Paraguay Travel Guide: Travel tips for foreigners & backpackers, Asunción tourist information, Paraguay food average prices, eating on a budget, accommodation in Asunción Find discount hotels, cheap accommodation, vacation deals, holiday packages.
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Paraguay Travel Guide

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Full country name: Republic of Paraguay
Area: 406,752 sq km
Population: 6,349,000
Capital City: Asunción
Language: Spanish, Guaraní
Religion: 89,6% Roman Catholic, 6,2% Evangelical Christian, 1,1% other Christian, 0.6% indigenous religions
Government: Constitutional presidential republic
Time Zone: (UTC-4), summer (DST) (UTC-3)
Dialing Code: 595
Electricity: 220V, 50Hz
Weights & measures: Metric
Currency: Guaraní (PYG)

Money & Costs:
Average yearly salary: USD4,600

Budget: $13
Mid-range: $20
High: $25+
Budget: $15-50
Mid-range: $75-100
High: $120-160+

Geography: Paraguay is a landlocked country in South America. Its neighbors are Brazil, Argentina and Bolivia. The Paraguay River (Río Paraguay) divides the country into two very different regions: eastern and western. Both, the Eastern Paraguay (Paraneña region) and the Western Paraguay (Chaco) gently slope toward and are drained into the Paraguay River.

Climate: Paraguay experiences both, tropical and subtropical climates. During the winter months (May – August) the temperature ranges from 16 to 21 C, with the nights being slightly cooler. The summer (October – March) temperature ranges from 25 to 38 C. Cold polar winds from the south and hot, humid north winds from southwestern Brazil are very common in Paraguay. Violent thunderstorms in summer are not alien to Paraguay. There is, however, no definite rainy season.

Recommended clothing: You should pack comfortable lightweight clothes that can be layered. It is important to note that there are extremes in weather - the summers can get really hot, and the winters can get quite cool. Since homes in Paraguay are not insulated, it is a very good idea to bring a sleeping bag when visiting the country in winter.

Food: The Paraguayan cuisine is influenced by South American (beans, rice, corn and beef) and Brazilian (meat dishes, eggs, pastries and baked dishes) cooking. In Ciudad del Este, for example, the food is mainly based on beef dishes or chicken stews, served with tapioca or noodles. In Encarnacion, the diet is based on various ground nuts and beans. The most popular desserts of Paraguay are corn pudding and tuberose ice cream.

Drink: Tap water in Asuncion, and possibly Ciudad del Este is of a good quality, however, in the rest of Paraguay it should be boiled before drinking. The national beverage of the country is a tea called mate (served hot) or terere (served cold). It is made from yerba mate plant and served in guampas (wooden or hallow bull horn). Mate is drunk through a metal straw (bombilla). Beer is widely available, as well as many other liquors. The most popular local beer is called Brahma or Pilsen. All of the hard liquors are similar to rum.

Health: The conditions of hospitals in Paraguay may radically differ. Some of them are of normal western quality, while others are unequipped and unsanitary. Therefore, if ill, try to get to the best hospital even if it takes you longer. There are many stray dogs in the streets, and you may pick up a foot flea known locally as pique (Tunga penetrans), so be careful not to have contact with the dogs.

Public Holidays:
Jan 1 New Year's Day
Jan 6 Epiphany Day
Mar 1 Heroe's Day
Apr 5-6 Holy Thursday – Easter Monday
May 1Labor Day
May 15 Independence Day
Jun 12 Chaco Armistice
Aug 15 Founding of Asuncion
Aug 25 Constitution Day
Sep 29 Boqueron Battle Day
Nov 1 All Saints' Day
Dec 8 Virgin of Caacupe, Immaculate Conception
Dec 25 Christmas Day

Disclaimer: The above information is for reference purposes only. The content of this page is not intended to substitute for advice given by the user's own government travel departments or a licensed travel health advisor. The viewer/user of this web page should always contact the user's own government representatives in that area for the most up-to-date information at that time, before making a final decision to travel to that country or destination.

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