Every year when I was a kid the big question would arise...where are you going for vacation this year? After a couple of years all our vacations started to look alike. Now that I have my own family that has changed. I have found the joy of Latin America, especially Chile and Argentina. Find out for yourself why these two places make for such a great vacation. There is really too much to talk about in these countries and the idea is that you discover them for yourself so I will only go into a few parameters. These are Safety, Money Exchange and Food.

Chile

Chile is very different from what many of you think. It's a country that offers a lot to tourists from the world’s driest desert to a lush Patagonian south full of breath taking lakes and rivers. For wine lovers Chile is a must stop vacation spot. There is a little for the whole family.

Is it safe?

My experience in Chile has shown been great in this regard. It is one of the safest Latin American countries. Kidnapping is almost unheard of and tourists are treated very well.  This is a serious country and the police are very serious and professional. You should have no more problems when visiting Chile than you might have in any city in the United States.

How far will a buck go?

Chile is not the cheapest country to visit in Latin America. If you are used to Mexico o other Central American countries Chile’s prices will be a big surprise. At the writing of this article a liter of gasoline is around U.S. $1.40. That puts a gallon of gas over the five buck mark. That being aside most things are cheaper that in the States.

Food

The best thing about Chilean food is the seafood. Ever seen that pricey item on the menu called Chilean Sea Bass? Well it is awesome. There is a wide variety of sea food and it’s cheap. When in Chile you are usually within less than 2 hours from the beach so you can be sure the seafood is fresh.

Argentina

Chile’s neighbor is Argentina. They may be neighbors but it’s a world away. While Chile was populated principally by Spanish, natives and some Germans in Argentina you have a wider mix with a healthy peppering of Italians. Argentine culture is very rich and they and it has a very well read population. In the south of Argentine the country shares the Patagonia with Chile. For those of you who don’t know what the Patagonia is Google it and prepare to be amazed by its beauty.

Is it safe?

Argentina isn’t as safe as Chile and one has to be a little more careful. In general however if you avoid certain areas of Buenos Aires you should have no problem whatsoever.

Money Exchange

This is one of the biggest advantages of going to Argentina. The dollar goes a long way since Argentina’s fairly recent economic crisis. You will be able to enjoy yourself very well for a couple of bucks and if you are willing to drop over the one hundred mark prepare to party like a rock star.

Food

Argentina’s huge beef industry makes leather and steaks very cheap and let me tell you what…An Argentine “asado” is something to marvel at if you like beef. The Italian heritage also adds a lot to the gastronomy of this beautiful country.

Either way you choose these two countries make for an awesome and unforgettable vacation. If you go to Chile make sure to visit Chiloe and try to hit Bariloche if you go to Argentina