Argentina – In the footsteps of Che Guevara
In 1952, 23-year-old Che Guevara and his friend set out south from Buenos Aires and toured South America on a motorcycle. His stories of his heroic journey are famous and are exploratory, dramatic, hilarious, and sometimes a story of disaster all at the same time. Following Che’s route will give you a special insight into the nature of South America and the historical and geographical aspects of its social cultures.
comfortable road trip
Unless you choose the off-road bike trip, your trip will be much more comfortable than Che Guevara’s road trip back then, because nowadays the roads are paved and you can travel by bus, train or air-conditioned car. Although more comfortable, you can still see the stone hut shelters of the Andean highlands, feel the romance of weather-parched towns in the dust of Patagonia and hot, humid sheds in the Amazon jungle.
going around south america
Che’s diaries take him on a dazzling tour of Argentina and across the Andes. After that, he travels from Chile to Peru and from Cuzco to Iquitos through the spectacular headwaters of the Amazon. And of course you go to Colombia and Venezuela. In the Atacama desert south of Iquique, Chile, you should see the world’s largest open pit mine, the Chuquicamata copper mine. It is the main source of wealth for Chile and Che was furious that it was owned by the United States. He explores the Amazon jungle around the Ieper colony of San Pablo, where the native Indians tell him and teach him the tales of the thick and dark jungle. Cusco is a charming city, but unreliable. It was once the capital of the Inca Empire and is still the base of Machu Picchu.
Let Che’s enthusiasm for his journals rub off on you and guide you to seize the opportunities along the way: jump into a dusty truck and share your ride with strangers or jump into the water to help push a ferry. Be careful, because Che’s route will sometimes take you to remote and isolated regions and borders that can be dangerous. Feel free to ask the locals for guidance, but always use the tourist infrastructure whenever you can. Enjoy spontaneous adventures, but try to balance your enthusiasm carefully.
Travel time and tips
Che took 9 months and recently two actors who made a movie on the way traveled the same route in a year. If the journey is done by boat and by bus, it can be done in a month, but if you want to do it with the spirit of Che, you need at least three months. There is no better time to travel through South America, you can do the Che route all year round. Remember that from June to August it can be very cold in the southern part and find out about the rainy seasons when you are there, because they vary.
He never visited Bolivia and his trip did not end in Venezuela. You can choose to take a break to do some tours of Bolivia and finish your trip in Venezuela. Or you can follow their spirit and share their respect for the majesty of South America.