March 22-23, 2017 The bus ride from Arequipa to Cusco was beautiful. We drove through highlands with rolling green hills, herds of llama/alpaca, and the occasional river and distant snow-capped mountain. We saw very few trees or shrubs. I don’t know if they were burned for firewood or simply don’t grow well in this environment. If there are roads in this area that aren’t used by buses etc, it would make a wonderful area to bike through.
March 21, 2017 After hiking in Colca Canyon, we took a rest day in Arequipa, which was wonderful. We slept in, caught up on journaling/blogging, and took advantage of the fancy food Arequipa had to offer with tasty hot chocolate (but not as good as Chocolat Vitale’s), and a wonderful mango tort. After that I was all ready to catch the 5:15am bus to Cusco. (That’s a lie. I don’t think I’ll ever be ready to catch a 5:15am bus, but I can make myself do it most days.
March 17-20, 2017 Colca Canyon is one of the world’s deepest canyons, and just 5 hours away from Arequipa by bus. We chose a tourist bus which leaves Arequipa at 3am, so we could make it to the condor viewpoint by 8:30am. Waking up before 3am does not make me happy, and having just 20 minutes at the condor viewpoint didn’t make things any better, especially since the condors we saw were all far away.