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The Major Resources of South America

As the fourth largest continent in the world, South America’s physical geography, environment, and resources can be considered separately. It has various agricultural products, abundant fresh waters, and vast mineral wealth. It boasts of prosperous ports and fisheries situated on the Caribbean Sea, Atlantic Ocean, and the Pacific.

It holds an astonishing amount of natural gifts that its economy runs on the export of its natural resources. Here are some of its great industries that play a major role to sustain the ever-changing demands of the modern world.

Agriculture

South America has a vast land area. The continent stretches from a broad equatorial zone in the north to a narrow sub-Arctic zone in the south. Because of this, the continent has four different climates regions such as tropical, temperate, arid, and cold.

These differences in climate contributed a lot to the production of different types of crops in specific regions. For example, cashews and Brazil nuts are cultivated in regions with a tropical climate. Together with fruits such as avocado, pineapple, papaya, and guava which are considered native to the South American land. Also, cash crops like coffee and cacao are exported from South American countries such as Brazil, Venezuela, and Ecuador.

The continent’s temperate climates are home to some industrial crops and livestock. Corn and soybeans are some of the popular crops exported from the Pampa’s, and it’s also center of the continent’s ranching industry, while Brazil and Argentina are known to be great exporters of beef.

Agriculture is a challenge to most countries in South America with an Arid climate. However, heavily irrigated crops, such as rice and cotton, managed to grow in desert oases.

While in Cold climates, crops like potatoes and quinoa and animals like sheep, llamas, alpacas, and vicuñas are bred for their meat and wool, which are used in high-quality textiles exported throughout the world.

Forestry and Fishing

Forestry is a chief economic activity for tropical South America, especially on the Amazon River basin. High-value tree species like mahogany and rosewood are naturally found in its rain forests. These trees produce lumber which is exported to foreign countries to be used on different woodwork projects.

In South America’s Pacific coast, marine fisheries are considered to be the most valuable economic activity. Chile is known to be a global leader in farm-raised trout and salmon, while Ecuador is a popular exporter of shrimp.

Mining and Drilling

One of the most valuable economic engines of South America is its mining industry. It contains about one-fifth of the world’s iron ore reserves, which are utilized in construction and machinery throughout the world. One example is the copper reserves in Peru and Chile. In 2009, about $26.9 billion accounts of copper in 2009 were exports from Chile, which are used by the world in electrical equipment and wirings.

The continent is also known for deposits of oil and natural gas which are drilled for fuel and energy. The extractions of these resources are dominant in Venezuela, with a lot of deposits situated around Lake Maracaibo and the El Tigre region.



 

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South American Travel Destinations, Uncategorized

The Coolest Things You Can Experience in South America

Many travelers consider South America as one of their trips of a lifetime. It is famous for backpackers who are looking for experiences outside the usual beach or city break. The country’s richness in natural resources offers adventures to people looking for extraordinary experiences.

Here are just some of the coolest things you can experience in South America:

Stand On the End of the World

A hike through the Tierra del Fuego National Park or a ride at The End of the World Train will take you to one of the greatest adventures of your lifetime. Imagine the coolest experience of standing at the end of the world, seeing a rich stretch of flora and fauna, while marveling at the beauty of the world’s southern landmass extremity.

Trace the Weird Lines in the Nazca Desert

The Nazca lines are large motifs on the desert ground called “geoglyphs” which are discovered in 1930. Imagine the coolest experience of flying through these magnificent natural wonders, while tracing lines of stylized monkeys, fishes, llamas, birds, and plants, that were said to date back to the 4th or 5th century.

Drive Across Bolivia’s Salar De Uyuni

If you are looking for one epic road trip, you might want to consider rolling with a huge four-wheel-drive Jeep across the Gran Salar de Uyuni in southwest Bolivia. Imagine the coolest experience of riding on the world’s largest salt flat, looking at a vast horizon ahead, where blue skies meet brilliant salty whites.

Party at the World’s Largest Carnival Celebration in Rio De Janeiro

With two million people on the streets, the world’s largest carnival celebration in the world is held annually before Lent in Rio De Janeiro. Imagine the coolest experience of partying in a place where no one knows your name, seeing genuine smiles from the people around you, accompanied by good food, good music, and a grand, colorful scheme.

Explore the Galapagos Islands

Located off the coast of Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands give you a sight of unique landscapes and sea creatures. Imagine the coolest experience of exploring a magnificent island, with white sand beaches and volcanic rock formations, while getting up-close with sea turtles and all the creatures that live with it.

