Cahuachi

I was in Nazca for less than 10 hours but the flight over the Nazca Lines only lasted 35 minutes and the whole experience was less than 2 hours. In the afternoon, Pepe, the tour operator at AeroParacas organised a trip to Cahuachi, an archaeological site about an hour´s drive through the desert from Nazca.

The Nazca people are said to have used Cahuachi mainly for ceremonial purposes and it did not have a large population.

The site is huge, consisting of some 40 adobe pyramids. Sadly, like many similar sites in Perú, they have been subjected to looting. The part of the site I visited was quite easily accessible via a dirt road and has been restored to some degree.

????????Not restored.

????????Restored.

????????To protect the restoration, you cannot go on to the pyramids.

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????????Cahuachi is set in a stunning landscape.

????????We then travelled a short distance back toward Nazca…

???????????????????????… to see an example of the aquaducts built by the Nazca culture.

???????????????????We arrived there just before sunset.

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San Isidro 2

Having enjoyed the walk through part the leafy Lima suburb of San Isidro yesterday, I looked it up on the internet to see what else it had to offer. A huaca, that’s what. Amazing isn’t it. More than 61 years without ever seeing a huaca and then 2 within the space of a fortnight. This one is called Huaca Huallamarca and has been restored , although, apparently it differs quite a bit from the original structure due to the various stages of construction and destruction it has gone through in more than 2000 years. FSCN0757

I decided to stick with the walking theme and left the hire car at home,IMG_0149 it goes so well with the penthouse.  I do not have a map of the San Isidro area but I had a good look at the location of the huaca online before leaving home. It seemed straightforward enough. Well, at least up until the point where I took a left turn where I should have taken a right.

Realising quite quickly that I must have made an error and spotting a Starbucks nearby, I decided to take some well deserved refreshment and ask for directions. Two more mistakes there! A cappuccino cost me more than a full breakfast with coffee would elsewhere and the staff had no idea where the huaca was. The guy serving, spoke reasonable English so there was no communication issue, even though I had asked for directions in Spanish. Well, hooray for Wifi, as I did a quick search while waiting for my coffee to cool and found that I was less than half a mile away from my target. I had just taken a parallel road.

It is sad, however to think that something as big as the huaca, would go unnoticed by people. It is not as if they try to hide their buildings or camouflage themIMG_0170.

Ten minutes later I was at the huaca, looking at this enormous ramp that went from the ground to summit of the pyramid and thinking, ” this is so wrong, on so many levels”.DSCN0732 Apparently the ramp has been put in such a way as to make it more tourist friendly.

There is a small museum with some artifacts that managed to evade grave robbers and the like. It also has a rather gruesome looking mummy.????? Extraordinarily, there was a wooden face mask which just has to be the original Spongebob Squarepants???????????????.

Climbing the ramp, you get the opportunity to appreciate more fully the beautiful surroundings.DSCN0739A closer look maybe.???????????????

It could be described as an ancient body bag with a wooden head placed on top. Every day an education.

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Expat

Huaca Pucllana

Huaca Pucllana

Yesterday, I visited Huaca Pucllana, the site of a preIncan pyramid/temple which has lain undisturbed for centuries cunningly disguised as a hill. It is still being excavated, which you can see, is painstakingly slow.

DSCN0527 The bricks are made of mud so they were obviously confident of there not being much rainfall. The design and construction make it resistant to earthquakes. DSCN0523The people that lived in the area cultivated the land and had a healthy diet of Coca ?????????????????????????????????which was supplemented  by ????????????????. This has been superseded in modern times by….DSCN0469 .

I am not sure which is the faster food as I have never tried catching a guinea pig.

Joking aside, for anyone coming to Lima, Huaca Pucllana is well worth the visit. All visitors are escorted round the site by knowledgeable guides, including English speakers.

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