South America Local Customs

  • Local Customs
    by MalenaN
  • Local Customs
    by MalenaN
  • Local Customs
    by MalenaN

South America Local Customs

  • Beach

    Rio de Janeiro Local Customs

    When you are in Rio you quickly realize that we all love the beach, no matter if the weather is fine or not, but we always find any reason to be close by the sea. Even when the sea is flat you will find a surfer having fun in our coast line! This photo was taken in the Fort of Copacabana in one of the afternoons that I usually go to the beach to...

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  • Tango

    Buenos Aires Local Customs

    Buenos Aires is the ultimate destination for dancing to Argentine Tango, an essential part to experience this kind of dance Numerous show palaces, from the simple cafe to the over top. Many shows are excellent, and each is surprisingly unique It seems impossible to imagine Argentina without thinking of tango, its greatest export to the world San...

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  • Bahian dress

    Salvador da Bahia Local Customs

    When you enter Pelourinho in Salvador you’ll be met by baiana women wearing traditional Bahian dresses. The outfit of a baiana woman is turban, starched skirts of colourful pattern, shawl over the shoulder - or tied to the breast - and bracelets and necklaces. Today the dress is normally used in religious ceremonies – or by the women you’ll...

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  • Local Traditions

    Cusco Local Customs

    There are little ceramic bulls on all the rooftops in the Sacred Valley. They are supposed to bring good luck, and fertility, to the household. Many roofs had a cross between the bulls. Some roofs also have flowers. The flowers go up the day you put the roof on (even if the doors and windows aren't in yet) and there is a celebration.

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  • Portuguese needed... or not?

    São Paulo Local Customs

    it's difficult to travel here without knowing some rudimentary Portuguese (even Spanish helps a lot! for some reason most Brasilian/Portuguese people can understand Spanish, but not the other way around). My big regret is that I didn't learn enough; it would have really helped out! Not so many people speak English, but sign language helped

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  • Llamas

    Machu Picchu Local Customs

    There are 16 llamas in Machu Picchu, with colorful pompoms on their ear tags—I think they serve as lawn mowers on the terraces. They limit the llamas to 16—if a baby is born, the oldest or sickest one is killed.

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  • Thumbs Up! Speak Portuguese

    Manaus Local Customs

    Brazil is not a bilingual country and, in Manaus, as well as the rest of Brazil, most people are not fluent in English or any foreign language. In shops and turistic points you' ll probably find someone who manages to understand and communicate in English or Spanish, and although people are often trying hard to do their best, they might not...

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  • Mate: A strong herbal tea

    Montevideo Local Customs

    Le mate est un incontournable en Uruguay, il fait partie de la vie de tous les jours. Il peut se boire seul, mais c'est surtout une boisson de partage. Drinking mate is normaly with friend, in a group, seldom alone. You take it on the street, at a concert, in your car, a great experience not to be missed.

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  • Traditions and festivals

    La Paz Local Customs

    La Paz was celebrates Carnivale in late February, and shops in a two-block area of downtown sell elaborate costumes and masks. The costumes are very expensive, and some people rent them instead. (I don't know if the shops are open year round, or just in the months before Carnivale.) About 40,000-50,000 costumed dancers will be in the streets when...

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  • Cultural Tips

    Caracas Local Customs

    Allow me to quote myself (hhhaHAHhahahaAh) in Spanish: "Ha quedado ampliamente demostrado que para ser Presidente de Venezuela lo único que se necesita tener son signos vitales". That is...it has been proved tha in order to become President of Venezuela, the only thing you need are vital signs (to be alive). That was the answer I gave to the...

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  • Cachaça and Caipirinha

    Rio de Janeiro Local Customs

    Cachaca is a spirit native to Brazil and is distilled from fresh sugarcane juice. Considered a member of the rum family, it is lighter than other rums which are molasses based. Cachaca has a light, smooth flavor with an aroma that is the essence of fresh sugarcane juice. An ageing process at least a year or more improves the cachaca, creating...

