Ahh the worst part of the holiday is always traveling home... luckily we didn't have an early flight so had some time to visit the Manatee rescue center.
Once at the airport later in the day thats when it all started..delayed..delayed..delayed...delayed...all 4 flights that we had to get home were delayed..some by 30 mins up to 2 hours..this wasn't the way we wanted to finish the holiday but we did get home safe and sound to see our excited beautiful boy Toby!
Overall Peru was awesome, the people were friendly but there was a language barrier so next time we go back we are going to ensure we speak better Spanish.
Due to hunting of Manatees in the Amazon numbers are extremely low. This center has been rescuing and breeding Manatees to release back into the wild. They are sort of like big puppy dogs haha
21 November 2016
More exploring this time for Giant Waterlily's. They are so big that they can support weight up to 20kg
20 November 2016
Ok I didn't realise but I have big fears of spiders haha especially when they are walking all around the jungle floor...I'm not talking 1 or 2..it was like I was in Arachnophobia the movie.
This time it was mosquitoes driving me insane it was cockroaches flying into me ewwww.
Phirana fishing in the amazon..Lots of fun and scary..these little guys are smart and hard to catch. Also they asked us if we wanted to take the jaw/teeth home as a souvenir.. try explaining that to customs!
Cruising around the amazon it was so beautiful. The large amount of green in the water is a type of plant that has become overgrown due to the hunting of Manatees. This is their main food source and without the Manatees the cabbage has become out of control.
19 November 2016
Caiman spotting in the amazon
Is a small monkey native to rainforests of the western Amazon Basin in South America. It is notable for being the smallest monkey and one of the smallest primates in the world at just over 100 grams
Red Social Spider web-
A social spider is a spider species whose individuals form relatively long-lasting aggregations. Whereas most spiders are solitary and even aggressive toward other members of their own species, some hundreds of species in several families show a tendency to live in groups, often referred to as colonies.
By building a communal web, it is thought that the spiders approximately maximize total biomass capture per spider. Having a larger web and multiple spiders to work together to subdue prey allows them to prey on larger organisms that would be impossible if they led a solitary existence. The colonies can grow large enough to take down birds and bats.
They picked us up 9am to begin the 3 hour boat ride out to the amazon resort. When we arrived it was beautiful and so peaceful..no internet or anything for 3 days
17 November 2016
Went out tonight with a few people from the Inca trail tour... we met up at restaurant Kusikuy as they have fantastic reviews on cuy (guinea pig)
We had it roasted but you can get it deep fried as well. The skin wasn't overly crispy but it was still nice..it tasted a little like chicken but we with less meat. We also had the alpaca skewers which were yum.
They just love their Inca Kola here
Lazy day today I wasn't feeling well..think it was the kfc we had late last night..we wanted to do another quick trip to the markets and visit the Inca museum and historic museum.
Tonight we have organised to catch up with a few people from the Inca trail tour to try Guinea Pig
16 November 2016
After spending hours wandering around we decided we had earnt a beer we needed it before the next part of the journey.... due to the train strike it meant that we would have to walk along the train track to get to the nearest road for a bus to pick us up..12km away. this was the only way in and out so we seen a few tourists walking in to get to machu picchu... there were little stalls set up along the train track selling drinks food and beer..yes Shane hunted down the beer and turned it into a train track pub crawl .
Once we got to the bus it was 6 hours back to cusco..I have to say the tour company did everything to make us happy ...stopping for beer...buying cds for the van.. stopping and buying a cable to plug an iPhone in to listen to music. finally around 10.30pm we arrived at our hotel..tired and dirty.
Due to the train strike machu picchu was empty..the only way to get in is via train. It was perfect so quiet.
Machu Picchu is an Incan citadel set high in the Andes Mountains in Peru, above the Urubamba River valley. Built in the 15th century and later abandoned, it’s renowned for its sophisticated dry-stone walls that fuse huge blocks without the use of mortar, intriguing buildings that play on astronomical alignments and panoramic views. Its exact former use remains a mystery
After the tour we were given free time..I have to say the silly part of machu picchu is that you can only go one way so it you want to go somewhere and you have already passed it you have to go out and come back in.
Waking up nice and early 4.30am today was the day we would arrive at Machu Picchu. Thank goodness no more camping..I'm sick of it... the zips on everything are so painful, the feral camping toliet..all of it I was over...never again I said to Shane..luckily he agreed!
