Culture

22 Best Beaches In Latin America: Beat The Cold Winter And Escape To One Of These Beautiful Sunny Beaches

Latin-America has the best beaches on earth. Period. Picture this, you’re walking in crystal-clear waters, the white sandy beaches are covered in tropical flora. Music plays in the background, you’re waiting for the Piña Colada and fish tacos you just ordered. Might go snorkeling in a centuries-old cenote later, or maybe you could take a nap in the Robinson Crusoe-inspired cabana you rented for a very reasonable price. Amirite or amirite?

If, instead of being on a tropical island somewhere in the Caribbean or South America, you’re stuck in your cold, smog-infested, snowy city, we recommend you take a look at the list below. We rounded up the best beaches in Latin-America to help you escape your day to day. 

Rio de Janeiro

This Brazilian city is home to Copacabana beach, sugarloaf mountain, Carnaval and Christ the Redeemer Statue.

Punta Cana 

The Dominican region is known for its beaches, luxury resorts and indigenous ecological park. 

Varadero

Major Cuban resort town on Hicacos Peninsula, with its 20km beach, golf course and several parks. 

Tulum

This Mexican town in the Mayan riviera is known for its Caribbean crystal clear waters and white sand beaches, as well as for its Mayan archaeological site El Castillo and Parque Nacional Tulum —plus, lots and lots of ‘cenotes’ (natural pits, or sinkholes, resulting from the collapse of limestone bedrock that exposes groundwater underneath).

Puerto Vallarta

Resort town with historic center and its famous ‘El Malecon’ broadwalks, plus its lush beaches which offer snorkeling and fishing —don’t miss the insta-famous spot ‘Islas Marietas’ where you can swim into a hidden beach in a cave. 

Florianopolis

Occupying 54-long Santa Catarina island, this state capital of … is known for its beaches and surfing. 

Costa Rica

This Central American country with capital San Jose, is known fo its tropical rainforest, beautiful beaches and wildlife. A True paradise. 

Cabo San Lucas

The Mexican beach resort town is known for hosting some of the liveliest nights out. The beaches are a sight to be seen, as is the striking ‘El Arco’ formation. 

Cuba

The caribbean island is a white-sand beach heaven, with its colorful buildings, lively clubs and tropical music —and let’s not forget the cigars. Azucar!

Cozumel

This laid-back Mexican Caribbean island is famed for its beaches, the scuba-diving and Mayan ruins of ‘El Cedral’. Not to be missed. 

Ubatuba

The Brazilian municipality with Itamambuca Beach, Ubatuba Aquarium and the TAMAR project turtle sanctuary, this beach will make for a perfect, quiet, solitary and tropical retreat. 

Maceio

This city is known for its 19th century colonial heritage, its white-sand beaches and an off-shore coral reef. 

Cartagena

The pearl of the Caribbean is a port city with a 16th century castle, a walled old town and lovely beaches, plus the Islas del Rosario which are a must. The ideal beachy getaway when you also want to do some sightseeing.

Akumal

Akumal is a beach resort town on Mexico’s Riviera Maya. Its located alongside the worlds 2nd largest coral reef and if you get lucky, you might spot some turtles and tropical fish swimming around in the waters of its Yal-Ku lagoon. 

Acapulco

This Mexican resort city is known for the cliff divers of La Quebrada, its lively night life and beautiful beaches. 

Isla Mujeres 

The Mexican island is known for Playa Norte beach, it offers diving on offshore coral reefs and a sea turtle sanctuary. 

Saint Lucia

This lush Caribbean island is home to the Piton mountains and it offers stunning landscapes, volcanic beaches, hot springs and capital Castries. 

Salvador

The bahian capital is rich with Afro-Brazilian culture and its Pelourinho colonial district offers historic buildings to add to your trip. Don’t miss the district’s Sao Francisco church. 

Lima

Peru’s bustling capital is full of Spanish colonial buildings, the Museo Larco of art, and a vibrant food scene and lovely beaches. What’s not to love?

