(0)20 7407 1478

855 625 2753 US

Monthly Archives: April 2016

This may be the world’s most dangerous selfie spot

On the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro lies the Pedra da Gavea mountain, a beautiful spot that overlooks the city and the Atlantic Ocean. No wonder it’s a magnet for adventurers and hikers who come to the scenic viewpoint at 2,769ft high. A dangerous trend of selfies near the edge is emerging, with visitors getting  terrifyingly close to the drop off.

RELATED: Our picks for the 2018 hotspots in Latin Americ

If you suffer from vertigo, you may want to look away now. The selfie spot located in Tijuca Forest, the world’s largest urban forest, is nail baiting stuff. Visitors have been know to lie, balance, do yoga and even hang off the cliff edge.

To visit Rio de Janeiro and Tijuca Forest (but not selfie from it’s edge), get in touch with us today.

How to spend the perfect day in Cartagena


The colourful city of Cartagena sits on Colombia’s Caribbean coast. Its charming colonial old town, friendly locals, laid-back Caribbean vibe and views over the ocean make it any easy place to while away a week, but if you only have one day in the city, this is what you should do. The metropolitan area of Cartagena is large, but in a day it’s best to focus on the old town surrounded by the old wall.

8 a.m.

Flickr: lesleyk

Flickr: lesleyk

Unless you’ve had a late night, wake early to make the most of the day. The pleasant temperature of the mornings cooled by breeze from the ocean makes it an excellent time to explore. Stop by Elaine Gomez Lozano’s arepa stand on the corner of Carrera 11 and Calle 38 in Cartagena’s Old City. Her generous corn arepas filled with cheese, meat and tomatoes are delicious and cost just a couple of dollars. Many street vendors specialise in freshly squeezed exotic juices, perfect for a little vitamin C boost.

10 a.m.

The city wall is more than 400-years old, but despite its age it’s in remarkably good condition. Start in the west and walk along the 2-mile stretch on top of the wall, taking in the views over the Caribbean ocean on one side and the old colonial streets on the other. There are plenty of scenic places to stop for a rest.

2 p.m.

Flickr: Aris Gionis

Flickr: Aris Gionis

You’re by the coast, so eating seafood is a must. Ceviche, a zingy mix of fresh raw seafood, typically white fish, marinated in lime juice, is fresh and perfect for the warm weather. While it’s easy to pick up a little plate from the street stalls or local cafes, the best in town is at La Cevicheria, a small restaurant on Calle Stuart 714. Sit outside in the sunshine, or perch on the seats inside and as well as ceviche, be sure to try the shrimps and octopus salad.

4 p.m.

Head over to the Castillo San Felipe de Barajas located just outside the old town. This enormous fort was built by the Spanish in the 16th century in order to defend the city from land and sea attacks. It was expanded in the 17th and 18th centuries. A scramble to the top of the fort 130ft high takes twenty minutes or so, from which you can explore the bunkers and tunnels and look down over the city.

6 p.m.

Flickr: sergejf

Flickr: sergejf

As the sun begins to set, and the twinkle of the city lights appear, jump on board one of the horse and carriages for a picturesque tour. Trotting around the old town is a delightful way to while away the early evening, enjoying close up views of the colonial architecture and people watching. The lighting at this time is excellent for photography, so get snapping.

8 p.m.


For dinner head to Don Juan’s on Calle del Colegio No. 34-60, a casual restaurant with a sophisticated menu that puts Colombian’s excellent produce at the forefront. For a starter, the grilled octopus, bacon and candied potatoes is an excellent choice. For dinner, try the roasted lamb with yucca fries and an artichoke aioli.

10 p.m.

Music plays an important role in Cartagena. Grab a stool at the bar in La Vitrola on Calle Baloco no. 33-20, a charming venue with a similar atmosphere to the joints in Old Havana. Sip on a cold beer or aguadiente (the local fire water) and listen to the nightly live samba and Cuban music.

To start planning your trip to Cartagena and Colombia, get in touch with us today.

