Mystery lines – Nazca, Peru

I have recently arrived from the joyous experience of visiting Nazca, Peru, and having a fun packed adventure! What initially drove me to visit the place was the mysterious and infamous Nazca lines which decorate the desert wonderfully. Alongside that I visited Cahuachi, some ruins discovered recently, which were from the Nazca civilisation who ruled around 1000 years before the Incas, and also an animal sanctuary a bit further away from the region of Nazca in Ica. The amount of vicuñas and  huanacos that were on the roadside was totally adorable!

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Not quite a llama, the huanaco, wild and untameable creatures.

DSCN0347The only form of transport you have to get to Nazca is either by car or a coach. The only choice for me, of course, was by coach. Now there are a vast amount of coached in Lima to get you to your destination, all offering different prices and comfortability. I decided to go along with ‘Cruz del Sur’ because it was the closest to get to, and I had seen many driving around during my stay so I thought it was more popular therefore better. The standard of the travel was excellent; the staff were very friendly and polite, and you have a varied amount of films to choose from throughout your time on the coach. The ‘VIP’ area, as they like to call it, costs 96 soles which equal to $28, and the cheaper tickets cost only less. Having travelled on both, I highly recommend the ‘VIP’ area as the seats are of much higher quality than the others and after several hours, you want to be relaxed and prepared for when you arrive in Nazca!

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My hotel in which I accommodated myself in was called ‘La Posada de Don Hono’ which is around a two-minute walk into their city centre. The room was beautiful, very soothing beds, and a large bathroom with a hot shower, and a stunning terrace which one could relax after a heavy day of adventuring. They had a super cute dog too if you love animals just as much as me. The greeted us at arrival and drove us to the hotel, for free, and told us exactly where we could find everything we needed in the city centre. The only downside I would have to pick out is that they only have breakfast so for everything else you need to go the extra mile to pay for food, luckily, however, the restaurants around there are cheap and tasty, so you’ll have no problem finding some place to eat. I would highly recommend their traditional Peruvian dishes. However, you will also find French, German and Chinese restaurants.

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The view from the gorgeous terrace

Before the trip, we organised tours, to have everything prepared once we arrive because we would not have much time to pick out trips as our stay for too short. It is recommended that one do so, as the people who sell you tours may sometimes bump up the price when they see a desperate tourist. The one thing everyone who goes to Nazca can agree on is that you have to see the Nazca lines if you enjoy flying that is. A light breakfast is mandatory as the plane swerves up and down to get a good look at the lines. Pictures do not give it justice!

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It is said to be a mystery, but if you visit the ‘Planetarium’ in the hotel ‘Nazca Lines’, you learn about the discoveries of Maria Reich, a German woman who dedicated her whole life to finding the meaning behind each of the twelve lines once formed by the Nazca civilisation. Her theories claim that the lines point to the place in which the sun rises every morning and that they are symbols dedicated to their many Gods. The Nazca people did not believe in one God, and like the Egyptians worshipped many. Because Nazca is in the desert, they had a lack of water and would often pray and worship the God of water to stay alive. One of the most famous lines is possibly the monkey, which is the biggest and most strange one there is. It is said that it may show the Nazca people having links with people from the Rainforest.

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The German flag alongside the Peruvian flag situated in their Plaza de Armas, in honour of Maria Reich

I would highly recommend at least staying in Nazca for a couple more days than I did, and take advantage of all tours on offer, even sand boarding which is a three-hour expedition to reach the top of the dune and an easy 10-minute ride downhill. However, I have been told the view is spectacular from the top! As soon as I post this I will be packing for my next expedition, which will be in the Amazon Rainforest, Iquitos. I will post my experience once I arrive back in Lima.

 

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