A Travellerspoint blog

07.04.10: Pisco, Peru

Happy 4th of July in Pisco, Peru

Happy 4th of July! This morning we embarked on a 40 minute bus ride to Pisco, a town on the west coast of Peru. Home to the National Reserve of Paracas and the Islas Ballestas, Pisco is a definitely a vision to see. At least that's what the guide book said. Had I written the chapter on Pisco it would have read a little differently. Something like, "Picture a pile of garbage. Now picture a pile of garbage with a beach in the background. That's Pisco."
I read, in my trusty 'Frommers Peru’ that the Islas Ballestas were a must-see attraction and referred to them as the 'Peruvian Galapagos.
We flagged a taxi from our roach motel in Pisco to Paracas (the only acceptable portion of Pisco) and hopped in a motor boat for our Islas Ballestas tour.
Clad in our blinding orange life vests, we watched pelicans dive for food while the boat filled up.
The motor putted and we cruised along the coast of the Peruvian pacific. One minute we were dry and the next we were soaked, covered in choppy salt water, smiles broad on our damp faces.
The first stop of the tour was to the famous candelabra, a huge engraving on the side of a cliff off the coast.
The guide explained that people are unaware of why it is there, what its purpose was, or how long it's been there. Historians believe that it may have been a map of some sort but they are uncertain. No scientific tests have been run to find out what era it was made, because it is a "protected area". In other words, a few decades ago, Paracas realized that they needed a new tourist attraction, so they had some Peruvian carve a half-assed candelabra looking thingamajig into the side of a cliff and they now use the lack of viable knowledge of it to add to the 'mystery', therefore raking in more tourist bucks. But that's just my cynical spin on it.

After that mind-blowing experience, it was on to the Islas Ballestas, homes to penguins, birds, sea lions, and dolphins.
An impressive sight to see if you were raised in Idaho, Kansas or some place along those lines, however, being a California native, I was not thrilled to pay inflated prices to see the same crap I can see back home.
The scenery was appealing and the rock formations were cool but we weren't even permitted to get off the boat, we only saw four lethargic sea lions and one or two penguins.
The islands were, however, filled to capacity with birds. There must have been thousands of them. The guide was explained that because of the amount of birds there is an extraordinary amount of excrement covering the islands. Ok, that's an easy conclusion; shit-ton of birds equals a shit-ton of bird shit.
Doesn't take a rocket scientist. As he, so eloquently, put it, "The birds, they make the shit over 350 times a day and we use the shit for planting." Well said my man, well said. You could see a device on the top of one of the islands that was used to scrape the droppings off everyday, later to be turned into fertilizer. All the more reason to go check out the Islas Ballestas! It is educational and fun!
We returned from our hour-long excursion, damp and disenchanted and decided to celebrate the 4th of July with some lunch and cocktails.
Shots of pisco to start with, followed by a piña colada, ceviche and a fresh fish sandwich. We toasted to Independence Day and gazed out into the ocean as we sipped on our drinks.

We walked around for a while, collected some sea shells, and explored the variety of garbage they piled up around the beach before heading back into Pisco. We walked around and went down to the market place, overrun with street vendors of all kinds and decided to grub on some street food. We found a lady slangin' spicy shredded chicken over french fries covered with ranch and ketchup.
An American dream on the 4th of July. We walked around a little more and I got a glass of emolente (a delicious Peruvian drink that tastes like warm apple cider) and crashed out.

Posted by emichele 17:00 Archived in Peru Comments (0)

