About Jonnie at ATSA

Hi, I am Jonnie and originally from Guildford but live in London now. I met Tom and Richard through university where we starred in one of the football teams and our friendship has grown ever since, with our trip to South America being one the most unforgettable things I have ever experienced!

Ever since I was young I was filled with a desire to travel the world and have always imagined South America to be the place that I would like to see most. As soon as I finished uni I started working and saving to fund the trip of a lifetime, and on 1st February 2009 I was on my way...The main push factor to go travelling was not a desire to find myself or anything like that, I just wanted to go on the most amazing holiday I could dream of before I got down to starting a career in London. So that was my reason for the first trip and since then have been back and forth pretty regularly and have completed fallen in love with the place.

Here are a few things that I wanted to share with you from my experiences travelling.

Best experience in South America

Impossible to choose but have narrowed it down to 3 things...first has got to be the experience of watching Boca Juniors play in their famous Bombonera stadium, the atmosphere was incredible and the biblical weather, with rainstorms and lightening, just helped to make the experience all the more memorable. Then there was the 2 months that I spent along the Caribbean Coast. Northern Colombia and Venezuela were absolutely fantastic places to visit at the end of my trip. Colombia has an incredible vibe of friendliness and a complete dedication to enjoying life that is infectious. It was in Taganga that I went SCUBA diving at night which was an unforgettable experience. The third thing that I thoroughly enjoyed was the Salar de Uyuni tour. This was just non-stop incredible, panoramic views across the stunning Bolivian landscape and is something that quite simply must be done when visiting Bolivia.

Diving in Taganga, Colombia
Diving in Taganga

Top Tip

Although probably not the most eco-friendly thing that we did...but it is definitely worth paying a bit more for the better hostels in La Paz to ensure that you can have a hot shower. It can get seriously cold in La Paz and when coupled with altitude sickness you cannot underestimate the joy that a nice, hot shower can bring to even the most hardened traveller!

Why write a website?

We decided to write the website quite simply because we enjoyed travelling there so much. When I was planning my trip I used to love researching what people thought of various trips that they went on and I find it difficult to find genuine independent advice and hopefully this website will be able to give a no-nonsense view of our experiences on our many trips to the continent.

Tom and I in the Atacama Desert
Tom and I in the Atacama Desert

What's next?

So my next trip is going to be around central Venezuela. When I was last in Venezuela I was coming to the end of my trip (and by that I mean coming to the end of my budget) so was not able to fully appreciate the beauty of the country. When I next visit I will make sure to save enough time and money to make sure that I can experience enough of the country to at least get started on a Venezuela page for AdventureTravelSouthAmerica. Of course I am also planning to be out in Brazil for the football World Cup in 2014!