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Published: January 15th 2011
We have crossed the international dateline arriving an hour before we left. Our first destination in South America is Peru, famous for the Incas, lamas, creating the Pisco Sour and of course being the birth place of Paddington Bear.
There is a well trodden backpacker trail which leads straight to Nazca. Nazca, a town in the middle of the desert and has became famous because of the Nazca lines. Discovered in the 1920s by pilots who described seeing shapes including, a monkey, flower, killer whale and humming bird they are a huge draw for tourists.
To see the lines in their full glory you have to take to the air. Unfortunately the past year has seen three fatal aircrashes and a hijacking by Columbian drug barons. This has resulted in a crackdown on businesses offering flights - accompanied by a steep hike in the price of flights we did the next best thing and climbed the viewing platform.
There is still no consensus on the purpose of the lines, some researchers have said they were messages to the gods, others suggest that they mirror the stars or point to water sources - my favourite theory is that they
are large scale patterns which the Paracas people used to dance around. Given that many of the patterns stretch for miles dancing must have been a serious business - my theory is that they were the prototype to the Play Station dance mat.
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