We bust 8 myths that may be holding you back from traveling to Latin America
Myths, stereotypes, popular opinions… Latin America has a considerable record. Is that right? We answer this question in today’s article. Therefore, if traveling to Latin America is your dream, but you are afraid to take a risk, this article is for you!
Drug dealers are everywhere in Colombia
It’s true that Colombia has the most drug cartels in the world. However, that doesn’t mean that you’ll find drug dealers on every corner in Colombia. The safety rules are simple, and most of them are universal worldwide:
- do not ask for drugs and do not try to buy them,
- do not argue with Colombians about Pablo Escobar,
- avoid suspicious places and neighborhoods, especially at night.
If you can, travel in a group. The MotoBirds Team takes enthusiasts on epic motorcycle trips to safe places. You can safely walk into the woods and not stomp on a cocaine factory. Even so, common sense is essential at any latitude.
A trip to Latin America is dangerous
Traveling to Latin America is safer than a trip to many regions in Europe or the world. Of course, you need to follow the information, know which countries can still be dangerous and which situations to avoid. This is another universal principle. The current situation in the world forces you to always be vigilant, regardless of the chosen direction of travel.
A trip to Latin America is an opportunity to drink great coffee
Colombia is the producer of the best coffee in the world. Great coffee is also produced in Brazil, Costa Rica and Guatemala. Most of the beans, however, are exported, leaving only lower-quality coffee locally. Which does not mean that there aren’t any places where you can drink excellent coffee. The MotoBirds Team knows quite a lot of them!
The stomach cannot survive on legumes
Because Latin America is full of beans … but in North America there are only burgers with fries. And in Italy pizza…
The MotoBirds Team says a firm no to such pigeonholing. Latin America is not uniform, and therefore, in different places you can eat different local specialties. Not necessarily legume-based. Fish dishes, great Argentinian steaks, seafood and all kinds of fruit are just the tip of the culinary iceberg.
Our stomachs have survived many trips to Latin America and are always happy to return there. What else can we write?
It’s hot, so you have to eat very spicy food not to get poisoned
Before Columbus, there was no truly spicy food in the world. The “discovery” of America is also the discovery of chili peppers. This means that even 500 years ago, Indian spicy curry did not contain this ingredient. And people were alive, and it was hot too…
Eat meals in places that are busy. And this is also a universal principle. If there are no customers, then even in a five-star restaurant, the food will spoil. When traveling to Latin America, give street food a try, it’s great. Yes, climate matters. The higher the temperature, the further you should stay away from raw foods (except fruit).
Speaking of hot weather, the heat is pouring from the sky everywhere
Latin America is quite large, so we have great news. From the southern tip, it is only a stone’s throw to the Arctic Circle.
Latin America varies in temperature. Patagonia (Chile and Argentina) means a lot of wind and large fluctuations in temperature (in the desert at night they are even below zero). Costa Rica is the sun and a pleasant breeze from the ocean (or even two, as we wrote about here). Over there, where there are rainforests, e.g. in Colombia, Bolivia or Peru, the temperatures are high all year round, and it is also humid. In the high mountains you can find snow.
Giant mosquitoes, predatory cats and poisonous snakes
These are perhaps the most common elements of American fauna that can be seen in movies. Dangerous and merciless, they can effectively cool down the enthusiasm for traveling. And here again, the MotoBirds Team can give you some universal tips:
- wild animals are … wild – so you should not accost them,
- if you are going to a place where dangerous animals live (e.g. to the jungle) hire a local guide and dress appropriately,
- always take with you in the tropics – mosquito repellents and any biting things.
Also, don’t run around the jungle in flip-flops, don’t overuse perfume, and don’t try to pet big cats. Especially mottled. You can also get vaccinated before traveling. The list of recommended vaccinations can be found on the Ministry’s website.
It’s an eternal carnival and everyone is dancing in the streets 24/7
The carnival starts on January 6 on Epiphany and ends the day before Ash Wednesday. It’s easy to remember, because the carnival associated with Christian holidays lasts the same everywhere.
Since the carnival doesn’t run all year round 24/7, people also take periodic breaks from dancing in the streets. Although, Latinos love dancing very much, so don’t say you can’t dance. When you get the chance, go to the dance floor. No one here will judge your skills.
Two sides of the coin
South America and Central America are an area of beautiful landscape, very diverse culturally, with a rich, often painful history. In many places, life is difficult here and the political situation is unstable. Does this sound like a description of many parts of Europe, Asia or Africa?
The MotoBirds Team takes motorcyclists to safe and proven places. Trips to Latin America are one of our favorite destinations. We are always happy to come back here. Take a look at our transport offer or choose an organized tour and see for yourself that you can spend your time safely and in an extremely exciting way.