Tag-Archive for ◊ Peru ◊

Views 31 Oct Renting a room in Cusco
 |  Category: Culture and Curiosities  | One Comment

Finding a room or house to rent in Cusco, Peru is not that difficult. More and more travelers decide to stay in Cusco and live for a while in Cusco as the city offers great opportunities for living and learning about Peruvian culture. Cusco also provides many hiking opportunities and other adventure sports. Some foreigners find a job, many of them in bars, restaurants, travel agencies, or as English teachers.

There are also many students taking Spanish classes in Cusco, as well as people that come to Peru to do volunteer work – many of them attending the AMAUTA Spanish School. AMAUTA also offers accommodation for instance with a local Peruvian host family. AMAUTA also owns a nice student residence in the heart of Cusco city.

Renting a room in Cusco

 

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Views 31 May Top 3 Museums Lima Peru not to be missed
 |  Category: Culture and Curiosities  | 6 Comments

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 31 May ¡Los 3 Museos de Lima Perú que no debes perderte!
 |  Category: Adventure Tourism  | 6 Comments

La mayoría de los turistas que visitan Perú no se quedan mucho tiempo en Lima, capital de Perú. La mayoría van directamente al sur y visitan las Islas Ballestas, Líneas de Nazca, Arequipa, Lago Titicaca, y por supuesto, Machu Picchu y Cusco. Sin embargo, ¡Lima es una gran ciudad, especialmente si sabes a dónde ir!

He aquí una breve reseña de nuestro Top 3 de los mejores museos en Lima, son los mejores y por supuesto que tienes que visitarlos, aunque sólo tuvimos tiempo de visitar 3 durante nuestra estancia en Lima. Si deseas conocer más museos en Lima, te recomendamos que consultes esta Guía de Museos Lima.

Museo de oro:
El museo de oroEl Museo del Oro presenta una gran colección de objetos de oro creados por las civilizaciones pre-incas. Hacer un recorrido por el museo es una gran manera de observar y aprender a preciar la habilidad de los antiguos peruanos. Su capacidad para elaborar joyería a mano, como pulseras, pendientes y narigueras, es realmente impresionante! Además, puedes ver los textiles, la cerámica, y una colección completa de las armas de diferentes culturas y civilizaciones de todo el mundo.

Dirección: Alonso de Molina 1100, Monterrico – Surco
Horario: Lunes a Sábado de 10:30 a.m. a 6 p.m.
Tickets: Adultos S/.33, Niños menores de 11 S/.16

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Views 08 Feb The Best Places to visit Carnival in South America
 |  Category: Events  | Leave a Comment

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 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 09 Ene Frequently Asked Questions about Machu Picchu
 |  Category: Tips & Testimonials  | 4 Comments

Nowadays, there is so much information available on the web about a tour to Machu Picchu that is it very easy to confuse yourself. Hopefully this article of definitive answers to some commonly asked questions will clear a few things up for those planning to visit the “Lost City of the Incas” in Peru.

  1. Is it necessary to use a travel agency to go to Machu Picchu?
  2. No, this is not a requirement. Technically you could travel to Machu Picchu organising everything yourself. However, the huge advantage of reserving with an agency is that they organise absolutely everything for you, at the same or even cheaper price for the complete excursion.

    Machu Picchu

    It so happens to be that in Cusco you have to buy every single bit of your tour to Machu Picchu from many different websites and offices, that are scattered all over town. Trains, buses, entrance tickets, guides and possibly hotels all require advanced booking one way or another, implying a very time consuming process. To make matters worse, the maddening red tape and communication in Spanish generally turns out to be a nightmare to the foreign visitor. To avoid any inconveniences and bad holiday experiences, it is highly recommendable to leave all the organizing up to an established travel agency in Cusco. You will be able to communicate with the same contact person about your entire travel itinerary, ask any question you like while counting on years of experience backed up with a travel service guarantee.

    In addition agencies may also get discounts for certain items of the trip, such as trains and hotels, due to the volume of passengers they manage. Therefore, if you were to do everything separate from an agency, you may find out it is actually not cheaper at all.

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Views 09 Ene The ins and outs of Aguas Calientes – Machu Picchu Pueblo
 |  Category: Must-see Travel Destinations  | One Comment

Set around 400m. below the historic site of Machu Picchu, the town of Aguas Calientes is the unavoidable stop-off point for all visitors. Those who do a one day excursion to Machu Picchu from Cusco won’t have much time there, but anyone staying overnight in order to beat the crowds at Machu Picchu before sunrise the next morning, and/or hike up the Huayna Picchu mountain will have some spare time in the town (recently renamed Machu Picchu Pueblo, just to confuse everyone).

