This is the place I will cover the stats of each country as we go.
As usual, follow along at:
Anyway, let's get into it:
Rough rules: I will count the flight (or bus) TO that country as tracks IN that country.
- Uyuni --> La Paz --> Santa Cruz de la Sierra --> Lima = 2,639km
- Lima --> Cusco = 586km
- Juliaca —> Lima = 843km
- Ollantaytambo --> Aguas Calientes --> Ollantaytambo = 61km
- Casey did some ridiculous day trip of about 650km in Lima to go sandboarding...
- Cusco --> Ollantaytambo --> Cusco = 124km
- Cusco --> Rainbow Mountain --> Cusco = 278km
- Cusco --> Puno = 387km
- And Casey did about 20km in a boat on that same crazy day trip...
Total = 5,648.9km
Rough rules: I will count the flight (or bus) TO that country as an expense IN that country.
Total expense: $6,475.39 AUD
Total Days: 11 Days inclusive
Expense per day = $588 AUD/Day
Expenses Breakdown (mathematical, not emotional):
The 'Sightseeing' item is massive here because it includes an organised tour for two people for 9 days through Peru. So it includes almost all of our accomodation and transportation.
But won't show up under those categories...which hurts my brain.
Peru has quite a few photogenic locations, and 'The Influencers' just cannot resist...
There is also a reasonable amount of "yeah I'm going on an Ayahuasca retreat" in Peru as well...thus the 'Spiritual Kings'.
An explanation of Travel Bingo is here.
- Leo Rojas - this dude's pan flute playlists were just constant!
Culinary Corner by a Non-Foodie:
- The food in Peru is really good
- The qinuoa and vegetable soups are a feature
- Lima seems to have some excellent Asian food
- Coffee is still not good - we head further north...
Tips and Tricks:
- Before you book: ask you tour provider to very clearly give you a schedule of pick-up and drop-off times - otherwise you will be suprised by 0430 pickups and all day drives
- Don't feel bad for turning people away when they offer to sell you things - you can conceivably be offered a massage 12 times in 10 minutes (Cusco Plaza d'Armas) or have a baby llama thrown into your arms for pay-per-photo (literally any tourist attraction)
- Lima feels different to Andean Peru - Lima functions, the people are sharp, business is being done; Andean Peru feels...different. I think this has something to do with Lima not being a 'fake place' ie not completely dependent on tourism (maybe another ppost for this) whereas some of the Andean sections really are dependent.
- Uber works.
- Miraflores in Lima is a very nice suburb - walk down to the waterfront and look out over the Pacific from the top of the cliffs.
- Cusco has heaps of easily accessible Incan attractions that you can take short cabs or walk to - they are mostly buried under Spanish churches but there is basiclaly an amazing Incan structure on every hilltop around the town - don't miss looking around Cusco just for the sake of a hyper-organised bus tour somewhere outside of town.
- Bring layerable clothes and a bag that you can take on day trips - you will be doing some significant altitude in Peru and a single big coat is not practical for the cold as you are humping it up mountains.
- Sunglasses at altitude. That is all.
- Emphasis here - a lot of the sights at altitude really cannot be seen by someone who is disabled, in poor fitness or with chronic health conditions - Rainbow Mountain requires a 90min hike up to 5000m - consider this before booking.
- Peru is not an exclusively tipping culture - you have paid a significant amount to travel there so don't feel bad if you don't particularly want to tip the random musician that has boarded your bus for some reason; and don't feel pressured to buy lunch for your guides - you have literally already paid them.
- Lake Titicaca is nice - but the attractions are fake, almost to the point of Movie World film sets: the people dont live in grass huts on floating islands (they live on the mainland or in the solid buildings on the other islands); the Taquile islanders strictly share around who gets to feed the tourists for the money it brings etc - it's still a nice place but fair warning.
- Puno is where you will stay for Lake Titicaca, but Juliaca is where the closest airport is.
- DO NOT STAY IN JULIACA - it is a complete shit hole, the site of more than a dozen killings in the recent protests and has effectively no tourist infrastructure; and Peruvians will look at you funny if you tell them you will be staying in Juliaca on your trip.
- At this stage, you will probably have a guide for everything - everyone is so excited to work after massive (violent) protests shut the tourism industry down for months - such that it feels like 'everyone gets a job, everyone gets paid'. They are doing their best.
- Altitude is no joke - realistically, to see some of Peru's major attractions, you will be at significant altitude. Periodically you will wake in the middle of the night very short of breath and very worried. People in poor states of physical fitness will struggle. Just repeating this...
- Machu Picchu was absolutely awesome and is a must see. Spend as much time there as you can. It is fantastic.
Thanks for reading along.
The next country update will come... after the next country.
Weekly updates will come...weekly.