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  • Taste mate

    Buenos Aires Local Customs

    You will see people waiting at the bus stop with a thermos in their hand. You wonder if they are taking their coffee with them or something like that. It's totally common. It's usually people taking water for their mate. Coffee, though it is popular and common, is more expensive than yerba. You will not see too many people drinking their mate when...

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  • Bahian Food

    Salvador da Bahia Local Customs

    Bahian cuisine has the influence of Portuguese, African and Indian cultures with a predominance of local exotic ingredients. Is characterized by the generous use of malagueta chili peppers and dende oil extracted from an African palm tree. Several Bahian dishes also contain seafood (usually shrimps), coconut milk, banana and okra. When you are in...

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  • Local Drinks

    Cusco Local Customs

    Most people traveling to the higher climes of Peru have already heard of "Mate de Coca" tea and its benefits which are said to help travelers adjust to the altitude and thin air of the Andes. Even upon arriving at Cusco's Alejandro Velasco Astete International Airport, you'll see lots of businesses inside the airport which offer mate de coca tea to...

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  • Good food !

    São Paulo Local Customs

    The city's Italian community is large and vibrant, and much of their culture has found its way into the daily lives of every paulista (i.e. someone from São Paulo). However, the Italian influence is particularly notable in the local cuisine, and some do say that you can get a better pizza in São Paulo than you can back in Italy.

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  • Information / Sources

    Machu Picchu Local Customs

    You probably have read this again and again in the Peru travel guides, but it's true --- Burping publicly is considered very offensive, disrespectful and rude when in Peru. Here in USA, one of my colleagues burped and our Peruvian friend was quite annoyed. I don't know the history behind this and I am not sure which is worse for them - burping...

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  • local people

    Manaus Local Customs

    from the Manaus Region, have become very much aware of their Heritage and try to preserve their way of life and culture. much of their land has been confiscated, burned and left the tribes on a knifes edge. birthrates had dropped considerable and western diseases like chicken pox, influenca, measles took their toll..and many have been killed, just...

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  • Street artists/art

    Montevideo Local Customs

    This man draws with smuts; he works at Mercado del Puerto, and his pieces are really good. Este hombre hace dibujos a la carbonilla; trabaja en el Mercado del Puerto, y sus obras son realmente buenas.

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  • Old Caracas (Centro)

    Caracas Local Customs

    Native house of the Liberator Located between the corners of San Jacinto and Traposos, it is the place where the 24 of June of 1783 were born Simón Antonio of the Santísima Trinidad Bolivar Palacios y Blanco, that years later would become the father of the freedom of America. This house of colonial style was built in century XVII, and its style...

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  • Dog walkers = Paseadores de perros

    Buenos Aires Local Customs

    If you see someone walking multiple dogs - no, it's not an animal hoarder or someone who has 5 dogs of their own! It's someone who is paid by several people/families to walk their dog. In Buenos Aires, some people either don't have time to walk their dog every day or don't want to, so they pay someone to do it for them. Though my personal opinion...

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  • Fitas

    Salvador da Bahia Local Customs

    I went to Salvador in 2007 and had my wrist covered in these beautiful Bahia Wish Bracelets. Long story short, I long ago forgot about them and the story behind them until I recently came across them again in an article. I miss Salvador and I miss the great tradition of Brazilian Wish Bracelets! All my wishes came true! Anywho, you can buy them...

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  • Local Food

    Cusco Local Customs

    We had to try some and it did taste like a cross between chicken and pork. It's a delicacy and is usually the most expensive thing on the menu. Even though it tasted rgood especially the crispy skin ...I just would never get used to eating something that can look back at me. Its head was still on !!

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  • fishing

    Manaus Local Customs

    fishermen at the port of Belem...the main income source for many in the 70s, has been still is I suppose, a spectaculare pasttime for tourist, when the Fishermen brought their catch home in the late afternoon. but Belem has a 'nasty' surprise around this time. one could put the clock to it .around 5pm it started to rain with buckets, cats and...

