Joined August 2016 Message
  • Day23

    Máncora District - Peru

    September 12, 2016 in Peru ⋅ ☀️ 21 °C

    I met up with the Israelis (Yarden, Ofir, Yehonatan, and Ron) at the bus stop at 5:00pm. We got on the bus and spent the following 3 hours to Guayaquil laughing our heads off. We also shared in our suffering as the same song played for all 3 hours. We got off the bus and immediately got on a bus for Mancora, Peru.

    The bus to Mancora was a 10 hour ride that began at 9:00pm at night. We spent most of the time sleeping happily in our 145° reclining sleeping chairs called camas. We arrived in Mancora at around six in the morning and were taken to a hostel.

    The Loki Hostal is a famous Peruvian hostel chain, for its very westernized hotel feel. Its a bit on the pricey side however and we weren't even planning to spend the night(our next bus was a 5pm) so we did the only obvious option.

    Yarden went to speak with the front desk and told them that we had a reservation(we didn't). When he couldn't find our reservation(reasonably as we had none) she told him she would try to check it in the morning. This whole bit legitimized our loitering on the premises. We promptly found ourselves a few comfy hammocks and went to sleep(picture below)

    We woke up around 10am and went to the front desk again. Whoever has been there for the night shift had already been switched out so it made our following actions quite simple. We told them that we had checked out already yesterday but wished to leave our bags in the storage room. They gladly complied.

    We left the hostel and got ourselves some breakfast, then we came back and spent the day at the pool with Israelis that the other people I was with has met in previous travels. We played volleyball in the water and even did some pool side reading. Around 3pm we showered in the dorm rooms of one of the friends who had actually payed to spend the night and headed out to catch a bus to Casma.
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  • Day21

    Montanita - Ecuador

    September 10, 2016 in Ecuador ⋅ ☁️ 22 °C

    My last night in Baños I had a bus at 1:00am. So there I am at the bus station, its 12:30am, waiting for the bus. 1:00 came and went. So did 2:00 and so did 3:00. It also began to rain. Pour really. One of the girls waiting for the bus with me stopped a passing bus and had him call the company. Turns out the bus broke down and another was on its way, it would arrive three hours late.

    The bus ride was a lovely 8 hour drive to Guayaquil and then another four hours to Montañita, a little, rather ugly town on the coast of Ecuador.

    The first day I did a bit of exploring. I walked down to the beach and met a group of about six Israelis that were about to take a surfing lesson. I felt kind of awkwardly there so I left them to their lesson, hoping to bump into them again.

    My hostel, Hostal Iguana consisted of two floors of dorm rooms and a loft. My bed was on the loft which basically meant I was sleeping outside on a mattress with a net to keep out the bugs around it. It was kind of awesome.

    Back at the hostel I met another Israeli. He invited me to come chill with his friends at another hostel, Chichi Babylon. I met a bunch of Israelis and after a few drinks we went dancing. Went to bed around 3:00am.

    The next day, I went down to the beach and took a surfing lesson. Highlight of Montañita. I didn't do much until later when I found myself playing beer pong with a few British kids. I ended up going out with them, dancing and drinking and stayed out until five in the morning.

    The next day was too cold to take another surfing lesson and I quickly realized that there really wasn't anything to do in Montañita but eat, sleep, surf and party. I was bored and already planning to leave the next day when a different Israeli from my hostel told me he was heading off to Moncora, Peru with a few other Israelis that night. I decided to pack my things then and there and join them. Little did I know this would be one of the better decisions I made on this trip.
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  • Day19

    Baños day 6 - Ecuador

    September 8, 2016 in Ecuador ⋅ ⛅ 13 °C

    Today I was going to leave Baños, but Cara wanted to climb to the Refuge of the volcano. I could not refuse such a request.

    We took a taxi to the village beneath the volcano and began to him from there. We hiked an hour and a half UPHILL before we got to an information center and were told we should have been dropped off at the info center because now we had another three hours of UPHILL. So we kept at it for another hour or so and when it began to rain, we turned back. We got to an elevation of about 2700.

    When we got back to the village, we got someone to take us back down to town. We got ourselves some hot soup and then bought ingredients for a large salad. After that, we got a mani pedi because after three days of hard physical activities we friggin deserved it.

