Here at Workaway you will find 3315 hosts and
organisations for volunteer work
in South America.
Low cost travel without having to pay expensive agency fees.
Buenos Aires, Cordoba, Rosario, Mendoza, San Miguel de Tucuman
Santa Cruz, La Paz, Cochabamba, Santa Ana, Oruro
Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte, Brasilia, Salvador
Santiago, Concepcion, Valparaiso, Vina del Mar, Antofagasta
Bogota, Medellin, Cali, Barranquilla, Cartagena
Guayaquil, Quito, Cuenca, Ambato, Machala
Cayenne, Kourou, Saint-Laurent-du-Maroni, Sinnamary, Roura
Georgetown, New Amsterdam, Linden, Corriverton, Bartica
Asuncion, San Lorenzo, Ciudad del Este, Encarnacion, Coronel Oviedo
Lima, Callao, Arequipa, Chiclayo, Trujillo
Paramaribo, Cottica, Nieuw Nickerie, Moengo, Brokopondo
Montevideo, Rivera, Salto, Punta del Este, Paysandu
There are 20258 reviews for 2253 Hosts and organizations in South America.
2253 Hosts in South America were rated at least 4.9/5!
La experiencia aquí superó mis expectativas, por momentos desafiante, diferente a mi día a día, me hizo pensar en cómo es la vida y cómo te está forma...
by Uilliam , 15/08/2022
We spent a wonderful moment in the hostel ! All the crew was very welcoming and made us feel at home. The hostel is very well located in Arequipa, it’...
by Chloé & Valentin , 14/08/2022
We spent two weeks working with Armando. The hours were very reasonable and we enjoyed the variety in work which kept things interesting! The room is ...
by Alicia & Hamish , 14/08/2022
I had an amazing time with Ernesto ! The work wasn't difficult, and I really enjoyed the more laid-back feeling of the winter off-season. Valparaiso i...
by Lauren , 14/08/2022
Best school ever! Staff couldn't do enough for us, always checking if we needed something. The work is as described, students are eager to learn but s...
by Johann & Aurea , 14/08/2022
Registering as a Host
Registering as a host with workaway.info is completely free of charge.
Workaway.info has been set up to promote and encourage exchange and learning. Hosts on Workaway should be interested in cultural exchange and sharing experiences. They should be able to provide a welcoming friendly environment for visitors as well as offering accommodation and food.Register to be a host
South America is a continent of superlatives – it has the world’s biggest rainforest and the largest river (Amazon), the highest mountain range outside Asia (the Andes), the world’s highest waterfall (the 979m Angel Falls in Venezuela) and one of the world’s largest waterfalls too (Iguaça Falls on the border of Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay). Last, but not least, it has the world’s southernmost city: Ushuaia.
It’s also a continent of contrasts: from teeming, multitudinous cities such as Sao Paolo and Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, to the remote Galapagos Islands in Ecuador, and from the hot, dry Atacama desert, to the icy landscapes of Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego. Nestled between the Caribbean, the South Pacific, and the South Atlantic oceans, it has a wealth of beaches, from perfect calm tropical paradises to stunning surf spots.
But there’s no getting away from it – it’s a big continent, with 5 time zones as you cross the country and measuring more than 7500 km from north to south. Any attempt at exploration will take time – so thank goodness for Workaway, and the many Workaway hosts based all over the continent! As a Workaway volunteer you can explore every country in South America in an affordable way, have an unforgettable summer or a unique gap year, do something meaningful, learn new skills, meet people and make friends for life.
The countries of South America tend to be friendly places, and the tourist sector has been growing rapidly recently. Every country has its own charm, and there is no shortage of tourist attractions in South America, so you may have a hard time deciding which places you want to visit. But when it comes to budget, you don’t have to worry too much since travel on the continent is usually quite affordable. Volunteering with Workaway will bring down costs associated with accommodation and food of course, and between volunteering stints you can use some of the tips on travelling on a budget from seasoned Workawayers to help keep costs down.
The sheer size of South America means climate can vary a lot from region to region. However tropical temperatures can be found over most of the continent – with the exception of Patagonia, the southernmost area of land shared between Argentina and Chile, where the climate is varied and sometimes extreme. And even further north, as soon as you get up high into the Andes, temperatures drop. For travellers from the Northern Hemisphere it is worth remembering that in South America summer lasts from November to February, and winter is from June to August. Research the weather in the area you plan to visit, and plan your packing well. Visit our Blog to get packing hacks and other advice and tips from seasoned Workawayers, and read on for more South-America specific help and hints.
