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12th Apr 2017 - 21st Apr 2017

We left the city of Tarma and there we were going up the mountains, finding fog, and slight drizzle  at times. As we were going close to 4000m altitude, we stop at a small local shop and ask for some coca leaves, the remedy here for altitude sickness, just in case. we put some dry leaves inside the cheek and leave them there. Not sure if it works but we felt all right all the way. It is legal in Peru. The road was pretty good most of the way. Good Friday here is a very important religious day for the Semana Santa, and it is a public hiloday. The blue sky appeared and it was warmer. After the city of Abancay, the road took us along a very scenic farming valley were they grow quinoa, the white and red one, lots of potatoes, some with dark pink flowers, corn, broad beans, luzern, oats, and dairy cows, sheep.So the locals are very busy working their land. In other valleys further they grow avocados, pawpaws, citrus. so plenty of fruits to buy along the way. We arrived in Cusco on Easter Sunday and went looking for the Information bureau right in the middle of town! Most of the cities have one way streets as they are too narrow, so it is always a challenge to find the way as the mapsme apps does not recognise the one way sign...eventually we did find a private parking and walked to the centre. That was a very different sight as the one at the city. Lots of tourists from overseas and from Peru as it was the mass time in the huge churches around the plaza. A nice city centre to walk around. We had lunch, trying the alpaca and quinoa risotto, all very nice. Then we drove to the well known camping by the Overlander travelers,  in the hills overlooking at the city. We organised our trip to Machu Picchu. The next day, we drove towards the town of Ollantaytambo, stoping at a local textile community display and shop, and further at the Salt farming in Maras. The next morning we caught the first train out to Machu Picchu, also known as the town of Agua Calientes. From there, after 1h30m of train following the river, we took the bus to the entrance of the ruins. this ride was really going uphill, very narrow road, only some wider section for the buses to cross as there is a constant traffic both way. Then it was walking uphill, going up some stone stairs, and there was our first view over the ruins! What an amaising sight! We had cloud cover at times and they seem to move fast so the view changed all the time. We certainly did lots of walking up and down and around and spend the whole day there, making the most of it. There is a mountain much higher, the Huayna mountain that only 200 people can climb a day, but only for the fitest!  The lamas wondered around the site as they eat the grass on the terraces, they are very friendly and used to people around. Well a long way to get here but well worth it. We are now on our way south, arriving along the lake Titicaca yesterday. The last few days, the sky has been really clear and it is nice to have some sunshine but the nights are getting really cold. The months of May, June and July are the coldest here. We are going into Bolivia tomorrow. So will update from there when we can, may be not that much internet in many places!  

Next: End of Peru. Bolivia
Previous: End of Ecuador, Hello Peru

Diary Photos

We think they are Vicunas

Lots of farming land

Taking the milk to the dairy


White quinoa

Red quinoa

Typical clothing

Drying the quinoa seeds


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Lots of political advertising painted on walls

Daniel find two little friends to kick the ball with

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Along the way

Arriving in Cusco

Cusco main plaza on Easter morning

One of the curches


Alpaca and quinoa risotto for Easter Lunch

At a community textile centre, preparing the dyes

Daniel found a new girlfriend...

The Salineras de Maras

Salt farming

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Inca site in Ollantaytambo

The Inca Rail train to Machu Picchu

Walking to the site

Our first view of Machu Picchu

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Lamas wander around the ruins

The agricultural terraces

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Nice stone work

Different corn growing in the aera

Another inca site

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Aguas calientes, hot springs

Scenery along the way south

In Puno, along the lake Titicaca

Lighthouse along the lake

Reeds are growing along the lake and used for all sorts

View of the lake from the road

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