Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Amazon Wildlife Tour (Day 2) - Peru

Our jungle lodge:
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Breakfast of fresh fruit! 
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The amazingly delicious bread and some kind of granola which was pretty tasty (and a bottle of peach yogurt - were we supposed to somehow mix them on our plates?)
Then I had my fresh fruit that I bought at Paucartambo - a pepino which was like an apple/pear, Capulin which were cherries and a passionfruit. All very yummy! 

After that we hit the road again to the Amazon river! 
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It's dry season, so the waters weren't rapids - but it made it a little difficult to navigate some spots. 

We got to our second jungle lodge and had lunch
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Some kind of vegetable puree (which turned out to be the sauce for the fettuccine) and cheese and a chicken salad
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Real meat and potatoes and these absolutely amazing ripe and delicious avocados stuffed with veggies and topped with queso. 

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Fettuccine and yuca with vegetable ceviche
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YUM! 

After our filling meal, we headed out to the jungle for a hike and to find some animals (like the capybara and hoatzin)
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Rather serene - but really humid and hot. 

Then it was back for a snack of popcorn and dinner at the lodge:
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Popcorn and yummy soup

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Some kind of frittata with queso on top

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And for dessert, we had chocolate pudding and a cracker. 

Overall: I had a pretty good day - my friends were a little miserable in the humidity and with the crazy small mosquitoes biting them. 

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Amazon Wildlife Tour (Day 1) - Manu Jungle, Peru

We went to the town of Huancarani and Paucamtambo with Amazon Wildlife Tours to see the Manu Jungle
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We got our first breakfast at this snack bar
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Chicken Sandwich 
Relatively simple sandwich - although it didn't really taste like any chicken pattie I've had - I think it was a mix of meat and spices. 

Some fresh fruit from the market
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Passionfruit, some apple/pear thing only in Peru and some "cherries" which weren't really cherries.

Then more driving: 
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Lunch al Fresco in the Jungle
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Chicken, green and yellow bean and carrot salad with a yuca on the side. 
Pretty good - if a little underseasoned. 

More driving before finally getting to our Amazon Jungle Lodge for dinner: 
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OMG this was some of the best bread I've ever had! It was harder on the outside and soft and fluffy inside and it was really tasty! (Our tour guides picked it up somewhere along the way out of Cusco)

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Quinoa Soup
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Fried Amazon River fish
Lots of little bones (which my friends all ate without choking - but given my problems with fish bones, I spent some extra time eating this), but it was really good! 
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Fried Rice...a little green
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There was a lot of queso, but I had no idea what this was. 

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Cucumber, cheese and tomatoes

The meals with Amazon Wildlife Tour weren't as amazing as Alpaca, but they were okay. This was a lot of travelling by bus - so we were kind of exhausted too. 

Monday, 28 September 2015

Agua Caliente - Peru

The next morning we were up at 3am to go line up at the gate to the trail to Machu Picchu and we waited until the gates opened so we could hike to the Sun Gate. 
From there, we hiked down to Machu Picchu:
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Some lazy llamas

After wandering around the ruins for a while, we went to catch the bus down to Agua Caliente (which was a fast winding journey down a steep cliff). 
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We went and had two of the local Peruvian specialties here: 
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Alpaca steak
It was interesting - rather lean and more of a pork texture than beef texture. Flavour wise it was sweeter than pork. 

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The guinea pig didn't have a lot of meat, but it was still pretty tasty (if prepared a little too much like it was grilled on a stick - we could see it's teeth!). It was pretty crispy and greasy and it didn't have all the hair (no furballs for us!) I would say it was kind of like chicken. 

Inca Trail with Alpaca Expeditions (Day 3) - Peru

Another bright and early morning, the green food tent (green for Alpaca!) tinted the photos:
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Bread - Peruvians really like bread for breakfast
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Fried Yuca
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Omelettes! So yummy!
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Bananas

Then we were off on our hike through the Cloud Forest! 
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We stopped for a lunch break and had some delicious food again.
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One of the things that really made my experience with Alpaca exceptional was their attention to all the tiny details! Like the folded napkin above, they really put all their effort into making our hiking & camping experience easier. Given we also paid a little more for the Alpaca experience over other tour companies, they still made it feel like a luxurious "glamping" hike.

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Ceviche - no fish in this ceviche, but it had that perfect spicy element to it and that fresh tangy and sour taste associated with ceviche.

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Noodle soup!

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Fried Rice
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Quinoa! The super grain that Peru is so famous for!
Yum - apparently quinoa for local Peruvians is really expensive since Peru makes so much more money exporting it.

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Cabbage slaw
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Fresh cucumber and tomatoes
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Squash
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Really delicious fried chicken with sauce - so good!

Then more hiking and llamas
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And we came back to camp and were surprised by CAKE! I can't believe they baked a cake for us on a mountainside!!!
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Our chef Leonardo with his cake!
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So good! And it tasted great too!

Our actual dinner:
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Garlic bread
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Beef sauce to go along with the spaghetti
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Stuffed Peppers
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Stir Fried Veggies

Food was amazing (as usual)!