What is “The Inca Trail” and why is it so popular to hike this trail? At the peak of their existence (1430 AD – 1530 AD), the Quechua civilization were called Inkas, in honor of their Royalty. According to their belief they were the sons of the sun and the Inka was their king. Under the rule of the famous Inka Pachacuti or Pachacútec, the Inka/ Inca Civilization quickly started to expand and conquer other civilizations. They called their new empire “Tawantinsuyu”, after the four different points of the compass. The Tawantinsuyu Empire covered a huge part west of the Andean Mountain Range, roughly in what are now called Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia and Chile. To facilitate transport, control and administration

Vilcabamba, Ecuador to Chachapoyas, Peru The most scenic way to travel from Ecuador to Peru is without doubt the eastern route from Vilcabamba to Chachapoyas, which passes through the Podocarpus National Park and crosses the border at La Balsa. Until March 2003 it was still only possible to cross this border by boat over the Canchis River. The small local boats were also called “Balsas”, hence the name La Balsa. On March 8, 2003 both, the presidents from Ecuador and Peru where present when a new international bridge between the two countries was opened. Now, 15 years later, the first direct bus crosses this bridge from Ecuador into Peru and back. Although this direct bus takes away a bit of

Ecuador visa update 22-8-2018 On January 5 in 2017 the Ecuadorian government approved a new immigration law called: “La Nueva Ley de Movilidad Humana”. Part of this law serves to help Ecuadorian migrants who want to come back to Ecuador, but there are also new tourist visa regualtionsis with news for tourists who want to come to Ecuador. The problem with the new law was that many new regulations seemed good ideas, but turned out to be unpractical, or just very difficult to enforce… Official PDF copy of the new law: https://www.aduana.gob.ec/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/Ley-Organica-de-Movilidad-Humana.pdf On August 21, 2018, most inconclusive details from the new immigration law have finally been sorted out and on the following website you can find more information about

The introduction of Potosí Historical seen the Bolivian city of Potosí and its Cerro Rico Silver Mines are without doubt the most important influences in South America history. But the mines and city of Potosí are now almost like a forgotten movie star, famous in its own time, but forgotten by new generations… Hopefully this article can help Potosí and its mines to gain back some of their fame. History of Potosí and its silver mines In pre-Hispanic times the current province of Potosí was mainly inhabited by ethnic groups called Charcas, Chullpas and Aymara. These cultures lived from agriculture and selling ceramic pottery and jewelry made from silver. When the ethnic group of Quechuas, better known as Inca’s, invaded

The pretty Oasis of Huacachina is located in the desert, about 4 km outside the town of Ica. It is only a small village with maybe about 100 inhabitants living around a natural lake and surrounded by high sand dunes. The history of Huacachina The origin of the name Huacachina seems to come from the words “waqay china”, which means “crying woman” in the local language Quechua. There are different local legends about the emergence of the lake. But in general storyline talks about a beautiful princes, with a beautiful voice who fell in love with a brave warrior. The warrior died in a battle and the sad princes looked for a quite spot to cry. She kept crying until

New regulations for tourists who visit Peru Since the beginning of 2018 the Peruvian Government has changed the immigration rules for tourists who want to stay longer in Peru. All regular foreign tourists who enter Peru have the right to receive a tourist visa, which allows them to stay a maximum of 183 days within a period of 365 days in Peru. However, if tourists were also receiving these 183 days was/ is depending on the person in the immigration office who puts the stamp in your passport. ‘Tourists’ from Ecuador for example often just receive just 2 till 5 days. They use those days to go shopping in Piura (cheaper) and travel then back to their homes in Ecuador.

Important visa travel information for tourists who want to stay longer in Ecuador: Since December 2017 the Ecuadorian government has adapted a new extension of the immigration law (acuerdo N° 907). According to this new agreement each regular foreign tourist who arrives in Ecuador has the right to stay 90 days for free as a tourist in Ecuador. Tourists who want to stay longer in Ecuador can apply once for an extra of 90 days extension on their tourist visa. This visa extension cost at the moment of writing exact 129.63 US$. South American tourists with the following nationalities: Argentina, Bolivia, Brasil, Chile, Colombia, Guyana, Paraguay, Perú, Suriname, Uruguay and Venezuela (all countries that belong to UNASUR), do not have

What makes Huanchaco a popular tourist attraction? Huanchaco is just a small fishermen and surfers town north/west of Trujillo, in the north of Peru, but in this article I would like to explain what’s so special about this coastal town. To be realistic, Huanchaco isn’t a pretty town. There is hardly any maintenance on the streets and older buildings from Colonial times are falling apart. The beach is not very clean and gets smaller every year. A few years ago high water even destroyed part of the boulevard, which is still (early 2108) not fixed, despite many promises… No, the attraction of Huanchaco is not really visual. But still, its location, history, culture, peacefulness, fresh seafood and some of the

Helpful Travel Links in Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Chile and Argentina Recommendable addresses and links in South America This is a list of recommendable addresses and useful in South America (plus friend of Fairtravel4u), including some hotels, hostels, restaurants and local travel agencies. All of these we know personally from our work as tour leaders in South America. Do keep in mind that services can change and not everyone has the same opinion. We try to keep this list as up-to-date as possible, and keep also your opinion in consideration. Tips and interesting links for travelers in general www.bibliotrek.be -> Your specialist in hiking and nature guides. Ultimate Descents  -> Exploring Wild Himalayan Rivers! Borderlands -> Eco-Adventure Resorts in Nepal! Nature Treks -> for

Healthcare during your travels in South America Practical information about your health during your travels in South America Visiting new places means that your body has to get used to new surroundings, colder, warmer (stronger sunshine), higher altitude and different food than it is used to. For everyone this can mean something different. Some people adapt quick, others need more time, but in the end almost everyone gets used to their new surroundings. The most important thing is that you listen to your body. Take it easy the first few days and let your body slowly adapt to the new things you eat and the new surrounding you are. Be also careful with using strong medicine against diarrhea like lopromide.