The checkpoint opened at 5.30am and from there it was about 90 mins to the sungate which overlooks Machu Picchu
15 November 2016
We arrived at the campsite and had again a huge lunch..no more treking today apart from the optional walk to another ruins.. I was feeling a little over ruins so decided to hang in the tent and chill. It was amazing how many people decided to do the same.
Dinner tonight was the last so they made it extra special with a feast of Italian pizza and pasta..how they made a pizza in a camp stove I will never know. They even made a cake it was delicious!
30 mins more sleep in this morning. I woke up like a bear with a sore head...didnt sleep well..again this camping shit isn't for us.
Luckily today was an easier day walking only 10km (finish around 2pm) it would be mostly down. This day was meant to be the most beautiful and it really was but with my lack and sleep I found today to be the toughest but I struggled on knowing that Machu Picchu was less than 24 hours away.
14 November 2016
Lunch again was massive...they give us all this yummy food I overeat and can barely walk after haha.
After lunch it was onto the second pass 2 hours up again and to finish the day it was 90 mins down..massively long day but we did it..this campspot was my favourite with a beautiful outlook. Shane purchased a couple of cans of beer from a lady on the trek for us to have with dinner..dont care that they weren't cold..they were good! Tonight was the night where the moon is the closest to the Earth and would be unbelievably bright.. unfortunately it was cloudy and we couldnt see it. No rain again just a couple of spots of rain as we were going to sleep.
I woke up today in a great mental state ready to tackle the day. Today was passing two peaks and walking approx 18km. Shane and I both also decided that camping isnt for us..zips on everything..stupid sleeping bags thst make you feel like a mummy and air mattresses that deflate..not to mention having to get up in the freezing cold to pee..oh and then there is the snoring of people in other tents..thank god for ear plugs. Ahh 2 more nights of camping.
Nice part was we were given coca tea in our tents when we woke up. After we got ready and packed up it was time for breakfast again another big spread.
First up it was getting to dead womans pass at 4215m (approx 4 hours) all uphill.. the altitude makes it harder to breath so it slows you down a bit..of course my fitness star Shane flew ahead while I took my time stopping for lots of pics. After passing dead womans pass it was downhill for 90 mins to the lunch spot.
13 November 2016
As we arrive to the campsite the porters clap and cheer for us, we have a bit of down time just enough to wash and change and roll out the sleeping bags before we have dinner..again another feast with bananas fried in Pisco for dessert..yum!
Time for bed around 8pm as it was going to be an early start 5am tomorrow....the hardest day! No rain today horay!
Lunch was amazing starter was fresh advocado with cucumber and tomato.. then it was a soup..then more food..fresh fish, guacamole..rice...bean salad..and more there was soo much food.
After lunch we continued to trek until we reached the campsite. Image 3. We were given a bucket of warm water to wash as there are no showers until day 3. Wet wipe showers for a while.
The main reason I chose this company was because they carry a toilet around for us so we didnt have to share the toilets with the other 470 people on site.
We got picked up early and took a 2 hour bus trip to Ollayatatamba.. in which I fell asleep haha feeling like an old woman lately.
When we arrived we had a quick stop before continuing to the start point of the Inca Trail. We had breakfast here prepared by the chef that would be cooking for us during the Inca Trail.
Day 1 is relatively easy and eases you into the trail we started about 8.30am and finished walking around 5pm. Approx 14km.
We were told to take it all at our own pace which was great..still I thought for sure that I would always be arriving last...luckily there were a couple of people that were going slower than me!
We didnt have to carry much with us as there are 18 porters that carry everything for us so we just needed day packs with water..camera..jacket etc. The porters would set up the tents for us each day as well.
Start of the track was very dry and dusty almost desert like and moved into bush land. It is also going into their rainy season.
12 November 2016
Tonight Shane and I had the briefing for the Inca Trail. It was a little painful going through all the details, it was like the admin staff and the guides didn't communicate with each other. There was incorrect information..Shane was older and a female haha.
We collected the bags that the porters would carry containing our personal belongings. We also got told about a strike that was taking place on 15/16 Nov with the trains. This was how we were meant to be getting back from Machu Picchu to Cusco on the 16th..but they didn't have an answer for how they were going to get us back at this stage.
Our pick up was scheduled for 4.30am..will be an early night tonight
Here are some weird things at Cusco markets
Cow Horns which they use in celebrations
Baby Llama..they bury this under their house in the fields that they grow crops in to bring them luck.