RELATED: A guide to the best street food in Colombia

23 quotes that show why Eva Perón was adored by the masses

1024px-Evita_dirigiéndose_a_una_multitud_de_mujeresEva Perón was the first lady of Argentina between 1946 and 1952. Also named Evita, she played an important role in her husband, President Juan Perón’s administration. Eva’s policies and influence in helping the working class and championing women’s suffrage had a lasting impact on the country and led her to become adored by the masses.

Sadly, Eva died after being diagnosed with advanced cervical cancer at the young age of 32. After her death radio broadcasts announced “The Press Secretary’s Office of the Presidency of the Nation fulfills its very sad duty to inform the people of the Republic that at 20:25 hours Mrs. Eva Perón, Spiritual Leader of the Nation, died.” This led to many days of intense mourning where the streets of Buenos Aires filled with people who wanted to take one last glimpse at Evita.

Here are 22 quotes that show Eva’s dedication to the poor and why she became so loved by most Argentines.


“I demanded more rights for women because I know what women had to put up with.”

“I am only a simple woman who lives to serve Peron and my people.”

“I am only a sparrow amongst a great flock of sparrows.”

“Answer violence with violence. If one of us falls today, five of them must fall tomorrow.”

“I know that, like every woman of the people, I have more strength than I appear to have.”

“I will return and I will be a million.”

“The nation’s government has just handed me the bill that grants us our civil rights. I am receiving it before you, certain that I am accepting this on behalf of all Argentinean women, and I can feel my hands tremble with joy as they grasp the laurel proclaiming victory.”

“To convince oneself that one has the right to live decently takes time.”

“If I have to apply five turns to the screw each day for the happiness of Argentina, I will do it.”

“One cannot accomplish anything without fanatacism.”

“Suffer little children and come unto me.”

“I am my own woman.”

“In government, one actress is enough.”

“My biggest fear in life is to be forgotten.”

“When the rich think about the poor, they have poor ideas.”

“Shadows cannot see themselves in the mirror of the sun.”

“Charity separates the rich from the poor; aid raises the needy and sets him on the same level with the rich.”

“Keeping books on social aid is capitalistic nonsense. I just use the money for the poor. I can’t stop to count it.”

“Where there is a worker, there lies a nation.”

“Time is my greatest enemy.”

“I had watched for many years and seen how a few rich families held much of Argentina’s wealth and power in their hands. So Peron and the government brought in an eight hour working day, sickness pay and fair wages to give poor workers a fair go.”

“I will come again, and I will be millions.”

“Keeping books on social aid is capitalistic nonsense. I just use the money for the poor. I can’t stop to count it.”

To start planning your tour of Argentina, get in touch with us today.

If you are a wildlife lover you shouldn’t miss out on these amazing experiences

Latin America is full of wonders. The diverse landscapes make for an equally diverse set of species. Roaming jaguars, gentle whale sharks, lazy sloths and colourful quetzals, to name just a few. Here are videos of some of the most amazing wildlife experiences you can have in Latin America.

Flamingos at Laguna Colorado, Bolivia

This high altiplano lakes are commonly visited after a tour of the Uyuni Salt Flats in southern Bolivia. The bright red lake is home to a huge flock of flamingos which often break out into mass flight. The mountainous backdrop and vivid lake make for excellent photography opportunities.

Colourful quetzals in Boquete, Panama

Part of the trogon family, these colourful birds are found in the humid highland forests in Central America. One of the best places to spot quetzals is along the Quetzal Trail in Boquete, a highland town in western Panama. They are largely solitary and relatively hard to spot, making them all the more satisfying when seeing one for the first time.

Snorkelling with whale sharks in Isle Holbox, Mexico

Whale sharks come to Holbox Island off Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula in numbers reaching 800 to feed on the water rich plankton and krill. A rarity, as whale sharks are generally solitary creatures. Whales sharks are the largest fish in the world reaching lengths of up to 15 metres and a weight of up to 15 tons. Snorkelling with these gentle giants, which are harmless to humans, is a magical experience. To snorkel with whale sharks, visit between mid-May and mid-September.

