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Cheapest South American countries to visit in 2024

South America is an amazing continent that draws travelers from all over the world. The heritage of its pre-Columbian civilizations, its colorful modern culture, and its incredible natural wealth are intertwined here. There’s a wide range of experiences on offer in South America. Have fun at the Carnival of Brazil, feel the power and enjoy the beauty of Iguazu Falls, taste delicious alcohol like Singani in Bolivia, and visit penguins in the Falkland Islands. Here’s our list of the best and cheapest countries where you will only need a little money to have a wonderful vacation.

Cheap South American destinations where you can travel on a tight budget

  • Bolivia
  • Paraguay
  • Ecuador
  • Venezuela
  • Peru
  • Brazil

Bolivia – A country where people’s colorful clothing fully corresponds with their lifestyle

It’s hard not to fall in love with unique Bolivia. Local people wear bright national outfits that reflect their mood and lifestyle, and flamingos live in colored lagoons. Active travelers can walk on water on the surface of a salt marsh at 3650 meters above sea level. Bolivia is also one of the best countries in South America regarding prices and safety.

Best places to visit in Bolivia

Let’s consider the most budget-friendly (yet just as great) places to stay in the country where llamas are the national animal.

Go on a trip searching for silver in Potosí

The city of Potosí itself is a stunning place to stay. It is located at an altitude of about 4000 meters above sea level, guarded by Cerro Rico Mountain. Travelers can trek to the mountain or admire it from a distance in the town. Back in the 16th century, a lot of silver was discovered in Potosí. Travelers can visit the working mines now as if they were real silver miners. A gripping adventure!

Santa Cruz – Have a rest in the best Bolivian weather

Santa Cruz de la Sierra, commonly just called Santa Cruz, is not only a magnificent city in Bolivia: it is located in such a satisfactory location that it holds the blessing of pleasant weather. Make sure you take some time to experience the local nightlife and walk along the charming Monseñor Rivero Street.

If you are a nature enthusiast, you must not skip Parque El Arenal or Jardín Botánico – a paradise where native monkeys and sloths liven up your leisure time.

Discover Sucre, the magnificent White Town

Sucre is the capital of Bolivia. When you come here and walk around the incredible streets with the remnants of Spanish colonial charm, you will understand why it is also called White City. The primary sights are the mesmerizing cathedral and the quiet cemetery. Be sure to visit Mount Cal Orko, a mountain that is completely covered in fossilized dinosaur footprints.

Everything about Bolivia in numbers

Area: 1,099,000 km2 Language: Spanish Capital city: Sucre
Population: 11.8 million Local Currency: boliviano Time zone: GMT-4

Average monthly temperatures in Santa Cruz, Bolivia

Avg Temp Santa Cruz Bolivia

Paraguay – The cheapest country for getting off the beaten path

Paraguay is not a popular tourist destination, unlike other neighboring countries. This country is often seen as “forgotten” compared to its popular neighbors. However, this has helped preserve a lot of cultural heritage in Paraguay, which was destroyed by the Spanish conquistadors. A visit to Paraguay can be a unique opportunity to get acquainted with the pre-Columbian cultures of Latin America.

Best places to visit in Paraguay

Here are the best vacation spots to visit in Paraguay.

Two different Paraguays meet in Сhaco

Everyone needs to travel to Lower and Upper Chaco when in Paraguay: both are beautiful and relatively untouched lands. In the humid Lower Chaco, you can visit historic Mennonite German settlements, go birdwatching, and explore national parks. In the arid Upper Chaco, traditional Indian settlements and the National Defense Historical Park will leave unforgettable impressions on you.

Areguá – A vacation spot for serene vacations

Areguá is a tiny village located 28 kilometers from the capital. Nevertheless, its options for pleasure range widely. People come to Areguá to relax on the shores of the amazingly beautiful Lake Iparacay. It’s one of the best places for souvenirs. You can buy some cute handmade ceramics here for little or nothing.

