Dressed in a skimpy gaucho two-piece, Maria José pouts and twists
her way past the screaming crowd. On her heels prances an army of
masked Incas, leaping, whooping and pummelling their bare chests until
their war paint runs.

Glitter-strewn Mayan maidens swirl and
shake behind them aboard elaborate floats, the silver tassels of their
bikinis dazzling in bursts of camera flashes.

In case you find yourself in Argentina and at a lose end at the weekend, hop on a bus and head out to Gualeguaychu. From its laid-back, siesta-somnolent vibe, you’d never guess this quiet town three hours outside the Argentine capital sports one of South America’s most colourful carnivals.

Every Saturday until the first week in March. Go, jump on that bus, you won’t regret it. 

More at: Guardian Travel, Saturday 24th Jan 2009