Blogs from Arequipa, Arequipa, Peru, South America

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South America » Peru » Arequipa » Arequipa December 18th 2015

Arequipa wasn't my the original plan but then again neither was Merian. Having originally met her in Buenos Aires and then randomly again in Colonia del Sacramento, we enjoyed each other's company so much that we decided to meet up again further down the road. Having been a couple of weeks behind me on the gringo trail, Arequipa ended up being the most convenient place for us to reunite before making some tracks up the coast. I also got word about Huacachina - a literal oasis in the sand dunes outside of Ica. This was also on the route up north, I have never been to an oasis before and having missed out on sandboarding down in S... read more
Colonial Arches
Orange Tree Cloister
Patio, Casa de Moral

South America » Peru » Arequipa » Arequipa November 16th 2015

We had Christmas with our son Simon in Canada...a road trip through Utah & Arizona during a polar vortex ending staying with Home & Away in Colorado...another road trip down the Blues Highway from Memphis BB King's Blues Club to New Orleans juke joints...schmoozing, bluesing & cruising the Caribbean with those darn Binkleys. It's time for our South American leg that we only added to meet Tara Cloud. Peru, Bolivia & Nthn Chile. Nil planning...dreaming of soaring with condors. Arrive in Arequipa...Tara there to meet us. Loaded up with her new camera and various gear we'd collected from Home & Away for her. "Did you get me a window seat on the flight to Cusco?" "No. They only let us book three together." "I'll change the seats," she says...jumping for joy when she has done so. ... read more
No soy enclavo
Searching for Enlightenment
Tara's new camera

South America » Peru » Arequipa » Arequipa November 14th 2015

I warn you now this is going to be a fairly long read as there has been a lot going on in our first week in Peru...! We touched down in Lima after a very long day (up in Chicago at 2:45am followed by a 3hr flight to Florida, 8hr wait in airport followed by 5hr flight to Lima) with a large part of it spent on planes that had less leg room than Ryanair. Vicks however did manage to make friends with a very cute baby called Emilio whose dad told us that he was on his way to see his Grandma for the first time. Given we got through customs at 11pm we thought the roads would be quiet and we would get to our hostel in a fairly leisurely fashion. Wrong! Turns out ... read more
Parque del Amor
We found Paddington in deepest, darkest Peru!
Changing of the Guards

South America » Peru » Arequipa » Arequipa November 2nd 2015

Drifting, dreaming, I wandered the labyrinth of geranium-lined, cobbled streets, sinking into cool azure cloisters, exploring century's old kitchens, baths, patios and the cells of long-dead nuns, servants and slaves. The 16c, high-walled Santa Catalina Convent was a huge city unto itself, and a tranquil respite from the traffic and noise of big city Arequipa. Entrance was pricey, so I took a book on the lives of women mystic saints and spent the day lounging, reading and exploring. I walked mindfully around the various cloisters, feeling both rooted in the present and open to infinity. After sundown, I stepped back in time as fireplaces were lit and rooms illuminated by candle. Heavenly! The buildings of this World Heritage Site, like many in Arequipa, were of sillar, a soft, white volcanic stone, and had beautiful, barrel roofs ... read more
through the window, darkly
looking like blue Chefchouan, Morocco
geraniums lined the cobbled streets

South America » Peru » Arequipa » Arequipa August 30th 2015

Our lead in to the Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu was preceded by a bus hop through Peru, beginning in Lima and taking in the towns of Paracas, Huacachina (pronounced ‘wacacheena’), and Arequipa before finishing in Cusco. Because of pre-booked tours, we gave ourselves only 1 night in Lima, which, as we discovered after arriving, was definitely not long enough. Lima is the culinary capital of South America, so unfortunately we missed out on testing this out, however Renee was quite excited about our need to do a little bit of clothes shopping. We successfully located a large open mall type shopping centre, Renee was excited. But then, less than 24 hours later, we were running down a main road in Lima chasing our bus, before finally getting on it ready for our adventure. On our ... read more
The sign says it all...
the Shopping Mall
Pacifico Christo

