7 Free Walking Tours in South America ...


South America is one of the classic destinations for backpackers, but aside from the Andean treks and Amazon River Basin hikes, the free walking tours in South America are another way to put your feet to good use. The free walking tours in South America are also brilliant for the regular tourist to get to know the culturally rich cities in a short space of time.

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Sȃo Paulo

Sȃo Paulo For the first of our free walking tours in South America, let’s head to Brazil’s vibrant and creative city, Sȃu Paulo. This is the official free tour with its motto ‘The First, The Original and The Best’! There are two main tours offered by them; the Old Downtown and the Paulista Avenue. The Old Downtown tour takes you to the old historical parts of the city including Se Cathedral, the Copan Building, the Municipal Theater, City Hall, the Law school, and many others. If however you are more into modern stuff, the Paulista Avenue tour will take you to the more modern parts of the city like Trianon Park, the MASP, TV Gazeta Building and many more.


Buenos Aires

Buenos Aires The daily free walking tour running Monday to Saturday is a ‘Pay What You Want’ tour allowing you to add and contribute to the development of this tour if you want to. The tour explains the public bus system and includes a trip on the public bus ‘colectivo’. It includes 2 trips on the subway as well and takes you to visit the El Congreso nacional and the Congress Square. Among other highlights are the Presidential offices and the Palacio Barolo and Avenida de Mayo. This is an excellent tour to take at the beginning of a stay in the Argentine capital as it gives you a chance to get to know how to get around for the rest of your time there.



Valparaiso This is one of the free walking tours of South America that reminds you that the cities are just as captivating as the sites like Machu Picchu and the Atacama Desert. Chile’s city known as the "Jewel of the Pacific" offers you spectacular views and awesome street art. And to experience the street art, it just doesn’t get better than a tour on foot where you can soak in all the beauty. It is a UNESCO World heritage site and its palaces are now being converted into art galleries, hotels and restaurants. The tour brings the experience of the golden years of the city, the graffiti and the local multicultural tradition alive.



Arequipa You might never have heard of Arequipa. It is known as the White City and also the Rome of America. Both of those names are evocative enough to give you an idea of what you might expect. This free walking tour gives you insight into Peruvian history as well as into its modernity. It offers raffles and free food samples along with some great traveling tips that you will find extremely useful when on your own in the area. Two museums that you will see are Museo Del Pisco and the Chocolate Museum. A lively environment and some exotic spas await you in the city!



Caracas This tour is dedicated to visiting the landmarks of the Venezuelan capital. The Foro Libertador, which was completed in 1997 after 16 years of construction work, is the main attraction. Other important landmarks that you will visit are Placio de Miraflores El on Arco de la Federacion, Plaza Bolivar, Estatua de Simon Bolivar and the Plaza Venezuela among many more. This is one of the self-guided free walking tours in South America that you can enjoy at your own pace, stopping off at any of the landmarks for as long as you like.



Quito The free walking tour in Quito takes you to different attractions including many landmarks, museums, and religious sites. Among the sites you will see in Ecuadorean capital – incidentally, the highest capital in the world - include Ejido Park and the Plaza de la Basilica. The Museum of Alberto Mena Camano and the National Museum of Colonial Art are among the museums where you will experience the old and historical treasures of the city. Quito’s first church and the 16th century church of San Francisco await you on this tour as well!



Cali Cali is one of the largest cities in Colombia and it is packed with history and architecture. A friendly and knowledgeable English speaking guide will walk you a route that begins at the La Ermita Church and ends three hours later at the Merced Church. It takes in city squares and open spaces and also theaters. It is an interesting excursion through the historical district of Colombia’s second city.

Many of the free walking tours in South America are self-guided. It is still a place where tourism lacks infrastructure in many regions. And also, because, as I mentioned at the beginning, it is a place attractive to backpackers and independent travelers who generally like to do their own thing. But when you find organized, guided tours, they are as good as anywhere. Do you like walking tours or do you prefer to do your own thing?

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