7.03.10: Ica, Peru

Exploring Ica

Today I woke up and took a ten minute cab ride into Central Ica to the Ica Museum, which was recommended to me by some fellow travelers.
Turns out that this was not the best advice I have ever received because I was bored… to death. It was nothing special at all. Actually, that’s an overstatement. I find the growth of my finger nails to be tantalizing than this museum.
The only entertaining part was at the very end of the museum, where there were mummies and skeletons displayed.
I only got to snap one quick photo before my camera started malfunctioning and the lens would not retract. My world came to a screeching halt and I could think of nothing further than my busted camera. I had been warned that this could happen after bringing a camera to a sandy place; the sand will obstruct the lens and cause it to stop working. I was definitely on edge until I tracked down a camera repair shop. For a hefty fee of 140 soles, I dropped my baby off to be repaired for the day.
I headed back to the hostel and made a reservation for a tour of an Ica winery which I had been anticipating from the beginning of the trip. Besides the Huacachina oasis, Ica is primarily known for their bodegas that produce wine and Pisco and its largest producer, Tacama, was first on the tour. There were only 4 of us that opted to go on the tour; Max and me and an English couple that was staying in the same hostel. We hopped in the car and headed out for the 30 minute journey to the vineyard.
We headed inside and sat at a table shaped like a wine barrel. The hostess put on a DVD for us to watch while we waited. I thought it might explain something about the vineyard or the process of making the wine, but it was simply a picture show of sudden dissolves between black and white pictures morphing to color that begged for a different editor. We sat and waited for a while before a woman came over and poured us our first glass of white wine and handed us a booklet. She pointed out the wine that she was pouring and tried to educate us with the literature, unfortunately, it was only in Spanish and there was no translation. When I signed up for the tour, they informed me that there would be an English-speaking guide, even if it was a mere piece of paper that translated for us. We asked for the English version and our request was met with a head shake and a simple shoulder shrug as she turned and walked away.
We drank our glass of wine, knowing nil about it, expect that it was white and fruity, and lingered around, waiting for our guide. Twenty minutes later, the woman appeared again with another bottle of white wine, poured us all a glass and pointed to a new page in the booklet. We drank and chatted some more. Another 20 minutes later, she returned and repeated her actions with a new wine. Over the course of an hr and a half she did this same process with 4 white wines, 3 red wines, and 3 different kinds of Pisco, that, by that time, all tasted like tequila.
Finally 7 glasses of wine and 3 shots of Pisco later, a group and a guide showed up, ready to teach us about the vineyard. Sloshed and sloppy after the drinking festivities, I actually forgot that we were waiting on anything, but I gathered my stuff and joined the group, enthused on the education I was about to receive. As I dragged myself behind the group, into the vineyard, the guide started explaining the growing process. I didn’t know if it was the alcohol or what, but I could not understand a damn thing this lady was saying, or anyone else in the group for that matter. It took me a few minutes to realize that she was speaking German along with everyone else in the group.
Come to find out, the English-speaking guide did not show up to work, so they fed us wine for two hours hoping to stall us with drunkenness until he showed up, which he never did, so they decided to put us with the Germans, hoping that we would be too wasted to tell the difference. We could tell… it may have taken a little longer, but we could tell. So instead of a winery tour, it turned into a bar outing.
Our driver told us that he would make it up to us but taking us on a tour of a local chocolate factory. After all the alcohol and no lunch, chocolate was the magic word, so I gladly agreed.
Unfortunately, in Peru, when they tell you that you are going on a tour of a chocolate factory, what they mean is that you are going to stand in line at a candy store. No joke. We pulled up in front of a candy store, swarming with children and waited behind the sugar filled beasts for 30 minutes without being even being noticed. After a half hour the hunger demon inside of my wine-filled belly roared its ugly head and I bolted for the door, frustrated and neglected. We had the cab drop us off in the center of Ica, where I ate a great meal of I don’t remember what and passed out.

Posted by emichele 08:55 Archived in Peru Comments (0)

7.02.10: Ica, Peru

Ica and Huacachina

We checked into our hotel in Huacachina, a short five mile drive from the town of Ica, and scoped out our new digs.
Complete with a bar, breakfast, a pool with lounge chairs, and laundry service, I was pretty stoked.
I arranged tickets for sand boarding at 1:30 and decided to walk around his desert oasis and find out what the lagoon is all about. Only a block away, we ran into a postcard paradise, a cute little lagoon, encircled by palm trees, restaurants and bars, amongst sand dunes and nothingness that stretched as far as your eyes could see.
It was amazing. It was around 1pm and almost time to head out for our sand boarding thrill ride so we headed back to the hostel. The lounge chairs were filled with people tanning the fairness off their skin and drinking cerveza around the pool. This looked like just too much fun and the awful array of random tan lines I had acquired from the many unflattering outfits I'd clad myself in for the last month, begged to be evened out. We decided to push out sand boarding back to four and kick it by the pool for some r&r. I read the end of my second novel and munched on a fresh avocado salad while the rays worked their way into my pasty exterior.