We won’t even attempt to beat about the bush; Aguas Calientes is a tourist trap. Most guidebooks slate the place and whilst we won’t go that far, it is a town irrefutably based upon the fact that lots of rich western tourists will pass through.

In the evening, bars play European or American football and blast out loud music. Touts or ‘sharks’ posted outside restaurants will practically beg you to enter, and market stalls typically are more expensive than Cusco and certainly the Sacred Valley. Despite all the above, we believe that there is something about Aguas Calientes that all the guidebooks have missed.

Aguas Calientes

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Views 04 Ene The great South American adventure is back: The Dakar Rally 2013!
 |  Category: Events  | One Comment

During its fifth edition in South America, the famous Dakar Rally will be hosted by three countries that already have revealed their magnificent natural charms in recent years. From the 5th to the 20th of January engines begin to roar again to traverse more than 8000 kilometers in Peru, Argentina and Chile.

Lima to San Pedro
For the first time in the Dakar’s history, the Peruvian desert enters the scene in the early stages of the rally. With the start podium in Lima, where the Pacific coastal neighborhoods of Chorrillos and Magdalena were chosen as the grounds for the technical and administrative controls, the race kicks off into the coastal desert land towards Pisco, Nazca and the sierra of Arequipa. Even though the starting days are less difficult than the following, allowing tension to gradually work its way up, it’s clear that the 2013 Dakar Rally leaves absolutely no room for improvisation. Crossing the border into the vast Atacama Desert of Chile, the race will see a grueling desert journey to the town of Calama, where the natural beauty of the Death Valley near San Pedro de Atacama will speak to the imagination of the pilots and onlookers alike.

Dakar

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Views 20 Dic Top 10 what to do for Christmas in Cusco!
 |  Category: Must-see Travel Destinations  | 6 Comments

If you are lucky enough to be in Cusco throughout the festive season, you will have a chance to experience a Christmas very different than you are probably used to. Cusco will become the vibrant center point of celebration for Andean communities and tourist alike.

Soak up the spirit of Christmas in Cusco by following these suggestions and you are bound to have a very rewarding and magical Christmas time:

  1. Share chocolate and smiles.
  2. Every year, our partner AMAUTA Spanish School in Cusco organizes a chocolatada on the 22nd of December, to give something back to the less privileged. Join us while visiting an Andean community in the Sacred Valley and give these children a reason to smile by giving out hot chocolate, snacks, toys and clothes.

  3. Buy a saint or Emanualito.
  4. On 24th December craftsmen from all over the country will flock to the Plaza to transform it into the most charming and diverse Christmas markets of Peru: Santurantikuy .
    Purchase some last minute gifts, such as Emanualito a baby Jesus doll, and stroll along the hundreds of colorful stalls with a steaming hot punch.

    catedral

  5. Attend the Mass of the Roosters.
  6. On the evening of the 24th December the Cusco cathedral of Santo Domingo will open its massive doors for a stunning Christmas mass. The Misa de Gallo will finish around 11:30pm to get you home for midnight presents, as is the Peruvian tradition. It may be in an unfamiliar language, but it is the spiritual chance of a lifetime.

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Views 19 Dic Meet Manuelito at the Santurantikuy Christmas market in Cusco.
 |  Category: Events  | 5 Comments

Every year, on the 24th of December the central plaza of Cusco is the decor of the biggest Christmas fair of popular arts: the Santurantikuy market, where hundreds of artisans come from far away to display their beautiful and unique works inspired by the faith in their holy creator.

Santurantikuy literally means “The Selling of Saints” in Quechua, with ‘santu’ meaning ‘saint’ and ‘tikuy’ meaning ‘sale’, hence the often heard phrase of ‘cómprame un santito’ referring to the many saints, angels, wise men, pastors and other religious clay figurines used for altarpieces and nativity scenes. Without a doubt, the main character and emblematic patron of the Andean Christmas fair is ‘el Niño Manuelito’, better known as baby Jesus.

santuranticuy

The figure of Manuelito is often represented as a white boy with eyes out of glass and black hair obtained from the first haircut of a newborn baby. Perhaps because el Niño Manuelito or Tayta-Niño has been responsible for thousands of miracles in the Andean community, there is no lack of sentiments and nostalgia at the Santuranticuy fair.

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