The Best Cities for South America Nightlife

South America nightlife is world class and offers travelers a unique opportunity to interact with locals; Going out on the town for a good night is a great way to see a part of a city's culture that you wouldn't normally get to see by just visiting the sights, and there are some great places in South America for those looking to party.

Whether you are looking for massive club nights with the world's best DJ's, dancing venues or places with a laid back vibe, there are plenty of cities across the continent worth visiting. Here are some of the most popular destinations for those looking for excellent South America nightlife

  • 01 of 05

    The Brazilian capital is famous as a party destination, with the amazing New Year's Eve party on Copacabana beach and the Carnaval both being some of the biggest celebrations in the country.

    The nightlife scene in Rio is varied and interesting, with some major clubs at the upper end of the price bracket playing trance music, while there are some great smaller clubs to be found in the Zona Sul district of the city.

    For those looking for an alternative way to spend the evening, going to one of Rio's Samba clubs is a great party, with excellent dancing and a wonderful vibe, with most of these clubs in the Lapa district.

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    Buenos Aires

    Buenos Aires Plaza
    ••• Buenos Aires Plaza. Ron Miller - author of Escape from the Happy Cannibal

    The sprawling capital of Argentina is not only one of the economic capitals but it is also one of the most exciting venues for South America nightlife.

    The Palermo district of the city is home to many of the best clubs, with live DJs playing on the weekends, and most clubs staying open until 7am, or even open 24 hours a day during their busiest periods of the year.

    One of the most interesting parts of the night life there is that Buenos Aires has an amazing range of live bands playing in the city throughout the year, and the passion for rock music is seen in the jumping crowds and the fact that so many live music DVDs are often filmed in Buenos Aires.

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    Montanita Beach
    ••• (c)Maria Florine

    Having once been a sleepy Ecuadorian fishing village, Montanita has been transformed over the last few years, because of the excellent beach and thriving surfing community that is present there.

    The nightlife in Montanita is distinctively Ecuadorean however, with local drinks and cocktails, and the local spirits flavored with fruits particularly popular. This town is perfect for those who want to go surfing or enjoy the beach during the day, and then relax with a few drinks and have a good time in the evening.

    If you prefer a more chilled nightlife atmosphere consider the neighboring town of Canoa, which also has great surfing but a less developed tourist scene.

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    ••• (c) Baconismagic.ca

    Having been considered a no-go area for much of the 1980s and 1990s, a crackdown on the drug cartels and great efforts to make the city a welcoming destination have transformed the appearance and atmosphere of Medellin.

    For those looking for a relaxed and entertaining way to meet the locals, going to one of the many salsa and tango clubs and maybe even trying your moves is a popular part of many people's visit to the city.

    Parque Lleras is the most popular district for nightclubs and bars in the city, and the excellent cocktails made with the local aguardiente sugar cane spirit are definitely an interesting taste of the country.

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  • 05 of 05
    ••• Image © ms.akr. Image © ms.akr

    Located on the northern coast of Peru, Mancora is a small town that has benefited greatly from the booming popularity of the surfing in the area, and there is a massive growth in the number of bars and clubs available in the town.

    Mancora is known for hosting parties every night of the week, and with the loud music it means that this definitely isn't the place to be for those looking for a quiet night in! Mancora is also a great place to try the local cocktail, the Pisco Sour, which is a distinctive taste of Peru.