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Peru Trip Report-Lima, Paracas, Cusco

Old Aug 29th, 2016, 07:53 AM
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Peru Trip Report-Lima, Paracas, Cusco

Hi All! My husband and I returned from a wonderful trip to Peru and Bolivia two weeks ago. Our trip was 10 days, and included Lima, Paracas and Cusco. All arrangements except from our flights from Canada were arranged by Ayni Peru, which did a truly remarkable job both during the planning process and throughout the trip.

Lima

We arrived in Lima in the very early morning, and went straight to our hotel to sleep. Our hotel was Second Home Peru, which is a small, beautiful hotel by the ocean. Ayni Peru managed all of our hotel and tour reservations, and the selections were excellent-all comfortable, quiet and pretty, and nothing over the top luxurious (which is what I requested).

We had a full day for Lima, and that was probably enough. Our guide in Lima and Paracas, Arturo, was friendly, knowledgeable and just a great person overall. We started in the morning with a market, and learned about the fruits and vegetables that come to Lima from all over the country. We tried juices, cookies and olives there (which were delicious), then visited the old center of Lima. I highly recommend a visit to the San Francisco church there; the history and catacombs are fascinating. In the afternoon we visited the National Anthropology and Archaeology Museum (Museo Nacional de Arqueología, Antropología e Historia del Perú). This was a request of ours, to prepare for the rest of the tour. It was an excellent resource, and I really don’t think we would have enjoyed each area as much without being more familiar with the history and people of the country.

Paracas and Nazca

We had a total of two days for Paracas and Nazca, which we visited with Arturo and guide. It was a great way to travel, because we were able to make stops along the way. Our hotel in Paracas, La Hacienda, was right on the bay, and very peaceful. We visited the Ballestas Islands in the morning, then had the afternoon free to walk on the beach and relax. The free time was a favorite, especially after the drive from Lima followed by a boat tour for a couple of hours. The next morning was the Nazca Lines, which only my husband did but enjoyed very much, then back to Lima for the night.

Cusco

If there was one thing I would have changed about the trip, it would be more time in Cusco. We had a total of five days in the area, but could have easily spent a couple more. Our guide for each day here was Hubert, who was excellent and hilarious. We chose Ayni’s coffee and coca tour that ends with Machu Picchu, which is like a culinary tour that mixes in history, ruins and hiking. Two nights were in hotels (El Albergue in Ollantaytambo and Tierra Viva in Aguas Calientes), and two were spent with families in the coffee growing area near Machu Picchu. The families here were wonderful; warm and accommodating, and happy to share their lives and knowledge. It was fun to see a part of Peru not many other people see, such as coffee farming and roasting our own beans, making chocolate in a family kitchen, and learning about the importance of coca to the Peruvian people. Definitely an unforgettable experience.

Machu Picchu was amazing, but crowded there (especially after several days in a rural area). The line to board the bus took over an hour! Hubert recommended that we stay later in the day until after most tours are over, and this turned out to be a good idea. There were still a good amount of people, but not as many as earlier. Mid-morning seemed like a peak traffic time.
If anyone has questions about any of these areas I would be happy to answer as best I can!
AliceCA is offline  
Old Aug 30th, 2016, 09:02 AM
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Thanks, Alice. Good that you got to see more of Peru than just Cusco, MP and Lima.
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Old Sep 27th, 2016, 12:02 PM
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fOR ANYONE LOOKING TO THIS FOR TGUIDQANCE, I would reddcommend going to ht4 PARACAS PENINSULA. THWT TOUR5 STAQAQARTS AT 11AM SO CAN BEDONE3 ON QRRIFVAL DAY FROM LIMA EFEN IF YOU LEAVE AT A REASONABLE HOUR.YOU EAT LUNCH IN LAGUNILLAS WHERE THEY DO 'ARTISINAL FISHING' AND PICK YOU FISH OF THE DAY AT ONE OF THE LOCAL RESTAURANTS.
mlgb is offline  
Old Sep 27th, 2016, 05:17 PM
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That coffee and coca tour sounds amazing.
colduphere is offline  
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