Off to Peru
Trip Start Mar 15, 2010
31Trip End Apr 29, 2010
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Where I stayed
Anyway, after two flights - Cancun to Miami and Miami to Lima, I finally arrived in Peru at 11.30pm om Thursday. Having spent an hour at US immigration in Miami, I then had almost another hour at Peruvian immigration - what a great way to pass your day! The airport in Lima had signs saying this is an earthquake safe zone, a very reassuring welcome (there were also some of these in the hotel and on the way to the hotel there was a sign for tsunami evacuation route, so I began to wonder what sort of place I had arrived in
On Friday I wandered the area by the hotel in Lima. The hotel is close to the coast in an area called Miraflores which is the holiday area of Lima. Early in the day it was very misty, but as it cleared the coastline was quite spectacular. I didnt realise the place was perched up on top of a huge cliff and to get to the beach would have been a major trek. There was a very upmarket shopping mall built into the side of the cliff and I spotted a stall selling tickets for an open top bus tour, so I signed up for that. The tour was interesting - people had told me that Lima isnt pretty, and that is quite correct. The streets were mostly very uninspiring and shabby until we reached the very centre. There was a group of lads doing streetdance in the road at traffic lights, which was most unusual and rather stupid, I thought, given the way the traffic moves! The Plaza Mayor was quite spectacular with a lovely cathedral, Archbishops Palace and government buildings. We got off the bus and walked round the San Francisco monastry and church which had fascinating catacombs full of bones and skulls. There were lots of colourful houses perched on the hillside going up out of the city, which looked like they could fall down at any moment. There was an incredible jam of buses and traffic on the way back, but somehow the vehicles all just pushed their way through.
At 6pm we had a wlcome meeting to joing the new tour. Our tour leader is from Lima and he is called Angel. The group is very different to the last one, as I am the only single traveller - there are 4 couple and two pairs of ladies, mostly from Australia. I went for a lovely dinner with two ladies from Philadephia, Mary Beth and Nancy, then back to the hotel to repack for the jungle.