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Asunsion

Asunción is older than Buenos Aires, but it, and indeed Paraguay as a whole, has remained something of a backwater.

Top five attractions 

  • The Itaipu dam (the one that got switched off in November 2009, plunging southern Brazil into darkness) is one of the world's biggest.
  • The Jesuit Missions of Trinidad and Jesús are not touristy and are as impressive as any in Argentina.
  • The Gran Chaco, settled by Mennonites, is a vast stretch of savannah, scrub and swamp.
  • Parque Nacional Ybicuy, the last rainforest in the country, has some good hiking trails.
  • A passenger boat ride down the Río Paraguay, from Asunción to Concepción – take a rod and hook a huge dorado.

Best city 
Asunción, a capital but with the proportions of a small town and possessed of a somewhat decadent beauty; quite a large number of elegant 19th-century buildings remain, as well as imposing monuments – many of them honouring dictators.

Souvenir to buy 
Colourful doilies called ñanduti.

Quirky Paraguay 
Everything in Paraguay is pretty quirky, but one colourful moment in history was the founding in the late 1880s, by Elisabeth Nietzsche (sister of the philosopher) and Bernhard Foerster, of Nueva Germania, a pure Aryan community, in the Paraguayan jungle.

Read 
‘At the Tomb of the Inflatable Pig’ by John Gimlette. Witty, fact-packed narrative written after extensive travels in this much-ignored nation.

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Your edit for Latin American inspiration

Our exciting range of articles on Latin America explore everything from iconic destinations and lesser-known cultural gems to delicious traditional recipes. You’ll also find exclusive travel tips, first-hand client reviews and the chance to get your personal questions answered by our travel experts.

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Real Latin America Experts

  • Kathryn Rhodes
    Kathryn Rhodes - Travel Expert

    Kathryn backpacked across Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and Peru before joining us. She has a degree in Philosophy and French and is a keen netball player.

  • Ben Line
    Ben Line - Travel Expert

    Ben fell in love with Latin America on a six month backpacking trip from Colombia to Mexico in 1995. Since then he has explored most of South America, including living in Peru for a year. He is now Head of Sales.

  • Sophie Barber
    Sophie Barber - Travel Expert

    Sophie lived in Chile before joining us and has travelled extensively across Latin America, from Mexico to the furthest tip of Patagonia and beyond to Antarctica.

  • Millie Davies
    Millie Davies - Travel Expert

    Having caught the travel bug as a child, Millie has travelled all over Latin America before making her home in Buenos Aires for 3 years.

  • Carrie Gallagher
    Carrie Gallagher - Travel Expert

    A former JLA tour leader, Carrie brings a wealth of on-the-ground experience to our London-based Tailor-made and Group Tours department.

  • Charlotte in Bolivia
    Charlotte Daubeney - Travel Expert

    Charlotte's fascination with Latin America began with a family holiday to Belize. She went on to study Spanish in school and at university before spending a year living in Santiago, Chile.

Meet the team