We crossed the border in Huaquillas with no issue. The only thing which took longer than we thought was to get an insurance for the side-cars.
Then, we stopped in Cancas, a village on the seaside. We spent a few days there, in the family house of a French friend. We took the opportunity to celebrate Marie’s birthday, ate the best “ceviche” of Peru and have been lucky enough to see whales. A great and relaxing moment before to go back on the road.
We used the Pan-American Highway, this is the desert: nothing on the horizon except sand and a lot of wind. We stopped in Huanchaco, famous for surfing. After a surf session, we went towards the National Park of Huascarán. We left the Pan-American Highway and went by the “Cañón del Pato”, a winding road over 100kms. We crossed many narrow tunnels built in the mountains and used very narrow paths. The surroundings are beautiful.
A stop in Caraz for the service of the side-cars and a few repairs including the welding of the exhaust as we had a leak. Then, we went to the Lagoon Parón in the National Park of Huascarán. There are 32kms of steep gravelled paths in the mountains. A tough journey for the vehicles as the engines are overheating. After 4 hours, we finally reached our destination. The lagoon has a turquoise colour and the summit of the mountain in the background is covered of snow. This is breath-taking! After a trek, we went back down and went towards the coast. Back in the desert, we visited the National Park of Paracas which offers seaside cliffs and sandy dunes. A very windy place but with glorious surroundings.
We carried on towards South and reached Ica and more specifically Huacachina which is famous for the sandboarding over sandy dunes. After a buggy tour and a few sandboard slopes, we went back in the mountainside and reached Ayacucho. The weather was sometimes foggy, then windy and rainy before to see again the sunshine.
Ayacucho is a very touristic city but enjoyable. Obviously, we stopped to visit the Machu Picchu and also enjoyed to climb La Montaña which offers a great view over this famous Inca site. This is something to see it in photos, but something else to see it in reality! We visited a few other archaeological sites from the Inca civilization on our way including the Salinas de Maras, Moray, Chinchero and Saqsayhuman. We then decided to go towards Arequipa. On the way, we stopped to explore the colourful mountains of Winicunca (the Mountains with 7 colours). The path to go there is winding and gravelled, plus there is a trek of a couple of hours before to reach the beautiful and colourful mountains.
On the way to Arequipa, the road between Yauri and Yanque was great with the side-cars and offered glorious views. We stopped by the Colca Valley to see condors flying around. A peaceful moment to admire them flying back and forth during hours. Arequipa is a touristic city but very enjoyable. The white and large buildings and the main square give a « European » atmosphere to the city. We enjoyed the handcrafted markets to send a parcel with Peruvian gifts for Christmas to our family.
Then, it’s time to reach the Bolivian border. On the last Peruvian kilometres we can see the famous and huge Titicaca lake. Another famous site which cannot let us indifferent.