Welcome to our Blog

Hola!  Welcome to the AMAUTA Spanish Schools blog!

At our Spanish Schools in Cusco and Buenos Aires, we provide the best Spanish courses and cultural immersion experiences for our students.  We encourage our students to step outside of the Spanish classroom, to enjoy the local culture, make Spanish-speaking friends, and travel in Peru and Argentina.  During or after finishing your Spanish course, we greatly encourage participation in our volunteer program in Cusco or Buenos Aires, where you will really get the chance to practice and improve your  Spanish language skills and give back to local community.

Here at our AMAUTA blog, we aim to keep you posted about what is happening out our Spanish schools, as well as what´s going on in and around the cities of Cusco and Buenos Aires.  We´ll also post fun articles about Peruvian and Argentinian culture, cuisine,  local fiestas, what to see in Cusco, & where to go in Buenos Aires, etc. 

We´ll include advice about which weekend excursions to sign up for and which free cultural activities are available. And after reading our section of student reports, you´ll know exactly why you want to study Spanish at AMAUTA in Cusco and Buenos Aires.  

31 Fun Fast Facts about Peru!

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Tuesday June 18, 2019 - Posted by
18Jun
potatoes-peru-31-fun-facts

31 Fun Fast Facts about Peru!

31 Fun Fun Fast Facts about Peru —- For many different reasons, Peru is a popular destination for a Spanish course abroad.

The spoken Spanish is very clear, the people friendly and the travel options endless: think Machu Picchu, Rainbow Mountain, the Inca trail, Lake Titicaca, the Nazca Lines, the beach, the jungle, and much more. Also, Peru is one of the most affordable options to study Spanish in Latin America. On top, there are great options for volunteering in Peru and the Peruvian food is amazing.

 

But there is much more to learn about Peru. Here are 31 Fun Fast Facts about Peru for you to read while preparing for your trip to Peru!

  1. Lima, the capital of Peru.
    Lima – the former City of the Kings – has a population of 9 million making it the 5th largest city in South America. Read here some interesting facts about Lima.
  2. Peru’s ocean has 33 species of marine mammals that live on the coast
  3. There are over 3,000 different types of potatoes in Peru and they’re helping Peru to face climate change
  4. Machu Picchu: the Inca citadel Machu Picchu is located about 3 hours outside of Cusco and it is named one of the 7 Wonders of the World. It is one of the most popular weekend trips for the Spanish students in Cusco.
    machu picchu spanish peru

     

  5. The Nuevo Sol is the official currency of Peru. At the moment of writing, the exchange rate is 3,33 soles for 1 US dollar.
  6. Condors have a long history in Peru. The Inca´s believed that Condors, because they flew higher than other birds, were messengers of the gods. The most likely place to spot these enormous birds is at Arequipa’s Colca Canyon. Read more about the condors in Peru here.
  7. The longest river in the world, the Amazon, begins in Peru.
  8. Religion in Peru: The dominant religion of Peru is Catholicism. Approximately 81.3% of Peruvians claim Catholicism. Catholicism first arrived in Peru with the conquest of the Spanish in the 1800s
  9. Martín Vizcarra is the current president of Peru. He was sworn in March 23rd, 2018.
  10. The Coat of Arms Peru: The coat of arms consists of a vicuña, a cichona tree, and a cornucopia. These symbolize the mineral wealth, the flora, and fauna of Peru.
    coat of arms peru

     

  11. You can spend the night in the world’s first hanging lodge! In the Sacred Valley, of the Incas, nearby Cusco, there is a transparent luxurious hanging lodges where tourists can enjoy views like that of a condor.
  12. The Cotahausi Canyon, 235 miles north of Arequipa, is the deepest canyon in the world! You can hike waterfalls or enjoy rafting.
  13. Coati Dung Coffee produced in Peru is the most expensive coffee in the world. The excreta of the Coati is used to produce this unique coffee. Coati feed off of vegetables, fruit, and coffee beans. Café Misha coffee costs $1400 per kg. A cup of dung coffee can cost anywhere from $20 to $65.
  14. The National dog of Peru is the Peruvian Inca Orchid, also known as perros floras.
  15. Nobel Peace Prize winner, Mario Vargas Llosa, was born in 1936 in Arequipa, Peru. He wrote several works that challenged political and economic systems in Peru. He organized protests and ran for president. He believed in reformism, democracy, free markets, and liberal pluralism.
  16. Three quarters of the world’s llama population lives in Peru!
    why study spanish peru

     

  17. The Incas believed that the world was created at Lake Titicaca by their god Viracocha. He created first giants, then believed he had made a mistake and thus created human beings. From there, he created the sun, moon, and stars.
  18. A tradition in some areas of Peru is to gift one another yellow underwear for good luck in the New Year!
  19. The Incas developed over 18,000 miles of roads, called Qhapaq Ñan. In 2014 the road system became a Unesco World Heritage Site.
  20. The first census was created by the ancient Incas.
  21. The current state flag of Peru was officially adopted on February 25th, 1825.
  22. Peru’s government is a presidential republic with three branches of government: executive, legislative, and judiciary.
  23. Spanish drawings indicate that 5 year old Inca children knew how to brew beer and spin yarn. Still, they were not allowed to drink beer or eat certain foods like sugary, fatty types. They needed to be as healthy as possible for marriage.
  24. One of the most visited cities in South America, Cusco has approximately 1.5 million tourists that visit it each year. With the decline of terrorism, tourism boomed in the mid-1990s in the city of Cusco.Did you know Cusco is known as one of the best locations to study Spanish in Peru?
    plaza de armas cusco