Watching the mating dance of the waved albatross in the Galapagos, Ecuador

Every April almost the entire adult population of the waved albatross return to Española (Hood Island), Galapagos in order to breed. At the visitor site of Punta Suarez, you can see their amusing courtship display including ‘bill-circling’, ‘sky-pointing’, ‘drunken swagger’ and ‘bill-clapping’. This flamboyant ritual dancing enables the birds to re-establish their pairs or the young to find their partner. It is the only time the birds come ashore.

Riding water buffalo on Marajó Island, Brazil

Marajó is a huge island, roughly the size of Switzerland, located where the Amazon meets the Atlantic.This is cowboy country, but instead of horses, large herds of water buffalo have been domesticated. These docile creatures are not native to South America, coming originally from Asia. Riding water buffalos is an excellent way to explore the island, but it isn’t just for tourists. The creatures are used for farming, transporting goods and even by the police to patrol the streets. An essential part of Marajó life.

See condors gliding below you at Colca Canyon, Peru

An unmissable wildlife experience in Peru, this majestic creatures sit on the rocks around Cruz del Condor and circle above and inside Colca Canyon catching the morning thermals. The experience has the bonus of also being able to look over the views of the Colca Canyon, which is deeper than the Grand Canyon in the US.

Noisy howler monkeys in the Amazon

Howler monkeys are found throughout the Amazon, but the most accessible spots are the lodges near Puerto Maldonado in Peru, near Manaus in Brazil and near Coca in Ecuador. The are considered the loudest land animal in the world, their sound can be heard for up to three miles. It is thought their howling is used for territory protection and mating calls.

Attacking orcas on the beaches of the Valdes Peninsula, Argentina

In Argentina’s Valdes Peninsula in Patagonia, orcas attack basking sea lion pups on the beaches between February and March. This spectacular hunting technique puts the orcas at risk of permanently beaching themselves. The area is also excellent for spotting dolphins and southern right whales.

Roaming jaguars in the Pantanal, Brazil

Jaguars are elusive creatures, but Porto Jofre in the Brazil’s Pantanal wetlands are one of the best places to see them. They often roam the river banks in search of prey such as caiman or capybaras. Although spotting jaguars here cannot be guaranteed, a day or two spent on boats along the river here often leads to sightings.

Whale watching in Baja California, Mexico

The warm, krill rich waters around Baja California, a peninsula in Mexico’s north west is home to many species of whale. However, the highlight is the curious gray whale which often comes up close to the boat and allows visitors to pat it. Other whales seen fluking are blue, fin, humpback, sperm, Bryde’s, and pilot whales. Dolphins are also a common sighting here.

Love wildlife? Want to start planning a wildlife adventure in Latin America? Get in touch with us today.

RELATED: If you are a wildlife lover you shouldn’t miss out on these amazing experiences

Argentine empanada recipe


Empanadas, the iconic street food of Latin America. Sold throughout the continent, these little pastries filled with meat and vegetables come in many forms. The empanada resembles something similar to a Cornish pasty, albeit smaller and with a distinct Latin American flavour. This recipe uses beef, but feel free to swap it out for chicken.

Serves: 24 empanadas
Time: 2 hours


100g butter, plus a little extra, melted
750g plain flour
2 tps salt
500ml water

700g minced beef
250g potato, peeled and diced
1 large onion
2 cloves of garlic, minced
100g cured chorizo, roughly cut
2 hardboiled eggs
Handful of green olives, cut in half
1 vegetable or chicken stock cube
3 tbs tomato paste
20g butter
3 spring onions, chopped finely
Olive oil
1 tsp cumin
2 tsp paprika
Salt & pepper


Begin with making the dough. This can be done a day or two in advance if you wish. Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl and add the salt. Make a well in the centre, add the melted butter and water and gently mix everything together into the smooth dough. Leave to cool to room temperature and put in the fridge wrapped in cling film.

Heat the oil olive to a medium temperature and sweat the onions gently until soft. Turn up the heat and add the beef frying until browned. Add the potato, chorizo, garlic, cumin, paprika and cook on a low heat for 5 minutes or so. Stir in the tomato paste and stock and reduce for 10 minutes or so. The mixture should not be dry, nor should it be sloppy. Stir in the spring onions and leave in the fridge to cool.

