There’s nothing that compares to solo travel. It’s a time to get out of your comfort zone and find yourself; and when you do, the world is your oyster! You can do whatever you want, eat whenever you want, scale whatever mountain you want, and sleep whenever you want. Most importantly, you can go wherever you want! The hard part? Figuring out where that place is—and of course, what you’re going to do while you’re there.
Knowing this, next time you want to plan some South American adventures, head to South America and let Surtrek show you the way. Operated by local travel experts, Surtrek is an all-in-one travel company that designs custom, once-in-a-lifetime journeys through South America that you won’t find anywhere else. Travel alone and, with their help, you’ll get to discover the world, and yourself, in a way you haven’t before.
In Chile, you can see everything from moonscapes, lakes and mountains, to volcanoes, beaches, islands, salt flats and fire-red deserts for miles. Go to southern Chile, however, and you’ll find a nature lover’s winter playground: Patagonia. Here, you can rediscover yourself as you trek through steep valleys, go rock climbing, cruise down one of its rivers or just take in the beautiful, wild natural surroundings that envelope you. Patagonia is huge, so when it comes to planning South American adventures, there’s so much to explore. One thing you definitely can’t miss are the fjords; these icy, dramatic landscapes will make you forget you’re just South of the equator.
For a solo adventure that capitalizes on adventure, “Baños” is where you want to go. It sits in Ecuador’s Tungurahua province, it’s a gateway to the Amazon Basin, and it has the active Mt. Tungurahua volcano, the can’t-miss El Pailón del Diablo and Agoyán waterfalls, and mineral-rich hot springs. With such a vast range of landscapes, this spot is the perfect place for the solo traveler to find a true escape. At Baños, you’re at the starting point for hiking trails up the volcano, and as you make your way up to Casa de Arbol, you’ll stumble upon a real treat: the “Swing at the End of the World.” Hanging off a seismic monitoring station that looks like a treehouse, this is an actual swing where solo travelers can swing in thin air and take in a view of the volcano all on their own. It’s extraordinary, but be warned: There’s nothing but air and a cavernous canyon to catch you if you fall.
If you want to see two countries at once, head to Laguna Verde, which sits at the foothills of the Licacahur volcano, on the Chilean-Bolivian border. Its name translates to “Green Lake,” which you’ll understand once you see its turquoise and emerald waters. Its striking colors aside, however, this mineral salt lake is also mystical because of the fact that it seemingly “hovers” 4,300 meters above sea level. Perfect for the traveler who loves all climates, you can disconnect daily as you quietly relax in its piping-hot thermal springs; just make sure to bring a parka for when the sun goes down. At night, the temperatures can go down to -4°F.
Where you’re going: Salta
Perfect for the quiet-seeking solo traveler, Salta is small town with a big-city layout. Founded in 1582, this haven of colonial architecture is the perfect place to call home as you explore Argentina’s wild northwest. See Quebrada de San Lorenzo, a nature reserve at the foot of the sub-Andean mountains that forms part of the Yungas forest. Here, you can immerse yourself in green ferns, creeks, moss and a tropical cloud forest, one filled with all of the ancient Incas, farmers, foxes, toucans, small deer and more that make South American adventures so sweet. Then, from Salta, follow the 300+-mile loop as you see an alpine pass, the hamlet of Seclantás, Colomé’s horse ranch and wine estate, and countless red-orange canyons in between. Wherever you go, prepare to be in awe. The landscapes you’ll see, here and everywhere in South America, are truly breathtaking.