Wednesday, October 28, 2015

#travelpost - Huacachina and Nazca

From Lima we took a 4 hour bus down to a town called Ica, from there we got a taxi to a place called Huacachina. We only spent a couple of nights between Lima and Cusco and covered a fair few hours of this on buses but it was totally worth it! 

Huacachina is a desert oasis. A small pool of water sits between the huge sand dunes and the small road that connects it to its neighbouring town, Ica. The little spot was bustling with tourists, teenagers and families... People were boating on the water and dune buggy after buggy were heading up to the heart of the dunes. We arrived around 4pm which was perfect timing as we'd heard the best time for dune buggying and sand boarding was at sunset. With this in mind, we got to the buggy guys at around 5pm and off we went with another 6 people. The dune buggying was like the best real life roller coaster, I'd never done it before but I would 100% do it again... It was so fun! We stopped off at 4 or 5 huge dunes during the ride to test out our sand boarding skills... Unfortunately, I'd left mine at home. I think I stood up for 2 seconds before sliding down on my bum! Harry wasn't that much better although I think he thinks he was. We also tried it face first on our bellies and that was fast! We stopped off on the way home just on the edge of town for some photos and the view was perfect... The twinkling lights reflecting on the water with the orange sand dunes in the back ground. That night we spent dinner at a neighbouring hostel that had a great bar and better food... Not forgetting happy hour pisco sours!

The next day we needed to catch a four hour bus to Nasca but not before visiting some wineries and pisco bodegas. Living in Spain we've visited our fair share of wineries so we were interested in the process but we were kinda more interested in the freebies... And they came thick and fast. The first place gave us a tour and the tasting of 4 wines and 2 piscos but the second place just skipped the tour completely and took us straight to the barrels! We must have tried another 6... This place was super old school too with all sorts of brickabrak on the walls. It's safe to say we slept well on the bus to Nazca that afternoon. 

We got to Nazca around half 7 and just spent the night getting some food and having a rest... The next day was the most important. The Nazca lines have been on my bucket list for a long long time and the decision between taking the plane ride or seeing them from the ground was a tough one but in the end we decided to save our money for our Machu Picchu journey in the next few days and make that a lot less hard work by travelling by train. So... We saved our $80 and instead spent 50 soles (£10) on a private tour guide to drive us to the lookout points where we could see some. They've built tall watch towers next to some of them and from up top the view was unreal... It looked like Mars! We learnt about some of the theories and the reasons behind the straight lines that you can see for miles. It felt really surreal seeing something so important to the history of a country... Anyway enough with the cheesy talk, the Nazca lines were incredible but after seeing them we had to prepare ourselves for the 15 hour overnight bus ahead of us. 

We survived and got to Cusco two days ago... The altitude is less harsh than last time and tomorrow we leave for Machu Picchu!! 

Ciao from 3,400m above sea level! X

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