Admire the architectural masterpiece of Asunción

Asunción, the capital of Paraguay, is diverse on various levels. The city is hugely popular among backpackers, with its large number of rich colonial mansions and tourist attractions on every corner. If you’re looking for budget accommodation options, Asunción is well known for its variety and value for money.

Everything about Paraguay in numbers

Area: 406,752 km2 Language: Spanish and Guaraní Capital city: Asunción
Population: 7.2 million Local Currency: guaraní Time zone: GMT-3

Average monthly temperatures in Asuncion, Paraguay

Avg Temp Asuncion Paraguay

Ecuador – A vacation in search of El Dorado

Ecuador is one of the smallest countries in South America, but its miniature size has not prevented it from becoming one of the most interesting destinations for travel enthusiasts. Five centuries ago, adventurers rushed here to find El Dorado, a country where gold lines the streets and children play not with pebbles but with nuggets of gold. Today, tourists come here to find magnificent nature and opportunities for outdoor activities.

Best places to visit in Ecuador

Let’s look at Ecuador’s unique destinations for you to stay during your vacation.

Ambato – Find yourself in the garden city

The Garden City of Ecuador – that’s what people call Ambato. The city itself is a great place for South American relaxation. Walking along the streets, you will experience the friendliness of the locals. Do not turn down the chance to try their fragrant local wine at local cafes.

Shop till you drop on a budget in Riobamba

Riobamba is a stunning town with narrow cobblestone streets and enchanting white houses. If you are here on a Saturday, make sure to visit the ample local market, where you can buy literally everything you can think of – spices, herbs, food, national clothes, and souvenirs. After shopping, admire the Riobamba Cathedral, the Municipality Building, and Maldonado Park.

Quito – One of the oldest South American capitals

When you come to Quito, the capital of Ecuador, you will not be surprised as to why this city was one of the first to be added to the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage List. Its location in a picturesque valley on the slopes of the Andes will move you deep in your soul. The Moorish-style Governor’s Palace, Independence Square, and the Church and Convent of St. Francis (the oldest one in South America) are must-sees!

Everything about Ecuador in numbers

Area: 283,560 km2 Language: Spanish Capital city: Quito
Population: 17.8 million Local Currency: US dollar Time zone: GMT-5

Average monthly temperatures in Quito, Ecuador

Avg Temp Quito Ecuador

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Venezuela – Travel to find the secret South American treasures

Travelers worldwide go to Venezuela to see picturesque waterfalls and lagoons, white-sand beaches, and mountain ranges. Active tourists come here to practice windsurfing and kite, while loungers can sunbathe and swim in the clear waters of the Caribbean Sea.

Best places to visit in Venezuela

Here are the best and cheapest places for you to check out in Venezuela.

Choroni – The perfect relaxation for you

If you are looking for a serene and less-promoted town, head for Choroni. Here, you can admire the classic Creole architecture and enjoy tasty pizza in local cafes. The stunning local beach is a great, uncrowded spot “sandwiched” between a mountain and numerous gently sloping hills.

Enjoy the pearl of Venezuela – Margarita Island

Margarita Island has earned the title of “Pearl of Venezuela,” not just for its beauty but for its real beds of pearls. Nowadays, tourists come here to find metaphorical pearls: kilometers of sandy beaches, many orchids, hundreds of flamingos and parrots, and a comfortable and relaxing holiday.

Costa Azul, the island’s capital, will give you a great experience with its vibrant nightlife. In the daytime, spend time visiting the beautiful forts and thermal springs surrounded by luxurious greenery and plantations of cocoa beans – it’s a must!

Caracas: A bustling capital like no other

Caracas is filled with exciting things to see for tourists, such as the Miraflores Palace or the Teresa Carreño Theatre. But if you want to dive deeper into the country’s culture, you should visit the house museum of Simón Bolívar, the respected hero-liberator of Venezuela. It is an unattractive and mediocre building, but on the inside, you will find historic treasures, with Bolívar’s original belongings preserved.