     

  25. One of history’s best South American players is from Peru. His name is Teófilo Cubillas. Also known as “Nene”. His position was attacking midfielder and he was famous for his precise passing abilities. He could dribble and quickly change pace. He also had an excellent reputation for sportsmanship, only receiving a yellow card his entire soccer career. Cubillas was awarded the South American Soccer Player of the Year and was named the best Peruvian soccer player of the 20th century.
  26. The color variation of the famous Rainbow Mountain depends on the weather. Sunny weather causes lighter coloring while cloudy, tense weather causes darker coloring.
    rainbow mountain tour peru

     

  27. The amazon jungle in Peru hosts over 595 species of birds, 300 reptiles, 1,200 types of butterflies, 2,000 species of fish, and over 50,000 plants.
  28. Peru has the highest sand dune in the world! At 3,600 feet the Cerro Blanco dune wins in terms of height. Tourists can enjoy dune buggies for hours!
  29. Spanish is not the only language spoken in Peru. There are many indigenous languages as well. Quechua and Aymara the most known. It is also theorized that there are at least 13 other indigenous languages in the Amazon jungle areas.
  30. Lake Titicaca is the highest reachable lake. It sits at an elevation of 11,436 feet.
  31. The Nazca Lines: The Nazca lines have puzzled archeologists, scientists, and common people alike. They can be seen in Peru. They are a collection of over 70 giant human and animal geoglyphs.

 

Learn more about Learning Spanish in Peru?
Download our brochure here or contact us!DownloadContact

Living with a host family during your Spanish course

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Wednesday May 22, 2019 - Posted by
22May
Living with a host family during your spanish course

 Living with a host family during your Spanish course

Living with a local guest family during your Spanish course in Peru is an amazing experience and an important component of most study abroad programs. AMAUTA Spanish School also offers this home stay experience in Cusco and in Buenos Aires. AMAUTA works with a great group of experienced guest families in both Peru and Argentina, carefully selected and monitored by our staff. We are happy to say that 98% of our students found that the host family experience was great; they mention it was a valuable complement to their Spanish studies.

However, living abroad in a new country with a new culture  – especially when you do not speak the Spanish language – can also be daunting and it requires a good deal of flexibility from both you and your host.  We think the following list of TIPS will be helpful for you when you plan on  living with a host family during your Spanish Course in Cusco . Check it out and let us know! (more…)

Volunteering in Peru: A Complete Guide to Organizing Volunteer Work

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Tuesday February 05, 2019 - Posted by
05Feb
Volunteering in Peru: A Complete Guide to Organizing Volunteer Work

Volunteering in Peru: A Complete Guide to Organizing Volunteer Work

One of the joys of traveling abroad is the opportunities it presents to interact with local people, from the women at the market stalls to the families you encounter in a rural community. But sticking around and opting to live in a community for an extended period can be even more rewarding: imagine being welcomed into a town and spending each day interacting with local people.

Volunteering in Peru allows just that. We’ve put together this guide to volunteering programs in Peru that sets out everything you need to know about finding and organizing projects where you lend a hand. (more…)

Learning Spanish for Adults: Four Foolproof Methods

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Thursday January 10, 2019 - Posted by
10Jan
: Learning Spanish for Adults: Four Foolproof Methods

Learning Spanish for Adults: Four Foolproof Methods

Learning Spanish is a rewarding challenge. It opens the doors to communication with 500 million speakers in 21 countries across the globe. Speaking another language is a hugely useful skill if you plan on traveling abroad, but studying Spanish also comes with a wide range of other unexpected benefits.

But if you’re looking at learning Spanish as an adult, you might feel that it’s more than an uphill battle. You can’t teach an old dog new tricks, right?

Well, not exactly. Not only is it possible to become fluent in Spanish as an adult, but there is a range of ways of doing so – with some far more effective than others. Let’s find out exactly what they are. (more…)

11 Must-Visit Sites & Things to Do in the Sacred Valley

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Friday November 30, 2018 - Posted by
30Nov
11 Must-Visit Sites & Things to Do in the Sacred Valley, Peru

11 Must-Visit Sites & Things to Do in the Sacred Valley

Just an hour’s drive from Cusco, the Sacred Valley of the Incas in Peru is named after its importance to the Inca, whose ruined citadels and former agricultural terraces are dotted along the valley’s course.

It’s an awe-inspiring place to visit, flanked by serrated mountains and lush with corn that grows beside the Río Urubamba that flows right along the valley floor. For any visitor to Cusco, the Sacred Valley of the Incas is an unmissable spot on your trip to Peru.