Today we attended a cooking class..learning how to make
The Peruvian national drink, cocktail made with peruvian pisco, lime juice, bar syrup, egg white, ice cubes and angostura / bitterness.
The traditional andean soup with mix vegetable, and dices of beef.
Ají de Gallina
Chicken deep in yellow chili pepper sauce made with chili, onion, peanuts, crackers, milk, cheese. Served with local potato rice, garnished with hard boil egg and black olives
One of the most favorites treats of Peruvians, created in Ica - Peru. Made with chocolate, caramel and pecan
Shane had a bit too much to drink last night so was a little dusty which seems to be a tradition of ours..every cooking class one of us is hungover
11 November 2016
These ruins Saksaywaman were incredible. . sections were first built by the Killke culture about 1100; they had occupied the area since 900. The complex was expanded and added to by the Inca from the 13th century; they built dry stone walls constructed of huge stones. The workers carefully cut the boulders to fit them together tightly without mortar. The site is at an altitude of 3,701 m
Llamas and Alpaca's 😙
Altitude: 3399m ASL
Cusco, a city in the Peruvian Andes, was once capital of the Inca Empire (13th century-1532) and is now known for its archaeological remains and Spanish colonial architecture. Plaza de Armas is the central square in the old city, with arcades, carved wooden balconies and Incan wall ruins.
It has a population of around 500k
The Killke people occupied the region from 900 to 1200, prior to the arrival of the Inca in the 13th century.
Today we did a free walking tour around the city for 3 hours learning about the history of the area.
10 November 2016
Beer!! Bigger the better
Haha Shane being killed by Jason from Friday 13th
Pisac is one of Cusco’s few great Inca ruins that features all types of architecture—agricultural, hydraulic, military, residential, and religious. Little is known for certain about Pisac’s precise function, and there is no mention of it in Spanish chronicles, perhaps because it was never used by the Inca in their battles against the invaders. It is perched on a plateau above the town, with a plunging gorge on either side.
Researchers believe that Pisac was established to defend the southern entrance of the Sacred Valley, controlling a route that connected the Inca Empire to the rainforest. The path leading into the rainforest still remains.
Most people will taxi to the top and walk down but not us..we decided to start at the bottom and go up! It's practice for the Inca trail we kept telling ourselves.
9 November 2016
Green mandarin Yes the skin is green but it is ripe...wasnt overly sweet either
Last stop of the day was visiting a place that does traditional textiles with Llama coat. They use a piece of glass to cut the fur, then they wash it and spin it into threads. After this they dye it using natural colours...looking at the photo you can see a wide range of colours that they can produce. They boil the threads for a set amount of time and then it is ready to use.
The ladies in the last image are making table runners
Yes alot of farms still use this method. The lady is dropping the seeds.
Yumm chocolate with Salt from Maras
Moray is an archaeological site in Peru approximately 50 km northwest of Cuzco on a high plateau at about 3,500 metres. The site contains unusual Inca ruins, mostly consisting of several terraced circular depressions, the largest of which is approximately 30 m deep. As with many other Inca sites, it also has an irrigation system.
The purpose of these depressions is uncertain, but their depth, design, and orientation with respect to wind and sun creates a temperature difference of as much as 15 °C between the top and the bottom. It is possible that this large temperature difference was used by the Inca to study the effects of different climatic conditions on crops
Quick drink to get some energy. When you see a pole in front of someones house with the red bag this indicated they are selling ChiCha. Alcohol content can vary usually between 1% to 3%. This was something that most Peruvian's grew up drinking.
Maras is a town in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, 40 kilometers north of Cuzco, in the Cuzco Region of Peru. The town is well known for its nearby salt evaporation ponds, in use since Inca times.
Since pre-Inca times, salt has been obtained in Maras by evaporating salty water from a local subterranean stream. The highly salty water emerges at a spring, a natural outlet of the underground stream. The flow is directed into an intricate system of tiny channels constructed so that the water runs gradually down onto the several hundred ancient terraced ponds. Almost all the ponds are less than four meters square in area, and none exceeds thirty centimeters in depth.