South America » Peru » Arequipa » Arequipa July 31st 2015

Distance driven today: 348miles/560km Cumulative distance driven: 11,560 miles / 18,604 km Today’s trip: Nazca to Arequipa, Peru We left Nazca early this morning, with the feeling that we could easily have spent a few days there, exploring the region and signing up for a variety of tours. Some of the thing to do around the Nazca region include dune sandboarding, various trekking tours, a full day of touring archaeological sites, desert rides with 4-wheel-drive dune buggies, countryside biking tours etc. However, our schedule does not unfortunately allow us to spend extra days around the region. We lost two days in Lima due to the malfunctioning electronics (which we think is the result of the sudden extreme ascend and descend) and the long Independence Day holiday. Taking extra days to explore surroundings is something that we ... read more
Atiquipa desert
Fishing village close to Pescadores
La Punta desert

South America » Peru » Arequipa » Arequipa June 19th 2015

Finally after the nightmare bus journey we arrived in Arequipa. We got a taxi to take us to the hostal we'd picked out but unfortunately it was full. Just a few doors up the road though was another just as nice and it did have a room available so we were soon settled in. We spent what was left of the day getting to know the place and booking the trip to Colca Canyon for Saturday. The next day we had the luxury of just staying in one place rather than jumping on and off buses and ambled around taking in the sights and relaxing on the roof terrace of the hostal where we had great views of the mountains and volcanoes that surrounded the city. That night we intended to go to bed early as ... read more
Inca Roots Hospedaje (hostal)
View from our roof terrace
View from our roof terrace

South America » Peru » Arequipa » Arequipa May 29th 2015

Well, here I sit in the north of Peru and I am hopelessly behind with my blog updates. The previous 3 weeks have been so busy and much happened that I really didn’t have time to update my blog. Carla has been with me the last 12 days and we had better things to do than sit in front of a PC and compose articles. That is called priorities. Nonethtless, let’s begin on my experiences in Puno and Arequipa After a fantastic time in La Paz it was time to move on. The day I choose to make the move was the 1st of May, a national holiday in Bolivia. So the city was dead in the morning when I went to the bus station to get my ticket to Copacabana. I purchased my ticket, went ... read more
On the way again
Crossing Lake Titikaka
Crossing Lake Titikaka

South America » Peru » Arequipa » Arequipa December 21st 2014

After a day in Aguas Calientes to enjoy the hot springs, a soft bed and our first showers (care of EcoPackers hostel) in a few days we headed for Arequipa, the white city. Straight off the overnight bus we joined a free walking tour and get a great introduction to the city including the white volcanic stone cathedral, the food market with frog juice, a view to the three volcanoes that surround the city, some beer and chocolate samples and of course the obligatory pisco tasting to finish it off! After the walking tour we headed for Wild Rover Arequipa hostel and enjoyed beers by the pool in the beautiful afternoon sun. The night saw some quality pub trivia, Courtney pulling off an award-winning rendition of url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1nCqRmx3Dnwhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1nCqRm... read more
Condor spotting at Colca Canyon
Happy little vegemiters at the top of a 2.5hr climb out of the canyon
A local girl in traditional dress in Colca Canyon

South America » Peru » Arequipa » Arequipa November 26th 2014

We passed through Puno en route to Arequipa. I found Puno to be a bit uninspiring. As Peru's most famous lakeside town, I was surprised that they lived with their back to Lake Titicaca. The land becomes more industrialised as you move from the town centre towards the shore. The main point of interest around here are the floating islands, made of bound reeds, on which indigenous people used to live to avoid marauding enemies.These days they are subject to marauding tour groups. Arequipa is Peru's second largest city and the dusty outskirts do not look particularly welcoming. However, as usual, the colonial city centre provides a pleasant focus for visitors. The main plaza is quite large and is flanked along one edge by a beautiful cathedral. A fair number of old buildings survive, some of ... read more
Arequipa Cathedral
Arequipa Cathedral
Arequipa Church




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