Will wonders never cease? Apparently not in South America. Our favorite continent pulled in yet another crowd-sourced award this month, and it’s a big one.
Bow down to Torres del Paine, Patagonia’s premiere national park and adventure destination. The southerly sprawl of glaciers, frosted mountain peaks, and deep blue lakes covers 935 square miles and clings to bottom of Chile, a string-bean of a country. In 2012, more than 139,000 hikers headed down to traverse trails—the W trek is particularly popular—and experience the park for themselves.
Torres del Paine garnered more than 5 million votes on the travel website VirtualTourist.com, which belong to the TripAdvisor Media Group. The site shares user-generated travel tips and experiences with the community’s 1.2 million registered users.
Tourism boards from across the globe submitted landmark destinations for consideration, assembling an elite collection of 300 contenders. Four of the top five destinations are in Latin America: Torres del Paine National Park, Chile; Santa Ana Volcano & Lake Coatepeque, El Salvador; Coffee Cultural Landscape, Colombia; Tikal National Park, Guatemala. Coming in at number 5 and the odd one out is the Skocjan Caves in Slovenia.
Are these really some of the best destinations in the world, or are those simply the destinations with the most motivated tourism boards? Once you get past the top 10, there are some odd Midwestern landmarks in the rankings: elevators in Iowa and Bass Pro in Missouri…?
Regardless, enjoy the following photos of Torres del Paine. Next week we’ll dive the New 7 Wonders of the World.
Torres del Paine, Chile
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Photo Credits: andreslabbe, World Resources, benontherun.com, giladlotan, Ostrosky Photos, Piero...