Reflections on Peru

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Lucy

Peru has dogs that do not have any hair. They also have Guinea Pigs in cages. I went to see the football with Daddy and in the bar they had a big castle of Guinea Pigs. I have also stroked an Alpaca.

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One day we were crossing the high mountains with my Aunty Clare and we even passed snow on the side of the road but I did not see it all as I was sleeping in the truck.

I have enjoyed having my Aunty Clare and Grannie come to stay with us. They have been telling me stories about a little bat called Barnaby.

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Alisha

After reading “Incredible Incas” I understood more about Incas than I did before. For instance did you know that they drowned their criminals in Lake Titicaca. That the Inca kings were called “The Inca”. One of the Inca loved sea fish so much that he got it fresh everyday, brought by messengers from the coast about 500kms away. If the fish was not fresh the Inca had the messengers executed, that’s a bit harsh isn’t it!

Have you heard of the ice maiden Juanita? She was sacrificed by the incas on top of a mountain, to say thank you to the gods. She was chosen at birth to be sacrificed and kept in the temple, until 14 when she was sacrificed. She was a bit frightened but in some ways she was a bit proud, as she thought she was going to live with the gods or in someways be a god herself.

I’ve been working hard making a blue dress, when it was finished I went to Sacsaywaman ruins in it and was pretending to be an Inca princess. Lucy wanted to be my servant.

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Gilly

We’ve loved the 5 weeks we’ve been in Peru. From sandy deserts, desolate coasts, high snow-capped mountains, indigenous villages, ancient civilisations and colonial towns we have seen a lot. Not forgetting that about a third of the country is jungle, we haven’t even touched on that. We’d been warned that Peru was quite touristy before we arrived but here is a reason for that: there is so much to do. In fact we found that is was only around Cusco and Lake Titicaca that places were really busy, we are here in peak season though.

My favourite area was the Cordillera Blanca, the mountains were stunning with lots of interesting places to hike and sleep. I would happily return there again and again.

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I may be proved wrong at a later date but so far, Peru has had the worst drivers we’ve come across. A lot of horn blowing, posturing and bullying goes on, on the roads. Often the size of vehicle is no factor in the driver’s desire to be the first or fastest. There is a car here that looks a bit like how I draw a car (a square on top of a rectangle) and looks like it is made out of cardboard. The make is popularly used as a taxi. Having been in several I can also confirm that my old vacuum cleaner had more horsepower. However these cars are the ones doing all the pushing and shoving at junctions and busy roads, angling themselves so they can just squeeze past us. The fact that the truck would easily squash them without hardly a bump, if Steve didn’t notice their last second manoeuvring, doesn’t seem to stop them. Luckily for us though the drivers on the extreme mountains roads, like the amazing Cañón del Pato, seem to have more sense.

I’ve also loved having my Mum and sister Clare visit us in Peru. It has been wonderful to spend time with them and I am very thankful they came all this way to see us. I think the girls will be very bored to have just mummy and daddy around once we say goodbye to my Mum in La Paz.

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Steve

We were not sure what to expect with Peru. We had visited 15 years ago on holiday and thoroughly enjoyed it but some overlanders had described it as too touristy, expensive, unfriendly and therefore not enjoyed it. Well I have to say I have thoroughly enjoyed it. We have seen the deserts along the coast, the beautiful mountains and many of the Inca ruins in our 5 weeks here.

Yes in parts it has been touristy and with us having family visiting we have also done the tourist things. However it has also been possible to get off the beaten track. I have absolutely loved the mountains and with the great weather we have had we have been able to thoroughly enjoy the views. We have also done some epic drives in Peru. The Canon del Pato and the drive over the passes in the Cordillera Blanca are just two that stand out.

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Peru is also famous for its cuisine and it has definitely lived up to expectations. It’s the best food we have had since Mexico. We have even been cooking some (Lomo Saltado) of it ourselves. I have also taken a great liking to Alpaca although I can not say the same for Guinea Pig.

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