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The heart of North America beats through towering forests, undulating fields, high-plain deserts, pulsating metropolises and offbeat oases.

Iconic cities that need no introduction are just the icing on this culture-laden cake. Yes, you have the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Smithsonian in Washington DC but the buzz of music, art and film finds its way down into everyday life, with citizens as often creating as consuming. From Toronto's film festival to Mexico City's thriving music scene, North America is a veritable smorgasbord of enlightening experiences just waiting to be uncovered.

However, even the most hardcore urban and suburbanites are forced to stop and gawp when confronted with the sheer natural beauty that is their homeland. Whether you're relaxing on a virtually undiscovered beach, racing down the slopes of the Great White North or scaling the iconic crags of the Grand Canyon - North America is certain to take your breath away.

In this land, adventure is king. Venture on a Canadian wilderness trek, buckle up for the legendary road trip along Route 66 or explore ancient rites at mysterious Maya and Aztec ruins. 

Andean peaks, Amazonian rainforest, Patagonian glaciers, Incan ruins, colonial towns, white-sand beaches and vertiginous nightlife: the wonders of South America set the stage for incredible adventures.

La Vida Musical
Welcome to one of the world's great music destinations. Colombian salsa, Brazilian samba, Argentine tango and Andean folk music all receive airtime across the globe, but nothing quite compares to hearing those rhythms in the place where they were born. Sultry milongas (tango clubs) in Buenos Aires, simmering garrafeiras (dance halls) in Rio, salsotecas (salsa clubs) in Quito – all great places to chase the heart of Saturday night.

Setting for Big Adventures
From the snow-capped peaks of the Andes to the undulating waterways of the Amazon, South America spreads a dazzling array of natural wonders. This is a continent of lush rainforests, towering volcanoes, misty cloud forests, bone-dry deserts, red-rock canyons, ice-blue glaciers and sun-kissed beaches. As landscapes go, there aren't many other places on earth that offer so much range – or so many opportunities for adventure.

You can hike past ancient temples first laid down by the Incas, contemplate the awe-inspiring power of Iguazú Falls or spend the day watching wildlife from a dugout canoe on one of the Amazon's countless igarapés (narrow waterways). You can barrel down Andean roads by mountain bike, go white-water rafting on class-five rivers and surf amazing breaks off both coasts. And once you think you've experienced it all, head to the dramatic landscapes in Tierra del Fuego, go eye-to-eye with extraordinary creatures in the Galápagos, and scramble up tableland mountains in the Gran Sabana for a panorama that seems straight out of the Mesozoic era.

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