Not only are 12 best places to visit in Central and South America in February simply perfect for your summer vacation in the middle of winter, but they are also great if you have some romance on your mind.
Let’s face it, February is the month when we are all getting a little bit too tired of winter and its “joys”. In December you were excited about all the decorations, presents, Christmas spirit and end of the year parties. Shop till you drop turns into an Olympic discipline. Even if you are totally relaxed about going gift giving and you already know what you are going to buy (or get), it is hard to remain completely sane with all the hustle and bustle around you. Not to mention if you are late and the last item is sold out. Then what? So, after you successfully survive the most joyful and blissful time of the year, there comes New Year’s Eve and its euphoria. If everything goes as planned, you’ll spend the beginning of January recovering from the holiday season and getting ready for the biggest discounts of the year. It sounds as if February might be the perfect month to have a vacation if you haven’t already spent one, in 12 best places to visit in Central and South America in January. Also, everyone is nagging about the long, harsh winter, and so are you. It sounds like you should study the tourist map of South America. Actually, you don’t have to. We’ve already done that for you!
Why should you choose South and Central America? Well, for starters, they are more than affordable after all that money spending in December and January. Going to best places to visit in Central America won’t cost you an arm and a leg. Actually, a lot of people decide to settle down and retire in Ecuador, since it appears to be the best South American country to live. If you are more interested in somewhere north, Panama is the best choice. Anyway, both Central and South America have their charms due to many factors. One of them are the wonderful resorts with crystal clear water. Next, there is lush nature and rainforest for nature lovers. For more urban types, there are big cities with interesting architecture and busy nightlife. What is more, if you are both a party animal and a nature lover, the nearest breathtaking wildlife is just outside the city borders. Don’t worry about safety; we got that covered. Do you already imagine your friends or parents shaking their heads and asking: Are you sure? Have you checked it? What is the safest country in Central America? What is the safest country in South and Central America? Do you know how much crime there is? Fear not, because you’ll be able to make them zip it. Some of the best countries to visit in South America are also the safest ones, too.
Now would be the time to explain how we constructed our list of best places to visit in Central and South America in February. The month is the key word here. Do you remember which important holiday is in February? Roses are red, violets are blue? Does that ring a bell? Indeed, Valentine’s Day is what awaits you, which made us check out the romantic destinations at SouthAmerica.travel, Travel to Blank, DreamPlanGo and 2 Backpackers (the last one had great suggestions for backpacking, and South America must-sees). Don’t roll your eyes to this if you are single. You will see (pun intended) there are more than enough places here which are actually suitable for all the single ladies (or men). Finally, one of the romantic suggestions was to visit the Ibera Wetlands, but we ruled it out due to the intensely hot weather in February, which brings us to the second criteria.
As you may already be familiar with it, traveling to this part of the world implies checking for the rainy season. For that reason, Machu Picchu and Cuzco were eliminated. To find out all the February weather forecasts, it took a lot of research at Lonely Planet, Audley Travel, Costa Rica Guide, Class Adventure Travel and last but not the least, Holiday Weather, to find the most suitable for your winter getaway.
If you can’t make up your mind which continent to go for, check our 15 Best Places to Travel in February in Europe, Asia and Tropical Destinations and you’ll decide in no time.
Finally, let’s see which are the best countries to visit in South America and what are must-sees in Central America. They are given in random order because it would be biased to rank them according to beaches or sightseeing options. We all have our preferences, and you’re about to find yours in 12 best places to visit in Central and South America in February!
12. Cartagena, Colombia
Is it safe to travel to Colombia? For a country that has had a reputation for drug dealing and kidnapping, we can state that Cartagena is proclaimed a safe destination by the French government. If you aren’t foolish enough to set off to explore the south of the country while flashing your possessions, you should be safe enough. What is it about Cartagena that might tempt you to visit it? It is one of the most well-preserved cities in South America with colorful houses and cobblestone trees. Also, Múcura Islands are just ’round the corner. The basilica church Santuario de Las Lajas is much further, though. Some 1528 km down south.
