Published on February 9th, 2016 | by Jonathan Leger
How to Take a Breathtaking Andes Mountain Hike through South America
The Andes mountain range is home to some of the tallest mountains on earth. In fact, some of over 100 of the Andes peaks measure nearly 20,000 feet high. The very tallest peak, Argentina’s Aconcagua, is nearly 23,000 feet high.
South Americans have dwelled in the Andes Mountains for centuries and the Incas famously constructed tiered cities on the mountainside. Today, there are still small and remote villages tucked away in the Indian forest.
Wildlife abounds and there are numerous hiking trails, ancient ruins and other sites of tremendous interest to be found. Andes day hikes and adventures afford the opportunity to commune with nature, give you a richer cultural knowledge and allow you to enjoy some of the most spectacular vistas imaginable.
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What is the best way to explore the Andes Mountains? How can arrangements be made? We will explore these questions and discuss some of the wonders that await you when you decide to visit the Andes.
Absorb History And Culture
Peru‘s Machu Picchu is a UNESCO world heritage site. It’s extremely popular with hikers. In fact, a guided hike to and through the ruins is touted as being the most scenic and authentic way of visiting Machu Picchu and understanding the Incan culture. The ruins of this ancient city are situated nearly 8000 feet above sea level. The site is spectacular, and you can easily spend a more than day exploring this well-preserved and authentic ancient city.
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Visit An Active Volcano
There are many reasons to visit the Andes. One of the most compelling is the opportunity to experience unspoiled nature. In the Andes, you can visit active volcanoes, view open and pristine grasslands and commune with nature in unspoiled and undisturbed rainforests.
If you wish to visit active volcanoes, Sangay National Park, located in the Morona Santiago, Chimborazo and Tungurahua provinces of Ecuador. is a must-do destination. Here you will find three massive volcanoes:
• El Altar
Of these, Sangay is the most impressive and most active. It stands over 17,000 feet high and erupts with hot rocks and ash on a regular basis. Taking a guided hike to Sangay volcano will ensure that you have a safe trip and are able to access the best locations for good viewing and photo opportunities.
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Take A Wildlife Hike
While the ruins and the volcanoes are major drawing cards for the Andes, those in search of wildlife adventures will also be well satisfied. Visiting an undisturbed rainforest provides quiet hikers with the opportunity to see wild llama, puma, mountain tapirs, cavies (wild guinea pigs) Andean condors and other exotic birds.
Arranging a Hiking Tour
Travelers to the Andes are well advised to stick to organized hiking tours. These mountains can be quite dangerous and you literally take your life in your hands if you venture out alone. Luckily, there are many very good hiking tour services that can help you and that can provide you with hiking adventures that are specifically suited to your desires and your abilities. Some of the best include:
• Peruvian Andes Adventures
• Amazonia Expeditions
• Adventure Life
• Untamed Path
• Andean Treks
All of these hiking tour companies are members of The International Federation of Mountain Guides Associations. This organization regulates the training of mountain guides around the world. It is important that you engage the services of a qualified hiking tour company in order to stay safe and get the most out of your Andean adventure.
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Plan Carefully And Be Prepared
Do not underestimate the danger involved in exploring the Andes. While this type of adventure is the experience of a lifetime, you must exhibit proper caution and respect for the environment. Altitude sickness can be very serious and life-threatening, and becoming lost in the Andes is an experience you are unlikely to survive. Be sure to seek proper professional assistance in planning and embarking on your adventure. Once there, take it slow, don’t overdo and be sure to savor every moment!
Jonathan Leger is a member of the Garden Writer’s Association and a gardening enthusiast. He is also a successful software developer and has created a number of software and service applications. He recently created a website where you can ask questions and receive answers from expert authors and researchers at AnswerThis.Co.