    We are out salad, packed our bags and hugged goodbye. I was out of there by 12:30, my bus to Guayaquil leaving at 1:00. Cara left for Cotopaxi a few hours later. I hope to meet up with Cara again in Peru.
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  • Day18

    Baños day 5 - Ecuador

    September 7, 2016 in Ecuador ⋅ ⛅ 23 °C

    El Diablo waterfall

    Cara and I decided that since we didn't manage to bike the waterfalls yesterday(big surprise) that we would do so today. We rented bikes for 5 bucks each and began to bike out of town. We were told the ride was all down hill. It wasn't. Is anyone noticing a motif here besides me?

    Anyways, here is this super sporty football(of the soccer variety) chick with these massive triathlon thighs riding along like little miss daisy as I struggle to keep up, huffing and puffing behind her. We past several waterfalls, each grander and not wonderful than the next. It was one of the lovliest, most gorgeous bike rides of my life.

    Upon reaching the path to el Diablo waterfall, we locked up our bikes and began to walk. Up, yet again(at this point I really don't know how my legs still exist). We reach this enormous display of falling water, the bottom looking like a white bubbling cauldron, and of course climb to ever possible view point and drench ourselves in freezing river water. Anything for the perfect picture! (coming soon, were taken with Cara's go pro)

    After the waterfall we caught a bus back(no way we were riding that back... It would be mostly uphill, no thank you).

    Later that night we ended up going out with all the guys from the hostel. We drank and then went to a club where we drank some more and had a grand time. The night ended, well spent, around 3:00am
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  • Day17

    Baños day 4 - Ecuador

    September 6, 2016 in Ecuador ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    La Casa del Arbol

    So Cara and I made an appointment to meet up at 8:30 in the morning and grab breakfast. This was when we began to walk.

    la Casa del Arbol(the tree house) is an actual tree house at the top of a mountain. A swing hangs off the same tree and when you swing it feels like you are swinging over a cliff(which truth be told you are). Now, most people pay two dollars for a bus to take you up there. We decided to hike. And so we began what little did we know was going to be the most difficult hike of our lives.

    We had been told the day before that the hike should take about two hours. It took us three. How did this happen?

    We began our trek with high spirits, expecting it to be uphil most of the way. We didn't expect to be practically on our hands and knees on a barely trodden muddy path that simply led up at something close to a 45 degree angle. We didn't expect this torture to continue the whole. Damn. Way.

    At one point I was telling Cara, "Listen girl, this isn't the right way." Her reply, "The swing is up. So if we keep going up we will find it eventually." and so we kept going up. And up. And up. We came upon a cow farm that we went around, barely touched paths, mud and lots and lots of up.

    Eventually we did find it. We sat down for a breather, took off our sweat drenched shirts and laid them out to dry before helping ourselves to a crackers and peanut butter snack. Then we put our shirts back on and took turns on the swing at the end of the world while taking plenty of photos. All the while, fresh faced lazy people, all done up in makeup and sweat free came to stand in line for the swing after getting off the bus.

    We decided that nothing could possibly be more difficult than the hike we just did. So off we began to take the correct path down. We must have gone wrong somewhere yet again because we found ourselves in unmarked paths once more.

    We got ourselves dinner on the way back. Upon arrival at our hostel, we showered and went to sit at a cafe where we drank something warm and read. A relaxing end to a taxing day.
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  • Day16

    Baños day 3 - Ecuador

    September 5, 2016 in Ecuador ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    La Selva

    Today I spent a full day in la selva(the forest) on an organized trip. We drove out about two hours and the weather got bleaker the further we got. We arrived at a little cabin where we were given lunch.

    After lunch, we walked around the cabin mad were greeted by an animal shelter/reserve. We were immediately greeted by a little monkey not in any confinement and then we walked around the reserve and saw everything from different large jungle felines, to monkeys, parots, crocodiles and even wild boar. As we walked, it began to pour. Within moments of the sky having opened up, we were all soaked.

    We went back to the bus, running for shelter and continued our drive. We had arrived at a path that led into the forest. And so, dawning our sexy yellow, plastic ponchos, we marched on. This hike which was mostly up hill, had us walking through mud, streams, and over less than reassuring bridges.

    We stopped at a swing that swing over a cliff and I am proud to say, I braved my fear of heights and swung on that mother clucker. Unfortunately I cannot post videos here, so you will have to check it out when I get around to posting my scream fest in Facebook.

    After the swing we continued further until we came to an enormous waterfall. As you can see in the photos, I came as close as I dared.

