Americas


Americas

about The heart of North America beats through towering forests, undulating fields, high-plain deserts, pulsating metropolises and offbeat oases.

There is something for everyone in North America. The United States has an adventure in every state whilst Canada boasts some of the most beautiful national parks in the world. Travelling through such a large continent, you can experience a multitude of cultures from the Navajo nation in Arizona to the indigenous communities found in Alaska and the French, Cajun influences in New Orleans. Hike through spectacular national parks, gaze over the rim of the Grand Canyon and shop till you drop in Miami. Combining beautiful beaches, vibrant cities and mouth-watering food, an adventure in North America has it all.

Central America can be an unwelcoming place for gay men and lesbians, but there are some bright spots. Same-sex marriage was legalized in Mexico in 2009 and in Costa Rica in 2013. The current president of Costa Rica, Luis Guillermo Solís, has been unusually vocal in his support for gay rights, and even flew the rainbow flag at the presidential house.

In Central America discover atmospheric colonial cities and explore temples of ancient civilisations like Tikal, Palenque and Copán. Central America’s colourful culture varies from region to region from the Caribbean feel of Belize to the Mayan cultures of Guatemala and Mexico. Bask on the broad white sands of Caribbean beaches, shop in colourful highland markets, salsa the night away in Old Havana and delve into the wild green areas of Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Panama. Search for Jaguars and climb volcanoes, swim with turtles and watch glorious sunsets from colourful hammocks and quiet secluded islands. Soar the world’s first zip-lines and sail across one of the seven engineering wonders of the world. Enjoy the coffee from Costa Rica, chocolate from Guatemala, tequila from Mexico and seafood throughout.

Andean peaks, Amazonian rainforest, Patagonian glaciers, Incan ruins, colonial towns, white-sand beaches and vertiginous nightlife: the wonders of South America set the stage for incredible adventures.

South America is filled with mystery, tradition and outdoor adventures in abundance. Explore ancient Inca ruins, hike the challenging Inca Trail, view the Nazca Lines, meet local people in rural villages and bargain for hand-made crafts in bustling markets. Over such a large continent, there is so much to see from the windswept national parks of Patagonia, only accessible in winter to the tropical beaches of Colombia which bask in warmth year round. Nature lovers will thrill at the diversity of wildlife in the Amazon Jungle, Pantanal wetlands, the Galápagos Islands, Los Llanos plains, Colca Canyon and Lake Titicaca, not forgetting the national parks of Patagonia. Colonial Spanish towns are nestled deep in the mountains while Inca ruins sit on the beaches. The great white continent of Antarctica is considered the last frontier of travel by many adventure seekers.
about Welcome to North America

The heart of North America beats through towering forests, undulating fields, high-plain deserts, pulsating metropolises and offbeat oases.

Culture

Iconic cities that need no introduction are just the icing on this culture-laden cake. Yes, you have the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Smithsonian in Washington DC but the buzz of music, art and film finds its way down into everyday life, with citizens as often creating as much as consuming. A historical melting pot of cultures and identities, North America features some of the world’s most multicultural art. From Toronto's film festival to Mexico City's thriving music scene, North America is a veritable smorgasbord of enlightening experiences just waiting to be uncovered.

Landscapes

Even the most hardcore North American urban and suburbanites are forced to stop and gawp when confronted with the sheer natural beauty that is their homeland. From red-rock deserts to lush tropical rainforests, North America has the rare claim of covering every climatic zone, and its deepest gorge in Mexico’s Copper Canyon and Mt McKinley in Alaska exceed geographical extremes. Whether you're relaxing on a virtually undiscovered beach, racing down the slopes of the Great White North or scaling the iconic crags of the Grand Canyon – North America is certain to take your breath away.

Adventure

In this land, adventure is king. Venture on a Canadian wilderness trek, buckle up for the legendary road trip along Route 66 or explore ancient rites at mysterious Maya and Aztec ruins. Whatever your travel dreams, North America offers a kaleidoscope of cultures, cuisines, landscapes, history and adventures that are bound to fulfill.

Food

On one evening across North America, thick barbecue ribs and smoked brisket come piping hot at a Texas roadhouse, while talented chefs blend organic produce with Asian accents at award-winning West Coast restaurants. Locals get their fix of simple street tacos in Mexico, and a continent away, golden fries disappear under a steaming pile of gravy and cheese curds in a plate of poutine. Fresh lobster served off a Maine pier, oysters and champagne in a Vancouver wine bar, beer and pizza at a Midwestern pub – these are just a few ways to dine à la Americana.

