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a small landlocked country has whisch has opened up to the outside world. Its democratic
with free trade. It's friendly and safe. Paraguay is full of
Riverboat rides, waterfalls,
trekking, ruins, fishing, train excursions, animal watching and indigenous
culture are Paraguay's main attractions.
The country appeals to travelers who have
already been to larger, more varied excursions, but who are now
ready to experience the more subtle attractions of the continent. It
appeals to those interested in learning and exploring Guarani Indians, watching Nanduti lace being made or taking a riverboat cruise
with a chance of seeing a jaguar or alligator. Asuncion is the capital city of Paraguay.
is built on hills above the Rio Paraguay.
Activities - There
are several hiking trails in Ybycui≠ and nature trails
in the Parque National Cerro Cora. The fishing and camping
are good at Villa Florida, while swimming and water sports
are popular at Lago Ypacari≠, whose waters are thought to have heady
curative powers. If you want to bust a gut, try climbing the
1640 ft Cerro Leon or take an expedition into the Chaco
wilderness (bring plenty of food, water and
celebrations in addition to Christmas, New Year's Day and Easter
include: Dia de San Blas (Patron Saint of Paraguay) in
February; Paz del Chaco (End of the Chaco War) in June; and the Fundacion de Asuncion (Founding of Asuncion) in August.
Carnival in February is liveliest in Asuncion.
crossings: 3 from Argentina, 2 from Brazil and a border crossing
from Bolivia. Asuncion has a passenger boat which takes you on the Rio Parana to and from the Brazilian city of Corumba°
Paraguay is about the size of the State of California with
approx: 5.5 million population.
he Paraguay River divides the
country into two separate regions: On the western side is the Chaco
(jungle, marsh and scrub); on the eastern side is fertile, grassy
farmland leading into hilly, forested country. The eastern side is the
most heavily populated. The broad Parana River, which forms a border
with Brazil and Argentina, provides landlocked Paraguay with a link to
the sea.Rainfall in Paraguay
is at its heaviest near the Brazilian border and July is the coldest
month. Religious center of Caacupi is important
for the Roman Catholic Immaculate Conception.
Paraguay Culture -
Theater is a popular medium, with
occasional offerings in Guaran√≠ as well as in Spanish. Visual arts of startling
unconventionality can be seen in many galleries. Paraguay's pre-eminent literary
figure is the poet-novelist Augusto Roa Bastos.
Paraguayan music is something of a curiosity - despite the fact that
the majority of the population still speaks the native tongue, the music is
European in origin, with little or no traces of Black, Brazilian or Argentinian
influences. The guitar and harp are popular instruments and songs are usually
slow and lachrymose. Dances, such as the polka and bottle dance (so-called
because performers swing around with a jar on their head) are, however, much
livelier. Agust√≠n Barrios (1885-1944), one of Latin America's most revered
composers for the guitar, often performed his music in full Guarana≠ costume,
promoting himself as the Paganini of the guitar from the Paraguayan jungles.
Roman Catholicism is officially the country's religion, but the
influence of the church is less pronounced than in many other Latin American
countries. Other religious groups include fundamentalist Mennonites and the
controversial New Tribes Mission, an evangelical group which operated with the
collusion of Stroessner's dictatorship.
Meat dishes as well as tropical and subtropical foodstuffs play an
important role in the Paraguayan diet. Grains, particularly maize, and manioc
(cassava) are incorporated into almost all meals. Try tucking into locro,
a maize stew, mazamorra, corn mush, mbaipy so-√≥, a hot maize
pudding with meat chunks, and sooyo sopy, a thick soup made of ground
meat and served with rice or noodles. Desserts include mbaipy he-√©, a
delicious mix of corn, milk and molasses. Tea or mate is consumed in vast
quantities while mosto (sugar-cane juice) and cana (cane alcohol)
are also frequently imbibed.