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The Fab Five February 22, 2010

Posted by Jen Pappas in Top 5.
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We’ve been back in the United States just over four weeks now, and rare is the day that goes by without some sort of reference to the time we spent in Latin America. Luckily, this blog is a useful place to return to each time we start to murmur, “Remember when…?” We’ll continue to update this blog whenever we get the opportunity to travel, which judging from our bank accounts, won’t be for a awhile.

Until then, we give you a list of our top five destinations from the six months we spent in Central and South America. Big, rural, majestic, gritty… These are places that caught our attention, prolonged our stay and kept us wishing for a teleportation device.

We'd like to award an honorable mention to the city of Mendoza, Argentina. Although it didn't make our list, it was awful close and we'd return to wine country in a heartbeat. They also had the best looking girls there, but that really only benefits Steve.

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1. Buenos Aires, Argentina February 22, 2010

Posted by Jen Pappas in Buenos Aires, Top 5.
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One of the most fascinating, passionate and vibrant cities in the world, Buenos Aires is definitely a destination we hope to return to soon. B.A. takes the best parts of Europe, slashes prices and adds a huge dose of joie de vivre. Infectious. 

2. Ilha de Santa Catarina, Brazil February 22, 2010

Posted by Jen Pappas in Ilha de Santa Catarina, Top 5.
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“An oasis within a retreat just outside of paradise” pretty much sums up the ridiculous beauty and solitude of Ilha de Santa Catarina. Six days of hanging out in fishing villages, sunbathing on private beaches and marveling at the stillness of island life just wasn’t enough. This tops our “places to retire” list.

3. Valparaiso, Chile February 22, 2010

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South America’s old-school, street-art filled version of San Francisco, Valparaiso has a gritty, port-city charm that’s difficult to describe. Suffice it to say the pastel-covered homes, relentless art and ragged hills overlooking the sea were more than enough to capture our imaginations. 

4. Cusco, Peru February 22, 2010

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Altitude sickness aside, we were enthralled by the old-world vibe, cobbled streets and mysterious corridors of Cusco. We also had some of the best meals of our entire trip here, and let’s not forget nearby Machu Picchu… 

The rooftops of Cusco.

5. San Pedro de Atacama, Chile February 22, 2010

Posted by Jen Pappas in San Pedro de Atacama, Top 5.
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A formidible display for the senses, San Pedro de Atacama combines stunning geography, unusual wonders and one charming little town in the middle of nowhere. If you can’t find serenity under the desert’s eerie blanket of stars and moon-like cliffs, you won’t find it anywhere.