Page 5 of kelleygirl Travel Blog Posts

South America » Peru » Puno » Puno October 14th 2018

By 7 AM, after a quick breakfast, (mine was coca tea and toast with honey, I could barely eat a thing due to altitude sickness) we were back on the bus on the road to Cusco, another UNESCO World Heritage Site, via the high Andes mountains. Cusco, at a purported 11,000 feet, those of us struggling with altitude sickness were looking forward to this change in elevation! As our bus progressed north through the grassy plateaus I could see some very big mountains on the horizon. Although I had done my research and printed a chart of all the major destinations and their altitudes, I did not record the “minor” stops along the way. After drinking plenty of water over the two hour bus ride we arrived in Pucara (elevation 12,664 feet…we were climbing!) for a ... read more
Pucara Bulls sit on the roof for protection
The Vicuna Llama of Peru
Here I am at 14,222.44 feet elevation on the border of the regions of Puno and Cusco

South America » Peru » Puno » Lake Titicaca » Taquile Island October 14th 2018

Waking up on Amantani with an early morning run down the stairs, in the cold (35 degrees) morning, across the courtyard, grabbing a bucket of water to flush to the outdoor toilet, washing my hands in the outdoor faucet was enough to wake me up. It was dawn and I ran back up and grabbed my camera to photograph the beautiful sunrise over Lake Titicaca. Since I was unable to photograph the famous sunset from the top of Pachamama, at least I got points for the sunrise. Flavia had breakfast on the table at 6:30 AM. Hot muna tea, warm potato pancakes with homemade strawberry jam fueled our bodies for the hike down to the boat. I know the altitude didn’t add to my ability to concentrate so after saying my thanks and goodbyes to Flavia ... read more
Leaving Amantani Island
Arriving on Taquile Island
Taquile climbers beat me up to the restaurant on Taquile Island

South America » Peru » Puno » Lake Titicaca » Uros Island October 14th 2018

Two person taxi choloswere lined up in front of our hotel at 7 AM to pedal 22 of us to the harbor in Puno for our exciting two days on Lake Titicaca, at 12,500 feet, the world’s highest navigable lake. We were deposited at a local lakeside market and instructed to purchase the necessary foods needed for our Amantani host people to make our meals later in the day. One of the things that made me choose Kaypi Peru Tours was their commitment to giving back to the people of Peru. Taxi cholos were chosen instead of busses so that more local people would benefit from the hire rather than one bus driver. In addition, one particular shop was chosen for us to buy food, water and gifts because this store gives a discount to the ... read more
Houses made from reeds on a floating island in Uros
Uros handicrafts being made while we watch
Our tortora (balsas) reed boat that carried us across the water to another floating island

South America » Peru » Puno » Puno October 14th 2018

We got up at the ungodly hour of 2:30 AM went down to the hotel lobby to get our box breakfast and coffee while we waited to be picked up at the hotel at 3 AM and driven to the Lima airport. We were 12 groggy travelers leaving for Puno in this group, while another Kaypi group of 10 left later for an 8 AM departure. Someone must have told Kaypi we were the adventurous group giving us the earlier departure. Elias, our new guide from Kaypi Peru, met us at the Puno airport and gave those of us who had had enough coffee plenty of information about the area. Puno is located on a high plateau. The Puno airport has an altitude of 12,300 feet so we were instructed to be sure to drink a ... read more
Political signs on way to Puno
Children's parade for the Celebration of the Child Day on Parade Square in Puno
Quechua woman in the traditional bowler hat, Puno

South America » Peru » Lima » Lima » Lima October 14th 2018

Sandra from Kaypi Tours met our now expanded group of 22 people at the Hotel Allpa for our included guided tour of Lima. Our bus was late so we began by walking 6 blocks to the Huaca Pucllana Temple built around 2,000 years ago. Lucky for us Sandra used to be a docent here so we ended up with an unexpected private tour. The entrance fee is only $1.80 US per person for senior citizens and since most of us were in that category we were moved in quickly. Little is known about this early culture, but we do know it was built before Machu Picchu by a culture headed by women, the first people of Lima, the Peaceful Lima People. They believed the gods controlled their environment and it is now believed that this place ... read more
Burial examples at Huaca Pucllana Temple
Street art in Lima, a contrast of old and new
Quechua woman in the courtyard of the Church of San Francisco

