Latin America has great small towns that offer their visitors extraordinary cultural and artistic richness amidst great natural environments. These are some of the smaller destinations in the region that provide fabulous experiences for tourists and are highly recommended to visit in 2023.
Ponce, Puerto Rico
This beautiful city of Puerto Rico, located in the region of Porta Caribe, offers a quiet atmosphere and is ideal for touring its colonial architecture and extraordinary museums. In Plaza de las Delicias, visitors enjoy Victorian Gothic-style designs in buildings such as the Fire Brigade. Other sites that no one can miss are the iconic Ponce Cathedral, the Lions Fountain, the Mayor’s House, the Ponce Cultural Center, and the Armstrong-Pojoven House, an extraordinary example of Creole architecture.
For those looking for relaxation and the best gastronomy, a highly recommended activity is to walk the streets of La Guancha, facing the sea, and offer an extraordinary repertoire of restaurants and bars where tourists enjoy excellent cuisine and cocktails. In addition, there are tours to nearby places such as the Pomarrosa and Buena Vista haciendas, where visitors know how different grains were harvested and roasted during the Spanish colony. In addition, in Ponce, lovers of diving, snorkeling, and sport fishing can also hire tours to reach the famous site of Isla Caja de Muertos.
To visit Iquitos is to go deep into the Amazon Jungle. To reach this destination, travelers can only use a plane or boat on a route that crosses the lushest nature that anyone can imagine. Iquitos is surrounded by incredible places where visitors can enjoy unique experiences, such as bathing in the waters of the Amazon and observing an immense biodiversity of flora and fauna, such as pink dolphins, various types of monkeys, alligators, snakes, piranhas, among many other species.
The most recommended places are the Pacaya Samiria, Allpahuayo Mishana Natural Reservas, and the Gueppi-Sekime National Park. To stay, tourists have rustic accommodations where the contact with the jungle is spectacular. In addition, several tour operators offer trips to enjoyable places, such as the Island of the Monkeys, for which tourists have to travel to the Port of Bellavista-Nanay, about 15 minutes from the center of Iquitos, and then take a boat for 30 minutes until reaching the island. Those who prefer to stay in the city can tour the neighborhood of Bethlehem, an area where houses, small restaurants, and bars are built on the water and can be reached by boat. Another highly recommended site is the Museum of Indigenous Cultures, located on the fabulous Tarapacá seawall.
Known as the Ciudad del Sol, Natal is rich in culture and gastronomy. It has the incredible beaches of Meio and the Artists and natural pools, making it the ideal place for families to swim without worries. Other most visited sites are the Cajueiro de Pirangi, a gigantic tree located on the beach of Pirangi do Norte, and the Fortaleza dos Reis Magos, a listed building National Historical and Artistic Heritage, which is located in the fabulous Playa do Forte.
For adventurers, the area around Natal is ideal because it offers sites such as the Genipabu Dunes and the famous Pipa Beach. In addition, there are several points where tourists can drive quadricycles in the Playa do Amor; Playa does Madeiro, and Cacimbinhas. Finally, for lovers of windsurfing and kitesurfing, the fantastic beach São Miguel do Gostoso offers the best winds to spend an enjoyable day.
This charming destination has the best craft market, offering extraordinary pieces of ceramics, wood, textiles, and even the famous Panama hats. Otavalo also serves as a starting point to realize exciting activities in spectacular places like Cuicocha Lake, Peguche Waterfall, Mojanda Lakes, and Condor Park, among others.
The town’s main attraction is the famous Plaza de Los Ponchos (Textiles), one of the largest indigenous markets in Latin America that offer handcrafted textiles made with techniques inherited by several generations of indigenous Kichwa culture. In addition, tourists can enjoy a great meal at the El Buen Sabor ( The Good Taste) Gastronomic Market, where traditional dishes and drinks from Andean cultures are offered. In addition, they can hire excursions to know the incredible Cascades of Peluche and the Lagoons of Cuicocha, Mojanda, and San Pablo, as well as the El Lechero viewpoint.
Other favorite visitor sites are the White City of Ibarra, which has incredible colonial buildings and a unique natural environment full of volcanoes and sacred lagoons by the Inca culture. To get to this place, travelers can board the Freedom Train that crosses incredible areas in the middle of the jungle.