5 Things That Surprised Me Most About Traveling Solo In Latin America

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There are various misconceptions about touring solo in Latin America.

I spent the higher a part of a 12 months in Central and South America, and there have been many issues that shocked me about touring solo on this a part of the world.

I’ve traveled to 11 international locations in Latin America, spending wherever from a number of days to a couple months in every nation.

Listed here are probably the most shocking issues I found whereas touring solo in Latin America:

Woman in Cartagena

1. It’s Safer Than You May Anticipate

One of many largest misconceptions about Latin America is that it’s extraordinarily harmful and also you’d be loopy to journey there alone, particularly as a feminine traveler.

However after touring extensively all through Central and South America, I can say that I’ve by no means as soon as felt unsafe. I hardly skilled road harassment in Latin America like I did in locations like Paris (the place I used to dwell), Rome, or Athens.

After all, you must nonetheless train warning whereas touring in Latin America, and there are positively sure areas to keep away from. You must also be vigilant about widespread journey scams (which might occur wherever on the earth) however total, Latin America is much safer than you might think.

Young Female Tourist With A Backpack Watching A Waterfall In A Natural Setting, Costa Rica, Central America

2. It’s One Of The Most Numerous Areas In The World

Since most international locations in Latin America have Spanish colonial historical past and converse Spanish as the first language, you would possibly assume that the area may be very homogenous.

However removed from being a monolith, Latin America is definitely probably the most numerous areas on the earth. There’s a wealthy historical past of indigenous tradition that stretches from the Aztecs and Mayans in Central America to the Incans in South America (and lots of extra.)

In Latin America, I’ve surfed in tropical seashore locations, explored historic colonial cities, found historic ruins deep within the jungle and excessive within the mountains, hiked volcanoes, and skilled otherworldly desert landscapes.

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A stunning photo of Peru's most popular attaction, Machu Picchu, a 15th century stone citadel perched on the top of a mountain.

3. It’s Excellent For Solo Vacationers

I’ve traveled extensively in Latin America and Europe on my own, and by far, I’ve discovered Latin America to be higher for solo vacationers.

The backpacker trails of Central and South America draw a number of long-term vacationers, so it’s simpler to satisfy individuals and make journey buddies. There are many nice hostels in Latin America too.

In most international locations in Latin America, the tourism infrastructure is well-developed and it’s straightforward to prepare activities and tours the place you too can meet different vacationers.

Woman in Nicaragua

4. It’s Nice For Digital Nomads

Latin America will not be the primary area of the world you consider in the case of digital nomad hotspots, but it surely’s truly one of many fastest-growing locations for distant staff.

Each Central America and South America have tons of nice cities which are good for digital nomads who need to take pleasure in a decrease price of dwelling and nonetheless be in the identical time zone as the US.

A few of the finest locations for digital nomads in Latin America embody Antigua, Guatemala, Quito, Ecuador, Medellin, Colombia, and Panama Metropolis, Panama.

View of Medellin Colombia

5. It’s Very Useful To Know Spanish

Lastly, I used to be shocked by how a lot you actually need to know Spanish in some components of Latin America. I used to be fortunate that I had studied Spanish for years in class, however I encountered many vacationers who struggled as a result of they didn’t converse a phrase of Spanish.

Whereas you may get by not talking any Spanish in fashionable vacationer locations, it’s actually useful to know no less than the fundamentals. It turns into much more helpful should you plan to journey round Latin America long-term or go off the vacationer path.

I spent a number of months finding out Spanish in Guatemala, which is an effective way to be taught Spanish shortly. It’s extraordinarily fashionable, so there are dozens of Spanish faculties to select from in locations like Antigua and Lake Atitlan, and it’s additionally very reasonably priced.

Archway in Antigua Guatemala

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