If you speak Dutch and want to visit South America, consider Suriname. This country in Northern South America has clinged to the linguistic vestiges of its previous occupiers, though its culture reaches beyond the Netherlands, stretching across the globe to embrace the customs of Africa, Indonesia and East India. This ethnic pastiche has created a population with a charismatic diversity.
The capital city of Paramaribo immediately broadcasts the Dutch influence through its architecture – Dutch colonial buildings dominate the streets, and the tongue-twisting Onafhankelijkheidsplein (Independence Square) is the site of the undeniably Dutch Presidential Palace. But Suriname’s richest treasures lie far from the creations of man. Adventure tourists are drawn to the country’s interior, accessible only by boat or light aircraft. A land blanketed with dense rainforests and swamplands, Suriname’s interior is home to the 3.9 million acre Central Suriname Nature Reserve, as well as the Brownsberg and Galibi Nature Reserves. Perhaps the most comprehensive route for experiencing Suriname is through one of the guided boat tours that bring visitors to remote jungle resorts to visit local tribes and sleep in a hammock under the stars.