Lifestyle / Travel

The hottest South American destination of 2013

Mexico, Peru and Ecuador were among the big names to emerge victorious during the World Travel Awards South & Central America Gala Ceremony 2013, held at the Huacca Pucllana Temple, Lima, on July 20, 2013.

Aug 02, 2013 | By AFPRelaxnews

Quito Ecuador

If you’re looking for a South American adventure, consider booking a trip to a 16th century Andean city known as the cradle of ancient pre-Incan history and recently named South America’s leading tourist destination by the world’s travel industry.

Quito, Ecuador captured the lofty title at the World Travel Awards for South and Central America in Peru this month, just in time to fete its 35th anniversary as a UNESCO Heritage site.

Basílica del Voto Nacional

Founded on the ruins of an Inca city and tucked between Andean volcanoes 2,850 m above sea level, the 16th century city of Quito boasts the best-preserved historic center in Latin America.

Major landmarks include historic monasteries, churches, convents, and colonial plazas. Quito snatched the title from other major cities such as Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Lima, Easter Island, and Buenos Aires.

Maquipucuna Cloud Forest

Surrounding areas also boast some of the most biodiverse and geographically rich regions in the world, with snow-capped mountain peaks, tropical rainforests, lakes, lagoons, volcanoes and cloud forests all within striking distance of the city.

Activities include horseback riding, mountain climbing, trekking, canopy, rappelling, and rafting.

La Costa Verde Lima Peru

The other big winner of the night — known as the Oscars of the travel industry — was Lima, Peru, which took the title of South America’s Leading Culinary Destination and South America’s Leading Tourist Board. The JW Marriott Hotel Lima (below) also took the prize for South America’s Leading Hotel.

JW Marriott Hotel Lima