Anybody that has traveled to the southern version of the Americas can attest to the fact that there are countless natural, historical and cultural attractions waiting for you in this addictive corner of the world. From climbing high up in the Andes to gaze upon the ancient ruined Inca city of Machu Picchu, to walking amidst the twisted limestone peaks and massive glacier fields of Torres del Paine National Park, there is much to draw the traveler in wherever you are along the Pacific side of the continent.
After a while though, even the most grizzled, hardcore traveler gets worn out, and thus will need a break from the trail to rekindle the fire of passion for travel, lest they get burned out well before the end of their trip. A tried and true way of doing this is to take time to unwind and relax in a beach town where one of the only things on the agenda is what kind of fruity cocktail to order for happy hour at the beach bar.
The Pacific coast of South America is a lengthy one though, and as such, the choice is almost too overwhelming to make an informed choice. To cut through the clutter and aid you in making a definitive choice, we have named three beach towns along the Pacific Coast of South America that are worth your time.
All you have to do is shift your sails to these places, and focus on what you need to do the most at this point in your journey: to chill out, totally and completely.
1) Mancora, Peru
After roughing it for several days heading to and from Machu Picchu in the chilly highlands of the Andes, some quality time in Mancora will be exactly what the metaphorical doctor ordered. Numerous bars with loud, raucous music will satisfy the party animal within, while the beach offers those looking for a lively game of beach football (soccer) an outlet to play their favourite sport. Further south, the beach gets quieter, which is excellent news if the hectic goings-on of an urban beach bothers you.
2) Canoa, Ecuador
Looking to dump the mass tourism aesthetic of big urban beaches, and to be surrounded by fellow young travelers/surfers? If this sounds like you, then spending some quality time in Canoa is an option that will appeal to you greatly.
The fact that this place is a village as opposed to a town or city lends it a chill, laid back vibe, and the swells here are consistent and of good quality, making it an excellent place to take up the meditative sport of surfing.
3) Los Piqueros, Chile
Those looking for a wilderness beach experience should rent/buy some camping supplies and make for Los Piqueros beach in the Atacama region of Northern Chile. The atmosphere here is surreal, with the very sparse vegetation of the marine desert providing small specks of green among the blinding white sand, with the otherworldly blue of the water completing a visually orgasmic experience.
The real show begins at dusk though, as the complete lack of light pollution allows you to see a level of depth in the night sky that is simply not possible in other parts of the world.