It was time for sand boarding! I grabbed an ice cream bar on my way out to the buggy and psyched myself up for this long awaited thrill ride.
They loaded us into the nine seat buggy and introduced us to our driver, "smiley". I later deducted that his name must be attributed to the masochistic way he giggled right as everyone was about to piss themselves with fright. Without so much as an instruction or a waiver of any kind, Smiley whipped the buggy up through the dunes.
Strapped in, like a three year old in a car seat, head banging against the roll cage, we plummeted down the sand on the roller coaster ride of a lifetime!
The dune buggy ride was just as much fun as the sand boarding itself!
Now I figured that, since I had been snowboarding before, and I was pretty good at that, sand boarding should come easy. Not quite. First of all, the boards are not like snowboards, they don't even have bindings, just Velcro straps to hold your feet in place.
As you glide down the hill, the concept of weight disbursement are the same but if you cut into the sand at all, you're done for. The sand overtakes your board and you're kissin' dunes. It wasn't too hard to get the hang of and it was a great rush.
The last hill we came to was monstrous and we were told that this hill had to be done on our stomachs for safety reasons.
At first it made sense until I was laying face down on the board, with my head dangling over the top, mere inches from the sandy death below me, hanging on to the Velcro straps with white knuckles of terror. I flew down the peak like a penguin on an iceberg and let out the most girlish scream of my life.
It was great! I went again.. And again until it was dark.

Posted by emichele 13:00 Archived in Peru Comments (0)

7.01.10: Colca Canyon, Peru

Colca Canyon, Cruz Del Condor and on to Ica

Happy July!!! Today we were told that breakfast, in our hostel, would be at 5:30am and our bus would be by to pick us up at six. I woke up at five, groggy and confused, threw my stuff together, got dressed, and headed into the hostels breakfast area for my morning meal. Nobody in sight, no hostel workers, no guests, no one anywhere. I sat there for a good ten minutes reprimanding myself for being on time, a lot of good it did, sat in my sluggish state and tried not to pass out at the table. Around 5:45 a woman came out with a thermos filled with hot water, a packet of instant coffee, and some rock-hard rolls with jam. I asked her for a menu and she shook her head 'no', otherwise informing me that I had no options. I chain sawed my way through the bread and macked down on the cardboard rolls and gritty coffee shavings until our bus pulled up.

We set off for a 40minute drive to the highlight of this two day excursion, Cruz del Condor.

Cruz del Condor is a lookout point on one side of the Colca Canyon that is famous in Peru for observing the elegant Andean condors.
At nearly 4,000 ft above the canyon river, beginning at 9am, the condors appear, circling far below in the gorge and gradually gaining altitude with each pass, until they, literally, soar above the heads of awe-struck admirers, such as myself.
They are the biggest birds in the world, with wing spans of up to 12 feet, and because of their immense size and weight, they can not simply lift off the ground, they have to take flight from cliff perches. Every morning they emerge from their cave dwellings and climb sensationally before heading down the river in search of prey. Watching them circle in the air is breathtaking and they fly with such beauty and grace, it's mesmerizing.
They came so close to me, I think if I would have held my hand in the air, I would have grazed a talon. I got some great shots and loved every minute of it!

Along with the magical condors, the canyon itself is a beautiful sight to see. Reaching depths of 11,150 ft, it is twice as deep as the Grand Canyon and it forms part of the massive volcanic mountain range, more than 62 miles long.
The Colca river, which slices through the immense canyon, is also one of the sources of the forceful Amazon river.
We watched the condors soar for an hour or two and trekked around the canyon for a while before our four hour bus ride back to Arequipa.

When we got back we arranged a ten hour overnight bus trip to Ica for the night. We bought the best, most direct bus they had advertised, but we had already learned not to expect much. Being prepared for a broke-down Peruvian ice box, void of sleep, I armed myself as best as I could, layering as many clothes as I could comfortably fit on my body and making a special trip to the Pharmacia for some sleep aids. I had a few hours before the bus trip at 9:30pm so I chilled at La Casa Blanca, drank a fresh strawberry smoothie and watched the time tick by.

I got to the bus station where they ushered me into a luxurious lounge, where I did indeed lounge, until they called us to board.
I walked outside and feasted my eyes on what looked like a tour bus fit for the queen of England and unexpectedly boarded the most lavish bus I've ever seen.
Better than a first class airline ticket, our seats reclined to a sleeping position and on our lovely leather sleepers were a prepackaged, brand new, fleece blanket and pillow.
The dinner they served was a, nothing special, chicken sandwich, but I was in such awe of the luxury of our seats and the ambiance of the quiet bus, I didn't even care.
As the HD screens folded down, as if from heaven, I plugged in my headphones, reclined my seat and took the invisible tiara off my head for bedtime.
I only made it through half of the movie before the sleeping pills forced my eyes shut and locked. Ten hours later I woke up in Ica, refreshed and stunned that I hadn't been disturbed once during the drive. Clearly this is the only way to travel!

