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Old 10-24-2010, 02:22 PM
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I have the month of February to spend in the southern hemisphere. I'm thinking Paraguay. Are there any Paraguayans here on CD? I'm looking for in country blogs and forums, suggestions on where to go, what to do, staying safe, favorite foods, living like a local, avoiding hot and humid for cooler locations...
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Old 10-24-2010, 02:52 PM
Location: 30-40N 90-100W
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My university has some agreement with Paraguay so students sometimes take tours there. I also met a Chinese-Paraguayan at the University. Alas I've lost contact with those guys. Maybe others can do better.
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Old 10-26-2010, 08:28 PM
Location: The world is my home
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I would spend some time in Paraguay, Uruguay and Brazil... but, that's just my opinion!

Have fun!
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Old 10-26-2010, 09:34 PM
Location: Tucson AZ & Leipzig, Germany
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I've been to Paraguay twice, 1981 and 1998. One of your comments got my attention, "avoiding hot and humid for cooler locations". If that's really important, don't go to Paraguay in February. One thing has not changed in the last few decades - there are no "cool locations" in Paraguay in February, the peak of southern hemisphere summer. All of Paraguay is hot and humid in February, something like South Florida in July or August. Typically around 37-40C (upper 90s or low 100s F) during the day, and 25-28C (around 80F) at night. Humid, tropical with occasional rain.

Most people avoid the mid day heat and hang out somewhere indoors to get some relief. Air conditioning is not everywhere, fans are the most common cooler.

Asuncion is the center of everything in Paraguay. It's not a tourist destination by any means, but a good enough place to spend a bit of time. There's an interesting mix of immigrants. Lots of people from Korea, the Mennonites (up in the Chaco, Nueva Filadelfia), Germans, and a smattering of people from all corners of the globe that landed in a pretty unlikely place.

Paraguay is one of the least expensive places you will ever visit. Top attraction is Iguazu Falls, near Ciudad del Este (city of Foz do Iguacu is across the river in Brazil - Brazil visa required). Ciudad del Este has a bad rep for crime and safety due the border location, so extra caution is needed around there. You can get good quality buses from Asuncion to Ciudad del Este.

If you want to make friends, learn a few words of the other official language of Paraguay, Guarani (language of the original inhabitants). Paraguay is one of the only countries in the Americas where an original native language is recognized and used as an official national language. People in Paraguay are mostly friendly and easy going, and did I mention they are proud of their national soccer team (understatement). Tell them that Jose Luis Chilavert told you to visit their country, and they will probably buy you a beer or not let you pay for dinner.
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