Monday, February 14, 2011

Peru: Lima, Huacachina, Nazca

February 5th 2011
From Huaraz I arrived in Lima. It's Saturday, a good time to enter a big town such as Lima (7,6 million ppl), not much traffic on the weekend. I find the hostel the was recommended to me by Todd, from previous post.

It's in Miraflores in front of the Kennedy park.

At the hostel I met with Wolf, a German motocyclist travelling in South America. We go walk around the park looking for a place where we could eat. Everything is so much more expensive here in Lima compared to the other towns, we ended up getting street food, it was cheaper but still very good.
 Breakfast was included with the hostel, and the restaurent had very good coffee, something very hard to find in South America for some reason. I've had coffee more more worst than instant coffee, sometime I wonder how they can manage to do that...
 Wolf had a Honda Translap with a bigger gas tank. 
The previous night I also met Stefan, originally from Canada, now living in Lima to start a flower buisiness, importing flowers from Ecuador. He kindly offered to show us around, we went to the old centro. 

Ended up there was a Carnaval, it happens only 1x a year and we were there! 

Good rhythmic music with thousands of dancers. 

 They even had traditionnal Predator costumes :)
After a meal where mine just never came,
we went to some Church that has Catacombs and nice wood carving.  

I didn't like the "forced" tour, the guide stop at some old painting and talk about it for ages, then do the same at another painting...

At night we drank, a lot, maybe even a little too much. Wolf told me about things I've done and I don't remember it. Anyway even though we had a hangover the net day, we still decided to get on our bikes and get away from Lima, which is nice but expensive.  

We decided to go to Huacachina, which is an oasis in the middle of the desert.
On the way we saw other bikers and stopped. Two loaded KLRs with British Columbia plate (Canada). 
It's Emrah and Sheniz, originally from Turkey, now Canadians. They are DJ on the road. We then all ride together to Huacachina.
Emrah and Sheniz stopped to buy wine here. Nice, we would have just drove past not seeing them. The wine was a little too sweet for me, but it's nice trying the local Peruvian wine, never tried it before.

 Huacachina, near Ica.
We climbed a dune but were too late for sunset. 

 It's quite small, about 200 inhabitants, but there are some hippies playing tam tam and drums.
Emrah was knowledgeable about photography and he showed me a few stuff I can do with my camera. Like this picture: 
The next morning we climbed up a bid dune hoping for a nice sunrise.
Dunes and sand as far as you can see, and the sand it quite soft. But clouds and no sun in sight.

 Us four and Huacachina behind.
Beleive it or not, this is one of the dryest place on earth, nothing is growing outside this oasis, and it rained!! A little bit.

Feb 8th,
We decided to go to Nazca after a breakfast. I regret now not doing sandboarding or trying to climb a dune with my bike. It's quite difficult to go up a dune as the sand is so soft and I felt lazy that morning, but anyway maybe another time another place...
To see the famous Nazca Lines you usually need to take a plane and see them from the sky, but there is also an observation tower where you can see 2 Nazca figures.  
Some hands:
Some tree: 

The lines were not nearly as big as I've imagined I was a little disapointed. To me it look more fake than 1-2000 years old. Like some circles in corn fields in USA. It's small and looked like someone bored did that on a weekend... I didn't take the plane... 

The town of Nazca:

Wolf knew about a nice hotel with a pool, with very expensive rooms and also cheap one.

Feb 9th,
We said goodbye to Wolf, he's going to Arequipa and we are going to Cuzco. 
On the way to Cuzco: 

We wanted to go to Abancay but didn't make it, we had rain and passes over 4500m and very cold weather, just above freezing. With the rain it gets quite cold, we stopped in Chalhuanca for the night.

Cuzco will be for the following day, and also for my following post along with Machu Picchu.

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