South America » Peru » Ica » Ica October 14th 2018

We woke at 5:15 AM to prepare for our 6-6:30 AM pickup at the hotel for the ride to Ica to experience the Nazca Lines Overflightarranged by Kaypi Peru Tours. Hotel Allpa gave us a box breakfast that included apple-peach juice, an apple, poppyseed cake, three little brioche buns with ham and cheese and we grabbed a coffee to go. Jorge, our guide for the day, met us in the lobby. There were only two of us as we climbed into the small 10 seater van with driver Paulo for our private 4 hour ride to Ica where we would catch our plane for the Nazca Line overflight. Jorge gave us another box breakfast with a meat empanada, poppyseed cake, chocolate cookie, apple-peach juice and water. The meat empanada was much better than the chicken empanada ... read more
Pan-American Highway
Deli-Bakery on Pan-Am Highway
Huaca Centinela pre-Columbian pyramids in Chincha

South America » Peru » Lima » Lima » Miraflores October 14th 2018

My poor body felt broken after sleeping on a bed that was like a rock and listening to noisy traffic while in our 3rd floor hotel room that faced a high traffic road. After some much needed early morning coffee and an Asian influenced breakfast at the Tanuki Japanese Restaurant, included at Hotel Allpa, by 8 AM we asked to change rooms and to have more comforters to sleep on doubled up on the bed to make it more possible to sleep on. I felt like I was acting out the story of the Princess and the Pea. The very nice staff were understanding. Our new room, 502 on the fifth floor, was much larger than room 303 and because it was farther from the road traffic, seemed quieter. By 10:30 AM we had changed rooms, ... read more
Chimu Funerary Attire at Museo Larco
Moche portrait vessel, Museo Larco
Erotic Gallery door, right, cafe-restaurant on left, Museo Larco

South America » Peru » Lima » Lima » Miraflores October 14th 2018

Last night was breezy and balmy. This morning we woke to tropical storm Gordon with heavy rain and winds up to 45mph. September is hurricane season in Florida so I’ll take a tropical storm over a hurricane any day. Our car was parked outside, easily accessible from the hotel but a challenge in the wind-driven rain. We had planned to transfer our Florida clothes for some clothes for Peru on the day of our flight. Now I had to try to stay dry as I ran to and from the car. I didn’t stay dry. After the transfer I spent the next hour in our room with a hairdryer on my wet clothes. We opted for the hassle-free (and dry) hotel airport transfer and ate a late lunch at MIA instead of the going to the ... read more

Mandy and I woke early to hear the roar of the Howler Monkeys. I ran off to photograph them in my night clothes causing the guards to chuckle. We wanted to savor every last minute so we grabbed our coffees, books and cameras, swept off a lounge chair to read and spent the last precious morning on the beach. From under the tall palms I looked out to the ocean and watched the fishermen prepare for their day at sea while the birds floated in the ocean around the boats or perched on the boats’ biminis hoping to catch a stray fish. Monkey Island stood out at the edge of the bay and behind it, the mountains’ sharp outline defined by the morning sky. Mandy relaxed with her book, enjoying the special last peaceful morning. Kate ... read more
Moonrise on our last morning at Bosque del Mar

Central America Caribbean » Costa Rica September 2nd 2018

Having navigated the winding, hilly, coastal road to Playas del Coco at night we decided to explore this funky little beach town by day. We started with breakfast at the tiny Java 654 Coffee Shop on the road into town. It was highly rated on Trip Advisor so we felt safe in trying it and were glad we did. They served fabulous pastries and excellent coffee, but not at Tica prices. This is not fast food, this is good food! And the service is done with a smile. If you go, be sure to ask for the Crocantes de Nuez, they are worth every 1500 colones! We indulged in this lovely macaroon pastry and also had fruit and an egg sandwich and a banana chocolate smoothie. Yes, I really did that. There is a cozy little ... read more
Playas del Coco harbor
Making ice rolls at Johann's
Mandy and Kate eating the delicious mango coconut ice rolls

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