As water evaporates from the sun-warmed ponds, the water becomes supersaturated and salt precipitates as various size crystals onto the inner surfaces of a pond's earthen walls and on the pond's earthen floor
Relaxing in Ollantaytambo
He wanted an energy drink....Come back with no energy drink but a corn cob with cheese! 😂
Ollantaytambo, a former Inca administrative center and gateway to the Antisuyo (the Amazon corner of the Inca Empire), sits at the northern end of the Sacred Valley. At the time of the Spanish invasion and conquest of Peru Ollantaytambo served as the last stronghold for Inca Manco Yupanqui, leader of the Inca resistance at the time.
Ollantaytambo is a town and an Inca archaeological site in southern Peru some 60 kilometers northwest of the city of Cusco
8 November 2016
San Pedro Apóstol was built by Jesuits in the sixteenth century over a pre-Columbian huaca, or ceremonial space. The construction of the current temple started in 1570 with the creation of a small chapel corresponding to the existing apse and sanctuary; the nave and façade were completed in 1606. Much of the interior was decorated by Luis de Riaño, a student of Angelino Medoro, in the 1620s. It is often called the "Sistine Chapel of the Andes" because of the beauty of its mural painting.
Pre Inca leather suspension bridge at Checacupe
The Inka site at Raqch'i was a primary control point on a road system that originated in Cusco and expanded as the Inka empire grew. It is located in a valley known for sacred sites. Most of the Inka structures are enclosed by a 4 km-long perimeter wall, but just outside it, on the Inka road that entered Raqch'i from Cusco, an enclosure with eight rectangular buildings around a large courtyard was probably a tampu (a lodging house for travellers). The administrative records from around the same time as the site indicate that this was in all likelihood such a place.The complex of Raqch'i consists of several different areas each designated with a specific function. Some have noted that these buildings may have been for religious and administrative officials. Others speculate that these buildings, paired with the scale of defenses may have been used as barracks to house troops.Nearby are approximately 220 circular buildings, likely used as storehouses.
The Peruvian Andes. La Raya pass 4313m ASL
Today we took a bus from Puno to Cusco, again this was a tourist bus that stops along the way at different places
7 November 2016
Taquile is an island on the Peruvian side of Lake Titicaca 45 km offshore from the city of Puno. About 2,200 people live on the island.
Taquileños are known for their fine handwoven textiles and clothing, which are regarded as among the highest-quality handicrafts in Peru. Knitting is exclusively performed by males, starting at age eight.
The boys have to learn to knit in order to get a wife.
The colour of the hat that the men wear indicates if they are single or married, also once you are married there is no divorcing.
We had lunch here overlooking lake Titicaca, fresh trout!
Just 7km east of Puno, these unique floating islands are Lake Titicaca’s top attraction. Their uniqueness is due to their construction. They have been created entirely with the buoyant totora reeds that grow abundantly in the shallows of the lake. The lives of the Uros people are interwoven with these reeds. Partially edible (tasting like nonsweet sugarcane), the reeds are also used to build homes, boats and crafts. The islands are constructed from many layers of the totora, which are constantly replenished from the top as they rot from the bottom, so the ground is soft and springy.
This is very touristy and I'm sure that they dont live on the island anymore, they travel out early and act like they live there. Shane and I were expecting no less which is why we went on this cheap tour.
Altitude: 3812m ASL
Puno is a city in southern Peru on Lake Titicaca, one of South America's largest lakes and the world's highest navigable body of water.
We were a little hesitant about coming here as it is very touristy and we were right, everything was expensive, the hostel here was possibility our least favorite as the bathroom smelt like sewer. Nice!
6 November 2016
Beer is required.. let's make it healthy by making it with quinoa
Now starts the next leg of the journey..moving into a different climate, going from dry desert to cold, wet and mountains. We opted to take a tourist bus from Chivay to Puno as they make some stops along the way so it breaks the long bus ride up. The stops we did make were pretty shit which is the reason for thr limited photos
This was high on my to do list and the only reason we stayed overnight in Chivay, in the morning we made our way 3km from Chivay to the zip lining. It so was awesome, we only had an hour free so could complete 4 of the 6 lines they had available. Nathan the owner was very welcoming and spoke fantastic English.
It was so awesome zip lining over the Colca Canyon and such a rush, especially the one line they called "extreme". It was the fastest line they had and depending on the conditions you can reach speeds of 100km. We had little parachutes clipped to us to slow the speed down. Walking up to the start of the Extreme platform was challenging it was only 7 mins uphill but after completing the Colca Canyon yesterday it felt exhausting.
