The seaside !!!
Trip Start Dec 03, 2010
95Trip End Dec 02, 2011
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Where I stayed
Paracas Backpacker's House
Edwin, who I met on the sand-boarding tour, gave me a lift to Paracas as he was heading for Lima. I'd already bought my bus ticket but it was only a few quid and travelling by car with company is better than sitting on a bus, often next to a smelly person...
Alberto, the manager at Paracas Backpacker's House (a basic but comfy hostal) told me a colony of flamingos had been spotted further around the bay if I fancied the walk. So, I headed off, dipping my feet into the cool waters and burying my toes in the sand (ah, bliss), walking past many plush beach houses and later came across a group of kitesurfing students - it looked great fun but scary too! I didn't find the flamingos however, but to walk by the sea again was good enough
Next day I took the popular boat trip to the Islas Ballestas, known as the poor man's Galapagos. We spotted several types of bird - Humboldt penguin, Peruvian Booby, Peruvian Pelican, Guanay and the Red-Footed Cormorant amongst others, plus one of the largest colonies of sealions. Guano collected from the black & white cormorant Guanay is still big business on the islands.
Later on a small group of us went on a tour to the Reserva Nacional Paracas, with our guide Jesus (no joke). Our group comprised of an American couple, a Greek born-Australian resident girl plus an Israeli born-South African resident lady. We were shown fossils in the sand (which used to be under the sea many years ago) around 35 million years old... Spectacular cliff faces (each rock strata which is one inch thick = 100,000 years)! Breathtaking scenery as you can see.
We stopped in a tiny fishing village for lunch and I opted for the grilled Rock Fish plus Scallops which just melted in my mouth. I'd waited a long time for good tasty fish...
We did get to see the flamingo colony later on, but only from a distance as they are protected by the national park rangers.
Although the area surrounding Paracas is desert, the meeting of this colourful desert with the burgundy-red sand, white of the waves and turquoise blue of the sea is just waiting to be turned into a work of art...