Monday, 21 February 2011

Facing death in Bolivia

Ater an amazing time in huge and very beautiful and interesting Peru, it was time for us to hitch the next bus south for a short stay in Bolivia.

Friday, 18 February 2011

The highest navigable lake in the world, and the people that navigate it with their islands

Our last stop in Peru was the famous Lago Titicaca. We bussed our way down there from Cusco to the cold city of Puno that lies at the shore of the lake.

Having heard a great deal about this lake and the different islands in it, we booked a day tour to see the Urus floating islands and the autonomous island of Taquiles.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Marvelous Machu and piccante Picchu

So as the alarm went off in the early morning ( make that the middle of the night) we sleepily made it out of bed, into our clothes and out into the street where we started to walk towards the bridge, the first ‘port’ on the way. Opening at 4.45 in the morning, it was already lined with about 50 people queueing up by the time we got there at 4.30.

The air was full of tension as everyone was getting ready to take off and be the first ones to the top, a bit like in the beginning of a sprinting competition.

The Tarzan way to Machu Picchu - part 3

On the way to the start of the hike on this last day of imitating Tarzan (everyone in the group had in fact voted to skip walking the 2-3 hours at the side of a normal road and go by car instead to a sport further up) we stopped to see quite a huge man-built waterfall.

Monday, 14 February 2011

The Tarzan way to Machu Picchu - part 2

Day 2 started up with buckets of rain coming down from the sky, making us believe that we were to pass another wet day out in the rain. But by the time we had finished breakfast, the rain had cleared up and when we started walking it was under a sunny, although partly cloudy sky. Perfect weather for this day partly on an Inka trail.

The Tarzan way to Machu Picchu - Part 1

On the first day of our 4-day tour to Machu Picchu it seemed a bit like we were running out of luck, as the rain kept pouring down from a dark sky and the road was covered in mist, and as we quickly realised that out of our group of 10 participants, 8 belonged to the same Polish group, and hence we were the odds out. However, it turned out to be a cool day anyway.

Sunday, 13 February 2011

Cusco and a 'Sexywoman'

Having arrived in Cusco, the 'starting point' to Machu Picchu, without any booking, we quickly realised that the original Inka trail was out of question for us, as it is booked up months in advance and the only cancelled spot available seemed to be 10 days later and we did neither have the time nor the want to wait that long. So instead, we spent half a day searching the hundreds of travel agencies for the best deal on the Inca Jungle trek that I had heard was a great alternative to the ever more touristy Inca trail.

Thursday, 10 February 2011

The deepest canyon in the world, Colca

On the second day in Arequipa, we woke up in the middle of the night as a minibus came to pick us up for a tour of Colca canyon - the deepest canyon in the world.
I was first surprised over the amount of people that we saw in the streets so early in the morning - until I realised that the night before had been Saturday, and that hence 4am was quite a normal time for people to be returning home from night clubs ;)

A white city, and slightly bizarre but marvelous Inka creations

Moving on South to the second biggest city of Peru, Arequipa - la ciudad blanca, an UNESCO world heritage site, we made a stop in another UNESCO site for a few hours in a deserved area with some huge lines drawn every here and there...

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Huacachina, a small oasis in the middle of the desert

Continuing down south we couldn't help ourselves from stopping in the little oasis town of Huacachina .

Saturday, 5 February 2011

Paracas, where the hot desert meets the cold seas

On our way down south from Lima we decided to make a stop in Paracas, a little town in the middle of the endless Peruvian desert driven by fishing, tourist attractions, and bird poop.

Since we missed our trip to the Galapagos islands because of the end-of-year tourist rush which made the flight prices hit record prices and after that everything got fully booked, we decided that the stop in Paracas was mandatory.

Lovely, languishable Lima

Feeling that we were still running out of time if we ever wanted to make it to Argentina and Brazil before our departure date, we decided to skip the rest of northern Peru and to instead join the gringo trail starting with the very likable city of Lima.

But isn't Lima far away from Mancora and the Ecuadorian border? And isn't Peru a rather huge country, bigger than we had ever imagined?