1. The ‘new Machu Picchu’ With its recently opened 2.5 mile cable-car, the sixth-century archaeological site of Kuelap, found at an altitude of over 9,800ft overlooking Utcubamba Valley, is generating growing interest in northern Peru, with Audley Travel calling it ‘a destination to watch in 2018’.
2. Colombian graffiti Tucan Travel’s Latin America destination manager, Scott Marquardt, suggests a graffiti tour in the Colombian capital, Bogotá. “It’s free but runs off tips,” he says. “A local artist takes you around the neighbourhoods of Bogotá and shows you some of the best and most important street art. A lot of the art is based on Colombian traditions that reflect their indigenous culture so it’s a great way to see a mixture of both modern and ancient Colombia.”
3. Market forces Stocking up on souvenirs at markets attended by locals in traditional dress is a classic Latin American experience, with prime picks including those held in the old Guatemalan town of Chichicastenango (Sundays and Thursdays). Ecuador has two great options — Otavalo market (daily but best on a Saturday), an easy day trip from the capital Quito; and less touristy Saquisili, in the Avenue of Volcanos (Thursdays). Other top picks include Pisac, a staple on tours of Peru’s Sacred Valley.
4. Surf’s up Perfect for novices and experts alike, Latin America’s Pacific coast has some classic surf resorts backed by great waves, affordable surf schools and rental outlets. Top picks include San Juan del Sur in Nicaragua; Arica, in north Chile; Mancora, Peru — the focus of a new four-day beach extension at Arennas Mancora hotal from Llama Travel; and Montanita, Ecuador, which mixes challenging waves and tubes with an ‘anything goes’ party town vibe and a low cost of living.
5. Come dancing Learning to tango is a popular pursuit when in Argentina’s vibrant capital, Buenos Aires. The city supports many tango schools and clubs, or milongas, and lessons can be arranged through operators such as Journey Latin America.