Help with South America backpack route
Replies: 3 - Last Post: Mar 7, 2013 5:33 AM Last Post By: trekker502
Mar 6, 2013 5:02 PM
Help with South America backpack routeHi everyone!
I am planning to go backpacking with a friend possibly on late June or July for 30 -35 days. I am stuggling creating a good route for the trip because there is not that much information out there . We are both 25 years old and on a tight budget. We want to definietly visit and spend time in Peru to do the Inka Trail. Apart from that, we are not sure where to go. We really dont want to visit Colombia since we have both been there. However, we will probably end up arriving here since air tickets are relatively cheap (we want to do the whole trip on buses, not sure if its the best idea). What will be the best cities or places to visit given the time constraint? Could you guys suggest a route? Should we go to chile or Argentina?
I appreciate your help!
Mar 6, 2013 6:15 PM
1There is A LOT of information out there. Seriously. I would know, I've spent the last 4 months researching to organize my 60 day trip in Peru starting in April.
30-35 days you should probably stick to one country, or a combination of two neighbouring countries, especially if you're going to bus overland. Buses are slow in Peru, especially in the mountain routes.
Did you book your Inca trail tickets? As far as I can tell, there are no permits available until the start of July (if not later). There are alternative treks (Salkantay) which do not require permits. This might be a better idea considering you're not sure what to do yet and have no itinerary set. Maybe start with booking the Inca trail asap, then plan the rest of your trip (including flights) around that.
If I were to suggest a route for 30-35 days, I'd start in Lima. Follow the route Lima - Cusco - MachuPicchu - PuertoMaldonado (jungle) - Lake Titikaka - Colca Canyon - Lima (or reverse)
If you want to visit another country, then maybe jump to Bolivia from Lake Titicaca or Puerto-Maldonado and come back (or keep going into Bolivia and fly to Lima or directly home from there).
Like I said, there is a TON of information out there. Read a book, use google and look at a map. Lonely Planet guidebooks are useful, but everything is out there on the web. Research Research Research!
Mar 7, 2013 1:10 AM
2Argentina and Chile (and Brazil) are not budget destinations so forget it.
I agree with #1 just stick to Peru, flights in to Lima tend to be comparable to Bogota (depending where you are flying from I guess). Add in Arequipa and Colca Canyon, Sand boarding in Huacachina, Isla Paracas and maybe a trek in Huaraz.
Edited by: Tryfan
Mar 7, 2013 5:33 AM
3Check out Lonely Planet's South America on a Shoestring -- see if it is in your public library. My public library has all of the Lonely Planet guidebooks for each country. I use http://www.hostelbookers.com and http://www.hostelworld.com to find cheap accommodations. In Cuzco, I stayed at the Loki Hostel, http://www.lokihostels.com which is located in a former Spanish viceroy's sprawling estate house on the hillside overlooking the city. There is an Irish bar with happy hour every night and they had buffet dinners for about $10. You can take a bus from Lima to Cuzco and return. You can take another bus to the Amazon rainforest in Puerto Maldonado. From Lima, you can take a bus south to Huraz and the Cordillera Blanca and trek along the Santa Cruz trail or others. From Huraz, you can catch a bus to Trujillo and then a long distance bus to Ecuador (be cautious about banditos when crossing that border). From Quito, you can fly on COPA Airlines (Panamanian) cheaply to Miami or to LAX.
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