This experience was well worth the 200 soles ($80 aus)
Altitude: 3270m Above Sea Level
Look at this little pig in mud. Shane finally found "Chicha de Jora" which is the "beer" that Inca and pre-Inca civilisations have been drinking for around 1500 years, Peruvian's all over are still drinking it. Made from fermented Jora yellow corn, honey and spices that big glass he's drinking cost 20c at a market in Chivay.
5 November 2016
On the way back from the canyon to Chivay we stopped in to try Sancayo fruit that grows on a cactus..OMG I love it..it is soooo sour, they turn it into a Colca Sour (cocktail) but unfortunately in Peru they are in love with sugar..they add it to everything ( want a fresh juice they add sugar) so once they mixed it up it tasted nothing like the fruit anymore.
It was here as well that I ticked off an item on my bucket list.. pic with Lama. They are so incredibly fluffy and the locals here almost treat them like pets. On the streets in Arequipa a lady was holding a baby Lama and she would try and get you to hold it to take a picture and would want money from you.
Here's a little lesson for you, did you know that the red pigment in most lipsticks and food dyes come from this little bug that feeds on a certain type of cactus predominantly in South America. This bug is called Cochineal and is one of Peru's major exports.
Shane sacrificed this poor little bug in the name of science.
Waking up at 4.30am was like a dream getting ready for the 3 hour trek up to get out of here. Just got to push myself for 3 hours I thought and then it will be over. Plus the bonus was I wasnt walking downhill anymore so it wont hurt my toenail and if you want breakfast you have to get to the top.
The bonus of starting so early meant we would miss the sun but it was still a grueling 3 hours of stones, rocks and dryness. We overtook a few people and seen them later coming up on a mule. I'm not sure what's worse, the pain I was in walking or watching the people of the mules trying to balance to stay on.. I have no doubt they are having trouble walking today.
Just shy under 3 hours we made it to the top, Shane would have been alot faster but he had to encourage me some of the way.
It was such a great feeling knowing that part was over just a short flat 30 min walk to breakfast and we were done! Overall it was a very tough trek to do it 2 days.
4 November 2016
FInally after up/down we made it to the accomodation. Taking off my shoes and socks I realise that I have terrible heat rash from where my socks were. It looked horrendous.
The accomodation was basic but the resort had a swimming pool so gave me a chance to dip my legs in the cold water. Dinner was being served at 7.30 so we had time for a nap, there was nothing else to do and power doesnt get turned on until 6pm.
Shane decided to get a beer with dinner, we have realised since being here (Peru) that having cold beer isnt high on the priority list so it was hot.
After dinner ( semolina soup and spag bowl) we went to bed as it was an early start 5am
Surely we just completed Mount Kinabalu in Borneo how hard can this be. HARD. First 3 hours (7km) of the day was treking down..steep, slippery over loose rocks..the sun was so incredibly hot and you just cant get enough water.
Because of the rush and the mess around the day before I forgot to cut my toenails ...big mistake which will cost me my big toenails..soo painful the pressure going down on my toes.
After 3 hours we reached the lunch spot where we had quinoa vegetable soup and aplaca meat. Alpaca tasted ok a little gamey to me but pretty well like beef.
After lunch it was another 3 hours (6km) to the accomodation point, an oasis deep in the canyon. This part of the treck turned a little more tropical passing, avocado and fig trees. We also passed alot of little tiny shaks with locals selling goods like water and fruit, it was here that we tried Grenadilla. It looks like big passionfruit and you can peel it. inside it tastes like passionfruit except no so sour.
On the way to the start of the treck we stopped at Cruz Del Condor this area is popular as a family of condors live there. of course when we arrived they weren't flying and we could only see two. However the canon really proved worthy with the zoom functionality to get some of these amazing shots.
Altitude: 3650m Above Sea Level
After our 1am bus to Chivay we checked into our hostel and managed to get 90 mins sleep before the Colca Canyon tour picked us up at 6.40am.
This was the start of our two day trek of the Colca Canyon.
Colca Canyon, a river canyon in southern Peru, with a depth of 10,725 ft (3,270 m),it is one of the deepest in the world, and a well-known trekking destination. It's a habitat for the giant Andean condor, on view from overlooks like Cruz del Condor. The canyon landscape comprises a green valley and remote traditional villages with terraced agriculture that predates the Incas.