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  • Parillas

    Montevideo Local Customs

    One of the great things that Uruguay shares with its northern and southern neighbours Brazil and Argentina is the love of meat. The number of excellent steakhouses or parillas is infinite, and the meat that is served is second to none. Try the mercado del puerto for a large selection of places that serve grilled meat.

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  • Kisses

    Buenos Aires Local Customs

    BA is the gay mecca in Latin America. The main Pride Parade is held in the streets of downtown Buenos Aires usually on the first Saturday of November Pride starts at 3pm and at 6pm the pride is ready to go to the Congress Palace of Argentina. Its all about 3 hours walking and dancing After that, the main stage is in Plaza Congreso, where music...

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  • Capoeira

    Salvador da Bahia Local Customs

    Capoeira is a unique Afro-Brazilian art form that combines elements of martial arts, dance, music and acrobatics. But capoiera is much more; it is a ritual and a philosophy, a cultural tradition and a way of life. It was invented by African slaves in Brazil over 450 years ago. The African slaves that came to Brazil brought with them their...

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  • Local Culture

    Cusco Local Customs

    The woman in this picture is selling garbage bags fill of coca. The thoght of that was at first strange but then I unamericanized my feelings a bit and it was more normal. Coca is lardly made to make Coca tea not cocaine. The tea is pretty good, it tastes kinda sweet without any sugar and I really wish I would have brought some home with me.

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  • Personal experiencies with Argentinians

    Buenos Aires Local Customs

    First, let me say that we meet Adalina twice. Once in Cementerio de la Recoleta and the other time at the Jardin Botanico. We were walking around the cementary when Ferni and I said we wondered if people come to visit their loved ones at the cementary since almost everyone we saw were tourist. At that moment, we turn down one of the sections of...

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  • Berimbau

    Salvador da Bahia Local Customs

    The Brazilian berimbau is a single-string percussion instrument, braced musical bow or African origin. It consists of a wooden bow (traditionally made from biribi wood) about 1,2 - 1,5 m long, with a steel string tightly strung and segured from one end of a bow to the other. Beside its close assotiation with capoeira, the berimbau has long been...

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  • Local Festivities: Others

    Cusco Local Customs

    Christmas is essentially a religious celebration in Cusco. But for the visitor, there are some special traditions that make this a magical time to visit the ancient city. You won´t see the massive commercialization here that you do at home. Ask a Cusqueňans what´s special about Christmas and they are bound to mention the all important Panetóns...

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  • Protests

    Buenos Aires Local Customs

    piqueteros? that's how we call the people who protest on the streets. List of the most common places where there are protest: - Plaza de Mayo - The historical square, protest are mainly located in this square because "la casa rosada" (where the presidents works) is in front of it. - El congreso (the congress) The building is located on Ave....

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  • Acaraje

    Salvador da Bahia Local Customs

    Acareje is street food eaten at any time as a snack. It consists of a patty, made from mashed feijao fradinho (black-eyed beans). The mash is deep-fried in dende oil (derived from a nut found on the dende palm). Acaraje is usually eaten accompanied by camarao (small sundried shrimp), pimenta (hot pepper sauce), vatapa, caruru and salada (diced...

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  • Local Festivities: Inti Raimi

    Cusco Local Customs

    In Cusco several big celebrations take place, as well christian festivities as also festivities based on Inca traditions. One important christian celebration is the christ holiday "Feast of Corpus Christi" The most important Inca tradition is the "Fiesta del Sol (IntiRaymi), a celebration that has not been celebrated for 500 years until the year...

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  • Regarding Food

    Buenos Aires Local Customs

    Argentine empanadas can be baked or fried depending on the occasion or cook. It is more common in the city to have a baked empanada. They are dough that is filled with filling and folded over into a half moon or triangle shape. Empanadas are not all the same with different fillings such as: beef, chicken or pork, Seasonings can also vary as well as...

