Tag Archives: Peru

Still Life Year in Review – 2009

I started this blog in February 2008 in order to journal our travels to South America and keep in touch with family. I had never considered blogging before, but it seemed like the right circumstance to start. In December 2008, we left Buenos Aires for a new excursion, one that kaleidoscoped into other side trips. To start the new year, I thought I would catalogue our 2009 locations.

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Lima, Peru

Balconies 1

The last two days of our trip were spent in Lima, Peru’s capital. I normally like to find the positive in every city’s character, but I found Lima to be gray and dodgy with a negative energy. There is a very lonely and dangerous element there.

Seaside

Still, there are some sweeter aspects of the city.

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Cusco, Peru

City View

Cusco is the doorway to see Peru’s Sacred Valley. It’s a lovely town that serves mostly as a tourist base for the pilgrimage to Machu Picchu.

On the way to the Sacred Valley, we zipped through the town, intent on arriving at Ollantaytambo that day. It is suggested to travel to the Sacred Valley upon arrival in order to prevent altitude sickness since the valley is lower than Cusco.

Our trip got a little complicated when we descended Machu Picchu to  the town of Aguas Calientes. Farmers were striking on account of the government’s privitization of water and had decided to block the Perurail train from Aguas Calientes to Ollantaytambo. This was a problem because the only way to get tourists out is by train. Farmers often demonstrate their frustrations to the government by damaging the tourist economy since it makes such an impact in Peru. 

We were able to take a rescheduled train late into the night to Ollantaytambo. The strike was happening in earnest the next day–the day we needed to get to Cusco, so it was tough finding a ride. Protestors were placing rocks in the road, and there was a human block in the road outside of Cusco. No cars or buses could pass.

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Machu Picchu

Llama and Huayna Picchu

The trip to Machu Picchu was the focal point of our trip to Peru. It’s a difficult place to visit, as it requires traveling from Cusco to the Sacred Valley, taking a train from the Sacred Valley to the town of Aguas Calientes, and then a bus bright and early in the morning to the UNESCO World Heritage site. Pictures follow the jump.

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Peru’s Sacred Valley

Cerro Veronica 1

We just returned from a week visiting Peru—the sacred valley of the Incas and the cities of Cusco and Lima. It had always been a dream of mine to see Machu Picchu, but for some reason I never thought I would be able to see it. I never “saw” myself there. We went, and it was a successful trip even though a farmers strike almost prevented us from getting back to Cusco.

The above and below snow covered mountain is called Veronica.

Cerro Veronica 2

The sacred valley is about an hour and a half from the city of Cusco. We took a flight from Santiago to Lima and then bounced to Cusco the same day. It was tiring, but E. and I didn’t want to waste any time.

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