View from the hill!

View from the hill!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

cuzco and beyond

I was greeted with heavy rain in Cusco as I arrived just before 6am on Sunday morning. Being rainy season this seemed to be an approriate welcome and i thought that i better get used to the rain, afterall i was about to do a 4 day trek to Machu Picchu in the rainiest month of the year. Luckily i was able to check into the Wild Rover early and take a 2 hour nap before heading out into town to book my Inca Jungle trek. As i ventured out into a new city I found myself a park bench and began looking in my Lonely Planet book to read about the sights of Cuzco. Shortly after settling down on the bench a girl from California introduced herself and after about an hour of chatting i learned that she too was traveling alone and headed out on the Inca trail in the morning.

Together we went on a mission to find some inca trail essentials... rain pants, poncho and backpack. I managed to get all of this gear for under 50 soles, so less than 20 bucks. Now all I had left to do was find an actual agency and book the trip. I had heard great things about the Inca Jungle trip, this alternate route was a popular way to get to Machu Picchu without doing the official Inca Trail. As much as I would have liked to do the Inca Trail in its entirety it was not an option for several reasons, one being the price (it costs at least $600) and the other being the fact that it is closed for maintance during the month of February (technically I was leaving on Jan. 31 but you must book the trek months in advance). Like in Uyuni, Bolivia, Cuzco is bursting with tour operators trying to lure you in off of the street. Every agency offers basically the same trip and the price varies slightly from one operator to the next. After speaking to several agencies and trying to find out who would be on the trip with me I realized that like in previous expereinces I had to face the fact that I would not know who else was booked in my group (it still does not make sense to me why it is not possible for the agency to look at their list and see what nationalities the other tourists are).

I decided to book into the Inca Jungle trip with the travel agency that was inside my hostel thinking there was a better chance of getting some Aussies or other English speaking people in my group, also this agency seemed to be the most reliable. After getting my trip all sorted out I went back into town in search of dinner. Using Lonely Planet as my guide I found what must be the most amazing burger in South America! This massive herbed burger was served on a gigantic bun with mango chutney, bacon, carmalized onions, Andean cheese, lettuce and tomato....a bit pricey for Peruvian standards, however it was easliy the best $8 I have spent on the trip so far! I would highly reccomend a trip to Los Perros on your next treip to Cuzco!

After a good meal I was ready to get to bed early so that I would have a fresh start for my Machu Picchu adventure in the morning.

No comments:

Post a Comment