Sucre, Bolovia is the admin capital of Bolivia, and a nice town to visit. It has a sweet plaza in the centre of town and some colonial buildings. Chantelle and I arrived by bus from Potosi, and cabbed it to the hostel recommended on hostel world only to realise it was full. So we stayed next door at some quiet hostel.
After exploring the town for the day, we booked into a three day hike around the local villages near to Cusco. This turned out to be quite an adventure.
Close to the plaza, is a sweet market, and at the back, they make awesome fruit drinks and fruit salads. Chantelle and I decided to grab a fruit salad, when we were being hassled by a young shoe shine kid.. probably around 10… instead of paying him, we gave him a spoon and made him eat with us.. it was so funny, the poor kid was so shy and so sweet. We bought some colour pencils and paper for gifts for the villagers, and Chan bought her self a kilo of cheese, which came in very handy later!
Yummy fruit market
We moved into a hotel closer to the main plaza, for the night and the next day, bright and early we arrived at the agency to start the hike. We were picked up by a ute and driven to a place where the trucks park to take people and supplies to the villages. We were loaded into the back of a flat bed truck. We took a pic before it filled up, but the truck was loaded completely. I had a dirty calf against me, and while the owners of the calf had the head, I had to deal with the more shitty end! You should have seen the old Bolivian man, and his wife, they were seriously kissing the calf during the whole trip. It was truly bizarre. It must have been a big investment for them!
The transport system!
The trip on the truck was an adventure, it was dusty and uncomfortable and we had to stand. We arrived at some old colonial church to start out hike. We met an Israle couple, who joined us for the first leg of the hike. They were doing it cheap by paying the 5 bolivanios for the tuck. haha. We hiked some ancient Inca steps initially, but the rest of the hike was in the country side.
Inca steps baby
Some of the scenery
For lunch, our guide put some ham and cheese between bread for us. How sweet. We hiked to this tiny village populated by extremely poor Bolivians, and we stayed a night in this lodge. It was probably the best building in town. Check out the dining room!!
5 star accommodations
We were cooked dinner by some of the locals in the well kitted out kitchen. It was pretty funny. The people out this way are dusty and unwashed! We were starving, so dinner was consumed without complaints.
On the hike the following day we pulled into this old home in the middle of nowhere. Here a lady cooked us lunch while her dusty children roamed the yard. It only took her three hours to make a feed. She even sold beer which was drinkable at room temperature.
mmm tasty potato soup.
After our three hour lunch break we set off and after a few hours of hiking, a couple of the local farmers said we wouldn’t be able to cross the river, so we’d need to hike an extra three hours… sweet. I was pretty stocked with that piece of handy info. Instead of following the river along where it is flat we had to climb down this massive valley and over the following hill… always the case. The landscape is beautiful but rugged. I stuffed a few dozen coca leaves into my mouth, and it made the climb a little easier. When we finally arrived at the river, the water had pushed against the cliff face, making it necessary to cross the river anyway. yay. It may not look it, but the river had some force in it. It took some time and testing before I found a path we could take. Channy and I crossed first, stashing the electronics at the top of our packs. (Sorry no photos) The other couple crossed after us, and they had to carry the guide, who was crapping himself haha.
Another funny thing happened when we made camp. We set up our tents and the guide took off for awhile. While he was gone, I grabbed some wood to get a fire cranking. When he returned he said that the place he normally borrows cooking equipment from was abandoned. haha. No way to heat dinner… sweet. Luckly Channy’s cheese supply kept everyone alive for the night, and I managed to heat some noodles in my cup on the fire.
The next morning, we hiked to another small village before breakfast. This was a laughable experience. We stopped at a house where the ladies were making chicha. It looked like a witches den, I wish we could have taken some photos but we weren’t allowed. There was an old lady kneeling near a massive cauldron stirring the liquid with her hands. They had another cauldron on the fire in the middle heating the chicha. Kids and grandparents floating around. We managed to heat up some Appi for breakfast, made from corn, I think, but it’s purple. It wasn’t that bad…
Appi makes you happy?
The truck back was another experience. Like before, but it took 6 hours over death roads. Seriously, we had to climb some massive mountains which took ages and was absolutely dusty and the edge of the roads… death. The truck was crammed full of people and produce, we had to stand the whole way! More and more things were loaded into the truck as we stopped at various places along the way. It was insane. Did I mention the dust? We were dust – brown when we arrived back in Sucre.
What an adventure, this hike I would never forget, and we saw some of Bolivia most wouldn’t!
Luckily the night back in Sucre was the Corpus Christy festival.. and what a cool show. All the university faculties have to parade through town… amazing costumes and dances.
the miners dance