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Expert travel advice: Peru and Bolivia

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Big Ice Cordillera Blanca Peru

Expert travel advice: Peru and Bolivia

Andean Trails’ owner Kathy Jarvis gives her tips and insights from her recent tour with son Lewis through southern Peru and Bolivia.

 

Where have you just been?

I went to Peru and Bolivia for a month

 

What did you see and do?

I wanted to check out some homestay accommodation near Cusco, trek in the Ausangate mountains staying in lodges, catch up with some old friends on Taquile Island in Lake Titicaca, ride on the new cable cars in La Paz and do some day walks through Sajama National Park in southern Bolivia.

 

Pack horse grazing with Ausangate peak behind

Pack horse grazing with Ausangate peak behind

 

In 20 words, describe your favourite…

Place: The Sajama area is stunning, with 6,000 metre volcanoes in all directions, geysers, hot springs, vicunas and large herds of alpacas.

Hotel: The lodges on the Ausangate trek are amazing, a touch of luxury in a high remote mountain environment, sensitively designed and at one with the environment.

Excursion: The penultimate day of the Ausangate trek takes you through the rainbow mountain area where mineral rich coloured strata create a unique beautiful landscape.

 

Sewing ribbons into llamas ears Ausangate trek

Sewing ribbons into llamas ears Ausangate trek

 

Who would love these treks?

Anyone that likes remote, high altitude landscapes and some tough trekking.

 

Essentials to bring?

Good warm mountain clothing. Sun hat and sun block.! Swim suit for hot springs.

 

Best place for….

Food: The best meal we had was on our last night on trek in Ausangate, where the chef managed to produce the most tender beef I’ve eaten in Peru. Namaste in La Paz is an excellent vegetarian restaurant that does a set lunch menu for a few Bolivianos.

Beer: The beer post-trek in any of many Cusco bars

Coffee: Jacks in Cusco is very gringo orientated, and does amazing breakfasts and pretty good coffee. La Casa de Corregidor in Puno has good coffee, cake and later in the day is a lively bar in one of Puno’s few remaining colonial buildings.

 

Corpus Christi in Cusco Peru

Corpus Christi in Cusco Peru

 

Advice or top tips?

Acclimatise as much as you possibly can before any high altitude treks. We had 5 nights in Cusco and made the effort to do a few days walks in the hills around Cusco too, before Ausangate and it was barely enough. Three of the nights on that trek are spent at 4,800m, and there are several 5,000m passes to cross.

Sajama village in the National Park is at 4,500 metres, so the fitter and more acclimatised you are the more you will enjoy the walks, that take you up to nearer 5,000m.

 

Holiday in a nutshell?

Way off the beaten track remote and high altitude trekking in Bolivia and Peru.

 

Condoriri Trek Bolivia

Condoriri Trek Bolivia

 

Where to find out more?

Contact Kathy by email.

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