Top 10 Things to Do in Paraguay

by Alice

Nestled in the heart of South America, Paraguay remains an underrated gem waiting to be explored. From its vibrant culture to its breathtaking natural wonders, this landlocked country offers a plethora of experiences for adventurous travelers. If you’re planning a trip to Paraguay and wondering where to start, look no further. In this guide, we’ll unveil the top 10 things to do in Paraguay, ensuring an unforgettable journey filled with unforgettable memories.

1. Explore the Marvels of Asunción: Paraguay’s Capital City

Begin your Paraguayan adventure by immersing yourself in the bustling capital city of Asunción. This vibrant metropolis is a melting pot of cultures, where modernity blends seamlessly with tradition. Start your exploration at the historic center, where colonial architecture and cobblestone streets tell tales of the city’s storied past. Don’t miss iconic landmarks such as the Palacio de los López and the Panteón Nacional de los Héroes. Additionally, delve into the local culture by visiting bustling markets like Mercado 4, where you can sample traditional delicacies and shop for unique souvenirs.


2. Witness the Natural Beauty of the Iguazú Falls

No visit to Paraguay would be complete without experiencing the awe-inspiring beauty of the Iguazú Falls. Shared with Brazil and Argentina, these magnificent waterfalls are a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the New Seven Wonders of Nature. Located on the border between Paraguay and Brazil, the falls are easily accessible from Ciudad del Este. Marvel at the sheer power of nature as you witness thousands of gallons of water cascading down steep cliffs, surrounded by lush rainforest. For the ultimate experience, take a boat ride to get up close and personal with the thundering waterfalls.


3. Discover the Rich History of Jesuit Missions

Step back in time and explore Paraguay’s colonial past by visiting the Jesuit Missions of La Santísima Trinidad de Paraná and Jesús de Tavarangue. Built in the 17th and 18th centuries, these UNESCO-listed sites are a testament to the cultural and architectural legacy of the Jesuit missionaries in South America. Wander through the well-preserved ruins and admire the intricate carvings and sculptures that adorn the churches and buildings. Guided tours are available, offering insights into the fascinating history and heritage of these ancient settlements.


4. Cruise Along the Paraná River

Embark on a scenic cruise along the Paraná River, one of South America’s most important waterways. This majestic river meanders through Paraguay, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes and wildlife. Whether you opt for a leisurely boat ride or an adventurous kayaking excursion, you’ll be treated to an unforgettable journey through pristine nature. Keep your eyes peeled for diverse bird species, playful river otters, and maybe even a glimpse of the elusive jaguar. For a truly immersive experience, consider a multi-day river expedition, camping along the riverbanks under the starlit sky.

5. Get Lost in the Wilderness of the Chaco Region

For intrepid travelers seeking off-the-beaten-path adventures, the Chaco region beckons with its untamed wilderness and rugged beauty. Covering more than 60% of Paraguay’s territory, this vast expanse of dry forests and savannas is a paradise for nature enthusiasts and wildlife lovers. Explore remote national parks such as Defensores del Chaco, home to elusive species like the giant armadillo and the Chacoan peccary. Take guided hikes through pristine habitats, where you can spot indigenous flora and fauna found nowhere else on earth. Camping under the vast Chacoan sky offers a chance to connect with nature in its purest form.

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6. Experience Traditional Guarani Culture

Immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage of Paraguay by experiencing traditional Guarani culture firsthand. The Guarani people, Paraguay’s indigenous population, have a vibrant history and unique customs that are still preserved to this day. Visit indigenous communities in the rural areas of Paraguay to learn about their way of life, from traditional crafts such as pottery and weaving to ancient healing practices using medicinal plants. Don’t miss the opportunity to sample traditional Guarani cuisine, which features staples like mandioca (yucca), corn, and various wild herbs and fruits.

7. Indulge in Paraguay’s Culinary Delights

No visit to Paraguay would be complete without savoring its delicious culinary offerings. Paraguayan cuisine is a delightful blend of indigenous Guarani flavors, Spanish influence, and culinary traditions from neighboring countries. Sample local delicacies such as sopa paraguaya, a savory cornbread made with cheese and onions, and chipa, a cheesy bread roll enjoyed as a snack or breakfast treat. For meat lovers, a traditional asado (barbecue) featuring succulent cuts of beef, pork, and chicken is a must-try experience. Wash it all down with tereré, a refreshing cold herbal tea enjoyed throughout Paraguay.

8. Trek Through the Ybycuí National Park

Escape the hustle and bustle of urban life and reconnect with nature in Ybycuí National Park, a pristine wilderness located just a few hours’ drive from Asunción. This protected area is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts, offering a wide range of activities amid stunning natural scenery. Lace up your hiking boots and explore scenic trails that wind through lush forests, past cascading waterfalls, and tranquil rivers. Keep an eye out for diverse wildlife, including capybaras, howler monkeys, and colorful bird species. Camping facilities are available for those who wish to spend a night under the stars, surrounded by the sights and sounds of the Paraguayan jungle.

9. Shop for Handicrafts at the Areguá Artisan Market

Discover Paraguay’s rich artistic heritage at the Areguá Artisan Market, located on the shores of Lake Ypacaraí. This colorful market is a treasure trove of handmade crafts and traditional artworks created by local artisans. Browse through stalls brimming with intricate pottery, woven textiles, leather goods, and indigenous jewelry, each piece reflecting Paraguay’s cultural diversity and craftsmanship. Chat with the artisans to learn about their techniques and the cultural significance behind their creations. The market is also a great place to sample regional delicacies and street food, making it a must-visit destination for culture enthusiasts and foodies alike.

10. Relax in the Thermal Springs of Atyrá

Unwind and rejuvenate your body and soul in the natural thermal springs of Atyrá, a tranquil oasis nestled in the heart of Paraguay. Surrounded by lush vegetation and rolling hills, these thermal baths are renowned for their therapeutic properties and soothing mineral waters. Take a dip in the warm pools to relax tired muscles and alleviate stress, or indulge in a mud bath for silky smooth skin. The serene ambiance and scenic beauty of Atyrá make it the perfect destination for a day of relaxation and wellness, providing a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Conclusion: Embark on a Journey of Discovery in Paraguay

From the vibrant streets of Asunción to the untamed wilderness of the Chaco region, Paraguay offers a wealth of experiences for travelers seeking adventure, culture, and natural beauty. Whether you’re exploring ancient ruins, cruising along mighty rivers, or indulging in delicious cuisine, each moment in Paraguay is sure to be filled with wonder and excitement. So pack your bags, embrace the spirit of adventure, and embark on a journey of discovery in this captivating South American destination. With its hidden gems and welcoming hospitality, Paraguay awaits your exploration.



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