• Friday , 15 December 2017
Time to move on: Southern Peru

Time to move on: Southern Peru

Peru has moved up in our ranks and is currently tied for first place alongside Colombia for our favorite country to date. It is time for us to continue our journey south, Bolivia is calling and it is time to wrap up this chapter. This final post for Peru is short on words but rich in pictures; we will let the photographs tell the story of our final memories of this wonderful country.

When you are a stranger in a strange land the greatest gift that can be bestowed on a traveller is to be treated like family. In Lima, Milka and Richard literally slept on the couch and gave us their own bed. For two weeks our every need was looked after. We were so happy to be there and so sad to leave. From left to right: Shannon, Milka, Betty, Richard and Ivan.

When you are a stranger in a strange land the greatest gift that can be bestowed on a traveller is to be treated like family. In Lima, Milka and Richard literally slept on the couch and gave us their own bed. For two weeks our every need was looked after. We were so happy to be there and so sad to leave. From left to right: Shannon, Milka, Betty, Richard, and Ivan.

The sand dunes of coastal Peru. It is easy to shut the mind off and just listen to grains of sand blowing in the wind. Huacachina, Peru.

The sand dunes of coastal Peru. It is easy to shut the mind off and just listen to grains of sand blowing in the wind. Huacachina, Peru.

This tiny bay was the home fishing port of the Incas. The surrounding coastline was covered in ancient structures the Incas used to preserve and process seafood. Puerta Inca, Peru.

This tiny bay was the home fishing port of the Incas. The surrounding coastline was covered in ancient structures the Incas used to preserve and process seafood. Puerta Inca, Peru.

Exploring the hills around Puerta Inca, Peru.

Exploring the hills around Puerta Inca, Peru.

All along the cliffs were stone paths made by the Incas.

All along the cliffs were stone paths made by the Incas.

In the town of Arequipa there is secret city that was closed off to the public for 400 years. The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent was founded in 1579. Since its inception, women from diverse social backgrounds have entered the convent to serve as cloistered nuns, never again to return to their homes or families and never again to leave the walls of this city within a city. It is now a UNESCO world heritage site and absolutely fascinating to explore.

In the town of Arequipa there is secret city that was closed off to the public for 400 years. The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent was founded in 1579. Since its inception, women from diverse social backgrounds have entered the convent to serve as cloistered nuns, never again to return to their homes or families and never again to leave the walls of this city within a city. It is now a UNESCO world heritage site and absolutely fascinating to explore.

The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent. Arequipa, Peru.

The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent. Arequipa, Peru.

In the living quarters of a nun from a wealthy family, Shannon explores the well-appointed kitchen. The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent. Arequipa, Peru.

In the living quarters of a nun from a wealthy family, Shannon explores the well-appointed kitchen. The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent. Arequipa, Peru.

The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent. Arequipa, Peru.

The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent. Arequipa, Peru.

Beautiful ironwork from a past age. The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent. Arequipa, Peru.

Beautiful ironwork from a past age. The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent. Arequipa, Peru.

The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent. Arequipa, Peru.

The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent. Arequipa, Peru.

The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent. Arequipa, Peru.

The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent. Arequipa, Peru.

The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent. Arequipa, Peru.

The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent. Arequipa, Peru.

Leaving Arequipa we opted for a seldom used dirt track that snaked between 3 volcanoes. We learned that volcanic ash is no different than sand and this route was our first real taste of riding long distances in deep sand. It was a difficult few hours and we later learned there was a much easier way.

Leaving Arequipa we opted for a seldom used dirt track that snaked between 3 volcanoes. We learned that volcanic ash is no different than sand and this route was our first real taste of riding long distances in deep sand. It was a difficult few hours and we later learned there was a much easier way.

Two hours from the last city and with many miles still to go on this desolate altiplano track, we came to a mud pit in an otherwise arid plain. There was no bypass or way around it. The second Mike's front wheel dipped into the goo all was revealed. This was raw sewage from the the little village uphill and both bikes and boots stunk until we later found a creek to wash off in.