Posted by emichele 13:00 Archived in Peru Comments (0)

6.30.10: Chivay, Peru

Colca Canyon Day 1

Today was the start of our two day one night trip to Colca Canyon. The 20 passenger van snatched us up at 8am as we headed off on the long drive ahead of us.
We climbed, steadily, from Arequipa, up the dusty, gravely, Peruvian roads into the mountains.
We passed through the Reserva Nacional Salinas y Aguada Blanca and caught a glimpse of some grazing vicuñas en route.
Vicuñas are a national symbol of Peru which is home to, more than half, of the world’s vicuña population.
Vicuñas are the smallest member of the camelid family as well as the most prized and endangered.
A scarf made of vicuña wool can be sold for as much as $1600, as it is the warmest and softest fiber in the world.
Luckily there were a whole bunch of the little guys munching on the grass just along the highway, so we got an opportunity to hop out of the van and snap some photos.
We continued on our route for another hour or so & stopped in a small village for some coca tea, for the altitude, and souvenirs.

There was also a large pen, ran by two young children, which housed around 20 alpacas for people to take pictures with.
I snapped some pics of the furry critters and the children who wrangled them.
We were on the road again and the scenery along the drive was divine. The sky was a dazzling aqua blue and you could see clearly to the mountain tops.
Our next stop was the Mirador de Los Andes, the highest point in the Colca Valley, ringed by eight snow-capped volcanoes.
After another two hours of driving, we stopped at our last breaking point at the top of the town of Chivay, where we'd be spending the night. We stopped at the perfect point to overlook the whole city and get some aerial pictures.
After about five hours of driving, we had finally arrived in our destination town of Chivay. Chivay is a quaint little town that, not long ago, got along just fine with no electricity. Tourism is clearly the basis of their income and they have a nice array of restaurants and hotels around the area. Our first stop in Chivay was for lunch.
We walked into a giant buffet table displayed with all the trimmings.
Three kinds of soup, chicken, rice, rocotto rellena, alpaca skewers, cheese wontons, guacamole, potatoes, you name it. I piled my plate full, anxious to try all the native grub I could fit in my hungry belly.

The rocotto rellena was the spiciest one I had yet and it was glorious! I had been waiting, this whole trip, for some kind of zing to knock my socks off and I finally got it, like a punch in the face. Eyes wide and sweat dripping down my brow, I longed for refreshments! I ordered an apple juice and when in came out I knew it was fresh and going to be just what the doctor ordered! Good apple juice is never transparent and this was, by far, the best apple juice of my life!

Back to the food... The alpaca was juicy and tender, the guacamole was creamy and delicious and then I got a bite of something not so hot. When I dug a little deeper into that section of my overflowing platter, I noticed something that looked like tongue, but smelled like ass. You can imagine my excitement when I found out that it was intestines. Apparently they hadn't been cleaned all that well, hence the faint fecal odor. That lovely stank was enough for me to ditch my plate of food and start over. By the end I was stuffed and content.
We went and checked into our hostel, a basic, cheap room with hot water, which is all I ever need, and then went out to explore the town.
I went down to their plaza de armas and walked around their market and shopped for a bit before heading back to the hostel to get ready for the hot springs.

La Calera Hot Springs are soothing, clean, natural thermal baths, centrally located in Chivay, with spectacular views of the mountains all around.
The water was to die for! One huge jacuzzi of awesomeness! They had poolside bar service, and I don't mind if I do, so I ordered an Irish coffee and relaxed in my overgrown tub. The only thing that could have made it better would be my very own rubber ducky.
It was a relaxing way to spend the evening and I stayed there and watched the sun set over the mountains until it was dark.

After some cleanup and a change of clothes, it was time for dinner. Our guide told us about a spot that had live music and a dance show along with dinner and I was all about it.
First there was a four person Peruvian flute band that serenaded me through my quinoa soup appetizer before the dancers came out.
A boy and girl, no more than 16 years old, entertained us with traditional Peruvian moves throughout dinner.
They were pulling people up to dance and gettin' down. I dined on a nice alpaca steak during the festivities and dodged invites for dances by hiding behind my fork.
After the dancing, the band members performed a traditional Kintu ceremony, invoking the Andean masses through chanting and drinking amongst sacred coca leaves.
It was an interesting and entertaining night! I grabbed some ice cream bars on my way back to the hostel (still can't kick this sweet tooth) and went to bed.

