It’s an awesome picture isn’t it? Cordillera Blanca, the most beautiful nature (if you ask me) in Peru. At the moment I am looking into my passport to see how much time I spent in total in Peru. Did I stay 7 weeks in Peru? I had visited Peru twice, and I was thinking about 5 weeks in total, but the stamps are telling me I stayed in Peru for almost 2 months! I guess the stamps in my passport don’t lie after all… But maybe they do, because the immigration office stamped me while I was still in Colombia! I really needed to leave Colombia after spending 3 months there (and with an expired visa) I got my stamp for Peru in the Colombian border town of Leticia. The plan was to cross the border the same day but the speedboat was fully booked; so with my Peruvian stamp I ended up spending 4 more days illegally in Colombia.
Time flies when you are crazy…
Fuck, my first visit in Peru was already a damn long time ago and the second part of Peru just finished about two weeks ago. I would love to write more often and detailed about my personal experiences, but I am too busy at the moment. If you have a crazy busy life working and travelling, setting life and work priorities are necessary 😉 At the moment I am already in Northern Argentina (which is SO beautiful) and visited the also amazing Chile after Peru. Time for the 4th country blog with my 4 personal highlights from my working holidays in Peru:-)
Amazing magnificent nature @ Huaraz. July 2016, part 1 Peru
After a cool jungle experience in the Amazon and a last stop in Colombia, I crossed the border to Peru by speedboat and took a direct flight from the city Iquitos (Northern Peru) to Lima. I needed to catch up on work so I spent the first days in a Starbucks of Northern Lima. A luxury and expensive shopping centre like back in Europe with famous shops like Nike and H&M. I felt a little strange walking around in the shopping mall because people looked at me like they never had seen a tourist before ;).
Trek to ‘Laguna 69’, one of the best day treks so far in South America
I really wanted to do some trekking in Huaraz before catching my flight to Buenos Aires from La Paz, where I would then catch a connecting flight to the Netherlands in order to attend the amazing wedding of my friends Bram and Tessa. So, after 2 days ‘living’ in Starbucks I took an overnight bus to Huaraz. I didn’t have much time left to spend in Huaraz so I decided to do the Laguna 69 trek the day after arriving. Wow, incredibly beautiful. Glacial turquoise waters backed by a snow-capped mountain. Amazing, but a damn hard hike after a long bus ride, just 4 hours of sleep and no time to get used to the altitude. I could barely feel my legs anymore. More than 12 hours away from town, with 7 hours walking in total, I crashed on the bus ride back. But it was definitely worth the climb (see a few pictures below).
The ‘Santa Cruz trek’ my first multi-day trek in the mountains (not-to-be-missed!)
Before I started my Santa Cruz adventure (which a lot of people recommended me) I needed a break and to catch up on some work again, so I decided to rest for two days. Then, the big adventure started: 4 days and 3 nights on the ‘Santa Cruz trek’. It was a lot of walking (actually only walking ;)), up and down, up and down, sleeping in tents amongst the night fog, camping in nature, in the mountains at more than 3000 meters above sea level, no showers or proper toilets and shitting in nature – wonderful! Going through endless lush green valleys, snowy mountains and beautiful blue lagoons, it was an absolutely incredible experience. My first multi-day hike and it tastes morish! Amazing & Magnificent♥! See my pictures below 🙂
Cusco, The starting point of the world famous wonder of the world: Machu Picchu 😉
Kick-off in Cusco, Peru: my second time in Peru, this time with my parents. As I wrote before, my parents had nothing to complain about me as a travel guide. Uhmzz okay, except once…We wanted to take the bus from Puno to Cusco directly once we crossed the border from Copacabana. I checked all the bus agencies, it seems they had all the same to offer. The first one was leaving at 2.30 in the afternoon and should arrive at 8.30 in the evening. Perfect! I thought… I forget to check if it was a direct bus (which it obviously wasn’t) or a dodgy local bus that stops at several towns. So the three of us end up in a smelly local bus, the only tourists in the bus 😉 overrun with local people trying to sell loads of different stuff and stopped in several villages with too many bumby roads. And no, we didn’t arrive at 9 in the evening like we had been told…
Incredible amount of tourist @ Machu Picchu Peru
The hotel we booked made us forget everything. A luxury 4 star hotel for the 5 days we have spent in Cusco, yes! Sometimes luxury can make a person feel realy happy. During this week we went to Aguas Calientes by train and visited Machu Picchu the day after. I never thought about the incredible amount of tourists wanting to visit one of the seven wonders of the world, Machu Picchu. My experience was (unfortanately) not like I expected, but at least I can say I visited Machu Picchu.
Peaceful and beautiful Sacred Valley with Inca ruins and varied scenery of snow-capped mountains
After my parents left at the end of October I stayed a few more days in Cusco. I celebrated Halloween and after, finally, headed to my friend in the Sacred Valley. Together with Jonas (a German I met in Medellin and again in Cusco) we took a bus from Cusco to Urubamba. I stayed a week at my friends place in the Sacred Valley. My friend, Janneke, got married a year ago and together with her husband John they started a family home with ayahuasca and wachuma ceremonies and sacred treks. With the use of just the most basic online marketing knowledge, I helped and trained them getting better online marketing results. Besides that we talked about several projects and about how to get better organized and focused. It was a totally different experience in the mountains. A more primitive lifestyle but a great experience!
Pisac, Sacred Valley
The lovely laidback sunshine city of Arequipa
Beautiful weather everyday, a smaller city than Cusco but still big with beautiful historical white buildings and with a very chill and relaxed atmosphere. And from all the Plaza de Armas in South America, definitely the most beautiful one. This city also reminds me of Sucre in Bolivia and Cuenca in Ecuador. I end up staying two weeks in total. I worked a lot here but besides that I also visited the Colca Canyon, enjoyed the cheap and good food, did a free walking tour and ended up doing a Peruvian cooking class where I learned how to cook my favorite typical dishes in Peru: Lomo Saltado and Ceviche! Arequipa is one of my favorite cities so far and definitely my favorite in Peru.
This was Peru, hasta luego!