Two hours from the last city and with many miles still to go on this desolate altiplano track, we came to a mud pit in an otherwise arid plain. There was no bypass or way around it. The second Mike’s front wheel dipped into the goo all was revealed. This was raw sewage from the the little village uphill and both bikes and boots stunk until we later found a creek to wash off in.

A windswept graveyard in the way back and beyond. Taking these unnamed back roads through the Peruvian Andes is slow, dusty, and hard on the bikes but wonders like this make it worth the effort.

A windswept graveyard in the way back and beyond. Taking these unnamed back roads through the Peruvian Andes is slow, dusty, and hard on the bikes but wonders like this make it worth the effort.

Camping in Tinajani Canyon (60 miles North of Lake Titicaca) was a feast for the eyes. We were surrounded on all sides by high cliffs and spent the afternoon exploring in the slots and canyons. The family who owned the land were very friendly and let us peak into their daily lives as they tended to their livestock, made mud bricks for a new building, and shared with us the history of the valley.

Camping in Tinajani Canyon (60 miles north of Lake Titicaca) was a feast for the eyes. We were surrounded on all sides by high cliffs and spent the afternoon exploring in the slots and canyons. The family who owned the land were very friendly and let us peak into their daily lives as they tended to their livestock, made mud bricks for a new building, and shared with us the history of the valley.

The patriarch's grandchildren had a lovely time watching us set up camp. We shared some snacks and S&M Boiler Works stickers with them before they were called home for dinner.

The patriarch’s grandchildren had a lovely time watching us set up camp. We shared some snacks and S&M Boiler Works stickers with them before they were called home for dinner.

Tinajani Canyon, Peru.

Tinajani Canyon, Peru.

Tinajani Canyon, Peru.

Tinajani Canyon, Peru.

Shannon preparing dinner as the temperature plummets. While pleasant and warm during the day this was our coldest night yet once the sun went down. Our breath made frost inside the tent and Shannon's contact lens solution froze along with the drinking water.

Shannon preparing dinner as the temperature plummets. While pleasant and warm during the day this was our coldest night yet once the sun went down. Our breath made frost inside the tent and Shannon’s contact lens solution froze along with the drinking water.

Shannon thanking our host for letting us camp on his property.

Shannon thanking our host for letting us camp on his property.

Making bricks for the new building.

Making bricks for the new building.

The formed bricks will be ready in two weeks. The cold dry air here does quick work of removing the moisture. These local made building materials are free, strong, and will last for centuries. The thick mud bricks absorb heat from the sun during the day. At night this heat is slowly released helping to keep the people inside warm while they sleep.

The formed bricks will be ready in two weeks. The cold dry air here does quick work of removing the moisture. These homemade building materials are free, strong, and will last for centuries. The thick mud bricks absorb heat from the sun during the day. At night this heat is slowly released helping to keep the people inside warm while they sleep.

The city of Puno is on Lake Titicaca. The town's waste water all ends up in the lake making the shore here smell like a septic tank. Even so, people still venture out for a relaxing fantasy boat ride in freezing temperatures over a sea of stink. A few miles away from Puno the lake water is clear and clean enough to drink.

The city of Puno is on Lake Titicaca. The town’s waste water all ends up in the lake making the shore here smell like a septic tank. Even so, people still venture out for a relaxing fantasy boat ride in freezing temperatures over a sea of stink. A few miles away from Puno the lake water is clear and clean enough to drink.

Lucky Puno pup having a leisurely Sunday brunch.

Lucky Puno pup having a leisurely Sunday brunch.

Puno, Peru.

Puno, Peru.

A floating reed island that is one of many of the Islas Uros on Lake Titicaca. The islands are built entirely with totora reeds that grow around the lakeshore. The families that live on these islands make a living off tourists who visit, fishing and hunting lake birds.

A floating reed island that is one of many of the Islas Uros on Lake Titicaca. The islands are built entirely with totora reeds that grow around the lakeshore. The families that live on these islands make a living off tourists who visit, fishing, and hunting lake birds.

The Isla Taquile in Lake Titicaca. Inhabited by indigenous people that pre-date the Incas the island has no police or motorized vehicles and life here has changed very little over the centuries.

The Isla Taquile in Lake Titicaca. Inhabited by indigenous people that pre-date the Incas the island has no police or motorized vehicles and life here has changed very little over the centuries.

 

Related Posts