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January 4th 2010
Published: January 4th 2010
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From Lima we booked a flight on Star Peru Airlines and travelled to Cajamarca. Cajamarca is in northern Peru at an altitude of roughly 9000ft. The name Cajamarca means the place of the Caxa (pronounced casha) cactus. It was absolutely wonderful to arrive to a place that was green, the air was clean, and the view included trees, mountains, and farmland. When I stepped off the plane I could not stop smiling!

Our first day we walked around town, taking in the sights and the scenery and admiring the ornate colonial churches. Later that day we went to Banios del Inca. The Banios (I spell it with ‘ni’ because I do not have the Spanish ‘n’) del Inca consists of a series of baths or hot tubs fed from the hot springs (158 degrees Fahrenheit). We rented a Pozo Exclusivo or private room with a large hot tub. The water is also rich in minerals and said to be very good for your health, but only for up to half an hour (after that, who knows, maybe you turn into boiled human). Very nice, relaxing, and refreshing.

Our second day was filled with tours; two tours which took all day.

The first tour was to Cumbemayo, meaning rivers end. Cumbemayo is like a rock forest on top of a mountain. The view was breathtaking. We were on the top of a mountain surrounded by even more mountains and gigantic rock formations. Along the way we viewed about a handful of petroglyphsand an aqueduct system from pre-Incan times; very impressive. Also along our path we were joined for a few moments by a herd of sheep; very cool!

Our second tour brought us to a Swiss dairy farm where they process and sell dairy products and, of course, Swiss cheese. We then visited a botanical garden and some local handicraft stores. Our main destination was to the Otuzco funerary niches. The niches are basically tombs that were carved into a cliff. The niches were only for people from the upper classes and utilized during pre-Incan times. Apparently the niches were secondary internments; the first burials are supposed to have been in the valley below. The final destination was to a footbridge over one of the area rivers, where sampled and decided to buy roasted beans (beans roasted like peanuts) and local tomatillos.

We saved our last day to visit the local museum. Well, it was closed, so we visited the market, had some ice cream, and worked on travel blogs.

Next stop, Chiclayo. Cheers!

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5th January 2010

Happy New Years to you two. We missed you both. Andy wanted me to remind you we are sitting here in 30 below weather freezing our asses off. We should be with you guys and the sheep oh well next time. Keep sending the pictures there great. Stay safe and well!!!!!
6th January 2010

I see the Rockefellers are out and about again. Good for you. I can live vicariously thru those with money and down home values. Great pictures. More of Leila, less Chuck, or of Leila with less on. Me, I'm the moron that appreciates you including me in the world travels list. Thank You. Have a Great time.

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