Take the chilled dough and divide into approximately 24 equal balls. Press each one and then roll to create circular discs. Dust with flour. Wet the circumference with a little water and fill with a tablespoon of the filling. Add a little green olive and hard cooked egg and wrap the dough in half, pressing down the edges. Take a fork and crimp the edges all the way around. Repeat the process until all are completed.

Put the empanadas on a baking tray and brush the tops with melted butter. Bake in a hot oven for around 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve immediately.

RELATED: 10 classic things to do on your first time in Peru

We’ve used 30-years experience to create the perfect 2-week tour of Peru

We’ve been creating tours of Peru for over 30 years. Obviously, the perfect tour is very subjective, however, in our experience, if you have just two weeks, the outline below is the perfect itinerary.

This exciting adventure takes you through the cosmopolitan capital, deep into the steamy Amazon rainforest, hiking in footsteps of Incas, discovering Peru’s rich and varied cuisine and exploring its natural wonders.

While some plane journeys are necessary to reach some parts of Peru, we have limited them. Overland adventures by train and car help you connect with the landscapes and people in a much better way. We’ve also maximised the time by using the weekends on both sides.


Today take your direct flight to Lima. When you arrive in the afternoon your guide will be waiting to take you to your hotel in central Miraflores district. This evening is completely free to explore the city at your own pace.

lima-502041_640After breakfast at the hotel you’ll be picked up and taken on a private city tour with an expert local guide. This will include a tour of Miraflores district, San Isidro district and a visit to the famous Larco Herrara Museum. Spend another evening in the city.

wildlife_holidays_peru_amazonHead to the airport and take your direct flight over the Andes and down to the steamy Amazon port town of Puerto Maldonado. Here you will board canoes and glide down the river for an hour or two observing the swinging monkeys and lazy sloths. Arrive at your rainforest lodge and settle in. After a spot of dinner your local guides will take you on a night time tour of the jungle to learn about the nocturnal wildlife and spot caiman.

Peru_amazon_tailor_madeToday you will wake up to the sounds of the rainforest. Before breakfast you will be taken to a nearby clay lick to see the frenzied colourful parrots and macaws eating the clay. After breakfast back at the lodge take a guided hike along the trails looking for exotic bird life, monkeys, sloths, capybaras. In the afternoon board boats to go in search for the elusive pink river dolphin.



The whole of the day is dedicated to wildlife excursions. Hike the trails, take boat trips along the river and lakes, and climb the tower to discover the birdlife in the rainforest’s canopy. Local and naturalist guides will accompany you to help you make the most of your time and point out the different species. Return to the lodge in the evening for dinner and a presentation on the wildlife, geology and conservation efforts of the Amazon.

cusco-609473_640Board canoes to head back up to Puerto Maldonado, where you will take your flight to Cuzco, the capital of the Inca Empire. You won’t be stopping here long, transfer directly to the beautiful Sacred Valley. Once the bread basket of the Incas, this fertile region is located at a lower altitude to Cuzco. Check into your hotel and spend the evening at leisure.



Today take a tour of the Sacred Valley with a private guide. Visit the Inca sites of Moray and Moras, the colourful market Pisac and Ollanntaytambo, the last remaining inhabited Inca settlement. Hike to the ruins in the town and stop for delicious local street food at the market, while bartering for colourful indigenous handicrafts. Spend another night in the Sacred Valley.


machu-piccho-1102720_640Today will surely be one of the highlights of the trip. Board the Vistadome train at Ollanta station and take the thrilling ride to Aguas Calientes. Here you will take a short bus trip up to the famous ruins of Machu Picchu where your guide will take you on a tour of the citadel. Afterwards you’ll have plenty of time to explore the ruins by yourself before returning to Aguas Calientes for the night.

machu-picchu-1018768_640This morning you will have a couple of options. The first is to take a second visit to Machu Picchu, the second is to visit the local hot springs for a soak. Either way, in the afternoon you will take the train back to Cuzco and overnight in the city. There are plenty of places to discover Peruvian cuisine and nightlife in Cuzco, so perhaps head out to find out for yourself.