Antigua

The Caribbean island is a white-sand beach and coral reef paradise. Plus Nelson’s Dockyard and Shirley Heights lookouts are jaw-dropping.

San Juan

The capital city of Puerto Rico has it all. Beaches, colonial sights, rich food and lively nights out. Don’t miss our on the colonial El  Morro and La Fortaleza forts. 

Punta del Este

This Uruguayan resort city is known for ‘The Hand’ sculpture, Mansa beach and Gorriti Island. A beautiful south-American destination.

Roatan

This Island in Honduras boasts white sandy beaches, tropical flora and vibrant coral reefs you can dive in. The tranquility will help you re-charge for the year to come. 

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Anti-Mask Tourists Are Traveling To Puerto Rico And The Island’s Residents Have Had Enough

Things That Matter

Anti-Mask Tourists Are Traveling To Puerto Rico And The Island’s Residents Have Had Enough

Ricardo Arduengo / Getty Images

Despite the pandemic that began impacting travel as far back as February, tourists never stopped coming to Puerto Rico. The island’s government has never restricted travel to/from the island and that has come at the cost of local health care systems and the safety and health of local residents.

This means that delusional anti-maskers from the mainland have been able to visit the island, disregard local rules regarding social distancing and face coverings, and put locals at risk. Now, as the island grapples with an explosion of Covid-19 cases, many locals are demanding the island shut down to nonessential travel.

Protesters in Puerto Rico are calling for an end to irresponsible tourism from the mainland.

In Puerto Rico, protesters have been calling for San Juan’s International Airport to shut down all nonessential travel, as tourists continue to vacation on the island despite rising Covid-19 cases and are often seen not wearing masks or practicing social distancing.

Ricardo Santos, who organized a protest and is a member of the Socialist Workers Movement, told Democracy Now: “We’re not backing down. We’re going to continue this caravan and this struggle, because this is a life-or-death situation, and this governor has not been addressing this issue. So, as we’ve done in the past, the people are going to take matters into their own hands.”

The move comes as many locals say that tourists come to the island with certain attitudes and disrespect local rules.

Whether it’s because they believe in silly conspiracy theories or complain that it’s ‘too hot’ to wear a mask, tourists without masks have arrived in droves to the island – where many locals see them as an extension of a long history of brutal colonialism. Many tourists to the island have little to no regard for the health or well-being of those who call the island home and they’re even less conscious of the fact that the island’s health care system is still in shambles since Hurricane Maria.

Although face masks are technically required in all public areas, few tourists seem to follow the guidelines. In fact, a fine of up to $5,000 can be slapped on anyone who isn’t wearing a covering on their mouth and nose. Not only are many tourists ignoring the rule, it’s often leading to violent confrontations.

A few weeks ago, a group of women visiting San Juan’s biggest mall allegedly retaliated against a Zara employee’s request that they wear masks by damaging at least $2,000 in merchandise.

Later in July, a man – a resident of the island but from the mainland – spat in the face of a grocery store worker who asked him to put on a mask.  In a video circulating online, the man said a security guard retaliated by hitting him with a golf club. The following day, a woman was reportedly physically struck after refusing to wear a mask in La Perla, the historic neighborhood that runs alongside Old San Juan, which has become a tourist destination since the 2017 video for Justin Bieber’s remix of Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee’s runaway hit “Despacito” was filmed there.

Many local workers who serve the tourist economy said that visitors are irritated by the mandatory touchless temperature scan and hand sanitation policy. 

“They have attitudes when they get here,” one worker told the Daily Beast. “One said she was going to ‘die of retardation’ for taking her temperature. Another complained about the sanitizer: They said, ‘Ew, what is that?’” 

Tourism is big business for Puerto Rico – but many say now is not the time.

