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Panoramic photo by Pablo Castillo - 360Ecuador EXPERT Taken 18:46, 27/09/2011 - Views loading...

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La Merced

The World > South America > Ecuador

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Nearby images in Ecuador

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A: Merced basilic of guayaquil

by jose-ignacio-teran, 90 meters away

Merced basilic of guayaquil

B: San Francisco Church of Guayaquil

by jose-ignacio-teran, 230 meters away

San Francisco Church of Guayaquil

C: malecon-8-of-guayaquil

by jose-ignacio-teran, 290 meters away

malecon-8-of-guayaquil

D: Malecon 2000

by Richard Bline, 360 meters away

Malecon 2000

Malecon 2000

E: Malecon 2000/ Guayaquil / Ecuador/ 12.2011

by NilsW, 370 meters away

Ecuador

Malecon 2000/ Guayaquil / Ecuador/ 12.2011

F: Government Palace of Guayas in Guayaquil

by jose-ignacio-teran, 500 meters away

Government Palace of Guayas in Guayaquil

G: Palace of the Governorate of Guayas

by jose-ignacio-teran, 520 meters away

Palace of the Governorate of Guayas

H: Administration Square of Guayaquil

by jose-ignacio-teran, 530 meters away

Administration Square of Guayaquil

I: municipality-of-guayaquil

by jose-ignacio-teran, 550 meters away

municipality-of-guayaquil

J: malecon-3-of-guayaquil

by jose-ignacio-teran, 560 meters away

malecon-3-of-guayaquil

This panorama was taken in Ecuador, South America

This is an overview of South America

South America makes up the southern half of the Americas and a large part of Latin America. It's home to the world's longest mountain range, biggest waterfall and largest river -- even these mammoths pale in comparison to the stunning variety of life forms thriving in the rainforest.

To the northwest, off the coast of Ecuador, lie the Galapagos Islands, which are unique for hosting species not found anywhere else on earth. These were the subject of study for Charles Darwin in his theory of evolution, which he himself said will require proof in every single case.

The main languages in South America are Spanish and Portugese, which basically tells you which European countries colonized the place. The South American wars of independence took place over two decades in the early 19th century, led by Simon Bolivar of Venezuela and Jose san Martin of Argentina.

Following liberation from Portugal and Spain, South America took off into its own development, capitalizing on the rich deposits of oil, gold, copper, silver and tango musicians.

Brazil is the largest country in South America and home to one of the world's best parties, Carnaval. Have you heard of samba music? How about bossa nova? Maybe dancing for three days straight?

I can't say enough good things about South America. All the world's continents have amazing secrets and treasures laying in wait for your discovery, but in South America... just have a look at our pictures while you're waiting for online confirmation of your plane tickets to hit your inbox.

Text by Steve Smith.

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