September 24, 2002 GMT

24 September- PUNO

We stayed in a great place- Casa Nostra in Yanque in Colca Canyon and had a great thermal spring all to ourselves and saw many birds souring the thermals.
Currently we are in Puno in Southern Peru on Lake Titicaca at 3855m high- 165km long and 60km wide. We are off to Bolivia today.

We have really enjoyed Peru and are quite sad to be leaving, but looking forward to more adventures.

Here are a few things that we found unique and interesting about Peru:
- The ancient civilisations going back many thousands of years with many secrets unsolved ie Nasca Lines and Machu Picchu.
- Lots of the houses are made of mudbricks and the people are generally very poor, but there is not much begging- they are very simple, but proud people.
- There are pre Inca and Inca ruins and tombs scattered everywhere in the very dry desert that runs right down the coast of Peru- 2500km long.
- Along the Andes there are many volcanoes (some quite active) and many quaint maintain (pueblo) villages.
- The altoplano is a vast plain at 3500m high running the length of Peru between the Andes Range and The Amazon Jungle.
- There are many fake coins and notes which the locals think they can easily dispose onto unsuspecting travellers! Once we filled up with fuel and got 4 fake coins in our change. It was so funny telling the local that we knew they were fake and would not accept them!
- The food was surprisingly good withMenu del dia (menu of the day) costing US$1 for a 3 course meal with great thick soups!
- There are no road rules (not apparent to us anyway) and everyone honks their horns continually. There are not many road signs, so we have to ask people continuously donde esta...? (where is...?).
- Everything is quite cheap, except fuel at US.85c/litre. We have got off the beaten track with the motorcycle and avoided dangerous bus stations and seedy parts of town and had some unique culural experiences as a result. Patrick was right travelling by motorcycle is way safer and much more fun than travelling by public buses.
- The Peruvians now realize the great benefits of tourism for themselves and their country and greet tourists with friendly and open arms. It is a fun and easy country to travel in with the only problems being pickpockets (which we havent experienced).
- There is an amazing similarity with Nepal- with the physical appearance of the people and their traditional dress and the geographic features of the country and the type of basic housing.

We will ´Talk´ to you from Bolivia!!

Posted by at September 24, 2002 03:53 PM GMT

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