3 November 2016
This day didnt at all go as planned, we wanted to catch a local bus from Arequipa to Chivay 4 hours. We arrived at the bus terminal just after 11, expecting multiple buses to offer the service and discovered that only a couple did and they only leave two times a day 11am (already missed that one) and 1am. WTF kinda time is 1am. Our original plan was to arrive in Chivay in the afternoon and get a full nights sleep before starting the Colca Canyon trek. Ok what the hell are we going to do until 1am, we ended up checking into a hostel and getting a 6 pack of beers and 1kg of potato chips haha and chilling out for a few hours before getting some sleep and waking up at midnight for the bus. It made the next day for the trek much harder.
2 November 2016
This corn snack became our fav beer food
After 4 years they would be allowed to move into main quarters with the other nuns. It is at that point that the family of the nun would fund to have their room built and furnished. Once completed all the items become the property of the Monistary. They could see their family only in a viewing room which meant they were seperated by a wall and there was no touching allowed. Another nun would be in attendance in the room with you.
The only males that was allowed in the convent was the pope and a doctor.
One amazing nun that lived in the convent was Sister Ana. She was in the convent up until her death in 1686. In 1985 John Pope Paul II beatified Ana for her various miracles and predictions.
Her room is now locked and people often bring their clothing or items by and ask for the to be placed on Ana's bed for a period of time in a hope that her power still remains and wil heal them when they wear it.
This place is soo fasinating and holds so much history. It takes up a whole block in Arequipa and is 20000 sq meters. It is the only convent which operated like a city inside with its own streets.
Back then to become a nun in this convent was something every family wanted for their daughter. Normally becoming a nun meant you would live a life of poverty or simplicilty but this convent had servents and slaves. This was not allowed and was kept under the rug for a number of centuries until Pope Pius IX sent a strict Dominican nun in to straighten things out. In 1871 Sister Josefa Cadena arrived and freed the slaves and servants.
To become a nun they had to train for 4 years in a small quarters and they are isolated away from all other nuns apart from 7 other nuns in training. They would only come out of their small room for church and confessions. They would not see their family for 4 years and there was no socialising with the other nuns in training.
This small museum is dedicated to preserving the body of 'Juanita' also called the Ice Maden- the remains of a 12 year old Inca girl that was sacrificed atop Nevado Ampato sometime between 1450 and 1480 add in more.
The body caused a sensation in the scientific world due to its well-preserved condition.
Juanita was found frozen and thus her remains and garments were not desiccated like that of mummies found in other parts of the world. She was naturally mummified, instead of being artificially mummified, such as is the case with Egyptian mummies. Her skin, organs, tissues, blood, hair, stomach contents and garments are extremely well-preserved, offering scientists a rare glimpse into Inca culture.
Unfortunately I couldn't take the camera in so the below images are from Google.
Altitude: 2328m Above Sea Level
After our overnight bus from Nazca we arrived in Arequipa which is the second largest city in Peru. It is surrounded by 3 volcanoes and the area is famous for the material that the buildings are made out of white volvanic rock. One thing I didnt realise about this place is the amount of sand flies (I assume as I couldn't see them) I wore shorts for a couple of hours and these little shits destroyed my legs so my legs looked like they had chicken pox.
1 November 2016
This was a regular dish in Peru for me.. yummm
The Puquios are an old system of subterranean aquaducts. Of of the 36 systems most are still functioning and are relied on to bring water into the desert. It is believed that this was built by Pre Columbian Nazca architect's around AD 540.
Chauchilla Cemetery is a cemetery that contains prehispanic mummified human remains and archeological artifacts.
The cemetery was discovered in the 1920s, but had not been used since the 9th century AD. The cemetery includes many important burials over a period of 600 to 700 years. The start of the interments was in about 200 AD.
The bodies are so remarkably preserved due mainly to the dry climate in the Peruvian Desert but the funeral rites were also a contributing factor. The bodies were clothed in embroidered cotton and then painted with a resin and kept in purpose-built tombs made from mud bricks. The resin is thought to have kept out insects and slowed bacteria trying to feed on the bodies.
It was really disappointing to see that for something so valuable in history that it wasn't more secure and guarded. There are still undiscovered tombs in the area which brings grave robbers looking for valuable items
So much nothing and crazy crazy wind
I felt like death from my hangover and now I need to get into tiny 4 seater plane that was going to do circles around Nazca for 30 mins.. holy shit those little planes feel everything I felt like we were going to drop out of the sky at times. I was secretly eyeing off the spew bags in the plane as we are twisting around in the sky. Being the professional that I am, I kept my shit together and didnt puke anywhere.
