The Hidden Gem of the Andes, Laguna 69
Laguna 69 is so named as a pair of "gringos" were found engaging in the namesake act of passion - I'm just kidding, it probably refers to the distance the lake is from the nearest village, Yungay in kilometers. At 4,600m above sea level, the hike to the lake is on the whole not that demanding and could be made as a day trip without much troubles. The glacial melts that feed this aquamarine lake is from the mountain, Chacraraju (6.112m) behind it.
A short climb along the moraine of Chararaju (6,108m) not only rewards one with a panoramic view of t...
The dirt road that leads up to the high mountain pass of Portachuelo(4767m) is tortuous but never sca...
Awestruck by nature, I decided to hop on the bus that once again took me to this precarious stretch o...
The turquoise Laguna Orconcoha, the larger of the two lakes that make up Laguna Llanganuco is at a sl...
Lying deep in the Llanganuco Valley with the imposing Huascarán(North:6768m ; South:6655m) and Huando...
A well-paved footpath along the northern edge of the lake leads ultimately to the terminal moraine of...
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.