Friday 21st August 2015 afternoon
Jumped in a taxi around 1pm off to the Cruz del Sur bus terminal. Some taxi drivers like this one prefer to have an iron box around them to make sure they can`t get hurt by dangerous passengers!!
Off on the road!
The Cruz del Sur bus terminal
Checking in my backpack.
List of fruits you can not take with you across the border. It feels like being back in Oz!
Control to get to the bus
The bus, a massive bus, so crazy and comfortable. Perfect for a bus ride of 26 hours!
Inside the bus
Lots of space for the legs
Off we go at 2pm. Arriving tomorrow around 6pm in Guayaquil. Bye Lima!
On the outskirt of Lima
Some shops build those animals, so cool!
Building new fresh ciment next to a toll, he better not fall in!
The road we are on is called the Pan American Highway. It goes all the way from Buenos Aires to Valparaiso then off North near the West Coast until Deadhorse in Alaska. I found this map online, how amazing it must be to drive it from one end to the other end!!! What an incredible road trip it must be.
Map found here: http://www.go-panamerican.com/pan-american-highway-map.php
At some point three hours north of Lima, the road goes through an amazing landscape, sandy cliffs falling into the sea. It was really striking and I wish I was in a car to be able to stop and soak the view in, what a crazy place.
We passed this village also, how interesting, I wonder what this culture is.
I really didn`t expect the north of Peru to be so sandy but here is what I saw from the window.
Photo of a village we passed at dusk.
Dinner served, like in a plane!
And the bus kept going all night. At 1am we stopped in Trujillo. After that, I slept! And actually pretty well! No noise of the motor, a straight road, not much curves, it felt like being in a plane, really. One of the longest bus ride I ever took, and still, one of the best smoothest quality one ever too.
Saturday 22nd August 2015
In the morning when I woke up, we were still going through a sandy landscape.
A petrol station
Sand and river
Local elections going on, lots of advertising about political parties
In the fields. That reminds me Cambodia.
In the bus, the TV kept going with action movies and also this weird advertising “Never say no to Panda”. On Youtube it dates from 2010 but as I never watch TV, I personally had never seen it. What a weird advert. You can see it here:
Out of the window was much more interesting, some pretty hills like this! And…the blue sky was back!! Yeah! That white sky weather of Lima and off the beginning of the bus ride was so gloomy and depressing!
We got to Mancora, a beach place where to relax for a few days, known also for kite surfing apparently. We were in Mancora at 9am. In Mancora, a couple from Switzerland joined the bus ride, Anne and Patrick, sitting on my right, they were super cool. They had just been travelling for 8 months all over the world. Anne was about to go volonteering for 3 months in Colombia while Patrick was interested in going to the Galapagos.
There were lots of this bird in the sky. At the time I didn`t know the name and only learned it later in the Galapagos, these birds are called fregates.
Landscape a bit after Mancora
The Pan American Highway goes next to the sea around there, beautiful views.
Sea side a bit after Mancora.
We stopped for 10 minutes in a spot where the bus picked up our warm lunches. Plane stype indeed!
Getting next to the border!
Border crossing. Some guidebooks say to be weary of rip off, but I have crossed borders really worse than that, my worse one being between Lao and Cambodia at 4,000 islands where they were even making you pay 1 dollar of “quarantine check”. This border here was really smooth and not corrupted. Easy! The border crossing took about 1 hour and half I think for everyone of the bus to get their passport checked, between 2pm and 3pm.
We are in Ecuador! Can`t see much differences yet. 🙂
Sunset from the bus
We got to Guayaquil around 7pm or 7.30pm I think. We were about 7-8 gringos in the bus. I asked all of them which hostal they were heading too to pair up with the ones going to the same one as me. At the beginning, none were, some were heading straight to a night bus to Quito, some had booked next to the terminal to take a bus in the morning. Finally there was a Brazilian guy called Fabricio who was going to the Tomo Hostal too. We tried to change soles in dollars but no success and then he booked a bus for the next morning going from Guayaquil to Quito, about 9 hours bus. And off we went to an official taxi to Guayaquil centre. The taxi driver told us to look outside of the window to see a massive monkey statue.
Pretty impressive indeed!
We got to the Tomo Hostal.
There we met Aaron, an American guy who had saved money being in the army for a few years and was now travelling for 5 years already, really interesting guy!!! He was now going back next to Seattle the next day to buy a van and live in it. Pretty cool! We went for dinner to a local place nearby he knew.
The church next to the hostal where a wedding was going on
We went to the Malecon, an avenue on the sea side where there was this statue.
It was Saturday night in Guayaquil, Ecuadorian families were out enjoying the fresh breeze of the evening.
While Aaron went back, we found a cool bar on the sea side with Fabricio and had an Ecuadorian beer there, a..Pilsner. Not sure how local that is, feels a bit American to me but hey, ok for the Pilsner!
Next day, Aaron off to Seattle, Fabricio off to Quito and me off to the streets of Guayaquil searching for a tour off to Galapagos!