Travel in Peru, Argentina or anywhere else in South America and DOS MANOS TRAVEL AGENCY will be your trusted guide. We are specialists in adventure tours and treks in Peru, including Lima City Tours, Sacred Valley and Amazon jungle excursions and an official Inca Trail operator to visit the famous Inca site of Machu Picchu. Also when you plan to travel to Argentina we can arrange for an unforgettable holiday including the breathtaking Iguazu Falls and exciting city of Buenos Aires and have years of experience organizing roundtrips to multiple other destinations such as the Galapagos Islands, Cancun and Rio de Janeiro. Our TRAVEL BLOG is constantly updated with insider tips, maps, photos and travel stories submitted by travelers just like you! A world of opportunity and adventure awaits you!
Views 3,607 11 Jun How to prepare for your trip to Peru…mentally and physically!

Five Tips to Help You Prepare for your Trip to Peru ! By making a few easy preparations before departing for your journey to Peru, you can be assured a much more comfortable stay! The following tips have been (almost) life-savers for me… Buen Viaje!

  1. Book in advance!
    Of course not everything needs to be planned in advance…but if you want to see one or more of Peru’s most famous and sought-after sites, you NEED to book beforehand! The best example of this is the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, but also a train tour to Machu Picchu should be booked before arrival, at least in high season. You don’t want to come all the way here just to be disappointed….. The Inca Trail needs to be booked with a travel agency in Cusco 4 to 6 months in advance in high season ( 1-3 months in mid and low season). This, because there is a limit of 500 entries per day, and this includes staff! If you want to trek to Machu Picchu but don´t have 4 to 6 months to plan ahead, you can always check out an alternative treks to Machu Picchu such as the Salkantay, Lares Valley or the ever-popular Inca Jungle Trek!
  2. Salkantay Peru

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Views 2,259 31 May Top 3 Museums Lima Peru not to be missed

Most visitors to Peru don’t stay long in Lima, the capital of Peru. Most go straight to the south and visit the Ballestas Islands, Nazca Lines, Arequipa, Lake Titicaca, and of course Machu Picchu and Cusco. However, Lima is a great city, especially if you know where to go!

Here a short review of our Top 3 must-see best Museums in Lima. You certainly have to visit those, if only have time to visit 3 during your stay in Lima! If you want to find out about more museums in Lima, we recommend you check this Lima Museum Guide.

Museo de oro (The Gold Museum)
Museo de oro (The Gold Museum)The Gold Museum showcases a large collection of gold objects constructed by Pre-Incan civilizations. Touring the museum is a great way to gain appreciation of the skill of the ancient Peruvians. Their ability to craft jewelry such as bracelets, earrings, and nose rings by hand is truly impressive! You can also see textiles, ceramics, and a complete collection of weapons from various cultures and civilizations from around the world.

Address: Alonso de Molina 1100, Monterrico – Surco
Hours: Monday to Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Tickets: Adults S/.33, Children under 11 S/.16

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Views 4,307 30 May How to get the most out of the city of Buenos Aires! Top 5 must-do activities Buenos Aires

Buenos Aires is an intriguing city, an amazing place to visit and experience. Ideal for (cultural) city trips, for learning Spanish in Argentina at one of the modern and professional Spanish language schools of Buenos Aires, for participating in the different options for volunteer work and community work that Buenos Aires offers, or just living there for a while as an expat.
Buenos Aires offers an amazing number of opportunities. Here are just a few examples of the essential activities of Argentina´s capital of Buenos Aires, and these are exactly five important reasons for a visit to Buenos Aires.

For being so amazingly green ?

Bosques de Palermo, ArgentinaThe « Bosques de Palermo » are a green zone of 25 ha. situated in the center of the neighborhood of Palermo, right in the heart of the big city of Buenos AIres. The area is well-known for its groves, lakes, and rose garden, the Argentinians, on foot or by bike. It’s also possible to take a ride in a rowboat on one of three artificial lakes. In this area of Buenos Aires, you´ll find the peaceful Japanese Garden, the lovely Rose Garden of Palermo with its Andalusian Patio, the entertaining Zoological Gardens, and the relaxing Botanical Gardens! The Bosques de Palermo are an urban oasis and a perfect escape from the crowds and the busy streets of the city itself!

