but don’t worry. You could also camp here, which can be a fun experience, and it will ultimately cost cheaper. You just need to pack everything you may need and enjoy!

Paraguay and Asuncion

Paraguay is a relatively small country located in the central part of the continent. However, it is a fantastic option to check out some unique destinations in South America. Not to mention that this country could be a good choice if you ever try to move internationally. We know that moving to another continent can be very stressful and filled with anxiety, but try to keep a positive mindset. There is no need to worry if you have made the right choice since Paraguay is well known for its safety and mild and pleasant climate. Have that in mind if you ever plan to move there.

As for its capital, Asuncion, located on the banks of the Paraguay River, is filled with exciting content. Here are some examples. The seat of the government of Paraguay, “Palacio de Lopez” is a beautiful construction that is even more extravagant at night when all the lights come on. And if you are an art lover, Asuncion’s Art Museums are must-visit places. There are various: Museo del Barro, Museo de Bellas Artes, Museo de Arte Sacro, Fundacion Texo, etc. And if you love animals and nature, we suggest visiting the Botanical Garden and Zoo of Asuncion or the delightful Crystal Fall, located in the jungle area.

The city of Valparaíso, one of the most underrated destinations in South America.
The colorful city of Valparaíso should be a must-visit place.

City of Valparaíso

The colorful city of Valparaíso is a must-see if you are visiting Chile. It is located about 80 miles northwest of the much more known country capital Santiago. It is the country’s cultural center, famous for its street art, brightly colored houses, and seaside views resembling some European cities. In 2003 the town was placed on UNESCO’s World Heritage list. Poet Pablo Neruda, one of its most famous inhabitants, often described it as beautiful chaos, partly because of its specific geography. Between a mountain range and the ocean, the city is a maze of steep inclines, narrow streets, and staircases, making some cities landmarks reachable only by foot or funicular. So be prepared for a lot of walking that will finally pay off because this is one of those places where, if you like photography, you will not put your camera down for a second.

The Chan Chan Adobe City in Trujillo, Peru.
Peru has a rich culture and wild nature.

Trujillo, Peru

Peru has rich pre-hispanic culture, wild nature, and world-famous gastronomy. That is why it is one of the favorite destinations in South America for tourists. But there is much more than Machu Picchu and Cuzco. Although it gets only ten percent of overall international tourist visits in Peru, the city of Trujillo is an excellent example of an unjustly underrated destination in South America. At least for those interested in pre-Columbian culture and heritage and not fond of high altitudes and problems it brings. Near the city lies Chan Chan, the largest mud city in the ancient world and the capital of Chimu culture. The site is a world heritage site. Some 2.5 miles south of Trujillo is another important archeological site, Las Huacas del Sol y de la Luna, which is very interesting to visit. Huanchaco spa is another place you should not miss.

Black monkey walking on rocks.
Amazon forests are full of wildlife.

Iquitos, Peru

Another location in Peru that deserves your attention is Iquitos. It is the capital of the Mayan province. People also know it as the capital of the Peruvian Amazon. Iquitos is the largest city in the world that isn’t connected to any other by road. The only way to access it is either by boat or plane. And that is part of its charm. Lush nature and the multitude of animals that live in a nearby jungle draw in the tourists that visit Iquitos. Choose one of the boat tours that can take you to one of the protected natural areas in the Amazon. Visit the local community of indigenous people or take a night-time hike in the jungle. These will be fun adventures that you’ll remember fondly. Be sure to try local or international dishes in the Iron house constructed by Gustav Eiffel.

Final Words

There is a reason why popular places are popular, but it doesn’t mean that those less known are not beautiful. If you love traveling, we urge you to consider visiting these underrated destinations in South America. See some other cultures, try new food, and enjoy your visit to the fullest!