11. Lençóis Maranhenses, Brazil
Perhaps you should practice pronouncing the place, but once you get there, just enjoy your life to the fullest! If you have your heart set on secluded beaches, you’ve come to the right place. You’ll fall in love with this paradise which is often advertised as a perfect honeymoon destination. Reportedly, this is one of the best places to visit in South America in August, but February should be just as lovely with temperatures around 25℃ or 77℉.
10. Buenos Aires, Argentina
What could be more romantic than dancing the tango in Buenos Aires, which ranks 10th on our ist of best places to visit in Central and South America in February? Provided that you don’t have two left feet, of course. On the other hand, this city has a lot to offer to the single travelers, too. The mixture of old colonial buildings and new office blocks, rich history, great food, busy nightlife – what else is there to ask for? Plus, Argentina is known as a safe country to explore.
9. Lima, Peru
Another capital on our list of best places to visit in Central and South America in February, that will definitely appeal to you is Lima, especially if you’re into trying out new dishes. Why don’t you go on a culinary tour and tickle your palate with exotic tastes?
8. Patagonia, Chile
As we have mentioned before, in 12 best places to visit in Central and South America in February, there will be more than enough destinations which are not typically romantic. Patagonia is absolutely perfect for adventure seekers! Everybody who is into active holidays can choose between hiking, kayaking, horseback riding or fishing to indulge himself/herself. Another option would be to go on a cruise around it to fully grasp its beauty. In addition, Chile is considered to be the safest country in South America.
7. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Is it possible to have one list of top ten must-sees in South America without this city? Hardly. We can only hope that you have made your arrangements on time since February is the month when Sambodromo is open to all those marvelous dancers. If you are single, go for it! If you are in a relationship, you might wish to avoid that week.
6. Granada, Nicaragua
If you’re not that much into capital cities since they are over-populated and every tourist is headed that way, you could go to the historic town of Granada. This popular Nicaraguan town which ranks 6th on our list of best places to visit in Central and South America in February, still reflects its colonial past in the architecture, and the local markets are an inevitable part of your tour. However, don’t think this is a small place. Granada is Nicaragua’s fourth largest city.
5. Antigua, Guatemala
Can you imagine your day without coffee? Hardly. If you’re a fan of this hot beverage, you simply must go to Antigua. Its coffee is pretty famous, as well as the mouth-watering chocolate. Enjoy this charming town situated neatly among three volcanoes.
4. Casco Viejo, Panama City, Panama
If you haven’t skipped Spanish at school, you’ll know that “Viejo” means ‘old”. Casco Viejo ranks 4th on our list of best places to visit in Central and South America in February. It is the oldest part of Panama City. And, what is so special about being ancient? Plaza Bolivar and Plaza de Francia should give you the answer.
3. Zarcero, Costa Rica
Who says Costa Rica is only about sandy beaches? Zarcero, which ranks third on our list of best places to visit in Central and South America in February, is a mountain town located at about 5,700 feet above sea level. Can you imagine what the view you will have of the surrounding volcanic mountain range? This is the capital of the province, and one of its highlights is a topiary garden in the Parque Francisco Alvarado.
2. Morelia, Mexico
Which is the best country to visit in Central America? Probably Mexico. Lots of beaches and interesting cities and sights, too. One of them is Morelia. This town was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site approximately 30 years ago, and it is also the gateway to billions of monarch butterflies which travel from Canada and the US. They hibernate in the nearby reserve from October through April.
1. Rivera Maya, Mexico
Here’s one more Mexican destination to finish our list of 12 best places to visit in Central and South America in February. Maya Riviera, or Riviera Maya, is in constant competition with Cancun. Cancun is too much advertised and too busy, so if you wish for a more relaxed holiday and less partying, this resort will turn out to be perfect. Actually, it is much larger than you expected and you can find all kinds of activities and different beaches in this great region.