If you’re looking for some thrill seeking action, a South America vacation should be at the top of your travel list. Cheaper than Africa, more exotic than North America, and wilder than Europe, few continents can claim the diversity, accessibility, and abundance of gasp-inducing activities that South America offers. Here are several adventures to check out, if you dare.
Mount Roraima. Ever seen the movie UP? The wonderfully mysterious and majestic place the characters dream about visiting actually exists. It is in Venezuela and is called Mount Roraima. It is a remarkably massive plateau surrounded by 400 foot sheer drop-offs. Getting there is difficult and should only be attempted by the most adventurous traveler, as it requires a several day trek through misty mountains. And of course, just traveling in Venezuela, regardless of where, can be challenging.
Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. The Inca Trail trek is much more traveled than the trek to Mount Roraima, but that doesn’t make it any less amazing. This trek follows the original path used by the Inca civilization to get to Machu Picchu, which back in the 1500s was an isolated retreat for Inca royalty. The high altitude requires at least a day to adjust to in Cuzco before setting off, and trekkers can choose to carry all their own supplies (such as tent, sleeping bag, and equipment) or hire a porter to carry them instead.
Biking in Bolivia. Despite being smack in the middle of the continent, Bolivia tends to be overlooked by travelers and tourists alike. This interesting highland country however has several hidden gems, especially for thrill seekers. Biking down what was once the World’s Most Dangerous Road is of course exciting, but a bit safer today because most car and truck traffic now (thankfully) takes a different route. Visiting the salt flats in Bolivia is another extremely unique experience, although biking across them isn’t recommended and would be nearly impossible.
Amazon adventuring. The Amazon covers parts of many countries, but the Amazon River runs primarily though Peru and Brazil. The most adventurous way to visit this region is to travel like the locals on slow moving river boats. An Amazon cruise is the trip a lifetime, but if you’re looking for something rougher and more affordable, hop on a local river boat. You can opt for a journey anywhere from 3 to 15 days. Be sure to plan ahead and pack proper supplies, because life on a river boat is pretty basic.