The Nazca Lines are a series of ancient geoglyphs in the Nazca Desert. Scholars believe the Nazca Lines were created by the Nazca culture between 500 B.C. and A.D. 500. The figures vary in complexity. Hundreds are simple lines and geometric shapes; more than 70 are zoomorphic designs of animals, such as birds, fish, llamas, jaguars, and monkeys, or human figures. Other designs include phytomorphic shapes, such as trees and flowers.
The designs are shallow lines made in the ground by removing the reddish pebbles and uncovering the whitish/grayish ground beneath. The largest figures are up to 370 m long.
Because of its isolation and the dry, windless, stable climate of the plateau, the lines have mostly been naturally preserved.
Waking up this morning after that pisco tour and my whole body was screamIng. Did I eat last night? Yes apparently Shane got me pizza in bed haha he looks after me.
Now to actually start functioning as I had a 2 hour bus ride ahead of me and a full day of sightseeing...after that we would endure a 10 hour overnight bus to Arequipa.
31 October 2016
It seemed like a good idea at the time but oh man the hangover was the worst.
Pisco is a colourless or yellowish-to-amber colored brandy produced in winemaking regions of Peru.
For the production of a regular Peruvian Pisco bottle it requires 8 kilograms of grapes.
We were only visiting two wineries just how bad could it get?
Get back from our tour.. ok for sure there will be water.. Shane was like YES.. he goes for the first shower.. I go next.. no... now I only have boiling water.. honestly WTF.. Shane goes down.. complains and finally the next day yes 2 days later I get a shower.
Firstly we were a little hesitant about visiting this place, it is called the "poor mans Galapagos Island". Secondly it was 6.30am pick up! We were definitely not dressed for the occasion.. it was freezing cold but still we continued on to the Ballestas Islands.
The Ballestas Islands are a group of small islands near the town of Paracas located within the Paracas District of the Pisco Province in the Ica Region, on the south coast of Peru. Composed largely of rock formations and covering an estimated area of 0.12 km², these islands are an important sanctuary for marine fauna like the guanay guano bird, the blue-footed booby and the tendril. Other notable species include Humboldt penguins and two varieties of seals (fur seals and sea lions), amongst other mammals.
Image 1- Humboldt penguins
Image 2- huge male sealion
Image 3- 1 trillion birds yes all those little dark spots are birds
Ok water update.. wake up bright and early ready for a shower... nooo... no water.. WTF ahhhhgggg ok lets go on our tour..
30 October 2016
We arrived in Huacachina on a Sunday totally unaware that they don't have any power or water until around 4pm. We went on the buggy tour below expecting to wash all the sand off us only to find our accomodation was having issues getting the water back on. How long will it be I asked 1st response 5 mins, 2nd response 1 hour , 3rd response tomorrow morning. Then with a power outage during the night you start to realise just how much you rely on these two utilities in our day to day lives.
Needless to say the next morning we didn't have water! Ahhhhh... read tomorrow's entry for an update on the water.
But back to the buggy awesome fun, most of the footage is on the go pro. Endless sanddunes and soo much sand, never ending sand coming out of my shoes.
Our accomodation for the next two days.. Oasis in the desert
29 October 2016
Not the best Pisco Sour but it's a start
Image 1 is the Cathedral of Lima Construction began in 1535, and the building has undergone many reconstructions and transformations since. It retains its colonial structure and facade. It is dedicated to St John, Apostle and Evangelist.
Image 2 is the Archbishop's Palace is the residence of the Archbishop of Lima, and the administrative headquarters of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Lima.
Image 3 is Plaza De Armas in Lima is essentially the core of the city. The city's plan and streets were designed around Plaza De Armas
This place was amazing Convento de San Francisco is the Spanish name for Saint Francis Monastery located in Lima. The church and convent are part of the Historic Centre of Lima, which was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1991. Aside from a church and monastery it also contains a library and catacombs.
The convent's library is world-renowned. It possesses about 25,000 antique texts.
The Catacombs were discovered in 1943, they contain thousand of skulls and bones, having served as a burial-place until 1808, when the city cemetery was opened outside Lima. It is estimated that 25,000 bodies were laid to rest there; the crypts, built of bricks and mortar, are very solid and have stood up well to earthquakes, it is also believe there existed secret passageways that connected to the Cathedral and the Tribunal of the Holy Inquisition.
