Peru Day 9: Salkantay Trek – La Playa to Aguas Calientes

Start: La Playa 2,064m (6,771 ft)

Finish: Aguas Calientes 2,050m (7,986 ft)

Trek Time: 9.5 hours (including a short lunch)

The final morning of our trek began earlier than usual, and it was our first day starting out in pouring rain. We packed our stuff in the tent and did our best to keep things from getting wet and muddy, had a quicker than usual breakfast and then said goodbye to our chefs. Despite the rain and impending 3 hour ascent, everyone was in great spirits as we headed out on our last day of hiking.

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Peru Day 8: Salkantay Trek – Collpapampa to La Playa

Start: Collpapampa 2,850m (9,350 ft)

Finish: La Playa 2,064m (6,771 ft)

Trek Time: 7 hours

Our third day was our easiest for both distance and terrain. We woke up to another sunny day, and had a delicious breakfast of omelets and quinoa porridge (which is an amazingly healthy “on the go” breakfast and super easy to make by the way!). We said goodbye to our horsemen; they took our gear to our third and final campsite via van and then headed home as their town was nearby.

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Peru Day 5: Mercado Central de San Pedro y Sacsayhuaman

On our last day before the trek, we wanted to take it easy but still get in as much exploring as we could. We ventured to the huge local Sunday San Pedro Market where we spent hours getting lost in all they had to offer. Much of the market was indoors, but it continued on the streets around the indoor section for blocks. There were separate sections for fresh juices and food like soup, fruit and vegetables, dried fruit and nuts, raw meat and fish, herbal medicines, dried beans and potatoes, textiles, chocolate, bread, flowers….even a whole street dedicated to guinea pigs! We loved walking through the market and were jealous we didn’t have a market similar close to our homes.

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Peru Day 3: Goodbye Lima, Hello Cusco!

After spending two nights in Lima, we woke up ready for our flight to Cusco. While Tonya took a walk down to the beach, Tish and I took the opportunity to get some work done  while we still had a hotel with “reliable” internet. We walked across the street to the local espresso bar we fell in love with and got coffee and a few last empanadas before our taxi picked us up. The flight to Cusco was quick and painless, when we landed our local Kandoo Adventures contact was there to pick us up and take us to our hotel and recommended Marcelo Batata for dinner. After settling in a bit, and realizing Tonya and I were definitely feeling “weird” from the altitude, we walked down to the Plaza de Armas, the main square in Cusco, and then headed to dinner. The Plaza de Armas has two huge beautiful Spanish cathedrals (Cusco was the royal city of the Incan people, but when the Spaniards invaded they demolished all Incan temples and build Catholic churches in their place). Continue reading “Peru Day 3: Goodbye Lima, Hello Cusco!”