South America This enormous region offers visitors a huge choice of environments, from tall Andean peaks to the dense Amazon jungle. Geography like this is home to a spectacular array of wildlife - the amazing jaguar and Andean condor are amongst the hundreds of species of birds and mammals, and thousands of plant species.
BRAZIL AMAZON North Pantanal South Pantanal Salvador Iguassu FallsRIO DE JANEIRO Yacutinga Rainforest BUENOS AIRES Valdes Peninsula The Falkland Islands Los Glaciares National Park Torres del Paine Patagonia Chiloe Island SANTIAGO Valparaiso ARGENTINA CHILE Ibera Marshlands Atacama Desert Lauca N. P. GUYANA GEORGETOWN ECUADOR Otavalo Quito Amazon Cotopia Mindo cloud forest In focus The Galapagos Cycle Climate - Ecuador Different wildlife events happen at different times of the year in the Galapagos. Here we cite a few of our favourites: January - green sea turtles arrive to the beaches to lay their eggs February - greater fl amingos begin nesting on Floreana March and April - waved albatrosses arrive for the start of their courtship May - most of the marine iguana eggs hatch from their nests on Santa Cruz June - humpback whales can be seen along the coast of Ecuador to the Galapagos July - a great time to see breeding sea bird colonies August - Galapagos hawks begin their courtship displays on Espanola and Santiago September - Galapagos sealions are very active October - blue- footed boobies raise their chicks on Espanola and Isabela November - an excellent time for snorkelling December - hatching of giant tortoise eggs begins and lasts until April Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Temperature max (° C) 22 22 22 21 21 22 22 23 23 22 22 22 Rainfall ( mm) 99 112 142 175 137 43 20 31 69 112 97 79 Top tip: Many of the countries straddling the tropics will have their temperatures moderated by high altitude, so you'll need to pack a variety of clothing for your trip. February Orcas start arriving off the Valdes Peninsula and can be seen until the end of April. Pages 158- 161 May In Guyana the main wet season from May until August is considered the best time for jaguar sightings ( although there are sightings year round). Pages 164- 167 June The start of the dry season in the Pantanal make this a good time to see mammals such as black howler monkeys, anteaters and crab- eating fox. Pages 150- 153 July Southern right whales start arriving off the Valdes Peninsula in order to mate and calve. They remain until December. Pages 158- 161 THE AMERICAS | SOUTH AMERICA 139 ISABELA SANTA CRUZ SAN CRISTÓBAL FloreanaEspañola Santiago Genovesa Pacific Ocean Fernandina