The only photos that I could take were of the outside so some of these images are from Google
28 October 2016
Romance at Bridge of Sighs- Woodern bridge built in 1876
We decided to head out for a few pre dinner drinks at a craft brewery...I got the big beer haha (see pic)
We had dinner at Songoro Cosongo which is a Peruvian restaurant, first nice Peruvian meal we have had. The owner was lovely and welcomes everyone individually, they also had a local band playing and the owner would get up and perform as well.
In the Plaza De Armas they were celebrating 125 years of Barranco so had lots of live music in Barranco park. It was amazing to see people young and old having a great time dancing away and they even all seem to have the same dance moves haha.
After Larco we went to Polvos Azules which is a big shopping center full of copycat brand clothing. It was mid afternoon and we were starving so decided to grab a bite to eat at the malls foodcourt (if you can call it that). After spending 10 minutes google translating everything we settled on chicken dishes, unfortunately the chicken came out warm for both dishes so we asked if it could be heated but it was still warm when returned to us. While the chicken may have been fresh as travelers we cant take the risk so only ate the non-chicken parts however one bonus was the beer was dirt cheap! While waiting for a taxi Shane found a little old woman selling fried green banana chips which tasted just like potato chips, so cheap too.
Taxis are pretty easy to catch here they have apps like uber so we don't have to negotiate every time we get in a cab and we also don't run the risk of getting a dodgy cab.
I have no words for these. These items were in another section of the museum. Jokes aside pre and Incan civilisations believed the dead helped to fertilise the earth so crops would grow.
What a fantastic museum with so much history
Image 1 is a Gold Funerary Offering from between 1300AD to 1532 AD
This is the only complete set of Chimu (pre Inca) clothing in the world. The belief was to bury prized possessions with them so that it will be with them in the next life, only people of great wealth or stature could afford such things.
The plumes in the crown and breastplate represent birds, the ear pieces feature the face of the great lord while holding decapitated heads
Image 2 is Quipus which was the main system the Incas used to record information. The colour, knots and distance between knots would tell them information about the city such as population, male and female and type of employment
Image 3 is the oldest item we seen dated 8000-2000BC. These were used by hunter-gatherers. Consists of arrow and spearheads chiseled from stone.
This may have be the most expensive chocolate that I will ever buy... but it is delicious and the cacao beans are from the Amazon
Great second day with lots of learning about the Inca's. We had to change our plans today as there was a procession for the Lord of Miracles, it is a celebration of an image that was painted in the 17th century of Jesus Christ on the cross , Its name originated in the 17th century during an earthquake, which destroyed most of the city leaving only that mural standing. This is considered a miraculous occurrence by many living in Lima.
Every year in October, hundreds of thousands of devotees from all races and economic backgrounds participate in a religious procession honoring the image through the streets of Lima. You can see by the picture why we avoided the area that day.
27 October 2016
Undiscovered until 1970 but built 700AD, totally covered in dirt strangely locals of Lima thought the ruins were just a hill even though surrounding land is totally flat. The ruins create a strange spectle now totally surrounded by modern apartments in one of Limas most predominant suburbs Miraflores. Unlike the Incas who primarily used stone in construction Pre Inca society's fashioned bricks from dirt, sand and sea water. Due to lack of funding 30% of the ruins are still to be discovered including burial chambers located deep in the structure.
Tastes like Ribena but with a twang
Lots of walking today, went from Barranco to Miraflores along the boardwalk.
Stopped along the way at Larcomar, this amazing mall built into the side of a cliff. In true Jodie and Shane style we managed to find a mini beer festival in the mall. We tried purple corn Beer, it tasted like beer to me haha.
We made our way further into Miraflores for a free walking tour which went for 3 hours..OMG I was so over walking. Shane reckons we walked 20km over the whole day.
We caught our first cab and Shane negotiated the price down in Spanish haha.
26 October 2016
First Peruvian meal.. not what I thought it was going to be.. pig trotters!! It was literally just steamed pig skin on bone. Lucky I ate a lot on the plane.
This beer 710ml = $2.90 au..wow
Closest to the front of the plane we will ever get "premium economy "
See you in a month Australia
So it starts.. 24 hours of travel!
25 October 2016
It WILL all fit.. It has to!
24 October 2016
Bags are almost packed. The dog is washed.. We will miss you Toby!