Peru Travel Plans!
About 2 years ago, Mike and I started talking about doing a trip to Peru. I have always wanted to hike to Machu Picchu. Mike has never been on an “Ashley Trip”, which made it an even more exciting adventure to plan. Side note: an “Ashley Trip” consists of backpacks, hikes, bus rides, and hostels, as opposed to beaches, resorts, and free margaritas.
We quickly realized that we wouldn’t be able to make it happen during the summer of 2012, as the cost for flights alone are astronomical. In an attempt to make our vacation a priority, we created a separate “vacation savings” account and set up automatic transfers to take $5 a day out of our checking account so it would continue to grow. This account is considered untouchable (with the exception of vacation expenses, of course). Any extra bonus cash has also been deposited into this account. At the end of April, we realized that our Peru dreams might actually become a reality – we had reached just over $3,000, almost enough to pay for our flights 🙂
Let the planning begin – once we got the okay to take 2 weeks off at work, we bought our flights and started planning. Er…Ashley started planning and Mike said, “just tell me what clothes I need to buy”.
Fast forward to ONE WEEK before we begin our trip…
We’re about ready to go! We will be spending 15 days in Peru starting late next week. Our general plan is as follows:
Days 1 – 3: Cusco
Day 4: Begin Machu Picchu hike – all day mountain biking
Day 5: Hike day 2 – also whitewater rafting
Day 6: Hike day 3 – also jungle ziplining
Day 7: Hike day 4 – arrive at Machu Picchu for sunrise and explore the ruins
Day 8: Train to Puno (on lake Titicaca) – called “one of the world’s greatest train journeys”.
Day 9: Boat trip on Lake Titicaca, spend the night with a local family on the floating island of Amantani
Day 10: Day 2 – boat trip on Lake Titicaca, visit Taquile island
Day 11: Bus to Arequipa, the 2nd largest city in Peru
Day 12: Free day to relax and explore Arequipa
Day 13: Hike the Colca Canyon, relax in local hot springs
Day 14: Colca Canyon day 2 – watch La Cruz del Condor
Day 15: Arequipa – Market tour and Peruvian Cooking Experience
Day 16: Back to the USA
Our trip sounds like it will be both incredibly amazingly awesome as well as exhausting. I am sure we will need a vacation from our vacation when we get home. I am just so pumped to share my love for real world travel with my husband – I hope he enjoys it as much as I do! I plan to keep a journal while we are there, so hopefully I’ll have some fun stories and photos to share with y’all when we return.
A change of race plans
On another note…I had hoped to complete an Olympic distance triathlon this summer. I even made myself accountable by writing about it here and here. Do you want the good news or the bad news first? How about the good news? Okay. I did complete an Olympic distance training schedule and actually feel much better about my swimming abilities than I did before I started training. I even completed a “practice” race where I did all three disciplines on the same morning (.93 mile swim, 25 mile bike ride, 6.2 mile run). I’m pretty confident that I would be able to complete the triathlon I was planning on doing without a problem. However (bad news), I’ve decided that doing my very first Olympic tri right after 2 weeks in Peru might not be the smartest idea. Granted, we will be very active while we are in South America. However, I won’t be following any semblance of a training plan and we will certainly not be following a diet that is conducive to staying in race shape. I would rather hold off on doing my first big triathlon until I know that I’ll be prepared. That said, I plan on looking into a race early next summer.
So…now you know. Hopefully you’re not too disappointed in me and we can still be friends.
I’m actually really happy to get back into lifting weights and other forms of exercise. I’ve been following a tri training plan since the beginning of April, so it’s nice to have the freedom to do what makes me happy on any given day. “Gorgeous day for a bike ride! Let’s do that!” Or, “It’s too damn hot to run outside. Screw that”. I just need to be careful not to fall off the workout wagon after our trip or I’ll need to go back into schedule mode.
Wherever you are and whatever you’re up to, I hope you’re happy and that life is treating you well. Catch you on the flip side. Hasta Luego!