Overnight the President had conceded to give government workers a 20% pay rise, and as it was new years eve, the situation had settled down sufficiently for us to stick to plan A.
The President later did a complete u-turn, and the fuel prices were reduced all the way back down to their original rate- what a wimp!
After 10 hours of travelling by bus and train, we made it to Uyuni 1 hour before midnight, and saw the new year in at the Extreme Fun Pub in the town centre.
Next, 4×4 3 day tour of salt flats
Salt hotel- no longer permitted to be used
Overnight Posada Coral Puerto Chuvica
Laguna de Flamencos
Arbol de Piedra (Tree of Rock)
Overnight Lodge Laguna
Geysers at 5000m alt
Salar de Chalviri- Thermal Hot Springs at sunrise
Laguna Blanca (due to arsenic) and Laguna Verde
Valle de las Rocas (Valley of the Rocks)
Mining Village San Cristobal
Entered Bolivia overland to find the country on the verge of industrial action, protests, and road blocks
Mani hot-footed it back to Peru, but we made it to La Paz before the road blocks without our guide.
Next day, spent 3rd wedding anniversary walking around town.
Witches Market – potions, voodoo dolls, dead frogs and llama foetuses
Black Market – poor quality designer rip-offs,
San Pedro Jail – too afraid to go on illegal inmate tour
and Protests over a recent hike in fuel prices.
We were told the miners from the south had started marching to join the protest armed with dynamite, and that all roads out of La Paz had been blockaded.
With the city on lock down, new guide Yannick briefed us on plans A,B,C,D and E, about how we would break out of La Paz, to continue our tour to the Salt Flats of Uyuni.
– a really cool town
– former Inca capital
Ccaccaccollo Community -18.12.10
– local women spinning, dyeing and weaving llama and alpaca wool
View of the Sacred Valley
Ruins at Pisac -18.12.10
Market at Pisac Town
– Administrative centre
– hotel built upon old Inca ruins
Inca Trail Day 1 -19.12.10
– Beautiful sunny day
– Trekked KM 82 to Wayllabamba (11km)
– Camp at Wayllabamba (3000m)
Inca Trail Day 2
– Tough day trekking
– Wayllabamba to Paqaymayo (12km)
– via Warminusca (Dead Woman Pass – 4215m)
– Camp at Paqaymayo (3600m)
Inca Trail Day 3
– Rain rain rain
– Trekked Paqaymayo to Winaywayna (16km)
– Camp at Winaywayna (2650m)
Inca Trail Day 4
– Early start- 03.30 rise
– Trek Winaywayna to Machu Pichu (5km)
– Rain and fog at The Sun Gate
– Sun appears as we arrive at Macchu Pichu (2400m); after seeing all the complex, taking our pictures and having a moment of peace, the rain slowly returned
– The whole experience consolidated our belief that at any given moment, you always get exactly what you need, and nothing more.
– The fog, our long journey around the mountain, and our ultimate realisation of our goal-which for so long remained out of sight- made us think first of the concept of maya, and then of the ego, and how we may overcome these by adapting the way we think.
Return to Cusco -22.12.10 to 26.12.10
Met Jan the Man- (Vanisha’s sister, who is actually called Janisha!)
Ate at shocking Indian Restaurant Maikhanna- Navita, the owner, had the bedside manner of an Air India air hostess. Buffet food distinctly average. No a-la-carte option
Xmas Eve markets
4 hrs of Rummikub in Australian bar
Played ‘Kings’ and ‘Ring of Fire’ which led to a drunken dinner followed by spiritual discussion
Hamel hungover for Xmas dinner at Real McCoy
Ayuhuasca and Shamans have evaded us this time, and so we wil return one day.