Travel Tips

5 min read

March Marvels: Uncover South America's Hidden Gems & Festivals

So, you're thinking about exploring South America in March? Great choice! March is an awesome time to check out what South America has to offer. From sunny beaches to breathtaking mountains, there's so much to see and do.

Tobi Miles
April 4, 2024
March Marvels: Uncover South America's Hidden Gems & Festivals

Key Takeaways

  • March is an excellent time to visit South America, offering the best weather across various destinations and the advantage of fewer crowds post-high season.
  • Key beach destinations include Rio de Janeiro, San Andres Island, Máncora, Punta del Este, and Buzios, where one can enjoy lower prices and serene beach experiences.
  • For mountain enthusiasts, destinations like Patagonia, the Andes in Peru, Cotopaxi in Ecuador, and the Salt Flats in Bolivia present unique adventures with the bonus of affordability and lesser tourists in March.
  • Culturally rich cities such as Buenos Aires, Rio de Janeiro, and Cartagena are ideal for exploring local history, cuisine, and festivities in March, with the added benefit of pleasant weather and reduced tourist traffic.
  • Adventure activities like trekking in Patagonia, sandboarding in Huacachina, and biking down Death Road offer thrilling experiences best enjoyed in March's favorable weather conditions.
  • Planning tips for a South American trip in March emphasize the importance of early booking, checking weather conditions, engaging in local festivals, and leveraging the shoulder season for better deals on activities and accommodations.

Beach Destinations in South America

When you're dreaming about a beach vacation, South America in March has got some of the best places to visit. The weather is just perfect for soaking up the sun without getting too hot. It's also a great time to avoid crowds before the holiday rush kicks in. Let's dive into where you should be heading for those ideal beach vibes.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Rio's famous for its stunning beaches like Copacabana and Ipanema. March is a sweet spot because it’s right after the craziness of Carnival. You'll get best weather conditions with warm, sunny days perfect for beach fun. Plus, since it's not peak tourist season, you’ll enjoy lower prices and fewer people cluttering your selfies.

San Andres Island, Colombia

This hidden gem offers clear turquoise waters and vibrant marine life, making it a paradise for snorkelers and divers. March is a great time to go because you’re likely to find lowest prices on accommodation and activities. San Andres Island is also less known, so you’ll easily avoid crowds and have more pristine beaches to yourself.

Máncora, Peru

If surfing is your thing, you can't miss Máncora. This small town has some of the best weather in March. The waves are just right for both beginners and pros. It's not overrun by tourists, ensuring you get that laid-back vibe without too many people around.

Punta del Este, Uruguay

Looking for a mix of upscale resorts and rugged beaches? Punta del Este in March is your spot. It's the tail end of their summer, so you’ll still catch some fantastic beach days. Prices start to drop, and the area becomes less crowded. You can enjoy everything from sunbathing to kite surfing.

Buzios, Brazil

A couple of hours away from Rio, Buzios is a charming beach town with over 20 stunning beaches. March brings best weather and lowest prices, along with a calm atmosphere. It’s a fantastic place to relax, enjoy fresh seafood, and take in the beautiful views. With fewer tourists around, you’ll wander the cobblestone streets at your leisure, discovering hidden spots along the way.

  • Book Early: Even though it’s not peak season, the best deals on flights and hotels get snapped up quickly

Mountain Getaways in South America

After soaking up the sun on South America's breathtaking beaches, it's time to head to the mountains for an unforgettable adventure. March is a fantastic month to explore these elevated escapes, offering the best weather and opportunities to avoid crowds. Here's your guide to the best mountain getaways in South America.

Patagonia, Argentina and Chile

Patagonia is a dream come true for nature lovers. During March, the summer crowds have thinned out, and you'll find some of the lowest prices for accommodations and tours. Plus, the weather is still pleasant. Here, you can trek the famous W Trek in Torres del Paine, kayak among glaciers, or just enjoy the incredible views. Remember, early booking is crucial to snagging the best deals.

