Paraguay: Country forgotten by God and by the people
Paraguay is the state in the heart of South America, accommodated between Brazil, Bolivia and Argentina. Although it has all the prerequisites for development, it seems to be in a remote corner of the world - burdened by severe poverty, corruption and crime, Paraguay is, together with Bolivia, the poorest country of South America.Pearl of Paraguay is capital city Asuncion. Colonial buildings and the proper arrangement of streets in the old town, a beautiful cathedral, several beautiful squares, excellent restaurants, friendly people ... Beautiful river Paraguay, also a border with Argentina, gives a special charm to mansions and manicured parks. The city offers a number of excellent museums, primarily the Museo del Barro - unusually wide collection of everything that has characterized life in the territory of present-day Paraguay.
Football - national obsession
One can rarely encounter so much kindness and friendliness among the local people as in Paraguay. Everyone there knows for Croatia only for one reason - football. While in Paraguay clubs or national team are not exactly the best, football is a national obsession. Some have begun to commemorate Croatia by reciting dozens of Croatian players. We were embarrassed because we did not know a single Paraguayan football player.
What we liked most in Asuncion was - great shopping, the best chance we`ve ever had. Center abounds with fancy shops in which quality goods are sold. However, there are much, sometimes even much more cheaper than in Croatia. Carefully we passed shops, chose really well and - fared better than ever. We were paying with guarani, funny salad notes with infinite zeros, which have no value outside of Paraguay. It is important not to mix hundreds of millions and billions, the difference is only one zero. Poverty is rampant even in the very center. Just look back and realize that the city is extremely dangerous. If you have to own anything of value, every corner is a new threat for you. There is no indication the cameras unless police is near, or at least a lot of people who can come to the rescue. At night, the best is to stay at the hotel, for there are zones that even police averse after sunset.
Gran Chaco - a remote and cruel place
Are we tourists or masochists? This question we asked ourselves traveling by bus through hundreds of miles of wilderness of dry tropical lowlands Gran Chaco.
Barren, covered with grass and shrubs, Chaco stretches from Bolivia and Paraguay deep to Argentina in the south. Wildlife includes jaguars, pumas and numerous species of lizards and snakes. No highways, mostly either asphalt. Dozens of hours of strumming on the gravel, with sand and dust entering the bus and branches hitting the windows. Later we found and even in the bags. We completed customs formalities hundreds of kilometers before the border of Paraguay and Bolivia, and after that point there is a big - nothing. You can not smuggle anything, becouse in the wilderness there are no people who would buy it. The first settlement, pale hint of civilization, was the Bolivian village Ibibobo. Although already deep in Bolivian territory, the Bolivian customs are placed here. A little sparkle is provided by a huge military complex. Indeed, only a strict military discipline can make people live in such a remote, unforgiving place.