Category Archives: Peru

Ausangate, the snowy mountains of Cusco. April 2010

I met Mario in Santa Maria where he spent a night with two British tourists returning from Santa Teresa. Maria is a professional guide with 23 years of experience. He is a bit younger than I and we connected well. … Continue reading

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Under the magic of Cusco, April 2010

Cusco is a very pleasant town. Now that the Machu Picchu is open, there are many tourists here. The guesthouse where I stayed was full, while I was one of the few tourists here on my first stop in mid February.

I like the stone streets, the big Inca rocks holding Spanish buildings, the small and medium squares that appear at the end of a small street. I like the view on Cusco from San Blas, the small white street on the hills, the San Blas square and its old little church. I like the huge variety of people that one sees in the street and I love the life and colors around the main market, the voices, the faces, and the essence of all. I love the people too, very much. Continue reading

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Visit to the Machu Picchu. Is it safe? Report from the inside on April 1st, 2010

It’s official. The Machu Picchu is reopening today to the public after over two months of being closed due to the heavy rains, mudslides and the ravaging and destructive river Vilcanota. How safe is it for tourists to go and visit the Inca City? I’ve spent the past 6 weeks in Santa Maria, Valle de la Convención, where the Inca Jungle Trail begins. Every night the rain was falling intensively and every day a road had been cut because of mudslides, at time leaving people stocked in a bus or a combi for hours. Has the situation improved? Not really… Continue reading

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The gringo of Santa Maria, Peru. March 2010

Santa María is a small town with about 1200 inhabitants near the Vilconota River, a 5 to 7 hours ride from Cusco depending on the type of public transport. The village is on the Inca Jungle Trail… But for the past 6 or 7 weeks, because of the intense rains, it’s all shut down. The Machu Picchu is closed and lots of mudslides have destroyed the trail in many areas. Everyone wonders how long it will take to reopen the trail, and how they’ll manage to open an alternative route since some sections are just completely gone. There are no tourists here. People look at the town as a ghost town, although local business continues and when they are no mudslides cutting the road, buses and mini vans continue linking the village to Cusco and the nearby cities of Quillabamba and Santa Teresa. Continue reading

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Cost of things in Cusco, Peru. March 2010

Cost of things in this area of Peru… At the moment of writing this – March 2010 – the local money is the sol. One euro is about 3.91 soles. Here are a few references… A meal… 4 or 5 … Continue reading

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Schools and Computers – The case of Santa Maria, Valle de la Convención, Cusco. March 2010.

Peru, I heard, is investing a lot in computer technology for schools. When I was in France, I got invited by the OLPS XO developers group – the One Laptop Per Child project. I was told there that the XO computers were very popular in Peru and that many schools were using it. While in Peru, I heard that schools also received many traditional computers and that people from the previous government were using the momentum to improve their image. Continue reading

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Quellomayo, Valle de la Convencion, Peru. Woofing in a ghost village. February 2010.

Quellomayo, Valle de la Convención, between Santa María and Santa Teresa, on the Vilconota river, a few hours from the Machu Picchu by foot. Quellomayo, or what is left of it is located in a small valley about 1300 meters … Continue reading

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