South America | Destination Guides

7 of the best places to celebrate Christmas in Latin America

If spending Christmas in Latin America has always been on your bucketlist, there’s no time like the present to start planning your holiday with Trafalgar. Whether you’re looking for a festive, picturesque village, a relaxing beach holiday or a fun-filled adventure for the whole family, there’s no shortage of incredible places to celebrate Christmas in Latin America.

1. Buenos Aires, Argentina

 
 
 
 
 
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There’s something for everyone in Buenos Aires, making it the ideal place to spend Christmas with your family. Soak up local culture with a live tango show, feast on an authentic asado or explore the nearby sights, including the famous Iguassu Falls. With Trafalgar, you can experience all of these things and so much more. Just remember to stay up until midnight on December 24, the day that Argentinians traditionally celebrate, to watch the display of fireworks and toast the start of Christmas day.

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RELATED CONTENT: From gauchos to glaciers — 6 essential things to do in Argentina

2. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

 
 
 
 
 
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For the best city break by the beach, look no further than Rio de Janeiro. Spend your Christmas learning about Rio’s rich culture or kicking back and relaxing at the beautiful Copacabana beach with Trafalgar. For Christmas dinner, opt for seafood and wash it down with a caipirinha, a popular Brazilian cocktail that we’ll teach you how to make.

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RELATED CONTENT: 7 beautiful Brazilian beaches to celebrate a ‘White Christmas’ with a difference

3. Cusco, Peru

 
 
 
 
 
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History buffs will love celebrating Christmas in Cusco. This charming city is located in the Peruvian Andes and features 16th century Spanish buildings, which you can learn all about with Trafalgar. Like much of South America, Christmas is celebrated on December 24 in Peru by attending mass, followed by a meal with family and friends. If you want to experience some of the country’s traditions, be sure to have a hot chocolate and panettone on Christmas Eve before going outside at midnight to watch the sky light up with fireworks.

EXPERIENCE THIS ON: Highlights of Peru

RELATED CONTENT: Pantone, pisco sour and more ways to celebrate Christmas in Peru

4. Cartagena, Colombia

 
 
 
 
 
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If you prefer wearing a swimsuit over a snowsuit at Christmas, Cartagena is the place for you. Located on the Caribbean coast of Colombia, you can expect hot and sunny weather during December. To celebrate like a local, be sure to check out the impressive display of Christmas lights around the city. For food, don’t miss the opportunity to try traditional dishes including natilla, a pudding-like custard dish and buñuelos, deep-fried dough balls.

5. El Calafate, Patagonia, Argentina

 
 
 
 
 
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If you like to spend your Christmas in the great outdoors, look no further than beautiful El Calafate. This Patagonian town has no shortage of hiking trails, mountains, lakes, parks and glaciers that are ready to be explored, which you can do on our Wonders of Patagonia tour. After a long day of adventure, make sure you treat yourself to a delicious glass of Malbec.

RELATED CONTENT: Your questions answered: Is Patagonia better in Chile or Argentina?

6. Bariloche, Argentina

 
 
 
 
 
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There’s something about a quaint, picturesque village that feels just right for the holidays, which is what makes Bariloche so appealing. Nestled in the Andes, it’s been coined the “Little Switzerland” of Argentina because of its ski resorts, Swiss-like architecture and abundance of chocolate shops. A visit to Bariloche at Christmastime is sure to be cosy, comforting and filled with lots of delicious chocolate. What more could you ask for?

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RELATED CONTENT: From gauchos to glaciers — 6 essential things to do in Argentina

7. Santiago, Chile

 
 
 
 
 
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If you’re a wine-lover, consider celebrating Christmas in Santiago. Wine is a key part of a Chilean Christmas dinner — a chardonnay pairs perfectly with asado for Noche Buena, after all. With Trafalgar, we’ll take you to Casablanca Valley, Chile’s wine region, where you can meet a winemaker and have an exclusive tasting.

RELATED CONTENT: 5 unique Chilean Christmas traditions you won’t find anywhere else in the world

Where would you like to celebrate Christmas in Latin America? Tell us your dream destination in the comments.

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