Bolivia & Peru
01.04.2008 - 01.05.2008
So after La Paz, the plan was to make it to the Amazon - however that turned out harder than it initially looked.We booked flight tickets to Rurrenabaque - but the landing strip there is grass and so we could not take off on Wednesday as it was raining there and the ground was not suitable to land. And so we were told to come back the following day and after waiting around for 5 hours we were told that the ground was still wet and there were no guarantees of a flight the next day either. So we tried to get a refund - which we did minus a whopping 20% admin fee and after 4 hours of arguing (a very shitty day) and with another Dutch couple we booked a jeep to take us there the next day. We eventually got to Rurrenabaque after a tiring 12 hour journey on roads as bad as the ones in Kenya and after chilling out for a day there, we started off on a 3 day Pampas trip.
The Pampas trip was great for seeing animals - in particular monkeys, river dolphins (we even swam amongst them on day 2) alligators, different frogs, turtles and loads of different birds. We tried to find anacondas but were unsuccessful after walking around in knee high water for around 4 hours - unfortunately it wasn´t the right season. And on the last day we did some piranha fishing but only caught a few - again it was the wrong season. We also did a night boat ride down the river to look at the orange aligator eyes.
After the Pampas trip, we started our 2 day jungle trip. This was completely different - we hardly saw any animals as they all hide very easily in the jungle, but got alot of information on how the natives used to and still live in the jungle, and how they still use the nature for medicine for different conditions etc... we took alot of walks in the jungle, including the slightly scary night walk - especially as the guide told us to turn off our torches because he had just heard something.... but it was great fun. We visited a nearby village on the second day which in truth was very similar to the villages I have seen in Kenya.
After another day of relaxing in Rurre, this time we managed to fly back to La Paz where we stayed for a couple of days before heading to Lake Titikaka and Copacabana. The lake is the highest navigable lake in the world at 3,800m. Copacabana was a bit of a disappointment mainly because the weather was shitty, and because we were getting tired of the high altitude now. The next stop was Puno where we visited the floating reed islands of Uros which were quite interesting and then we made our way back to Cusco - we completed our full circle round South America. We spent 3 days in Cusco where we visited our school and homestay - it was good seeing them again after 7 months and a better grasp of Spanish.
The next stop was Arequipa where we did a 2 day trip to see the Colca canyon, and came back to Arequipa yesterday. We go to see some bullfighting this afternoon before taking the night bus to Lima, fly out on Wednesday, and reach London on Thursday (Miami immigration permitting!!)