For the artistic fiber : El Caminito (La Boca)

El Caminito (La Boca)What was formerly a storage area has become one the most celebrated street of Buenos Aires! It inspired Juan de Dios Filiberto, back in the 1920′s, to compose a tango called »el Caminito »! In the 1950′s, the street theatre appeared, in the 1970′s local artists became authorized to display their art in the street and the houses became multi-colored. This 100-meter long pedestrian street has become a symbol of Buenos Aires, and is now considered an outdoor museum! Here you can enjoy singing, tango dancing, browse the craftsmen´s works, and admire paintings, ceramics, and the representations of prominent figures from Argentine history, such as Carlos Gardel and Maradona. This place is definitely unique and unforgettable!

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Views 1,970 25 Apr Between heaven and earth: top 5 mountain drives in Northern Argentina!

North Argentina is an extremely mountainous region featuring absolutely stunning mountain drives filled with adrenaline and vertigo. On these steep mountain slopes, called cuestas, you are challenged to take on sharp curves, frequent gear changing and minding the other traffic by honking at dead angles and measuring the passage for vehicles approaching head-on. If that is not exciting enough, just imagine marveling at the wonderful landscapes of Argentina and deep canyons and cliffs that on more than one occasion will take your breath away.

To prepare you for your high mountain drives, Dos Manos Travel Agency has compiled a list of the top 5 Mountain Tours in North Argentina, with their characteristics and whereabouts:   

  1. Cuesta del Portezuelo(Catamarca)
  2. Bordered on one side by the Sierra de Ancasti and the other by extremely deep ravines, the Cuesta del Portezuelo offers amazing sights of the natural beauty of the Central Valley of Cajamarca. The best way to get there is taking the turnoff on National Highway 38. On extremely narrow and zigzagging roads you will climb from 700 m.a.s.l. to the summit at 1800 m., where you have a good chance to see condors circling around you. The spectacular drive itself offers plenty of opportunities to stop besides the road to take in the magnificent scenery, which is especially beautiful in the flowering season. 

    Between heaven and earth: top 5 mountain drives in Northern Argentina!

  3. Cuesta del Obispo(Salta)
  4. The mountain drive is reached 57 km. from Salta, on the Provincial Route 33. A wide road that is under permanent conservation goes up the slope from Chicoana at 1270 m.a.s.l. to its maximum altitude at the Piedra del Molino (the Mill Stone) at 3340 m., in the National Park Cardones. Meters before the summit there is a viewpoint where you can see the dizzying hillside in its entire glory. When weather conditions are favorable you can observe the Valle Encantado (the Enchanted Valley) with its many multicolored hills, a lake situated between high meadows and there are even cave paintings. When you keep going on a road known as the Recta Tin Tin, made during the Inca period, you arrive at the picturesque town of Cachi and eventually to Seclantás, very famous for its artisanal production of ponchos.

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Views 1,871 25 Mar Semana Santa or Eastern in Cusco Peru
 |  Category: Events  | 3 Comments

Every year in Cusco the week leading up to Easter ´Semana Santa´ sees the streets full of animated and excited processions which will this year, 2013, be taking place from Sunday the 24th to Sunday the 31st of March.

The first day, ´Domingo de Ramos´ (Palm Sunday) is when Peruvian families in Cusco and other cities, will go to church together; to bring palms and seek blessings. The next day, Monday, is a special day exclusive to Cusco with celebrations reserved for ´El Senor de los Tremblores´(The Lord of the Earthquakes), the patron saint of the city of Cusco. Tribute is given to ´El Senor´ in the form of a beautiful statue of the saint, adorned and carried as part of a procession through the old streets of the city. This parade begins at around 2pm and goes until the evening, when the saint is taken to the cathedral in the Plaza de Armas to be blessed; thousands of people come to the plaza to see this sight, and the huge square is full every year.  This is something you would not want to miss, when you are in Cusco or elsewhere in southern Peru these days.

Semana Santa o Pascua en Cusco
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Views 2,405 26 Feb Sacred Valley Tour & Quad Biking in Cusco Peru
 |  Category: Adventure Tourism  | 5 Comments

With a weekend to spare in Cusco – Peru, I thought I’d get down to some furious activity in and around Cusco city. I opted for a Sacred Valley tour on Saturday, before a Sunday afternoon’s quad biking. Needless to say it was a great weekend!

SACRED VALLEY TOUR

The Sacred Valley tour took us first to a small artisan centre just outside Pisac, where we wondered around the stalls and checking out the vast array of potential souvenirs and alpaca-wear that was on offer.

Sacred Valley Tour & Quad Biking in Cusco Peru

We then head to the Pisac ruins – a very impressive set of ruins and terraces on an isolated mountaintop. The guide we had was excellent and told us of old Inca traditions along with the functions of each site. A short stop in the town followed, before our transfer for lunch.

