In this latest series, I will be going through all the countries I’ve travelled to on my mission to visit every single country in the world. In this article, we will be covering country #32: Peru. If you haven’t gotten a chance already, read this story first to find out why I’m trying to visit all 193 UN-recognized countries.
Travelling to Peru has been a dream of mine since I was a kid. When I was in grade 6, I learned about Peru from social studies. Since then, it’s been in the back of my mind that one day, I will travel here.
VIDEO – Country #32: Peru
Blog post on Bolivia
- My Adventures Going to Cusco Peru from Copacabana Lake Titicaca
- Complete LA, Bolivia, Peru, and Ecuador Spending Breakdown
- Machu Picchu – 22 Pictures from Start to Finish (Starting from Cusco)
Bus from Lake Titicaca to Cusco
My journey to Peru started when I crossed over from Bolivia into Peru via Lake Titicaca. From there, me, my sisters, and girlfriend took Bolivia hop (bus company) to take us to Cusco. Along the way, the bus stopped at a city called Puno for us to eat dinner before continuing the long overnight ride to Cusco.
Surprisingly the bus ride was pleasant despite the twist and turns that made us mildly nauseous. The bus showed us the classic movie Mrs. Doubtfire which helped keep us entertained during the long journey.
Upon arrival, the company provided a free taxi ride to take us to our hotels. Talk about amazing customer service.
My sister Eunice redeemed her Best Western points for three nights which we used as our accommodation in Cusco.
Cusco city exploration
The city of Cusco is beautiful. And pretty safe, too. Apparently, the Peruvian government keeps the city secure to encourage tourists to keep visiting.
We took the time to book our tickets to Machu Picchu which was pretty expensive. Along with the train ride, we’re looking to paying over $250.
Train ride to Aguas Calientes
The next day, we took the long train ride from Cusco to Aguas Calientes, which is the launching point for Machu Picchu.
The train ride was very comfortable and we were provided with snacks during the trip. We didn’t notice that time flew quickly because, before long, we were already in Aguas Calientes.
Bus ride from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu
After arriving in Aguas Calientes, we got on the bus that would take us to Machu Picchu.
It was a fairly short bus ride up the windy road to take you to Machu Picchu. Yes, you can hike to the top but it seems only the extreme budget backpackers were doing this. And technically, I was an extreme budget backpacker when I was travelling for one year. But, at this point, I was travelling with my sisters and girlfriend and so I travelled normally with them.
Machu Picchu: One of the 7 New Wonders of the World
Machi Picchu did not disappoint. When my eyes laid upon this hidden city in the mountains, it brought me back to my childhood when I was reading about this place in my grade 6 social studies textbook.
It’s really as nice as you see on pictures!
Unfortunately, if you want tickets to Huayna Picchu, you need to book several months ahead of time which we failed to do. So, we took the consolation prize and hiked up the Sun Gate instead.
After hiking up Sun Gate, our next destination is to head back down and explore Machu Picchu proper next.
There are lots of llamas in Machu Picchu but they’re domesticated animals purposely placed here for the entertainment of tourists. Their presence did feel right for this place since these animals are endemic to this region of the world.
Stranded in Aguas Calientes
After a fun day trip to Machu Picchu, we grab a bite to eat in Aguas Calientes before heading to the train station. All of a sudden, the train was significantly delayed due to landslides along the rail train tracks.
It looked like a refugee camp in the train station as all the tourists were stranded in this place. By the time they cleared the tracks, it was getting quite late at night and we were dead exhausted. Many of the employees of the train company also looked tired and my sisters decided to give one of them some food to eat. He looked so happy.
The train was unable to go all the way to Cusco and we had to connect through a bus to complete the trip. Sadly to say, we missed our trip to Rainbow Mountain which we had booked the day prior.
Cancelled trip to Rainbow Mountain
Thankfully, we were able to get a refund for our trip to Rainbow Mountain. We still had to pay a small credit card fee but the rest of the payment was refunded.
Since our trip was cancelled, we spent the rest of the day exploring Cusco some more. We even got a Peruvian massage which was a hit or miss experience. I personally got a masseuse that knew what she was doing. But, my sisters and Karen had no clue what they were doing and it was one of the worst massages they’ve ever had in their life.
Before long, we said our goodbyes to my sisters as they fly back to Canada. Karen and I would continue on our journey in South America the next day by going to Ecuador next.
Sister’s left and Karen and I stay one more night before going to Ecuador
Karen and I went to book accommodation in Cusco by the time my sisters left. To our surprise, by the time we arrived at the place where the accommodation was supposed to be, all we saw was this beat-up alleyway.
We left immediately because we didn’t know if this place was safe or not. After walking on the streets of Cusco, we randomly stayed at the first hotel we saw.
This hotel had a nice view of the city which was the good part.
The bad part was that it smelled like a dank toilet in our room.
Flight to Ecuador
The next day, we flew out of Cusco on LATAM airlines connecting from Lima before finally arriving in Ecuador. The flight was not memorable but we did use my British Airways Avios to book this flight and saved us a ton of money.
Peru is a fun country to visit for adventure seekers. I personally loved my time here, especially since it fulfills a childhood dream destination. I found myself feeling safe while travelling in Peru.
Some people say there’s a lot of scams here and while that is probably true, we didn’t experience much of it.
I think if you use your common sense, your time in this country is going to be a memorable one.