Places in Paraguay
It's hard to get your head around Asunción. At heart the city is beautiful and simple, with a sprinkling of original colonial and beaux arts buildings, international cuisine, shady plazas and friendly people. Probe a little deeper, however, and you'll see another side: smart suburbs, ritzy shopping malls and fashionable nightclubs.
Encarnación, 'La Perla del Sur', is Paraguay´s most attractive city. It's also known as the 'Capital de Carnaval' and, following the completion of the new costanera (riverside promenade) with its fabulous river beach, is referred to rather ambitiously by some locals as the new Rio de Janeiro. It is rather less proud to be the birthplace of dictator Alfredo Stroessner.
Ciudad Del Este
Originally named Puerto Presidente Stroessner after the former dictator, the 'City of the East' is a renowned center for contraband goods, earning it the nickname 'the Supermarket of South America'. The part near the busy Brazilian border is chaotic, but you'll find the rest of the city is surprisingly pleasant, with some interesting attractions nearby.