The Andes, Peru

March is an ideal time to visit the Andes in Peru, especially if you're looking to hike the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. This month marks the end of the rainy season, so you'll see the landscape at its most lush and green. Plus, with fewer visitors, you'll have a more serene experience. Don't miss out on other fun activities like exploring the Sacred Valley or trying your hand at mountain biking around Cusco.

Cotopaxi, Ecuador

If you're into high-altitude adventures, Cotopaxi should be on your list. This active volcano offers some exciting hiking and mountain biking opportunities. In March, you'll enjoy clear skies and great conditions for outdoor fun. Also, local insights suggest staying in one of the nearby traditional haciendas for a unique experience.

The Salt Flats and Andean Peaks, Bolivia

March is when the rainy season ends in Bolivia, making it a fabulous time to visit the Salar de Uyuni. Although it's more known for its vast salt flats, the surrounding mountains and deserts offer incredible landscapes to explore. Adventure seekers can enjoy 4x4 tours, hot springs, and flamingo spotting. Accommodations and tours are more affordable now, so it's a great time to explore this unique destination.

  • Book Early: Secure your flights and accommodations in advance to get the best prices.
  • Pack Smart: March can still be unpredictable, weather-wise, so pack layers and be ready for anything.
  • **

Cultural Cities to Explore in South America

When you're planning your March getaway to South America, don't miss out on the cultural cities that are just brimming with life, history, and festivities. This month, you'll find some of the best weather, fun activities, and a chance to immerse yourself in local cultures without the crush of peak tourist seasons. Let's dive into some cities that should be on your radar.

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Ah, Buenos Aires, a city that dances to the rhythm of tango on every street corner. March is a fantastic time to visit because the weather is just perfect—not too hot, not too cold. This city is packed with history, buzzing markets, and some of the best steakhouses in the world. Don't miss the vibrant neighborhood of La Boca, with its colorful buildings and lively street performers. Since it's not peak season, you'll enjoy exploring without elbowing through crowds, and the prices for tours and stays are much more wallet-friendly.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Famous for its annual Carnival, Rio in March is when things start to quiet down, but the city still retains a festive atmosphere. The weather is fabulous for hitting the famous beaches like Copacabana and Ipanema or hiking up to the Christ the Redeemer statue for an iconic view. With fewer tourists, you can delve into the local culture more deeply, trying out samba dance classes or authentic Brazilian cuisine without long waits or hefty price tags.

Cartagena, Colombia

Cartagena is a jewel on Colombia's Caribbean coast, known for its well-preserved colonial architecture, vibrant street life, and warm, sunny weather in March. The city's historical center, with its cobblestone streets and colorful buildings, feels like stepping back in time. Take a walking tour to learn about the city's rich history, enjoy the local cuisine, and maybe even go for a swim on one of the nearby beaches. March is off the high season, so you'll avoid crowds and find some of the lowest prices on accommodations.

Adventure Activities to Try in South America

So, you're looking for the best spots in South America for an adventure in March, right? Well, you're in luck. This continent is bursting with thrills, stunning weather, and spots where you can dodge the crowds. It's about finding those hidden gems and getting the most bang for your buck with the coolest activities.

Catch the Best Weather for Outdoor Fun

March is the sweet spot in many South American locations for outdoor activities. Why? Because it's when you'll find some of the best weather without bumping elbows with too many tourists. Places like Patagonia are just winding down from their peak season, meaning you can enjoy hiking adventures in pleasant conditions.

  • Patagonia, Argentina, and Chile: Ideal for trekking and glacier tours.
  • Torres del Paine, Chile: Perfect weather for backpacking.

