Visiting Machu Picchu, Our Long Time Dream

An image of Jean sitting on the top of Huchuy Picchu at Machu Picchu, Urubamba Province, Peru.

An image of foggy sky over Machu Picchu in Urubamba Province, Peru.

Bob and I managed to get aboard the first bus of the day from Aguas Calientes up to Machu Picchu.  The 20-minute bus ride up the switchbacks of the dirt road had us clinging to our seats whenever we rounded the sharp corners.  The other option for getting to Machu Picchu is to hike up the mountain, but it is supposed to be a pretty long and very tough climb.  We preferred to use that time to explore the ruins at the top. Read more

Hiking the Inca Trail – Our Adventure of a Lifetime

Upper terrace at the Wiñay Wayna ruins on the Inca Trail in Peru, South America

Jean hiking with a group on the the Inca Trail in Peru, South America

When it was finally time to set foot on the Inca Trail, we were guided by an authorized trail guide and accompanied by two other hikers, guides in training.  Our adventure would be a one-day hike along the time-worn Inca Trail, headed for Machu Picchu.  Our excitement was palpable.

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Our Visit To The Floating Islands On Lake Titicaca

photograph of a Uros men building a new reed boat on a Uros floating island on Lake Titicaca in Peru, South America.

Uros village on a totora reed floating island on Lake Titicaca in Peru, South America

On our first morning in Puno, we found that the clouds were hanging low and grey; it was a cold world.  We had come prepared for this sort of weather, so our spirits were high as we walked towards Puno’s harbour on Lake Titicaca.   Cold weather is quite the norm in the Lake Titicaca area because  the cold winds that blow over the lake result in an average temperature, in the warm months of the year, of 10-14C, (50-57F).   Having warm clothing is a must. Read more

Arequipa, the White Stone City

Catedral de la ciudad de Arequipa, Arequipa, Peru

Cathedral, Plaza de Armas, Arequipa, Peru

Bright sunshine greeted us when Bob and I awoke in Arequipa, Peru at 6:30 a.m.  It is amazing how a little sunlight can change the face of a place.  When we emerged from our hotel with a city map in hand, the cobbled streets and high walls seemed less daunting than when we arrived in the dark the night before. Read more

Our Drive On The Pan American Highway to Arequipa

desert alongside the pan american highway - peru

desert along pan american highway near nazca peru - frame to frame

Our destination heading south from Nazca on the Pan American Highway in Peru was the city of Arequipa.  At 556 kilometers from Nazca, we figured the drive should take us about 6 hours and put us in Arequipa well before dark.  The day’s drive, however, sure proved that calculation to be wrong.

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Wild Vicuna At The National Reserve Of Pampas Galeras, Peru

icuna in a meadow at the National Reserve of Pampas Galeras in Peru, South America.

Vicuna in the National Reserve of Pampas Galeras in Peru, South America.

In the harsh climate high in the mountain meadows of the National Reserve of Pampas Galeras in Peru live the rarely-seen Vicuna.  In 1974, the Vicuna were declared an endangered species; at that time, only 6,000 of these animals were left alive in Peru.   Today, with the aid of organizations like World Wildlife Fund, the population of Vicuna has recovered to about 350,000.  Even with that supposed high number of these animals, it is still very difficult to actually catch a glimpse of one in the wilds of Peru. Read more

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