13 Fun Fact About Paraguay’s Culture and Geography

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Named “Corazón de América,” meaning the heart of America, the country of Paraguay is blessed with natural beauty and friendly people. 

Here are some fun facts that’ll make you pack your bags and plan a trip to this beautiful country!

1. Home Of The World’s Second-Biggest Hydro-Electric Power Plant 

Situated on the River Parana, the Itaipu Dam is the world’s second-biggest working power plant that leverages hydropower.

Almost the entire electricity of the country is sourced from this power plant. As it shares it with Brazil, 90% of the generated energy goes to Brazil. In 2016, it broke its own record and produced 103.1 million MWh. 

2. Boasting The World’s Second-Largest Freshwater Aquifer System 

The Guarani aquifer system is the world’s second-largest freshwater aquifer system

This 1.2 million square kilometer reserver is so huge that it stretches beneath Uruguay, Argentina, and Brazil too. This humongous freshwater reserve alone can supply fresh drinking water to the entire world for around 150 years!

3. The Second Largest River In South America Flows Through This Country

Yes I know, another ‘2nd’ on the list. The Parana River is South America’s second-longest river after the Amazon.

However, unlike the Amazon, this river is navigable to a great extent. It acts as one of the most important waterways linking inland cities of Paraguay with the ocean.

4. Paraguay’s National Drink Is A Tea Prepared With Cold Water

Tea prepared with cold water? That sounds strange but don’t knock it ’till you’ve tried it!

Yerbamate tea with straw

Yerba mate tea is a type of terere native to Paraguay and much loved by locals and travelers alike. It is usually drunk through a filtered metal straw called a bombilla. 

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5. Paraguay Has One Of The Largest Naval Fleets In The World

Thanks to the connectivity provided by the Parana River, the country boasts an impressive naval fleet.

And despite being an inland country, it has the largest navy among the landlocked countries. 

6. Paraguay Has A Higher Literacy Rate Than The United States

Paraguay has always had a constantly high literacy rate, scoring 94.54% in 2020 while the United States only scored around 79% only. 

7. The Country’s National Flag Has Different Emblems On Both Sides!

The national flag of Paraguay has the country’s coat of arms on the front and the treasury seal on the back. It’s the only country in the world to have differing sides.

Both sides of the Paraguay flag

Along with the treasury seal, it also has the country’s motto, which translates to “Peace and Justice.” 

8. Paraguay Is A Bilingual Country

Unlike many, this country has two official languages. The two languages are Guarani and Spanish. 

Guarani is spoken by almost everyone in Paraguay, irrespective of any class or biases. Many of this language’s words are inspired by the sounds of animals and other earthy tunes. 

9. The Iguazu Falls Is The World’s 3rd Largest Waterfall

Located on the triple junction of Paraguay, Brazil, and Argentina, this waterfall is Instagram heaven! If you are awed by Niagra falls, then Iguazu falls is twice its width.

Iguazu Falls

The Iguazu river itself has more than 275 individual waterfalls and cascades. Perfect if you can’t get the perfect photo at Iguazu to wow your followers!

10. The Guinness World Record For Hosting The Biggest Barbeque Feast Ever!

The country broke the world record for hosting the biggest open-air barbeque in 2008. There were around 30,000 participants who consumed more than 28 kilo tons of meat within a mere 6 hours!

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11. Old School Dueling Still Exists

Unlike many countries, you can still have a little taste of ancient times by engaging with your friends in a round of dueling. Yes, the real thing!

Given the danger involved, you have to be a registered blood donor recorded and have a professional medic present should things take a turn for the worst.

12. Home To The World’s Largest Rodent: The Capybara

Don’t worry – they’re not all that bad! The Capybara is basically an adorable giant guinea pig!

a capybara and magpie on ground

These extremely friendly furry beings can grow up to 4 feet and weigh more than 100 pounds. Being very social and responsive to humans, they make for the perfect pet.

13. The Festival De San Juan Is A Tourist Favorite

Seen those movie scenes where the hero walks on burning coals and embers for his lover? Well, that is the main attraction of this colorful festival that draws tourists from across the world.

Having walked on fire myself, it’s definitely an interesting experience. For the non-fire walkers, this carnival celebration has plenty to keep you entertained.

Joshua Smith

Joshua has visited 10 countries and has another 110 to go! He plans to sail around the world over 5 years, and then spend the next 5 years driving around the world in a 4×4. He prefers to explore the more remote places without the tourists, and yet, doesn’t mind the ritzy feel of business class at 10,000 feet either.

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