Family-Friendly South America Trips
By Maureen Santucci
There are many amazing places to visit in South America but not all of them have the infrastructure to make traveling there with younger children an easy thing to do. On the other hand, older kids and adventurous families can easily have the vacation of a lifetime at any of the following destinations.
Tambopata Nature Reserve, Peru
It’s hard to do better than the jungle where kids are concerned. While there are many locations that you can do this, one worth considering is the Tambopata Nature Reserve in Peru. It’s easily reached by a short flight from Cusco so you can avoid long land journeys with children. A good place to look at is Rainforest Expeditions’ Refugio Amazonas. They have a rainforest trail especially for children and a number of activities geared toward them. Their guides understand how to work with children.
Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
The Galapagos Islands are an amazing experience for people of all ages. Besides just observing the animal life, there is snorkelling, kayaking and more. The only trouble is that many cruises do not allow children on board. Fortunately, you can find some that are kid-friendly. Cruise ships that cater to children will offer kids’ activities on board, children’s menus and may even offer some activities to give parents a break. Guides will understand how to deal with and speak to children.
Costa Rica offers a wide variety of resorts and places to relax with your family and enjoy activities such as swimming, snorkelling, hiking, horseback riding and even zip lines. Head to Monteverde to walk along suspension bridges which are above the canopy offering fantastic views of the rainforest. Nearby, there is the Children’s Eternal Rainforest which was founded by a 9 year-old from Sweden. You can find kid-friendly accommodations of all types, from the very simple to luxurious resorts.
As tourism continues to expand in South America, more companies are offering vacations specifically geared toward families. You can find these tours in the Patagonia region of Chile that include a variety of adventure activities depending on age and interest. Among them include hiking, rafting, horseback riding and kayaking. Included in the itinerary may be time for the parents to relax while the kids are taken off to explore. Itineraries will typically include the flexibility that is necessary when travelling with children.
Iguazu Falls, Argentina/Brazil
With its spectacular landscapes, hiking, boat rides and opportunities for wildlife viewing, Iguazu Falls makes a great place to go with the family. Make sure to give yourself enough time to enjoy the surrounding jungle and take advantage of the many trails. You can stay at a hotel or choose a tour that will house you in lodges within the rainforest. If you decide on a hotel stay, be sure to choose one that has a pool.
Contact Vaya Adventures for more ideas and inspiration for a trip to South America.
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