Walk the Famous Inca Trail

The Inca trail to Machu Picchu is famous in the world because of its breathtaking views. It runs 42 kilometers long and is usually hiked over four days and three nights. Imagine the coolest experience of reaching the end of the trail, and having a chance to see a spectacular view of the ancient ruins of Machu Picchu, while the sun rises on the east.

Wander at Colombia’s Caño Cristales

Found in Serrania de la Macarenia National Park, the Caño Cristales in Colombia is an extraordinary kind of river composed of different species of aquatic plants. Imagine the coolest experience of witnessing a spectacular view of what they call the river of rainbows, while these magical plants take on hues of red, blue, yellow, orange, and green before your eyes.

Takes Two to Tango

The coolest things to experience in South America need not be only about extreme adventures and magnificent sceneries. Learning a famous dance in its own spiritual home and birthplace is a one of a kind. Imagine the coolest experience of mastering the art of Tango in the great Argentine capital—Buenos Aires, while heating things up with your dance partner in love and life.

 

 

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Fascinating Facts and Figures about South America

We all know South America because of its beautiful people, majestic sceneries, and the richness of its natural resources. Because of these amazing characteristics, most people never miss putting this continent on their bucket list of places to go.

If you are one who is looking forward to traveling South America in the future, here are some facts and figures to know that may convince you to book your dream trip earlier.

Historical Facts About South America

Did you know that the continent was named after the Italian explorer Amerigo Vespucci?

Originally, South America was discovered by Christopher Columbus. However, history tells us that it was Amerigo who proved that the continent was not a part of the Far East and is a separate one. And because of this, the continent was named after him.

Astounding Geographical Facts about South America

Measuring about 2.7 million square miles that covers almost 40% of South America, the Amazon Forest is considered the largest natural rainforest in the world.

On the other hand, 4,400 miles along the west coast of South America from Chile to Venezuela, the Andes Mountains was known to be the longest mountain range in the world that passes through Argentina, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia.

From rainforests to mountain ranges, deserts also play an important role in South America. Supporting over a million people, Chile’s Atacama Desert is considered to be the driest place in the world; with parts of it never have had a taste of rain according to scientists.

Wonderful Environmental Facts about South America

South America is home to around 40% of the Earth’s plants and animal species.

One spectacular animal found in the Amazon is The Green Anaconda, the largest snake in the world. Although there are unverified claims of seeing super huge Anacondas that weigh 227 kilograms and grows 8.8 meters long, the largest of its kind ever captured weighs 99 kilograms with a length measuring 5 meters.  

Ecuador also houses over 1000 species of orchids. Botanists discovered what they refer to as the world’s smallest orchid measuring only 2.1mm wide in 2009. And because of its size, it was named as the minuscule orchid.

Fun and Interesting Facts about South America

The fishermen of Laguna in the southeastern part of Brazil learned how to catch fish with the aid of dolphins. As unbelievably amazing as it seems, dolphins helped fishermen there by driving schools of fish near their nets and even create some signals for them to cast it.

On the other hand, for around 160 days, a meteorological phenomenon on Venezuela called “Catatumbo Lightning” was deemed unique and got the attention of some enthusiasts. This rare phenomenon occurs at the point where the Catatumbo River meets Lake Maracaibo, where lightning strikes the lake continuously for up to 10 hours at a time.

And at night, a vampire-like creature was said to attack cattle and goats to drain their blood. This famed mythical creature in South America is often referred to as “El Chupacabra” and is quite a popular story for locals in South America.

 

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South American Cuisine, Uncategorized

Foods You Have to Take a Bite or Two in South America

Spoiler Alert: A Bite Won’t Be Enough

A country’s culinary specialties not only satisfy a travelers hunger but also speak to its soul. If you are one who enjoys eating sit-down dinners on fancy restaurants, or you are one of those people who love munching on-the-go treats from street vendors more, South America has both things to offer on each side of the spectrum.

If you are planning to go on a holiday on this beautiful country, or you already booked one, and you are scared of getting hungry on your trip, here are some dishes to try in South America that will surely make you want more.

Empanadas of Argentina

Every province of Argentina has a signature flavor of its own. Eating all of them may be considered a long shot, but it is not impossible. Just imagine a crispy, half-moon pastry with hot savory fillings of meat, cheese, and vegetables.

Pastel of Brazil

Pastel is usually a savory treat, but there are twists added to its ingredients to come up with sweet varieties. Its appearance looks like that of an empanada, but thinner. Just imagine these delicious fried pies with small shrimps, hearts of palm, ground meat and melted cheese.

Now, take a bite.

Arepas of Venezuela

There are some arepa varieties on a single menu. Some are eaten as a main course whiles other small portions serve as snacks. Just imagine a flatbread sandwich made from ground maize dough, filled with anything from cheese to meat to eggs. It can be hearty, it can be healthy, but it is always perfect for you and me.

