Gifts that travellers and outdoors lovers actually want

I can’t believe it is already this time of the year. The darkness and the cold -though never an excuse not to enjoy the outdoors-, the frost and… the panic to find the perfect gifts before Christmas… (Yes – how fortunate we are to face such a problem that can keep us busy for the all month!).

I truly believe in the power of giving and the pleasure of finding the perfect gift. However too often Christmas, birthdays or over gifting occasions are a synonym of an accumulation of just more “stuff”, most of it ending up in a drawer and never seeing the light of day again or on Ebay.  It doesn’t have to be… Know some globe trotters, nature lovers, adrenaline junkies? This article is about finding a gift that will make their eyes sparkle!

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Salkantay trek to Machu Picchu: it’s like Peru in a nutshell

With this 5 days trek, you leave from bursting Qosqo (Cusco) to start hiking into a fantastic valley, you will pass amazing snow y andean peaks, admire glaciers and lakes, cloud forest and humid jungles before ending up at the amazing archaeologic site of Machu Picchu.
The trek brings you in the steps of the chaskis´ steps, the inca messengers. Thanks to a vast network of inca trails which was connecting Cusco, mountains and the jungle and a system of relay, a message could reach Machu Picchu from Qosqo in only 5h. For you, it will be in 5 days, on one of the world´s top 25 treks, according to National Geographic.


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Enjoy 2015 like a gaucho


New Year, new start. On this first day of the year, I was thinking what I could post about. Of course, I wish you the best for 2015, but what exactly? Maybe to spend a bit more time enjoying life like a gaucho. These South American cowboys are a huge part of the continents culture and a few weeks ago, we stayed in an Uruguayan estancia to know more about it. I came out of these 2 days, fresh, relaxed and inspired by the simplicity and the authenticity of this life. Here is why.

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Christmas in Bariloche, Lakes District (Argentina)

Many people asked me during the last days, how it will be to spend Christmas in Argentina. For the first time in twenty seven years (my age for those who do not know me), I will be far from home for Christmas, almost at the other side of the world…

Camping on Christmas, a first!

Well, to be honest, it didn’t really feel like Christmas for me. Far from the darkness of the winter (joy to travel in the south hemisphere), far from the constant marketing propaganda for finding the perfect gift and far from the family, it just didn’t feel like a special holiday at all.


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3 must do to discover the 1000 colors of Valparaiso


Valparaiso (Chile) is no quite like any city you have seen before. Authentic cable cars more than a century old link the cranes of the harbour to the mansions on the top of the hills. Art and colors are omnipresent, from the big industrial buildings to little cobled passages almost hidden to the visitor. Once a pirates´ retreat, rich during the XIX century, hurt by many earthquarkes, the messy city has attracted creative and intellectual for decades. And well, you have to admit, it’s difficult not to fall under the charm of Valparaiso.

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Football madness: Brazil

The year is 1950:


GOOOLLLLL! Brazil scores 1-0! The whole country is boiling of excitement, Maracana is burning, finally we are going to win, at the FIFA world cup and in Brazil. But… Uruguay wanted something else! GOOOOLL! 1-1. 11 minutes before the end of the game , GOOOOL 1-2, Uruguay is now leading. Brazil is giving their best the last minuets, but no goal and the referee blows the whistle. It’s suddenly deadly quite. As if the country stopped to exist. Brazil has lost its first World Cup final at their own home stadium the Maracana.

Experience a football game:

This is a must experience for everyone, even those who haven’t seen a single game. Football is the number one religion here, trust me people pray more at the stadium than home. Everyone has their team to cheer for, such as Corincas, Palmeiras, Flamengo, São Paulo and Vasco da gama. During our visit to Rio de Janerio Vasco da Gama was playing against ABC. Of course we were going! Football madness, Brazil!

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Did you say tango?

Tango: a dance of improvisation, born in the bordels of Buenos Aires at the end of XIXth century. Despised for decades by the sophisticated Argentinian class, it’s in Europe and particularly in Paris that the tango gained its recognition. A century later, travelers from all over the world book a night in Buenos Aires milongas (dance halls) to vibrate with the performances of the best tango dancers in the world.

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A glimpse of the Brazilian carnival, even if you don’t come in February

Every year in February, the daily life of Brazilians stops for 3 days: it’s carnival, a celebration bigger than Christmas. And Rio de Janeiro, with 2 million people attending per day, holds the most famous and biggest carnival in the world.

But did you know you can get a glimpse of the world’s biggest carnival even if out of carnival time? Guided visit to one of the most famous samba school of Rio de Janeiro.

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Want to meet a real witch? Go to La Paz!

The witches are respected characters of La Paz. On the streets Jimenez and Linares in the bolivian megapole, their shops attract tourists´eye with their colorful candies, herbal potions and dead llamas.

A couple of secrets from the witches of La Paz

Here, you can buy anything you need to accomplish your rituals to mother earth!

Don´t expect them to tell you their secrets or to let you take them in pictures. In fact, if you show a bit too much curiosity, they will stare at you with a black look, making you fear they just casted an evil spell on you. The witches market is something serious.

Don´t be scared by the usual sight of dead animals or skeletons hanging on their doors, pacha-mama (mother earth) requires sometimes bigger offrandes than just candies and herbs. The local habit is to burry a dead llama under a future house, to bring luck and prosperity over the new home. A majority of the population has strong beliefs towards pacha-mama and the witches rituals and most of construction workers will refuse to start working before the proper completion of the ritual. (Don´t worry, if you don´t know how to perform it yourself, you can always hire the witch to do so!).

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