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Apr. 20, 2024

I'm in Nazca, Perú.


Nazca, Perú

2024/04/20

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Nazca, Perú, has a population of around 40,000. The city was established by the Spanish in 1591 though it goes back much further. The city is located at the edge of the Atacama Desert and is extremely dry. This was my second visit to Nazca so I only spent one night. I arrived at about 9am and arranged for a room but had to wait until 2pm to actually get into the room, so I spent the five hours walking around town.

Palpa, Perú

2024/04/19

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Palpa, Perú, has a population of around 9,000. The city was established in 1963 though it goes back much further. Most of the houses are probably more than a hundred years old, not that that makes them interesting. This town is definitely on the downhill-side of its life. Everything is deteriorating. There are few new buildings, and only a couple of new construction/renovations that I saw. So, what does this town have to offer the visitor? The town itself - nothing.

Ica, Perú

2024/04/18

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Ica, Perú, has a population of around 283,000. The city was founded in 1563 by the Spanish conquistador Jerónimo Luis de Cabrera. He gave the new town the name Villa de Valverde. On August 15, 2007, a 8.0 earthquake occurred off the coast of Peru, severely damaging buildings, houses and infrastructure in Ica, including the beautiful 16th century cathedral. Seventeen people died and 70 more were killed when a church collapsed. Pisco, which I visited previously, was even more severely damaged and many people were buried under buildings that had collapsed. Some 80% of the city's buildings were destroyed.

Ayacucho, Perú

2024/04/15

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Ayacucho, Perú, sits at an elevation of 2761 meters (9,058 feet) in a high Andes Mountains plain or plateau called Altiplano. The greater metropolatin area has a population of around 182,000 people. Ayacucho was founded in 1540 as "San Juan de la Frontera de Huamanga" and known simply as Huamanga until 1825. The official name was changed by Simón Bolívar in 1825 through a decree to commemorate the battle of Ayacucho during the Peruvian War of Independence. Ayacucho is famous for its 33 churches, which represent one for each year of Jesus' life. Ayacucho has large religious celebrations, especially during the Holy Week of Easter. These celebrations include horse races featuring Peruvian Caballos de Paso (This Peruvian horse is a breed of light saddle horse known for its smooth ride. It is distinguished by a natural, four-beat, lateral gait called the paso llano. This breed is protected by the Peruvian government and has been declared a Cultural Heritage of the Nation by the National Institute of Culture) and the traditional running of the bulls, known locally as the jalatoro or pascuatoro. The jalatoro is similar to the Spanish encierro (the famous 'running of the bulls'), except that the bulls are led by horses of the Morochucos (cowboys of the Peruvian Andes Plains).

Huancayo, Perú

2024/04/13

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Huancayo, Perú, sits at an elevation of 3259 meters (10,692 feet) in a high mountain valley called Mantaro Valley. The greater metropolatin area has a population of around 380,000 people, making it the fifth most populous city in Perú. Huancayo is the cultural and commercial center for all of the central Andes Mountains communities. Being so very high in the sky at more than 10 thousand feet it is also quite chilly. Yes, daytime highs reach the low 70s for a couple of hours, but beyond that, it's downright cold. During a few months of the year the night temps drop to near zero. I don't do well in such cold climates so I spent only two nights here, as I did in the previous mountain towns/cities I have visited.