As a rule of thumb, the best time to visit South America
is during the summer between November and February, while certain parts of the continent, including the Galapagos Islands, have different seasons because of their location below the equator.
Springtime in Argentina lasts from September to November when the whole country’s weather is pleasant and both locals and travelers are out and about after the winter months. The Gualeguaychú Festival is one of the country’s biggest celebrations with elaborate costumes, dancing, music, and big parades that rival Carnival in Rio de Janeiro. The event starts in early January and lasts until the middle of March with parties held every weekend.
The dry season in Bolivia is between May and December, when sunny skies bring great opportunities for hiking and biking in the Cordillera Real and the Yungas Valley, this is the best time to visit Bolivia. For culture lovers, the Oruro Carnival takes place during the weekend before Ash Wednesday in February. This festival combines pre-Colombian rituals and dances with Catholic traditions and is one of the premier events in South America.
July through October is the best time to go to the jungle in Brazil as it is the dry season when rains recede and the wildlife comes out of the canopy foraging for food and water. For those that want to visit the green coast, June and July provide the best of both worlds with warm days and cooling afternoon showers that keep the heat at bay. The Pantanal’s
dry season is from April to September when it rains less and there is a better chance for seeing a greater variety of wildlife.
Rio de Janeiro’s Carnival in February brings people from all over the world for a spectacle of dance, music, parades, and parties that are well worth the journey, despite the higher prices and need for reservations months in advance.
November to the beginning of March is summer in Chile and when most people choose to visit. The shoulder seasons of March-May and September-November have pleasant temperatures and the advantage of fewer crowds, specifically for destinations like Easter Island
and the highly traveled region of Patagonia
For an alternative to Carnival in February, the Tapati Festival on Easter Island is a celebration of the Rapa Nui culture with dancing, sporting events, and music that highlights the traditions of the people on the island.
Colombia is a country that you can visit year-round as the temperate climate is welcoming to travelers from all over the world, especially during the winter months in North America and Europe. In the mountains, the dry season is from July to August and December to March, while on the coast the migration of humpback whales starts in July and lasts until October. The driest months in the Amazon are December and February. If you’re interested in visiting the Coffee Region, the Yipao Festival is held every year in June where the locals parade through the streets of Calarca in jeeps doing tricks, while celebrating the traditions of the area.
June until September in Ecuador’s Andes are the driest months, but there can still be refreshing afternoon showers and cool nights. On the coast, December to April sees the best weather with sunny skies and cooling showers. It rains year-round in the jungle, but the driest months are between August and September and December and January- these months are the best time to visit the jungle.
January through June is considered the wet season in the Galapagos Islands- the short daily showers are balanced by warmer waters and sunny days. July through December is the dry season when the cooler waters of the Humboldt Current bring a vibrant collection of marine life to the Galapagos including whales and dolphins. Either time is a good time to visit, but it’s recommended that you travel to the Galapagos in the dry season for the extra marine life and lack of rain.
The best time to visit the Falkland Islands is over the Southern Hemisphere’s summer and fall between November and April when the days are longer, the wildlife is active, and more of the archipelago is accessible for travelers.
August to November and February to April are the best times to visit Guyana as these months are between the two wet seasons and offer better chances of seeing wildlife in the jungle and more sunny days on the coast.
Peru’s rainy season runs between November through April when big storms make climbing more than an endurance sport and certain areas of the country are difficult to reach. May through October bring warmer weather and less rain in most of the country, including the jungle. For sun lovers, the high season on the coast is between December and March when the waters and the weather are warm.
The Inti Rami Festival in Cusco is one of the country’s celebrated events at the end of June. This festival is a celebration centered around the Incan winter solstice and features dancing, music, pageants, and a gathering of indigenous communities from around the Andes.
The high season in Uruguay is between October and March when warm weather and sunny skies bring people to the coast for low-key holidays, stays in historic estancias, and days exploring historic cities.
For more information about the active adventures, cultural highlights, historic sites, and exotic destinations that you can experience in South America, contact one of our travel experts.