Avoid just passing through on the way to the epic Inca fortress of Machu Picchu and instead spend a few days exploring one of Peru’s largest and most dynamic artisan markets, pre-Colombian salt mines and even one-of-a-kind hotels installed high up on the valley sides. Join us as we rundown the eleven Must Visit Sites and best things to do in the Sacred Valley.

Spoiler: yes, AMAUTA Spanish School offers Spanish classes at this amazing location (see #11)!

(more…)

Spanish for Travelers: 68 Essential Travel Phrases To Know

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Tuesday November 27, 2018 - Posted by
27Nov
Spanish for Travelers: 68 Essential Travel Phrases To Know

Spanish for Travelers: 68 Essential Travel Phrases To Know

Heading on a trip to South America this year and want to make sure you don’t make yourself and those around you completely confused? Having a toolkit of invaluable travel sayings at your disposal will ensure your plans don’t go awry and it’s for that purpose we’ve put together this Spanish for travelers guide.

The 68 travel phrases have a particular focus on South America, where expressions sometimes have a distinctly different character than in Spain.

We’ve broken down these Spanish travel phrases into topic areas to ensure that, regardless of the situation, you’ve got a phrase at your disposal. If you want to go even further into learning Spanish ahead of your trip to South America, head over to our study Spanish online guides or consider taking a Spanish language immersion course when you arrive in the continent. (more…)

The Six Most Unmissable Places to Learn Spanish in South America

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Tuesday November 06, 2018 - Posted by
06Nov
The Six Most Unmissable Places to Learn Spanish in South America

The Six Most Unmissable Places to Learn Spanish in South America

One of the easiest ways to pick up a new language is by studying abroad, where you have every opportunity to put your new linguistic skills to the test. Although Spain might seem like the obvious choice, the best place to learn Spanish is actually South America.

Not only are Spanish language classes affordable, local accents are comprehensible and you also get the chance to explore a new continent. But it’s a big place to choose from, so that’s why we’ve put together this run down of the six most unmissable places to learn Spanish in South America.

From the Inca heartland of Cusco to the pampas of Argentina via the beaches of Colombia, there are plenty of places to immerse yourself in Spanish.

Know before you go: where to learn Spanish in South America

Comprising 12 distinct countries and covering 6.89 million square miles, South America has plenty of options when it comes to language study – and maybe even too many options. (more…)

7 Extraordinary Benefits of Learning Spanish If You Like to Travel

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Wednesday September 26, 2018 - Posted by
26Sep
The 7 Extraordinary Benefits of Learning Spanish If You Like to Travel

7 Extraordinary Benefits of Learning Spanish If You Like to Travel

 

Whether you’re looking to travel to Peru or other parts of South America or you’re just lining up your next challenge, studying a second language is a valuable thing to do. The benefits of learning Spanish, particularly if you have designs on travel, can’t be understated.

So, if you’re looking for inspiration for why you should learn Spanish, read on as we take you through the six main benefits of picking up this language up.

Studying Spanish makes travelling abroad a whole lot easier

If you’ve yet to embark upon a journey through South America, you probably don’t quite appreciate the difficulties that you come across as a monolinguist or solo English speaker in these parts.

Want to get to another city? You’ll be needing the colectivo, or possibly the micro. (more…)

The 5 Best Peru Hiking Adventures For Your Bucket List

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Thursday September 06, 2018 - Posted by
06Sep
The 5 Best Peru Hiking Adventures For Your Bucket List

The 5 Best Peru Hiking Adventures For Your Bucket List

 

With the ridge of the Andes Mountains slicing the length of the country and 6,000m mountains that make the most adventurous drool, Peru is a trekker’s paradise. Some of the best Peru hiking options are easily accessed either from Cusco or by a bus journey from Lima, so strap on your hiking boots and get ready to hit the trail!

1. The Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, Cusco

Easily the most famous of all trekking in Peru, the Inca Trail that leads you directly to Machu Picchu is a classic hike, combining history and sublime landscapes with the chance to end your journey the exact same way the Inca would: at this former estate for Inca royalty.

There are several Inca trekking routes in Peru that go to Machu Picchu, however, the classic Inca route is a four or five-day 43km hike that winds up into the mountains beyond the Sacred
Valley, summiting three high-altitude passes before terminating at the ruins for sunrise on the final day.

This definitely ranks among the best hiking in Peru and the experience of travelling in the footsteps of this former civilization is one you won’t forget in a hurry. (more…)

The best way to learn Spanish: 8 scientifically-backed methods

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Thursday August 23, 2018 - Posted by
23Aug
The best way to learn Spanish: 8 scientifically-backed methods

The best way to learn Spanish: 8 scientifically-backed methods

 

Is Spanish easy to learn? What’s the quickest way to learn Spanish? What is the best way to learn Spanish?

These are just some of the questions that you asked yourself – and the internet – when you first started learning Spanish. There are plenty of ways that you can study Spanish – and plenty of debate around their effectiveness. But which are actually work?

 

Is it possible to learn Spanish in a month?

Before we begin, let’s put to bed a question that touches the lips of a lot of first-time language learners: is it possible learn Spanish (or any other language) in a month?

In a word, no. (more…)