Today you will be taken on a tour of Cuzco and the surrounding pre-Columbian ruins. Visit the main plazas, cathedrals and points of interest. Outside the city lies the Saksaywaman, the huge remains of some ancient ruins left hundreds of years ago. Enjoy the views over the city. Return to spend another night in Cuzco.



This morning you will be taken back to the station to board the luxurious Andean Explorer train. The journey from Cuzco to Lake Titicaca takes around ten hours as you pass spectacular Andean scenery. Along the way you will be served a delicious three course meal and drinks, and you can while away hours in the observation carriage which has panoramic windows on all sides. When you reach Puno you will be taken to your lakeside hotel where you will overnight.


peru-143876_640Early this morning your guide will meet you and take you to the dock for a boat trip across Lake Titicaca. First stop is the famous Uros reed islands where you will have the opportunity to disembark on the man-made islands and learn about the indigenous people. Continue over to Taquile, the largest island in the lake. Here you will take a hike across the village, meet with the locals, enjoy a traditional lunch and have plenty of time for rest before returning to your hotel.



After breakfast you will join a small group to drive up through the altiplano to Chivay. Along the way stop to take photos of the galloping guanacos and llamas. Arrive and spend some time in the natural hot spring spa. Overnight.

condor-943300_640Very early this morning you will be taken down to the Colca Canyon. Here you can marvel over this natural wonder which is deeper than the Grand Canyon. You can’t help but notice the majestic condors that glide above and below you, circling as they catch the morning thermals. In the afternoon continue on to Arequipa, also known as the White City, and overnight.


arequipa-43282_640Take a tour of Arequipa with a local guide. This will include the plazas, cathedral and the highlight, the Santa Catalina Monastery, a colourful 16th century complex still used to this day. In the afternoon you will transfer to the airport for your short flight to Lima and onward flight back to the UK.


Arrive back in the UK in the afternoon.

The cost of this tour depends on a number of factors including current flight costs, type of hotel, and private or shared excursions. A rough estimate including international and domestic flight costs starts from £3,500. If you have any questions or you would like to book this tour please call us on +44 (0) 207 407 1478 or contact us via email.

RELATED: 10 classic things to do on your first time in Peru

Penguin swims thousands of miles each year to reunite with the human that saved him

In 2011, fisherman Joao Pereira de Souza discovered a little South American Magellanic Penguin covered in oil and nearing death on a small island off Rio de Janeiro.

The fisherman took him in and spent weeks cleaning him up and feeding him sardines, eventually restoring the penguin back to full health. After naming him Dindim, he tried to release the penguin back into the wild, but the creature wouldn’t leave and ended up staying for 11 months. One day, after he’d grown new feathers, Pereira de Souza said the penguin just disappeared.

He thought that was it.

penguin 2

But a few months later the penguin returned. Pereira de Souza found him back on the same beach and it waddled back home with him.

For five years the penguin has left and returned back to the same spot each year, spending up to eight months with Pereira de Souza before disappearing again.

“I love the penguin like it’s my own child and I believe the penguin loves me. No one else is allowed to touch him. He pecks them if they do. He lays on my lap, lets me give him showers, allows me to feed him sardines and to pick him up” says Pereira de Souza. He added “Everyone said he wouldn’t return but he has been coming back to visit me for the past four years. He arrives in June and leaves to go home in February and every year he becomes more affectionate as he appears even happier to see me.”


While no one knows where Dindim goes, it is thought that he swims south to breed along the coast of Argentina and Chile. Each year the little penguin travels over 5,000 miles to reunite with the human that saved him.

Brazilian biologist Joao Paulo Krajewski says “I have never seen anything like this before. I think the penguin believes Joao is part of his family and probably a penguin as well. When he sees him he wags his tail like a dog and honks with delight.”

A heartwarming tale of the friendship between man and penguin.

To start planning your trip to Brazil, get in touch today.

RELATED: Bucket list worthy things to do in the Antarctic