Our next stop was Nazca, but unfortunately due to my recent illness, I did not feel a roller coaster small aircraft ride to view the Nazca lines would be sensible, so instead spent the day exploring the town and lazing by the pool. That evening we were cooked a traditional meal in an earth oven – meat and potatoes and vegetables were placed on hot coals, covered in banana leaves and soil and left for hours to slowly cook. Slightly bland, but an interesting meal all the same. In the morning we went to a look out post over the tree and hand Nazca lines. The Nazca lines are a series of geolyphs believed to have been created between 400-600 AD. They are shallow grooves in the surface of the ground and have been mostly naturally preserved due to the low winds in the area. The purpose of the lines is contested, some believing they are symbols to the gods, others astronomical, and other theories even suggest they were created by aliens!
After our pit stop, we boarded the bus again to take us to an oasis in the desert. A group of us I,media rely opted for a ride in a dune buggy and sand boarrding. It was amazing! The sand buggy ride was insane and we spent half the time airborne as we sped over dunes. The scenery itself was fantastic and so bizarre to think that one country has jungle, desert, mountains and glaciers. After our crazy ride we were taken to the top of really steep sand dunes to board down – I opted for the lying face first option as you picked up more speed – it was incredible fun, and we even managed to persuade our driver to take us to a extremely steep dune! After returning to the oasis, we washed off in the pool and relaxed before our next stop,
That evening our final stop was the coastal town of Paracas. We awoke early for a tour of the Ballestas Islands – a haven for sea lions, Humboldt penguins, blue footed boobies and a variety of other birds. It was a chance for Phil to get a taste of the Galapagos as he would not get a chance to visit on this trip.
Our final stop of the trip was Lima. We all went out for a lovely farewell dinner and drinks. The following morning it was time for me to say goodbye to Phil – my bus buddy was heading back to the desert after a jam packed three weeks. That evening myself and the remaining members of the group attended an amazing fountain light show..the best four sol I ever spent, it was so much fun! All the fountains were lit up differently and there were water mazes, laser shows and projections of photos on the water spray all set in time to music, from classical music to spanish music, to abba and the Beatles. Definitely a must see! That evening was my last night in Lima….and the next day I took a flight with Aoife where our next adventure awaited us….the Galápagos Islands!