Keeping Fit While Traveling: South America’s Healthiest Cities


The last thing you want to take into consideration before picking a place to vacation is whether it will ‘be kind’ to your mid-section. I mean skipping the marinara-drenched pasta and buttery breadsticks in Italy or sizzling street-food in South America, is hardly worth the sacrifice in attempt to save yourself from gaining 5 pounds.


If clean eating and staying fit on the road is your cup of tea, I have compiled a short list of cities in South America that will keep you lean and green without forsaking your strong appetite for culture and cuisine.

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Known for their culture of love, romance, and divine architecture, this tourist-savvy city also boasts an enormous selection of vegetarian cuisine. Although traditionally known as a meat-lover’s paradise, there are actually an ample amount of clean and inspiring cafes sandwiched between Parrillas, (Steak Houses) and fried empanada joints. They are the type of restaurants that serve ambitious and plentiful vegetarian dishes. Try Baraka Casa y Comida. This cafe serves tasty salads, sandwiches, and even an Italian inspired gnocchi dish that may turn out to be the highlight of dining experience.

Care for a run? Buenos Aires offers long stretches of running paths that are buzzing with other young, (and old) Argentines looking to stay “buff” before or after indulging in one (or a few) glutenous meals. If you feel safer running with more people around, ask the locals where their favorite running paths are and what time of day is best to run.

Curitiba, Brazil

With a grand and popular Botanical Garden, beautiful,(and clean!) parks and plazas, and one of the highest recycling rates in the world, this city is blessed with fresh air and fresh fare!

For healthy eating try, Restaurante Vereo Natural. If the name doesn’t imply its merits, this top-rated vegan-friendly restaurant boasts, “outstanding vegetarian cuisine” with a range of non-meat dishes including fresh juices and delectable puddings.

Sucre, Bolivia

If you have visited Bolivia you wouldn’t immediately regard it as a country offering a plentiful selection of healthy food. Its hard to imagine that vegetarian and healthier options even exist, considering in the big cities and rural villages alike, there are fried chicken joints on almost every “esquina” (corner).

Don’t let the oily aromas and piled-high-meat dishes dissuade you from visiting Sucre, Bolivia – foreigner favorite and regarded as one of the cleanest and healthy cities in Bolivia. Sucre offers an array of vegetarian cuisine, gimansios (gyms) and some of the cleanest “markets” in Bolivia.

For good eats, try Tentaciones Trattoria Café. A super tasty and tasteful little café offering pizzas, pastas, sandwiches and vegan selections. It’s locally owned producing fresh ingredients and an incredibly friendly staff to match.

As for accommodations you can easily find hotels at a medium-level price tier that come equipped with a gym or a picsina (pool).


Do you recommend other highly healthy cities in South America?


About Author

Since a young age Jenna has always had an undeviating desire to explore the world and all its hidden niches. This desire has catapulted her willingly into some of the most memorable experiences of her life! Starting with delivering shoes to underserved villages in the Dominican Republic to bussing it down through Mexico and Central America, she currently lives and works in Cochabamba, Bolivia and believes experiencing first hand what foreign culture is really like, serves as her ultimate passion.

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