South America was sometimes considered a subcontinent of the Americas, but today it is largely seen as a continent of its own.
Covering 47% of the South American continent, Brazil is the largest country in South America and the fifth largest economy in the world with the city of Sao Paulo as its commercial hub. Brazil is known for its Amazon Rainforest, the passionate, masterful football players and samba dancers and musicians, as well as the colourful yearly carnival, and the famous beaches.
To the South-west of Brazil lies Argentina, the second largest country in Latin America and the world’s largest Spanish-speaking nation. The tango - that sultry and intimate Latin dance - is undoubtedly Argentina’s most known export, with many tango clubs populating the working class district of La Boca, in the capital Buenos Aires.
Wedged between these two giants is tiny Uruguay (”river of the painted birds”). Attractions in the capital Montevideo include the old city quarter (‘Ciudad Vieja’) and the Rambla promenade, with more than 13km of white sandy beaches for relaxation, watersports and sundowners.
To the Pacific Ocean side, Chile is a long, narrow country, wedged between Argentina and the ocean. The beautiful Valparaíso is a major seaport, known to sailors as “Little San Francisco” and famous for its artistic vibe. Ancient cultures, including the famous Inca Empire, also populated Peru, whose city of Nazca was home to an ancient culture. The Nazcas built a system of underground aqueducts that still function today.