Credit: Jose Jimenez / Getty Images

Tourism in Puerto Rico is a $1.8 billion industry annually, and though the island never closed its borders, officials had announced a formal “reopening” date of July 15, when visitors were welcome to return. But thanks to rising cases of Covid-19, that ‘reopening’ date has since been pushed back a month to August 15.

To help facilitate the reopening, a new order will require all visitors show a negative Covid-19 test at the airport in order to enter the island, or be tested voluntarily at the airport by a National Guard team. The curfew, which was previously set to end on June 22, is still in place from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. every night. 

But for residents, none of this makes sense. Police have threatened Puerto Ricans with exorbitant fines and even arrest for being out past curfew. Alleyways that would usually be teeming with people dancing to live salsa were barren. Yet locals continue to see tourists step out the door of their Airbnb, hand in hand, no mask, to take in a sunset or grab something to eat. Locals feel like they’re on lockdown while visitors are on a worry free vacation.

Like many places across the U.S., Puerto Rico has been hit hard by the Coronavirus pandemic.

Credit: Ricardo Arduengo / Getty Images

As of July 29, the island has seen more than 16,000 confirmed Covid-19 cases and 211 people have died of the virus. These numbers have been rising in recent weeks as

Puerto Rico was initially praised for being one of the first U.S. jurisdictions to put drastic measures in place, such as implementing an islandwide curfew and banning cruise ships, as well as closing schools and all nonessential businesses, to avoid overwhelming the island’s fragile health care system in March.

But a recent surge in COVID-19 cases has coincided with Puerto Rico’s efforts to reopen nonessential businesses and tourist attractions. Over the past week, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases jumped by more than 1,000, while the number of probable cases increased by almost 1,300.

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People Have A Lot Of Opinions About The Argentina Episode Of Netflix’s ‘Street Food: Latin America’

Culture

People Have A Lot Of Opinions About The Argentina Episode Of Netflix’s ‘Street Food: Latin America’

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Netflix has a new food show out and it has everyone buzzing. “Street Food: Latin America” is bringing everyone the sabor of Latin America to their living room. However, reviews are mixed because of Argentina and the lack of Central American representation.

Netflix has a new show and it is all about Latin American street food.

Some of the best food in the world comes from Latin America. That is just a fact and it isn’t because our families and community come for Latin America. Okay, maybe just a little. The food of Latin America comes with history and stories that have shaped our childhood. For many of us, it is the only thing we have that connects us to the lands our families have left.

The show is highlighting the contributions of women to street food.

“Street Food: Latin America” focuses mainly on the women that are leading the street food cultures in different countries in Latin America. For some of them, it was a chance to bring themselves out of poverty and care for their children. For others, it was a rebellion against the male-dominated culture of cooking in Latin America.

However, some people have some strong opinions about the show and they aren’t good.

There is a lot of attention to native communities in the Latino community culturally right now. The Argentina episode where someone claims that Argentina is more European is rubbing people the wrong way right now. While the native population of Argentina is small, it is still important to highlight and honor native communities who are indigenous to the lands.

The disregard for the indigenous community is upsetting because indigenous Argentinians are fighting for their lives and land.

An A Jazeera report focused on an indigenous community in northern Argentina who were fighting to protect their land. After decades of discrimination and humiliation, members of the Wichi community fought to protect their land from the Argentinian government grabbing it in 2017. Early this year, before Covid, children of the tribe started to die at alarming rates of malnutrition.

Another pain point in the Latino community is the complete disregard of Central America.

Central America includes Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Belize, and Panama. Central America’s exclusion is not sitting right with Netflix users with Central American heritage. Like, how can five whole countries be looked over during a Netflix show about street food in Latin America?

Seems like there is a chance for Netflix to revisit Latin America for more food content.

There are so many countries in Latin America that offer delicious foods to the world. There is more to Latin America than Brazil, Mexico, Peru, Argentina, Colombia, and Bolivia.

READ: This Iconic Mexican Food Won The Twitter Battle To Be Named Latin America’s Best Street Food

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