Trip Start Mar 18, 2008
23Trip End Ongoing
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Where I stayed
We didnt change much money at the border because they rip you off and as such, our accomodation options were limited when we arrived. We now have a new candidate for worst accomodation in South America! The place looked like a shanty town in the back alleys of Mexico City. The mattress was a thirty year old piece of foam resting on a concrete slab and we both endured some pain to avoid using the bathroom facilities. For seven bucks a night what do you expect. Early check out was the go and we headed for greener pastures - the photos of both accomodations should give you an idea of the vast difference a few extra bucks makes
Mancora is more chilled and friendly than Montanita and the beach is kept cleaner. A local tuk-tuk driver was telling us it rains only one or two days each year and the landscape is vastly different to coastal Ecuador, with dusty brown hills spreading out behind the town. Some days when in the surf and looking back at the landscape, you wouldnt be surprised to see Taliban fighters training back there. There is only one wave here - a perfect left that breaks over a shallow rock shelf and can run for around 100m. Sadly the swell didnt pick up over head high during the week but there were still some good waves had. PT bought a nice board for all of $130 so that should see some good use over the coming weeks in northern Peru. Lazy days in the hammock were again on the agenda and our hotel provided great facilities for relaxing.
Our mate Julio with the tuk-tuk picked us up one afternoon to visit the renowned hotsprings and mud bath. The scenery as you move away from the coast is barren but also beautiful, with the rock hills reflecting a range of different shades of brown and red. As we have come to expect with shonky tourism over here, the hotsprings were about the size of a spa and the mud bath was really nothing more than a muddy patch at the bottom of the hole full of dirty water. But driving in the back of the tuk-tuk across the dusty terrain and across creeks (as well as pushing when we got bogged in the sand) made the adventure more than worthwhile.