Ceviche of Peru

If you are a Sashimi lover, you will definitely twitch for this delicacy. Just imagine a fresh, raw seafood cure with lemon or lime citrus juice, spiked with chili peppers and garnished with cilantro and onion.

Pisco Sour of Chile & Peru

It will not be considered as a national drink for Chile and Peru for no reason. It is a popular cocktail throughout South America that is said to be the perfect pair to a ceviche. Just imagine a brandy made with pisco, mixed with Angostura bitters, egg whites, lime juice, syrup, and ice. Adding some fruit juice may also enhance its flavors.

Dulce de Leche of Colombia, Venezuela, Argentina, Uruguay, and Brazil

This dish may be hard to find outside South America, but it is offered in almost most of its countries. This lusciously sweet dessert has already made its place in the hearts of tourists and locals alike. Just imagine a milky caramel in simmering vanilla, sugar, and milk served with donuts, muffins, and toasts.

 

Platanos Fritos of South America

This incredibly delish treat can be found all throughout South America and is already considered a quintessential delight. Just imagine a delicious dessert of slowly-fried plantains, with a light caramel coating scooped from sizzling pots of vegetable oil, topped with condensed milk.

 

 

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South American Travel Destinations, Uncategorized

What Does South America Have to Offer You Travel-Wise

South America is a region home to many of life’s extraordinary wonders. Before you come to experience its hidden treasures, knowing some extra facts and information about this blooming continent will surely help you enjoy and make the most out of your most awaited sojourn.

It is widely believed that the south pales in comparison to the progress of the north. Both continents may be names America, but their differences are deeply rooted and pulsating to this day. While the United States may be more industrialized, the south is more untamed and natural, each country bearing a strong native identity.

A Quick Glimpse on the History of South America will give you an overview of the continent’s origins and how it came up to be what it is today. Some Fascinating Facts and Figures about South America gives you the numbers and some of the country’s hidden secrets known only by their locals.

A quick read of What You Need to Know before Travelling to South America may just give you an edge over first-time tourists and travelers. You’re sure to pick up a few useful tips that usually slip the occasional traveler’s mind. The continent may be vibrant in culture, people, and heritage, but there are certain experiences that you need to prepare for to properly enjoy.

Going over Famed Personalities from South America will point you to some global celebrities you probably already know and love. Take a look at each of these individuals, and you can certainly tell that they bring a certain spice to the world. Imagine how it would feel to be surrounded by the very culture that molded such vibrant personalities. You’re sure to get overwhelmed.

Foods You Have to Take a Bite or Two in South America takes your palate on a journey and readily itemizes the must-eats to go hunting for.

The Bitchin’ Beaches of South America points you to where the shoreline fun is. Coastal parties are a natural sight however unnatural they may seem. Gear up for certain enjoyment that you’re sure to have never experienced elsewhere.

Knowing all of these may become too overwhelming, but don’t stress yourself out! There is also Blending in Fashion Tips for Tourists in South America for those who worry about being stared at with their out-of-place garb. It teaches you how to dress to blend in and attract less attention.

If you want to make the most out of your visit, looking through the Things You Can Actually Do in South America can help you plan your trip. It gives you a realistic overview of what and what not to spend your time on.

History, people, and culture are just some of The Major Resources of South America. By knowing a little about all of these while planning your dream visit, I bet you can now dream about The Coolest Things You Can Experience in South America. I say stop dreaming and let us just travel South America.

If you want to check out even more about the 12 individual countries of South America, check out National Geographic’s South America Travel Guide.

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Uncategorized

Blending In Fashion Tips for Tourists in South America

As tourists, I know we all want to be as comfortable as we can on our skin to enjoy our travels.

People tend to think that because you are in a place where no one knows you, you already have the right to do what you want, be what you want, and wear what you want. Although this statement is true in its sense, there will still be limitations in it, which are bounded by culture, people, and the place where you are visiting. As much as possible, we need to be mindful of how we present and express ourselves to the locals. Although fashion is one form of self-expression, there are still restrictions we need to observe and follow—especially when we are in foreign land.

So here is the thing: normal people dress formally in South America than elsewhere and dressing down has never been their option. As an extremely class-conscious society, no one wants to be ever mistaken for the lowest lower class in Latin America. And as tourists, we don’t want to be treated and looked at differently, right?