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Views 1,722 08 Feb The Best Places to visit Carnival in South America
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Peru, Bolivia, Uruguay, Argentina

Carnival all over South America is approaching this weekend, and so wherever you are on the Spanish-speaking side of the continent, these are the best places to go:

Cajamarca, or, The Sacred Valley of the Incas (Cusco), Peru

Here you can take part in the cutting of the ‘yunsa’ – a big tree adorned with prizes up for grabs when it falls, and witness the extravagant processions and traditional music and dances. Cajamarca is known as the capital of Carnival in Peru, and is well worth the visit. Water fights will also be a bit feature in Peru, especially in the Andes. Kids and adults alike will be throwing water balloons on unsuspecting victims as they roam the streets. Just outside Cusco, the Sacred Valley has many towns that will be celebrating in the same way as Cajamarca, with a ‘yunsa’, just slightly more low key, so if you’re in the south, head to Cusco’s Sacred Valley and visit villages like Calca, Pisac, or Urubamba.

The Best Places to visit Carnival in South America
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Views 2,051 04 Feb Experience the Candelaria Festival in Puno, Peru!
 |  Category: Events  | 5 Comments

For the first half of February the highland town of Puno, Peru, near Lake Titicaca at an altitude of 3,870 meters above sea level, becomes the Folk Capital of the Americas. The festival gathers more than 200 groups of musicians and dancers to celebrate “La Fiesta de la Candelaria”. During the first week, the churches are decorated and there are banquets and fireworks displays. Later, the virgin is led through the city of Puno in an impressive procession, when troupes of musicians and dancers take the scene, performing and dancing throughout the city.

Experience the Candelaria Festival in Puno, Peru!

The Candelaria festival is linked to the pre-Hispanic agricultural cycles of sowing and harvesting, as well as mining activities in the region. The dance of the demons, or La Diablada, the main dance of the festival, was allegedly dreamt up by a group of miners trapped down a mine who, in their desperation, resigned their souls to the “Virgen de la Candelaria.” The dancers, blowing panpipes and clad in spectacular costumes and outlandish masks, make their offerings to the Earth, “La Pachamama”. Experience the Candelaria Festival in Puno Peru with Dos Manos Travel Agency this February. You can depart with us from Cusco, or meet with us in Puno! Contact us here or write info@dosmanosperu.com for more information and to register! This is a cultural and fun experience that you do not want to miss.

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Views 2,929 31 Jan About Puno & Lake Titicaca Tour

Having flown to Cusco from Lima, I knew that I had missed out a bit of the traditional travellers trail in southern Peru. One place I really wanted to visit over a weekend was Lake Titicaca. Luckily, Dos Manos were able to sort this out around my Spanish classes in Cusco, which was fantastic.

This trip involves 2 overnight buses, which although put me off slightly, was actually extremely comfortable, thanks to the cama seats that were booked for me. I set off at 10pm on a Friday evening, having eaten and got a few snacks for the journey. Rather sleepy, I arrived around 5am in Puno, from where all the trips to Lake Titicaca operate. I was met, and given a choice between breakfasting in the bus terminal or heading to a nearby office to rest some more.

About Puno & Lake Titicaca Tour
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Views 3,563 10 Jan The Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu: Day 1 + 2

Hiking the Inca Trail had always been a huge ambition of mine.  Directly after arriving at the Amauta Spanish school in Cusco I met a group of students that were booking for later that same week, through their in-house travel Agency Dos Manos Peru! Admittedly I was quite relieved that there was still space; I guess the trail doesn’t get so booked up in the wet season.

The staff of Dos Manos made the whole booking process very easy for us and was very professional in accommodating special requests and dietary needs of one of my fellow hikers. Our guide, Simón, gave us a briefing two days before we left, allowing us time to buy last minute necessities. He described the trail, what our plans were, what would happen each morning before walking and the type of food we could expect. I received a great feeling of confidence and excitement and really lived up to the moment of the first day:

Inca Trail to Machu Picchu

Day 1
We were picked up very early that fateful Friday from the Amauta Spanish School, and travelled to Ollantaytambo, a town 75km from Cusco for a snack breakfast. This is often a compulsory stop due to the need to pick up porters. Since we were a relatively small group this was a quick affair and we were quickly on the road again, heading for Km 82 where the trek would really start!

After a lengthy entrance process (where our passports were cross-checked with our tickets for name/number discrepancies) and a bridge crossing, we were off! The first morning passed pleasingly and the walk itself was not challenging; quite flat before a slight incline to lunch.

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