South America | Peru | Southern Peru | Arequipa | Chivay – 16 passengers, 9 seat belts
I didn’t feel confident enough to take a local bus to Chivay (pronounced shiv-eye) so I ended up on a tourist special. It turned out to be a microbus crammed with people and luggage. I was the last one on and guess where my backpack ended up, thats right, up on top for the 165 kilometers of only half paved roads between Arequipa and my first nights lodging of my 4 day tour of the Colca Canyon.
We started hitting rain about 65 kilometers into the trip and at about 85 kilometers we stopped to see some wild vicunyas and I was finally allowed to put some plastic over my gear. At the highpoint of our journey (aprox 4600 meters) we all got out to see the view and one girl passed out and hit her head pretty hard. This all happenned before I could even extricate myself from the back of the van. In all fairness things got better in Chivay where we visited the hot pools and then had a nice dinner complete with folk show. My accomodations in Chivay were better than I had hoped for considering the price I had payed for the tour, which was quite reasonable.