So it's getting closer to the big day - October 24th, 2005 to be exact! That's when I head off to begin my adventures! I'm going to outline my itinerary below(it's very loose at this point!)- let's see if I actually manage to keep to it as the next year progresses! A year - yikes! Sounds like a long time - as I keep telling you all, be prepared, I could be home in a month in tears! Fingers crossed tho' that doesn't happen!
So here goes:
Leave Boston Oct 24th at 6:05pm to fly to Lima via Miami. Arrive Lima 4:20am and then hop on a wee plane to Cuzco at 6:40am (do you really need this much detail I ask myself?). Get to Cuzco at 7:55am where my new found friends from Loki Hostel will pick me up! Yah - I will have arrived at my first stop! Spend 3 days in Cuzco getting acclimatized to the altitude (3,326m), visiting the Sacred Valley with its' Inca citadels of Pisac and Ollantaytambo, and gearing up for my 4 day Inca Trail to the lost city of Machu Picchu. Total distance is only 33km but the ancient trail laid by the Inca's back in the 1500's winds its way up and down and around the mountains, hence the fact it takes 4 days to get up and back down again! Really looking forward to this!!!
So - back to the itinerary. Arrive back in Cuzco on the bewitching night of Oct 31st - Halloween! Stay at Loki one last time then head off on Nov. 1st back to Lima where I pick up another flight to Quito in Ecuador. Meet up with my friend Dominique at the Secret Garden Hostel in Quito. That's the only real planning done so far.... the rest of the trip is very loose but we know we want to go to the Galapagos Islands, hike around Ecuador, head down via Peru to Bolivia, visit Lake Titicaca and the Salar de Uyuni (the hallucinogenic salt deserts with geysers and eerie lagoons), maybe pop down the Amazon, on then to Chile where we intend to enjoy the many vineyards to be found there, hike in Patagonia, onwards to Argentina where we have to learn to tango then phew, time for a rest on the beautiful beaches of Uruguay, and if there is time, pop over to Rio for a wee look! I leave South America from Buenos Aires and fly back to Boston on March 1st, 2006 -4 months after arriving... and fingers crossed my awful Spanish gets just that little bit better.
Phase 2 of my world adventure will begin around the end of March when I set off to visit friends in Australia and New Zealand. Then it's onward to Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, Thailand, India (maybe Dubai?) and home to Scotland then back to Boston - this trip is still up in the air in terms of logistics/time in each country etc. - its all down to how long the money lasts but I hope to be able to do it all.... if not, that's fine, I'll save up and head off again when I can. OK- enough rambling - will write again soon.