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Monday, February 19, 2007

Travel Tuesday Peru!

Peru: Pack your Six Senses.

1. Machu Picchu
2. Paraca National Park
3. Nazca Lines
4. Moray

Well folks its Travel Tuesday
I've decided to tell you about Peru Today. Mostly because it's one of the many places that I want to see someday. Peru is a beautiful country with a rather bad rap. They seem to fall into the Colombia category of drug dealers. The truth is far from that. Sure they have had their fair share of troubles, including a dictatorship type government now replaced with a more loving leader with the aim of stopping the poverty and unemployment that still plagues the country.
Geography: Peru is one of the leading tourist countries of South America. It is divided into 3 main weather zones: a narrow coastal belt of desert, a mountain belt with the highest Mountain Huciscaran at 6768 m high!, and the low land tropical Amazon basin. This country shares its border with 5 other countries including Chile to the south, Bolivia to the south east, Brazil to the north east, Colombia to the north and finally Ecuador to the north east.
Temperature: Depending on where you are in the country the temperature ranges from a comfortable 20 C to 27 C. When inland in the mountains and at high elevations you may find the nights rather chilly. Its better to only travel to the higher elevations and come down for sleeping to avoid altitude sickness.
Stuff To See: Peru is a rather huge country so I've decided to tell you about the two most popular and interesting parts. Peru is a country of natural wonder and history. Like most South and Central countries the landscape is sprinkled with ruins of several cultures including the Incas. The two states below are in the southern part of the country. The northern part of Peru is slightly less traveled, so unless you are a seasoned traveler or being accompanied by a reputable company do not go there.
State of Ica: A coastal agricultural zone. Among the sand dunes you will see fields of cotton, asparagus, and citrus tree orchards. Believe it or not you will also see vineyards this is Peru's wine state. The Paracas National Park is one of the more known of Peru's many protected natural areas. It is has beautiful beaches, rock formations as pictured above, and is home to many protected animals including fur seals, otters, penguins, dolphins and 200 bird species including flamingos. But the most famous sight to see in Ica are the Nazca lines. A vast network of lines and drawings. This is truly a sight to behold. Many people believe the pictures where put there by aliens! They cover an area of 350 square km! There is the whale, man, hand, tree and the long tailed humming bird as seen in the pic above. You can climb a 39 foot look out and partially observe the hand and tree lines, but to truly appreciate the magnitude of the Nazca lines you must see it from the air. Most tourist companies supply a small plane for their travelers. There is of course so much more to see. The cities and architecture. Some of the cities in this state have been lived in since Inca times!
State of Cusco: This state is more inland then Ica. It is located in some of the highest mountains in the world. It is in this state that Altitude Sickness may become a worry. But don't worry the locals have a cure. They will give you some leaves to suck on as you head up to the higher heights to see Machu Picchu! This is one of the largest ruin sites in the world. And due to its location which is high up in the mountains it was only discovered in the last 50 years!!! Unlike some of the other well known ruins in Mexico which where discovered long before that. Machu Picchu is nestled on the top of a mountain. It was believed to be one of the centers of worship due to its natural and breath taking surroundings. There is also a astronomic observatory and some food storage buildings. It was also the private retreat of the Inca ruler and his family. There are other ruins to see in Cusco such as The Fortress of Sycsayhuan which is made of granite blocks and is a military ruin. The other interesting one is Moray as pictured above, this is believed to be a agricultural research center the Incas used to test crops at different altitudes.
Health Risks: Like most countries with poverty there are some health risks in Peru. Most of which are avoidable and preventable. Also if you are planning on staying in the main tourist areas the odds of you catching one of the following are greatly diminished.
Altitude sickness- as explained above-sleep in lower altitudes, eat the leaves they give you.
Hepatitis-A and B have vaccines, for the other use basic food and water precautions. Don't drink tap water and stay away from fishy looking sea food (no pun intended)
Malaria-wear light coloured and fully covering clothing-eg. pants and long sleeves. Particularly when you are hiking in the parks etc. Where deet laced mosquito repellent.
Rabies-easy don't pet any animals -dogs, cats, monkeys, that look uncared for or wild.
Yellow fever-must get vaccine!!!!
HIV/AIDS-don't have sex! unless it's with some one you know eg hubby.
Needs: Passport only- no visa needed.
Well that's it for Peru. I hope you enjoyed!

1 comment:

Annieann77 said...

wow- Peru looks awesome! I can see why you want to go there! I'm all about going to check out the penguins ! LOL