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Thread: South America

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Bay Area, CA

    Default South America

    I have heard a lot of people talk about the Inca trail in Peru (Machu Picchu). If there is anyone who has done this already, do let me know. I have no clue where to start from.

    Fly from CA to where in Peru?

    Also, is there anything interesting to see around (having gone all the way from CA to South America, we are interested in seeing and doin stuff related to nature, walk, hike, scenery, etc).

    This is a site for NA. But if there is someone who has been there or knows something abt SA, I would greatly appreciate it.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Québec, Montreal, Arizona, California, France

    Default Machu Picchu


    I haven't been there but many people I know did go there and hiked to Machu Picchu. Some went with organized groups and others by themselves. Needless to say, if you decide to go there by yourself, you need to speak fluent Spanish and you have to be very careful. Some people took a flight to Cuzco and others to Lima and then drove up to Cuzco. Apparently, Lima is not a very safe city for tourists and you have to watch out for pickpockets, they often are very young (9-12 yrs old) and work in small groups. Everyone I know enjoyed the hike to MP pretty much, especially those who decided to hire a local as a guide for the trek. I believe Machu Picchu is about 2 400 m high so you have to be in shape to do that hike. I believe you can "rent" a mule or hire some kind of sherpa to carry some of your stuff for most of the way. If you're not in shape, there are probably several other ways to climb up there but I'm not aware of them. Everyone I know who has been there really loved their trip and all have amazing pictures!


  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Bay Area, CA


    Pickpocketing is news to me. Maybe bcos, all my friends went through guides. I am trying to look for a guide. I've hrd it is quite strenuous, but I guess it should be worth it.

    Also, the flight charges seem so expensive.

  4. Default

    depending on how much time you have there are amazing things to do in peru. spanish will help but you can do it with determination and a smile. generally it is safe outside of the big cities. lima is a big complicated city, with out much travel expierence I would try to avoid.. one trick if you do have to fly in to lima and stay overnight is to know the hotel you are going to, and have one as back up. when you get off the plan there will be tons of official airport taxis all trying to get you to go with them. ten feet past them there are non official taxis dropping people off. these can be assummed to be safe because they have delivered their people to the airport. we saw one hugging the people goodbye and wishing them a good flight. so we asked him how much to the predetermined hotel, it was 1/3 the cost of the official taxis, and I believe safer.
    Anyways same in cuzco. walk 100 ft out of airport complex and catch one on the street. From cuzco you can take the local bus to pisaq for 60cents, 45min. there are ruins in pisaq that are also amazing. there is an art hostel in the small town that costs $7. the owner knows newly descovered inca trails and ruins that cost $10 as opposed to the $150 tourist trail/hike to machu pichu. from pisaq you can take the local buses to the less expensive $40 train to machu pichu. there are ruins all through this valley. the local people are amazing to expierence. this place is very special and gives you a new respect for the south american indigenous.

    Lake titicaca is also a days travel away. cococabama on the bolivian side is nice. remember this is up in the andes and is cold, and elevation sickness is common

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