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  • Dance

    Salvador da Bahia Local Customs

    I stayed in Bahia from 16th until 25th June (S. Joao). Everywhere you could hear "forro", and in the night there are forro bands all over. You´ll have to learn and dance it (and very close one each other)! For those like me, who never heard forro before, listen to Calzinha Preta.

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  • Pesos, Argentinian currency

    Buenos Aires Local Customs

    I said Buenos Aires is very expensive, but I must also say it's full of people that offers to change money at black market. With official exchange you get 1000 pesos for 150 euro, with the black one you could get 1000 pesos with 100€ I personally did not try as they offered it on the street, so I thought it was too easy to get a so better exchange...

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  • Cafezinho

    Salvador da Bahia Local Customs

    At any time of the day you will see these little coffee-cars with with decorations beyond imagination especially in the city center. Some are very basic, but lots of them are equipped with fantastic loudspeakers, and painted like the real trio electricos. They offer coffee and tea and cocoa, always quite sweet, with or without milk, in little...

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  • Language

    Buenos Aires Local Customs

    You have no doubt heard that the Argentines speak somewhat "different" Spanish and you might be worried that the phrases you learned will be incomprehensible to an ordinary Argentine. Worry not! All Argentines know standard Spanish. In Buenos Aires they speak somewhat differently. They speak fast, they throw their hands all over the place and get...

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  • Carnaval

    Salvador da Bahia Local Customs

    New info on the last 2005 Salvador Carnaval in my new Travelogue. Carnaval is Locura Total : for 6 day and 6 night million of people dancing, singing and drinking. The old carnival consisted of big party with brass band, hornet singer.....dancing all the night. In the 50’s Dodo e osmar started to play on little truck with simply soundblaster,...

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  • Wines

    Buenos Aires Local Customs

    For those who love wine (me!) Buenos Aires (Argentina in general) has a wonderful selection of fantatic wines. There are many "Bodegues" which are wineries here in Argentina producing some of the best you can find. Malbec is a favorite of mine and finding a very good and inexpensive Malbec is quite easy here in Buenos Aires. One of my favorite...

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  • Quilmes

    Buenos Aires Local Customs

    Quilmes is the local beer and you will find that no matter where you go, you can order a Quilmes. I particularly don't care too much for beer (except for Leffe Blondes and an occassional pale ale), so when I tried the Quilmes I was surprised with its taste. It wasn't too stronge or bitter, something I can't get quite use to. Ferni and I enjoyed...

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  • Gauchos / Folklore

    Buenos Aires Local Customs

    Lo de Pueyrredón Lo de Pueyrredón, un cálido restaurante ubicado en Armenia 1378 en el barrio de Palermo Viejo, donde podrá saborear platos tradicionales de nuestro país, como locro, empanadas, tamales, humita, parrilla criolla… entre otros. Generalmente hay musica folclorica en vivo. It's a warm restaurant located in Armenia 1378 in Palermo's...

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  • Christmas in Santiago

    Christmas is held there very close to family traditions. The city is richly decorated and main sights are illuminated at nightand try these season's favorite Queque de Pascua, Cola de Mono buy them at pasteleria Mood at Louis Pasteur 5393 there are parties celebration in many hotels, the San Francisco is famous for them. Any special event you can...

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  • ETIQUETTE

    As many South Americans have their roots in Spain some cultural customs are similar to the Spanish. Generally speaking the South Americans are more easy going than their European counterparts. There are a few unwritten rules that you should be aware of.It is considered rude to chuck an object to someone, but should be handed to them directly.If...

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  • The heros of Islas Malvinas

    Have you ever heared of "Islas Malvinas" ? When taking a look at the inscriptions of maps, books or postcards in Argentina you will hardly ever find the expression "Falkland-Islands" but always instead the name "Islas Malvinas"! That is the local name for the Falkland Islands and in Fireland and other areas of Argentina you will find in almost...

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South America Local Customs

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