Latin America offers the intrepid traveller a brilliantly varied patchwork of stunning landscapes to explore, ancient sites to marvel at, diverse cultural influences to appreciate and plenty of parties, fiestas and celebrations to enjoy.
With its relatively low cost of living, slower pace of life, vibrant cities, snow-capped mountains, treacherous jungles, surreal deserts and rainforests .
The best way to truly feel a part of Latin America and join the party, however, is not to simply pass through from tourist sight to tourist sight but to get involved and feel part of the communities you visit.
Fortunately there are plenty of opportunities to volunteer in projects as diverse as human rights, conservation, archaeology, healthcare, community work or to . So there is no reason not to dive in and experience Latin American culture and parties like a local.
Here are some things not to miss and some ideas how you can feel a real part of the Latin American countries you visit rather than just a tourist.
From the almost lifeless dream-like glaciers of Patagonia to the biodiversity of Costa Rica’s rainforests there is so much to see. The gushing Iguazu waterfalls of Brazil, ancient cities of Peru perched atop the Andes and the mysterious Mayan ruins abandoned in the jungles will all take your breath away.
Fiestas and carnivals
Latin America knows how to party and even its religious festivals descend into a riot of colour, celebration and music. – or Easter – in cities including Antigua (Guatemala) sees the streets decked with carpets of flowers, pines, clover and fruits.
Meanwhile the streets are just as colourful and who could say what they will be decked with for the Carnival in Rio (Brazil). Whatever the occasion, get involved because the locals surely will!
Be a part of the Latin American party
The best way to experience Latin America is to be a part of it. Organisations such as that enable you to gain experience in an area of interest while living and working with the local community.
You can even take the opportunity to learn the local language (Spanish or Portuguese), which will greatly help your further travels.
Some of the ways to get involved by volunteering with these kinds of organisations include learning about the Incas in Peru while working with local cultures, working in hospitals in Mexico, teaching English in Bolivia, and pursuing care work in Argentina.
These programmes can last from two weeks to several months so you can tailor your volunteering to suit your trip.
Volunteers take home so much more than just holiday snaps from their travels. They become part of the cultures they visit so you will really feel that Latin spirit. Now let’s party!