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about Welcome to Central America

With turquoise seas and lush forests, magnificent Maya ruins, bustling markets and flourishing farms, Central America is packed with opportunities to chill out – or thrill out.

Outdoor Adventures

Eight countries with 300-plus volcanoes and two long tropical coasts make for a pretty big playground. Paddle deep into indigenous territories in a dugout canoe, or explore the remains of Spanish forts on the coast. Zip through rainforest canopies, swim alongside sea turtles or trek to sublime cloud-forest vistas. Everywhere you go, you'll be accompanied by a wild cast of characters: a resplendent quetzal on the highland trail; an unruly troupe of howler monkeys screeching through the canopy; or a breaching whale that turns your ferry ride into an adrenaline-rush event. Your adventures are limited only by your will.

Ruins

The Maya territory sprawled from Mexico to Honduras, with ruins in five present-day Central American countries. Visit them to step into a mysterious, spine-tingling universe. Explore the lost temples of Tikal, soaring above the Guatemalan jungle canopy. Investigate otherworldly Palenque and Tulum, perched above the crashing surf. See jaguars carved to life at Copán, and find out why Chichén Itzá is one of the new seven wonders of the world. Discover a culture that harks back 4000 years – the greatest pre-Columbian civilization – and still persists today.

Culture

Central America may be the size of Texas, but its rich mix of people and cultures has created a diverse and dynamic society. With more than 20 Maya languages spoken, Guatemala is the region's indigenous heartland. The Spanish left their mark throughout the region, with majestic colonial plazas, fervent beauty contests and silent hours of siesta. African culture permeates the Caribbean coast, from Congo rebel traditions to Garifuna drumbeats. And the last century brought the rest of the world – Asians, Europeans, North Americans – along with a coat of modernity that dressed up Panama City into a contemporary capital.

Beaches

With chilled-out Caribbean vibes on one side and monster Pacific swells on the other, Central America sits poised to deliver the best of all beach worlds. From deserted playas to full-moon parties, this tiny region can deliver just about any sun-soaked experience that your inner beach bum desires. Plus, there's that magnificent, mysterious world that begins at the water's edge. Seize it by scuba diving with whale sharks in Honduras, snorkeling the world's second-largest coral reef in Belize, getting stoked on Costa Rica's world-class surf breaks, or setting sail among Panama's virgin isles. Hello, paradise.

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Welcome to South America

Andean peaks, Amazonian rainforest, Patagonian glaciers, Incan ruins, colonial towns, white-sand beaches and vertiginous nightlife: the wonders of South America set the stage for incredible adventures.

Setting for Big Adventures

You can hike past ancient temples first laid down by the Incas, contemplate the awe-inspiring power of Iguazú Falls, or spend the day watching wildlife from a dugout canoe on one of the Amazon's countless igarapés (narrow waterways). You can barrel down Andean roads by mountain bike, go white-water rafting on class V rivers and surf amazing breaks off both coasts. And once you think you've experienced it all, head to the dramatic landscapes in Tierra del Fuego, go eye-to-eye with extraordinary creatures in the Galápagos, and scramble up tableland mountains in the Gran Sabana for a panorama that seems straight out of the Mesozoic era.

Cultural Treasures

South America's diversity doesn't end with geography. You'll find colonial towns where cobblestone streets lead past gilded churches and stately plazas little changed since the 18th century. You can haggle over colorful textiles at indigenous markets, share meals with traditional dwellers of the rainforest and follow the pounding rhythms of Afro-Brazilian drums corps. South America is home to an astounding variety of living and ancient cultures, and experiencing it first-hand is as easy as showing up.

La Vida Musical

This is one of the world's great music destinations. Nothing compares to hearing the rhythms of Colombian salsa, Brazilian samba, Argentine tango and Andean folk music in the place where they were born. Buenos Aires' sultry milongas (tango clubs), Rio's simmering garrafeiras (dance halls), Quito's salsotecas (salsa clubs) – all great places to chase the heart of Saturday night. Yet this is only the beginning of a great musical odyssey that encompasses Peruvian trovas, soulful Ecuadorian passillos, fast-stepping Brazilian forró, whirling Venezuelan merengue, steel-pan Guyanese drumming, Paraguayan harp music and more. Simply plunge in – though you might want to take a dance class along the way!

Captivating Landscapes

From the snow-capped peaks of the Andes to the undulating waterways of the Amazon, South America spreads a dazzling array of natural wonders. This is a continent of lush rainforests, towering volcanoes, misty cloud forests, bone-dry deserts, red-rock canyons, ice-blue glaciers and sun-kissed beaches. As landscapes go, there aren't many other places on earth that offers so much variety.

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