Everything about Venezuela in numbers

Area: 916,445 km2 Language: Spanish Capital city: Caracas
Population: 28.7 million Local Currency: Venezuelan bolivar Time zone: GMT-4

Average monthly temperatures in Valencia, Venezuela

Avg Temp Valencia Venezuela

Peru – Travel back to the beginning of civilization

To get to Peru, you have to endure an extremely long flight. But it’s worth it to see the beginning of civilization. Here, you will find plenty of interesting historical excursions, rainbow-colored mountains, and delicious food.

Best places to visit in Peru

Peru has so many fantastic sights that it’s impossible to do it all at once. Let’s look at the top attractions you can’t afford to miss on your first visit.

Land in the middle of the Peruvian Andes in Cusco

Once the capital of the ancient Inca empire, Cusco is one of the oldest and most significant cities in the world. When you walk around its stunning streets, you feel as if you were walking through the settlement of the Inca as well as through the capital of a Spanish colony.

Ica – A magnificent place where everyone will find something special and affordable

The best thing about Ica is not just its beauty but the large number of experiences waiting to be had. Surfing and windsurfing, diving and snorkeling, yachting, and kayaking await active tourists. Extreme sports lovers can participate in things like helicopters, buggy tours, or skydiving.

Are you a fan of revealing the mysteries of ancient civilizations? The geoglyphs of the Nazca Lines and the ruins of the ancient Inca city of Los Paredones are waiting for you!

Wander through Lima, one of the most beautiful capitals in the world

The capital of Peru, Lima, is a vibrant metropolis: it is located on the Pacific Ocean, at the foot of the Andes mountains, in the valley of the Lurin, Rimac, and Chiyon rivers. The capital boasts beautiful, clean beaches that perfectly suit a family vacation with children. The historic center of Lima, which is on the UNESCO List, is definitely worth a visit.

Everything about Peru in numbers

Area: 1,285,000 km2 Language: Spanish (Quechua and Aymara have co-official status in the regions in which they are spoken) Capital city: Lima
Population: 33.3 million Local Currency: sol Time zone: GMT-5

Average monthly temperatures in Lima, Peru

Avg Temp Lima Peru

Beautiful Brazilian

Brazil – A paradise destination for adventure-seekers

Brazil is known for its happy people, crazy parties like Carnival, and football. But the most striking thing is, of course, its nature. Just imagine: you could take trips to places like the Amazon that only a handful of people outside the country have seen.

Best places to visit in Brazil

Brazil has lots of budget-friendly places for travelers to visit. Here are some of them.

Perfect climate and interesting activities await in Itacaré

Itacaré is known for its tropical climate, which travelers adore. Here, you can find around 20 beaches for every taste, walk among the coconut groves, take capoeira lessons, or go rock climbing. Choose a suitable beach to spend your time during the day and then take a walk to Conchas Beach in the evening, where they hold free capoeira performances every evening. A great chance to know Brazilian culture a little better.

Rio de Janeiro – A city that God created on the seventh day

The Brazilians are sure that on the seventh day after the world’s creation, God was busy creating Rio de Janeiro. They have every reason to believe this: Rio is magnificent, beautiful, original, and energetic. Popular attractions include Christ the Redeemer and Copacabana Beach.

Besides popular sights, there are many other things to do. Count the steps of the Escadaria Selarón staircase, laid with colored tiles sent from more than 60 countries. Of course, you should also go dancing at the Rio Scenarium club to feel the true vibe of Brazil.

No sea but a lot of fun in Brasília

The capital of Brazil, Brasília, has no sea at all. Nevertheless, the cute and vibrant streets of Brasília are at your disposal, waiting to be explored. There are a lot of pools and water parks to compensate for the absence of the ocean.

Everything about Brazil in numbers

Area: 8,516,000 km2 Language: Portuguese Capital city: Brasília
Population: 214 million Local Currency: Brazilian real Time zone: GMT-3

Average monthly temperatures in Rio de Janeiro, Brasil

Avg Temp Rio de Janeiro Brasil

Want to find out more about the cheapest vacation places? Read more on Kiwi.com Stories!

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