Set on Chile’s Pacific coast, Valparaíso is famous for its unique bohemian culture, brightly coloured houses and stunning seashores. It’s a riot of colour and fun, different from any city you’ve ever visited – so it’s little wonder that it became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2003.
Easter Island is Chile’s other hidden treasure and another must-see destination on UNESCO’s list. You’re almost certainly familiar with its legendary stone moai and other indigenous artefacts, but you may not know that it’s one of the most remote inhabited places on earth – and a location that few tourists will ever experience.
Whilst you’re in Chile, don’t miss the fjords. As spectacular as any to be found in Northern Europe, Chile’s fjords are set amid some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world, with snow-capped mountains standing proud under bright blue skies.
Lima, capital of Peru, was the seat of Spanish rule for 300 years and has the architecture to prove it, including magnificent churches and monasteries that will stay with you forever. The city is famous for its cuisine, with countless good restaurants competing for your custom, and is well known for its wonderful summer weather. Meanwhile, the country’s principal seaport of Callao is more than just a place to dock – it’s a treasure trove of history, with stunning colonial architecture that can hold its own against that of Peru.
Ecuador can boast the world’s most elevated capital city in Quito, perched 9,350 feet above the ocean. One of the most beautiful and unspoilt historic centres in the Americas, Quito is another UNESCO World Heritage Site and one more destination you simply have to experience while in South America.
However, the greatest jewel in Ecuador’s crown has to be the spectacular Galápagos islands, whose teeming and unique wildlife inspired Charles Darwin’s Theory of Natural Selection. Giant tortoises, sea lions, marine iguanas, penguins and remarkably diverse seabirds have attracted the attention of natural historians from all over the world. We know they will command yours and create memories that last a lifetime.