Peru Vacation Pages

Machu Picchu
Machu Picchu, May 24, 1997

    Clicking on title photo brings larger version (154k)
Andrys Basten, photos taken 5/15 - 5/28/97

These pages were originally set up for friends interested in my trip to Peru in May '97. It was my first trip to a distant land in 30 years, so I've decided to make a production of it. I hope it's useful to anyone interested in travel to that beautiful place

*Click* on photos on this page (including title photo above) for larger views.

Vendor postcard Customized postcard.
   Clicking on this (34k) brings up a closer version of the llama and its owner behind my broken wing.

   This particular memento of the trip was from a vendor of instant very-personalized postcards who caught up with our group an hour later in a rural portion of our tour (Tambomachay). We had wondered why he was taking photos of us walking in the city of Cuzco. I was happy, though, that the broken bone hadn't affected the trip

    He sold these easily when he found us later. Vanity's a good source of income anywhere.

Why the plaster cast? See postcard below. (79k)
Temple of the Sun Temple of the Sun postcard

   This was the first building official discoverer Hiram Bingham saw at Machu Picchu when, in 1911, he came upon the site on top of a mountain 8,000 feet above sea level. It was also the last building I saw at Machu Picchu.

The postcard above is for friends curious about how I managed to tumble and where.
    After reading my guidebook on the top stone step at the Temple entrance, I pulled myself up via a temporary wood door barrier there which then broke from its grooves, sending me backwards down these ancient stone steps. I noticed a big time-gap after some painful bounces, because I was now also rolling off the 5-foot-high ledge, thudding onto the dirt road on the level below. Due to some kind of angelic intervention, only an arm/wrist bone was broken, and we were able to continue on with other fascinating tours the following day, though I missed seeing a sundown and next day's dawn at truly awesome Machu Picchu. Still, I had 2 full, unforgettable days there.

The rest of the series will be in, more or less, chronological order. Here's one photo, though, which shows something of the landscape of Peru, which is extremely varied. It's often breathtaking, both figuratively and literally, as the average height above sea level in this trip through the highlands was 12,000-13,000ft.

*Click* on this for the much clearer, large version (107k).an area of The Sacred Valley
This photo was taken in the Sacred Valley area outside Cuzco, which includes the temple/fortresses of Ollantaytambo and Sacsahuaman and the Pisac market with its high-quality offerings of alpaca sweaters and rugs at bargain prices.

The quickly shifting light of Peru can create almost totally different landscapes from moment to moment. Gold Dusk is a common sight, as is the creative terracing almost everywhere in difficult terrain.


Next stop is Colca Canyon, Peru ...

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