Cycling in Peru

Maybe later!

by Bicycle Junkies
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“Hey lady, want massage? Special price for special friend!” Uhh, is this Thailand? No, it’s Cusco, Peru! By walking around Plaza the Armas within minutes your shoes are polished, you’re bound to board a tourist bus or there’s a guinea pig on your plate! “Maybe later!” 🙂

Lago Titicaca
It’s the largest and highest motorable (whatever that means) lake in the world and Copacabana in Bolivia it the place to be. Both Jan and I are suffering from bugs and unfortunately we are stuck in this god forsaken place for more days than we want.. Once a bit better, we visit Isla del Sol in a very.., very.., but I mean ..very slooooooow boat. I can swim faster… 😉 The color of the lake and the white mountain tops in the background are nice to see though, but Copacabana will be forgotton easily, what a dump.

Cycling in Peru

Lago Titicaca and the reed islands

We decide it’s better to visit the reed islands on our own and from Peruvian Puno, so we board a boat-bus filled with locals and visit two or three islands. Still, we get a whole explanation on how these islands are being build and of course there are souvenirs. Our man Paul and Elmar fall for the charms of the beautifully dressed lady and they both buy a nice Peruvian hat, don’t they look cute?

Cycling in Peru

Paul and Elmar

The shitting twins
Both Jan and I are still living with our bugs and therefor doped up with antibiotics, but for now we are weak and constantly need a break.. While riding we keep eachother out of the wind and make jokes about our situation. We call ourselves the ‘shitting twins’. 😉
It takes us five days to reach Cusco from Puno and after Juliaca we are back in nature and empty landscapes, we camp in the middle of nowhere and cook ourselves some good pasta meals and end it with a nice cup of coffee sitting in front of our Hilleberg tents. We can put another 4000+ (4300m) pass on the list of ‘been there, done that’ and with a last 400 meter climb into busy Cusco we can lay our sick bellies on a bed in a comfortable hostel near the center of Cusco! Our last ride together.. for now…

Cycling in Peru

Camping together

Tambopata National Reserve
But, before we say goodbye, we decided we want to visit the Amazon basin and the four of us book a tour to Tambopata National Reserve with David from Macaw Adventures. After a long and winding bus ride we are at no more than 350 meters altitude and it’s hot and humid. The whole trip is locally very well organised by Tarantula Adventures and I sure do hope they don’t live up to their name.  A boat ride, a two-hour hike and another boat ride further we arrive at our jungle lodge and the next couple of days we spend on the water or hiking looking for caymans, monkeys, birds, butterflies and… yes, spiders! And believe me, they are big.. and ugly.. and hairy! I mean, they’re just creepy! At night I keep the mosquitoe net neatly tucked in..

Cycling in Peru

Apart from all the animals, the bugs have decided to travel with me too.., again. Well, I’ve made my decision, back in Cusco I need to visit a hospital and do a thorough check, I really need to get rid of them before we start cycling again.

But, first, Machu Picchu!

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