Posted by emichele 12:36 Archived in Peru Comments (0)

6.29.10: Arequipa, Peru

Arequipa and Rio Chili

Rise and shine at 6am today! Had to get up in time to make it to church. Yep, I said it, church. One of the sights that was on my list of must sees was the Monasterio De Santa Catalina. Constructed of sillar, quarried locally, this convent is said to be the most essential and impressive colonial structure in the city. You can tour it at normal business hours however, the church attached to it is only open for morning mass, so we had to rise with the roosters. I had a nice big cup of java to rouse my senses before church and I was in a fantastic mood.
I was skipping down the morning streets of Arequipa singing 'zip a dee do dah', when my glasses leaped off my head and out popped a lens! I tried to reinsert it into the frame but it was a no go. My glasses had died. I tried the one-lens look, but it wasn't the best.

After I ditched my botched frames, we arrived at the church.
The church was smaller than I had imagined but beautifully decorated with jeweled snowflake-shaped chandeliers suspended from the arched ceilings.
In the back of the church, behind what looked like wooden, crisscrossed prison bars, sat the cloistered nuns.
Then we set out to explore the monastery with our hired guide.

The Santa Catalina de Siena Convent was founded in 1519, and since its inception, women from diverse social backgrounds have entered the convent to serve as segregated nuns, never again returning to their homes or families. In fact, their families were only permitted to visit once a month and they were separated by the crosshatched wood paneling because the nuns were not able to be in close physical proximity with anyone from the outside world.

She showed us several different statues of Jesus throughout the convent and told us that, in Peru, their portrayal of Jesus must reflect a painful, distressing exterior to remind people of his suffering.
To make him seem as life like as possible they used alpaca teeth and the nuns even donated their own locks of hair to the statues.

She showed us around the old time sleeping quarters of the nuns, which, she explained, always had to be set under an archway because earthquakes were so prevalent, an archway is the safest place to be in that occurrence.

She showed us where and how the nuns would wash their clothes, cook food and even entertain themselves.
She showed us the room they used for funeral services. The body was placed in a carved wooden box, that looked like a cross between a coffin and a bassinet, for viewing and a portrait of them was painted and hung on the wall.
Nuns could only have their portrait painted after death because, if you were still alive to see it, it was like a mirror, which is a sign of vanity and is strictly forbidden.

The monastery was enormous and amazing, with brilliant colors and epic archways at every turn.
There are luscious gardens and a central fountain, and on top of it all, a breathtaking view of the city down below. Imagen_112.jpgImagen_099.jpg

We had a little bit of time before our, much anticipated, white water rafting trip, so we decided to visit the monastery cafe for a quick pick-me-up. The cafe, appropriately titled "Temptations & Sins", featured hilariously named delicacies such as 'Rage: Irate Apple Pie' and 'Arrogance: The Proud Carrot Cake'.

On to white water rafting!!!
I had such a blast on the first round of white water rafting in Cusco, I was itching' to go again.
This time I'd tackle the Rio Chili in Arequipa, home of class 2-5 rapids.
Last time my uniform consisted of a bikini and shorts, but this time we were getting wet suits.
The water down here is much colder and the guide assured me I'd be sorry without one. Layer #1 was, of course, my bikini, followed by a wet suit that made me look like I should be training dolphins at Sea World.

Then came the jacket, water shoes, a life vest and helmet. I was rocking' it!
This route was a lot different than the last I went; much colder, narrower, shallower, and very rocky, in other words, more dangerous, therefore, more fun!
The scenery was beautiful and I was floating along in awe.
The rocky cliffs, lush trees, and blue skies all around brought a smile to my face that never seemed to leave.
Everyone else had opted to go at 8am instead of the afternoon run, so we had the sights and the river all to ourselves.
It started off easy and relaxing as we got warmed up and then the fun started.
Rocks, rocks, more rocks, drop-offs, curves, and waterfalls, "Hold on for dear life!" aided our guide. "Where's my 'oh shit' handle?!" I begged.
It was sick! We had a couple of close calls when I though, for sure, someone was going, face first, into the river but we all made it out alive and exhilarated.
When we one with our water world adventure, we hauled the raft up a hill to the truck and changed into some dry clothes. Our rafting hosts had hot tea and snacks waiting for us; Oreos, Sublime bars, and water bottles that were so gay. Literally... SoGay water.
It was a glorious day!