The continent is made up of 12 countries of varying size. Brazil is home to more than half the population and covers about half the land area of the continent, and here Portuguese is spoken. The official language in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela is Spanish, although many indigenous languages are spoken too. In Guyana, Suriname and French Guiana English, Dutch and French are spoken respectively. These linguistic differences are the result of the different colonial histories of each country, but the land is also marked by traces of ancient civilizations, the indigenous peoples of the past and present, and of African slave communities, among others. These influences combine to create a thriving and varied modern culture.
When planning your trip, bear in mind that if it’s company you’re looking for, you should stick to the north and the coastal areas, especially the eastern part of the continent, where the majority of the population live. If you want rugged, empty landscapes to explore, go south and west. Beyond that basic advice, to help you plan your trip to South America here are a just a few ideas of places to go and things to do from the incredible number of options available. Choose your area to explore, and then browse the nearly 3500 Workaway hosts based all over the continent to find the perfect base for your trip.
The ruins of ancient civilizations share the continent with world-class metropolises: check out Brasilia for outstanding modern architecture, Buenos Aires for European architecture, Cuzco for its genuine indigenous culture, Rio for its strong African influence, São Paolo for its huge Japanese community, and pretty much everywhere for the traces of the Iberian conquistadores.
A few highlights:
South America boasts over 100 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, like the Iguaçu National Park in Brazil, the Galapagos Islands, Los Glaciares National Park in Argentina, and Machu Picchu in Peru – but there is still so much yet to be discovered. With millions of miles of Amazonian rainforest and hundreds of islands, many of these places have yet to be troubled by human presence, and this is part of what makes South America such a mysterious, yet fascinating continent.
Talk of festivals in South America and the annual carnaval celebrations in Rio de Janeiro come immediately to mind. Over two million people flock to the city to join the party every year, and samba dancing and the wonderful music and parades with grand floats and dance troupes make for a spectacular climax to the event. But South America has lots of other festivals to offer, all featuring music and dancing and giving you plenty of opportunity to interact with locals.
Beaches are almost synonymous with holidays, and South America has plenty of them. You will find hip and happening party beaches, and quiet and less crowded beaches where you can just laze around and relax with your family… plus all the water sports to go with it.
Workaway is the world’s leading community for volunteering and cultural exchange. Lone travellers backpacking through South America will find plenty of opportunities to meet and connect with the locals, but Workaway also offers many opportunities for couples, friends, families and groups. Workaway’s many hosts offer volunteers free accommodation and meals in exchange for a few hours of work a day, normally five days a week. This is the perfect way to make travelling affordable in South America, or to extend your stay. Whether you want to visit South America’s lively, diverse cities, or get right off the beaten track and immerse yourself in wild nature and local life, the perfect host is waiting to welcome you. It doesn’t matter whether you are exploring during your summer holidays, or seeking a gap year adventure, the volunteering opportunities are almost unlimited and will guarantee you have the time of your life.
As a member of the Workaway community you can use the many thousands of reviews and feedback provided to find your perfect match among our hosts. Share your culture, skills and language with the communities, projects and families that offer a wide range of volunteer programmes, volunteer projects and volunteer jobs. If you want to take a backpacking trip through the heart of South America, use our regional filter to check out the many offers far away from the usual tourist spots. Combining these more off-the-beaten-track opportunities with a stay with some of the many host families and organizations in South American’s towns and cities is the ideal way to enjoy the country’s diversity.
Who doesn’t enjoy going on holiday and relaxing in a tourist hotspot? However, travellers who want to connect more deeply with the host country and make a real difference will find perfect opportunities to do this by joining Workaway. Do you want to find out more about the diverse cultures of South America? Volunteering is the perfect vehicle for cultural exchange, providing the traveller with a truly memorable experience while doing something useful, like helping to restore an old building, helping with household tasks, or caring for children or animals. Working and travelling in South America is the perfect opportunity to get to know this unique continent, the countries that form it, its nature and its people.
If you are planning to visit South America as a volunteer and not as a tourist, you must have the correct visa for each country. To find out about the latest requirements, you need to contact the Embassy of the country you plan to visit in your home country before travelling. And please don’t forget to take out appropriate insurance to make sure you qualify for healthcare!
It’s practically impossible to do justice to a continent the size of South America in words, so you’d best just get out there and do some exploring – join Workaway and get planning your trip!