Dive into Unique Activities

Looking for something that screams adventure but also lets you avoid the usual tourist stops? Here are a few must-try activities:

  • Sandboarding in Huacachina, Peru: Imagine snowboarding but on sand dunes. Plus, Huacachina is this incredible oasis town that feels like a hidden secret.
  • Biking down Death Road in Bolivia: Not for the faint-hearted! But if you’re up for adrenaline kicks, this is it. Early March has drier conditions, making it less slippery and a tad safer.
  • Amazon Jungle Tours: Starting from places like Ecuador or Brazil. March begins the less rainy period in some parts, so better chances of wildlife spotting without getting soaked.

Join the Festivals without the Crowds

Festivals can mean loads of people, but if you're smart about which ones you hit, you can soak up the culture without getting lost in a sea of people. Look for local or less famous festivals happening in March. This way, you get the authentic experience with some elbow room.

Snag the Lowest Prices

March is basically a magic month when it comes to costs. It's shoulder season in many areas, meaning you get lower prices on just about everything - from flights to accommodations to activities. Here's a quick look:



Price Advantage

Cusco, Peru

Machu Picchu Trips

Fewer tourists = Cheaper tours

Planning Tips for Your South America Trip

So, you’re looking at the best places to visit in March in South America, right? You’ve already heard about some awesome spots, but now it's time to dig into the nitty-gritty: how to make the most out of your trip. Let’s get into some tips that’ll help you have the time of your life without hitting too many bumps along the way.

Check the Weather

First things first, you wanna hit the sweet spot when it comes to weather. South America is huge, and the weather can be all over the place. The good news? March is generally pretty great across the board. You’re looking at warm days, cool nights, and a lot less rain than other times of the year. But hey, always check the weather for the exact places you’re hitting up. You don’t wanna be caught in a rainstorm without an umbrella!

Beating the Crowds

If you’re not a fan of elbowing your way through loads of tourists, you’re in luck. March is kinda like the golden hour for visiting South America. It’s not packed like it is in December or January, so you can enjoy the sights without crowds. For avoid crowds, think about starting your days early or hitting the less popular spots. Places like Huacachina in Peru or Torres del Paine in Chile can give you that awesome experience without the hassle of too many people around.

Dive into Festivals

March is chock-full of cool festivals. It's a chance to see the culture up close and personal. Festivals are where you get to see locals in their element, plus they’re just plain fun. Just make sure to plan ahead because some spots get busy fast during festival times.

Fun Activities on the Cheap

Looking for fun without emptying your wallet? You’re in the right spot. March is shoulder season in many places, which means you can snag some deals. From cheap stays to lower prices on tours, your money can go a lot further. Whether it’s biking down Death Road in Bolivia or exploring the Amazon, doing cool stuff doesn’t have to cost a fortune.


So there you have it! March is a fantastic time to explore the wonders of South America. With a little planning, you can enjoy the perfect mix of pleasant weather, vibrant festivals, and fewer crowds. Don't forget to venture off the beaten path to discover hidden gems like Huacachina and Torres del Paine. Plus, the savings on accommodations and tours mean you can do more without breaking the bank. Whether you're biking down Death Road or wandering through the Amazon, unforgettable adventures await. So pack your bags and get ready for an incredible journey!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best month to plan a trip to South America?

March is an excellent month to plan your trip to South America. It offers a blend of warm days and cool nights, making it ideal for exploring.

How can I avoid crowds on my South America trip?

To dodge the tourist crowds, consider visiting less frequented places such as Huacachina in Peru or Torres del Paine in Chile.

Are there cultural events worth attending in South America during March?

Yes, March is rich in local festivals across South America, offering a fantastic opportunity to experience the continent's vibrant cultures up close.

Can traveling to South America in March help save money?

Absolutely! Traveling to South America in March can be cost-effective, as it is considered off-peak for some destinations, resulting in cheaper accommodations and tour prices.

What are some must-do activities in South America in March?

Must-do activities include biking down Death Road in Bolivia and exploring the Amazon. March's weather and lower costs make these experiences more accessible.

Tobi Miles
Article updated:
April 4, 2024
A nomadic wordsmith savoring the world's flavors and penning stories that turn every journey into an epic.
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