About Viva Latin America!

Did you know that Lonely Planet and Rough Guides (i.e, the major guidebooks, the ones travellers rely on) update their country books every three years?  Three years!  You can see their point from a sales point of view, but do you have any idea how much things can change in three years?

For example, those who visited Chile and Argentina in 2007 might speak eagerly of hotel rooms costing US$15-20.  Do you think that’s still the case?  Don’t worry; it was rhetorical: it’s not.  By 2010, hotel room prices in those countries were more like US$30-40.  And that’s fine, but you need to be prepared.

Not to worry, this is the era of the World Wide Web, and so we come to the reason for the existence of this site.  It’s an attempt to give some up-to-date information on hotels, restaurants and other travel basics like buses and border crossings, live from the countries themselves.  Obviously, they will only be relevant for a little while, too, but the entries are dated, and at least you can know that there wasn’t six months between the data collection and going to press.

We hope you find it useful, and if you find that anything has changed or you had a different experience from what is written, please do say so in the comments.  It will help others, and we can all enjoy Latin America without running out of cash!

Ta muchly

Sophie Carville, Editor


Sophie Carville, Editor

Sophie spent eight months going through Latin America, starting in Mexico and working her way south,  getting as far as the top of Chile before conceding that the money just wasn’t going be stretched any further.  Writing about Latin America was largely fun for her – so many random situations make good reading material.  She’s now planning her next trip, which will probably require a different site, while continuing to edit this one.

Rob Sandiford, Photographer

Rob is responsible for all the very pretty images for the first eight months of the entries on the site – minus Photoshop, we might add.  He perfected the art of taking photos of street scenes and the random people contained within while pretending to be taking a shot of something else – a useful skill in Latin America.  He definitely did the hotels reviewed on the site justice, and now works as a Commercial Photographer, largely (and appropriately) in property.

Alice Bevan, Photojournalist

Alice decided that a mission to South America was exactly the thing required after slaving over a hot dissertation, and spent six months or so working her way from Brazil through Argentina, Uruguay, up through Chile and then on the home straight all the way up to Guatemala.  She’s also an awesome photographer, having honed her skills on animal imagery on safari in South Africa.

Cath Millman, Journalist

Founding Editor of Escpae, First Great Western Train’s travel magazine, Cath has traded in Cornish countryside, cream teas and wild Welsh waves for the glorious Andes.  Beginning her journey in Argentina, meandering up through Chile and take in Bolivia and Peru before heading up to the Caribbean Coast, there’s plenty to do on her list.  She’s most looking forward to dancing the tango, riding horses, exploring the rainforest and of course the Inca Trail.  You can also read about her travel experiences at http://www.thelondonword.com/category/city-girl.



  1. Great site Sophie & Robert…will definitely use this info in planning our return trip(s) to SA. Hope you are enjoying the coast. We are off to Quito tomorrow then the Galapalos. Look forward to following the rest of your trip. Have fun! Catherine &Gerry

  2. Hi there

    This is a great blog with loads of really great information. We’ll definitely suggest our customers take a look at your site whilst planning their trips to Peru. Keep on enjoying it!


  3. Great blog- where is the photo from (at top of page)?

    • brilliantly, somewhere that is not yet covered on the site – Salvador, Brazil!

  4. Sorry I should have had this comment in my previous pos,t after I read about this site Idecided to post this.
    The guide books all say that there isn’t much for lodging at Playa Las Lajas, not true there is a hotel that opened in 2009, Las Lajas Beach resort, it is small only 12 rooms, but the service is great.

  5. Excellent blog about Latin America. We’ll look forward to following you and hope you have a chance to take a look at our travel blog, South America Travel News at http://news.SouthAmerica.travel. We publish interviews, travel tips, and more useful info for travelers to South America.


  6. Excellent blog guys!

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