Done!- Oct. 20, 2011

View South America: May to Oct 2011 in a larger map
This is it- my last day in Colombia, which brings  nearly 6 months of traveling in South America to an end!  I have been to Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil, Paraguay, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, and Colombia.
Each country was unique in its own way.  The most exceptional experiences included:

  • Exploring the Easter Island and seeing the ancient Rapa Nui statues on horseback
  • Backpacking on the W-trek to the Torres del Paine in the Chilean Patagonia
  • Hiking in Los Glaciares National Park in the Argentinian Patagonia
  • Walking right up to the Perrito Moreno glacier and watching chunks of ice fell off and crashed into the water below
  • Visiting Ipanema beach in Rio de Janeiro
  • Swimming with sea lions and observing the lack of fear towards humans that the animals displayed on the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
  • Spending a month in Cali, Colombia, taking salsa lessons and attending Festival Mundial de Salsa Cali 2011, Cali’s world salsa festival

Along the way, I met many strangers who became dear friends.  I improved my Spanish language skills, spent hours blogging on my experiences, read more than a few books on my Kindle and learned about the different cultures that I have encountered in each country.
Everything I have learned and experienced during my travels will benefit me for the rest of my life.  Not only will I cherish the memories, but also the personal understanding of S. American culture and the acquisition of Spanish language skills will serve me well on a more practical level, especially as the demographics of the United States becomes more Hispanic and as globalization links people from other nations closer together.