    After having hiked out of this part of the forest We were taken to the riverbed where we were met by canoes. We floated down the river, absolutely soaking wet from the rain and waterfall from earlier. And the water that kept splashing into our canoe certainly did not help.

    Our last activity of the day was to be taken to a village of indigenous people. We had our faces painted by little girls dressed in traditional straw skirts and later when I tried to have a conversation with a few of them I was fought over(who got to paint my hands). All very entertaining. We also got to shoot a traditional hunting weapon made of a long tube you stick an arrow in and blow on the tube to shoot the arrow. I hit the target perfectly(must be my skills from working with weapons for so long).

    We got back around 8 pm and went out separate ways to our separate hostels. When I got back to the hostel, I was greeted by a full table of travelers playing drinking games. They called me to join but I was frozen and still soaked to my bones from the extremely wet day. And so I showered quickly and then joined. It was then that I met Cara.

    Cara is from Australia. Cara was going to hike up to the swing at La Casa de Arbol tomorrow. I announced that I would join her. More on that tomorrow
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  • Day15

    Baños day 2 - Ecuador

    September 4, 2016 in Ecuador ⋅ ⛅ 23 °C

    Woke up pretty early for some reason, maybe it was the noisy street, so I went to do some laundry. When the boys woke up, I offered to make breakfast. It was an offer they could not refuse.

    And so I went downstairs and walked five minutes to the market to by some eggs. I made it all the way back safely and as I was getting ready to fry them... I dropped the whole bag. Good job, butterfingers.

    Jordie saw all of this and offered to go fetch more eggs with me. We got the eggs and take two worked out a little better. I bought some parmesan cheese as well and whipped us up a nice parmesan scrambled eggs. Feeling healthy and rather motherly, I must say.

    Didn't end up doing much today. The boys were supposed to leave for Quito but there was a huge accident(a bus crashed on a bridge, killing 4 and injuring 22) so the streets were blocked and they couldn't leave. We made a large salad for dinner and then went to the hot springs.

    The hot springs were fun. We alternated between submerging ourselves in torturously cold and scorchingly hot pools.
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  • Day14

    Baños day 1 - Ecuador

    September 3, 2016 in Ecuador ⋅ ⛅ 19 °C

    Fieke and I took a bus to the central station where we parted ways, she to some farm and me to Baños. It was a three and a half hour ride.

    I arrived and immediately went to the dorm hostel recommended to me by the staff at Community Hostel. I asked to be put in a room with other people and was placed in a room with three guys. Bo from New Zealand, Jeremy from France and Jordy from Australia. Jordy and I got talking and when I asked where there is anything good to eat, he offered to come with me.

    When we got back, I got talking with the other two guys as well and after awhile I asked them if they would want to cook dinner instead of eating out. They were down.

    Jordy and I went to shop, we got meat and veggies for a salad. We ended up making a salad with meat, cooking while the other two boys watched and watered us with coke and rum. The dinner was hardy and delicious and everyone was having a good time.

    After dinner they pulled out more rum and when a couple (friends of Jordy and Bo) turned up we started playing drinking card games. After we were all nice and tipsy, we headed out to a club and danced to put heart's desire. I went to bed around five. Pretty intense night.
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  • Day13

    Full day in Quito - Ecuador

    September 2, 2016 in Ecuador ⋅ ⛅ 19 °C

    Started the day off with a free walking tour provided by the hostel. We walked all around the old town from 10:30 to 14:00. I made a friend! Fieke, from the Netherlands. After the tour she and I went with the guide of the tour to his tattoo studio and I almost got a spontaneous hand poke tattoo...(mom don't kill me) but in the end I chickened out.

    That night, Fieke and I, as well as another guy from the hostel, Patrick, went to a street called La Ronda. This is a cute street where the locals make it all traditional with dancing and singing and food. We ate empanadas at a restaurant with live traditional music and ended up dancing with the locals to songs they all knew by heart. We were true silly gringos, but it was fun.
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  • Day12

    Back in Quito - Ecuador

    September 1, 2016 in Ecuador ⋅ ⛅ 10 °C

    I went back to Quito after the butterfly farm. There I checked into Community Hostel recommended to me by my friends from the zip line. Great little place where I met lots of cool people.

    That night I met up with my friends from the Canyoning at the famous Bungalow. Pretty normal club if you ask me but they were super hyped up about it. It was fun, I got drinker then I thought I would and danced a ton and around 3:00am took a taxi back to the hostel.Read more

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