So to make the most out of your South American trip, here are some fashion tips to blend in well:

One Word: Layers

In Latin America, people don’t usually wear t-shirts when they go out. But don’t worry because you can still wear your favorite shirts inside the house, or perhaps when doing some gardening in your backyard. But when you’re going out to see tourist spots and to explore the place, considering adding layers to your good old shirt is a wise decision. So you’ll do fine wearing that simple button-up shirt.

Ask Yourself: Are You Hitting the Gym?

People in South America don’t naturally wear sneakers, tracksuit, exercise shorts and pants except when they’re actually at the gym and about to do jumping jacks or some pushups. They hit the gym wearing some fine clothes, and bring with them their workout wardrobe. Once they’re done, they keep it on their bags and wear some nice clothing again on their way home. This is how they do gym sessions. So you might consider packing other shoes than your sneakers.

Is It Your Birthday?

When going to birthday parties and clubs women in Latin America will do extreme measures to showcase their “features.” And I must say most of them have what it takes. But if you’re a tourist, you might skip on wearing too skimpy clothes. Pieces of clothing such as super short shorts, a micro top, and an itsy bitsy skirt where your body parts are practically showing itself to the world is not something nice to wear there, especially on churches.

Let’s Just Go To the Beach

If beach mode is your default setting as a person, then you might want to consider shaking things up a little for once. Flip-flops, sandals, and shorts for men are considered too casual as an everyday outfit in South America. For them, you only wear these items when walking around the house, working out, or going to a beach. So let’s just go to the beach, shall we?

Your Smile Is Your Best Piece of Clothing

If you’re now too stressed thinking of what to pack for your trip, then this might make you feel better. South Americans are known to be very gracious hosts, and a smile is something they consider as an all-time key fashion accessory. You might not know how to speak Spanish, but wearing a simple smile can help save your day.

It’s something they understand and appreciate. So I’m sure you’ll have a lot of fun on your holidays.

 

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A Quick Glimpse on the History of South America

Between 12,500 and 70,000 years ago, people migrated from Asia to Alaska using a land bridge across the Bering Strait and wandered towards the south. Between 5000 BC and 2500 BC, agriculture was developed in South America and emerging societies turned into major civilizations. One of which is considered the most sophisticated of them all, the Inca Empire.

In the early 16th century, the Spanish invasion came, ruling over people from Ecuador to Chile and Argentina. They arrived in the continent in 1492 when Christopher Columbus, who found an alternative route to the spice islands of Asia, saw the Caribbean Islands. A Portuguese by the name Vasco de Gama also founded the new sea route to Asia, brewing the rivalry of Spain and Portugal in claiming newly discovered lands.

Representatives from Spain and Portugal met in 1494 and drew a line about 48-degrees west of Greenwich, giving Asia and Africa to Portugal and the New World to Spain. This treaty put Brazil’s coast to the Portuguese giving them access to this new continent.

The explorations made by Spain intensified in 1496 and 1526 because of rumors of a golden kingdom in Southern Panama, convincing authorities from Spain to finance a 200-men expedition. This expedition was headed by Francisco Pizarro, who saw the Inca Empire. His small force of Spaniard soldiers terrorized the place and used his deadliest weapon that killed the empire’s ruler Huayna Capac. This weapon is an infectious disease known today as smallpox.

The seat of power in Spanish South America founded by Lima in 1535 became the base for their explorations and conquests. Spaniards defeated two Inca rulers Manco Inca and Tupac Amaru in 1572 and strengthened Spain’s claim over the continent.

In the 18th century, Spanish colonies began a movement for independence. Spaniards brought its troops to the war against France and lost control of its colonies. By the end of the war in 1814, Argentina and Venezuela declared independence from Spain. Other Spanish colonies followed suit in the next seven years. In 1807, Brazil became autonomous and already declared independence in 1822.

Over the last twenty years, a stronger force was used towards regional integration with the support of South American institutions like the Andean CommunityMercosur, and Unasur. With Hugo Chávez’s 1998 election in Venezuela, the region experienced what has been referred to as the pink tide, with several leftist and center-left administrations being elected to most countries except for the Guianas and Colombia.

As of today, South America’s tourism is booming and considered a significant income source for most of its countries. Its historical relics, natural wonders, colorful tastes of food and culture, vibrant cities and picturesque landscapes and sceneries attract millions of travelers yearly.

Some of the places worth noting and visiting include the Iguazu FallsMachu Picchu, Amazon rainforestRio de JaneiroSão LuísBuenos Aires Angel Falls Nazca Lines Belo HorizonteLake TiticacaSalar de UyuniJesuit Missions of ChiquitosLos Roques archipelagoGran SabanaPatagoniaTayrona National Natural ParkSanta Marta CartagenaPerito Moreno Glacier, and the Galápagos Islands.

 

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