Hiking the Inca Trail, Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu

Inca trail ruins

Jackson and I had already been travelling for 2 and a half months before we arrived in Cusco, Peru. It was exciting to meet up with everyone, although immediately we encountered problems – we suffered from dull headaches from the high altitude (Cusco is approximately 3600m above sea level) and our hostel was overbooked, unable to fit us in.

We acclimatized in Cusco for two days before starting the Inca trail, a four day trek through the Andes Mountains. Acclimatization is necessary as we were out of breath just walking the streets of Cusco.

At the beginning I wasn’t looking forward to the trek. I was worried about the altitude, the camping and cold temperature but in hindsight it was all needless concern – it is one of the greatest experiences I’ve had in my life!

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Starry Night

Stars and milky way at the Salt Flats in Bolivia

Our tour guide said he would take us to a place to see the stars. It was the dead of winter with minus temperatures but we begrudgingly agreed after putting on several layers of clothing. About a half hour of driving around in complete darkness, we stopped in a seemingly random spot out in the Salt Flats. We got out of the car and were speechless at the view before our eyes. We could see the milky way clearly and it was the most amazing view of the stars we had ever seen. We stood in the cold and tried to name the constellations, while shooting stars flew overhead.

Do you remember the last time you felt alive?

Patagonia

I often pondered this question whilst listening to Jose Gozales – Stay Alive whilst in transit through South America. The line that resonated with me was “Do whatever just to stay alive”.

The last time I felt truly alive was actually today. It was our first day in Patagonia and after a morning of touring a cave, we arrived at our accommodation, a farmland in front of fjords and snow-capped mountains. It was beautifully remote and only accessible by boat or private dirt road.

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