Posted by emichele 12:23 Archived in Peru Comments (0)

6.28.10: Arequipa, Peru

Exploring Arequipa

Today we checked into a brand new hostel, definitely worth noting, La Casa Blanca.
A homey cafe/hostel ran by two Seattle natives. The rooms, made of sillar and brick, are modern and chic, the water is hot (not hot meaning luke-warm like other hostels advertise, hot as in 'I want to live in this shower forever' hot) and the breakfast of eggs, toast, bacon, coffee, and fresh pineapple juice is to die for.

We walked around the plaza and headed to the Museo Santuarios Andinos.
The museum features exhibits of mummies and relics from the Inca empire, but is dominated by one tiny girl: Juanita, the ice maiden of Ampato. The victim of a ritualistic sacrifice by Inca priests on the volcano just outside of Arequipa, Mt. Ampato, she was buried by the ice at 21,000ft and frozen in time for over 500 years. After an eruption of the volcano in 1995 caused the ice surrounding her to melt, she was finally discovered in what has been christened 'the most important archeological find of the past few decades'. She is astonishingly preserved and is not a skeleton or a mummy at all, but an actual frozen corpse, complete with nails, hair, and skin.
Today she is kept in a glass-walled freezer chamber and is truly a sight to see.
It was, by far, the most fascinating museum tour I’ve ever been on.

Next was a delightful lunch. A rocotto rellena (meat stuffed pepper) with potatoes and it was muy delicioso!
Then we went on a ridiculous scavenger hunt for a waterproof, disposable camera to use tomorrow when we go white water rafting. Come to find out, they don't exist in Arequipa, no disposable cameras anywhere.
As we were walking, we spotted, what looked like a corn dog stand, but instead of the typical cornbread casing, it had a waffle cone shell.
For one sole we knew we had to investigate. Yep, there was a dog inside.

We headed to a local market, brought some local Peruvian wine and cheese with some fresh baked bread, watched a movie and fell into a dream.

Posted by emichele 12:19 Archived in Peru Comments (0)

6.27.10: Arequipa, Peru

The white city: Arequipa

Woke up in the charming city of Arequipa, nicknamed "the white city" because most of the buildings are made, almost entirely, out of sillar, a porous, white, volcanic stone. It is the second largest city in Peru and by far the most handsome.
We visited their Plaza de Armas, an elegant symmetry of gardens with a central fountain. Arched buildings line three sides of the plaza with a beautiful cathedral completing the square.
We strolled around the plaza and slipped into a cafe overlooking the plaza for some snacks and refreshments.
A huge vase of frozen orange juice, a plate of heavenly ceviche, and some much-needed flan. I have had such a sweet tooth on this trip, eating whatever desserts I can find. There are ice cream vendors on every corner of every block tempting you with their sweet cream goodness, I couldn't oppose. One day, for lunch, I made my rounds to three different ice cream vendors and made that my meal. I tried to justify it by telling myself that it was an ice cream experiment and I had to compare and contrast. Ice creams, hot chocolate, pastries, and cakes, everyday.. I don't know what's wrong with me. Everything was delectable, but what I really had a yen for, was flan. I had wandered into several restaurants solely because I saw flan on their menu. I'd sit down order a drink and when it was time for flan, they were out and it was too late to move on. I was on the hunt, flan was my prey of choice, and my hunger was finally satisfied.
I can rest easy.

We walked around a little more and visited a church named Iglesia 'La Compania' a 17th century Jesuit church made entirely of sillar stone, located right off of the plaza.

It was about dusk and the plaza was coming alive with lights and the photographer inside me was itching to click away.

I geeked out for a while and finally was pulled away with a new desire.. Food. We walked amid the arches, being pulled in different directions by walking menus claiming their restaurant was better than the next. As the bidding war began, we were offered free desserts, cheap drinks, two for one, and I think I heard one woman offer me her first born, however, the winning bid went to a woman who promised us rooftop access overlooking the plaza. SOLD! We cashed that chip right away and climbed three separate stairways to get exclusive access to the tip top, peering over the dazzling nighttime plaza. My inner photographer tugged on my heartstrings once more. Let the clicking begin!

Posted by emichele 12:12 Archived in Peru Comments (0)

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