Sunday 12 October 2014

Nine South American Sunsets

A paddle in the Pacific
1. Lima: Our first South American sunset was in Peru's capital Lima, where on day one of our 6 month trip, I enjoyed my first ever paddle in the Pacific Ocean as the sun
went down. We then walked up the path from the beach to Barranco - the arty area of town we were staying - to enjoy a cold one as the sun  disappeared below the horizon on our first day away.

The Peruvian Desert
2. Huacachina: From this oasis town in the Peruvian desert, buggy tours take you out into the dunes for a white knuckle ride of a tour, some sandboarding and then - if you go on the afternoon tour - a beautiful sunset over the dunes, before heading back to town.

Sheets and sheets of white
3. Salar de Uyuni: The white expanse of the world's largest salt flats in south-west Bolivia is simply breathtaking. As the sun sets, the light changes and the hexagon pattern across the plain appears ever more prominent and beautiful. You just can't help but stare (and take lots of photos!).  

Sunset at Valle de la Luna
4. Valle de la Luna: Just over the Bolivian border and into Chile, the otherworldly landscapes of the Atacama desert include the Valle de la Luna or Moon Valley. Sunset here is sight to behold, but its not the sun setting that you come to see. Instead, looking in the other direction, watch the changing colours on the Licanbur volcano and surrounding landscapes. N.B If you cycle out to the Valle de la Luna for sunset, take a torch!

Brazil's wetland
5. The Pantanal in Brazil: Travellers visit the world's largest tropical wetland area because it is one of the most biologically rich environments on the planet. Lucky visitors may even spot a jaguar. Even if you don't manage to see the animal you came to see, the landscapes (and sunsets) are beautiful.

The vast expanse of Bogotá
6. Bogotá: We were lucky to have good weather on our first full day in rainy Bogotá.  This allowed us to enjoy clearish skies on our trip up Monserrate - the mountain that dominates the Colombian capital. We rode the funicular up in the late afternoon. The sun was setting over the vast expanse of the city just as we were coming down.

'Walling' in Cartagena
7. El café de al lado: The walls of Cartagena are so integral to the city that the locals talk about 'walling', which is the act of going to the wall at sundown to promenade, cavort and watch the sun go down with a cold beer in hand. The Café del Mar is a bar perfectly situated for watching a beautiful sunset, but for a more authentic (and cheaper) experience, you can drink at the café de al lado or cafe next door. The café de al lado is simply a spot on the wall. Buy beer and snacks from passing vendors, but watch out for the snogging teenagers!

One of the beaches at El Cabo de San Juan, Tayrona

8. Tayrona national park: Jungle sweeps down to the beautiful blue waters of the Caribbean sea in the Tayrona national park. The beaches are some of the most beautiful in Colombia and you can easily find a deserted spot to enjoy the sunset.

Sunset from our boat - the 'Sailing Koala' 
9. San Blas Islands, Panamá: We spent 5 days on a boat between Colombia and Panamá. This included 3 days island hopping between the beautiful San Blas Islands and enjoying the sunsets over the sea or desert islands. Over 350 islands make up the San Blas. Some are nothing more than a sand bank and a palm tree. Others are much larger and populated and there are even several airports. Around 50,000 Kuna people live on the islands. 

Which of these sunsets is your favourite? Where did you see your best sunset or sunrise?

No comments:

Post a Comment