Posted by Julio C. Tello,
I woke up to a chilly Thursday morning in Huaraz not wanting to get out of bed, there’s something about cold floors I just don’t enjoy. I had spent the night trying as best as I could to keep warm, by now my body had adjusted to the warm nights of Lima, the change in temperature and altitude had begun to take its toll on me. I shivered my way to the bathroom to take a hot shower, although at first it seemed as if I would have to forget about freshening up as it took nearly 15 minutes for the hot water to finally make its way up to my room.
After the shower and getting changed I headed to the laundromat to get some clothes washed (Lavanderia Denny’s, Jose Del Mar 561), I was charged 4 s/. for a kilo of clothes. I started to wonder around the city in my typical spiral manner looking for a place to have breakfast, after asking around for the best place I was soon directed to Fruti Frutita (Jr. Jose San Martin 508). Here I bought a delicious empanada and spent about 10 minutes trying to figure out what kind of juice to order from their large selection. They also have a vast selection of sandwiches and some pastries, I ended up going for the papaya juice.
Back to work, I scoured the city to talk to recommended tour operators and hotels. I had already visited Huaraz with family and friends in 2007 so I was familiar with the tourist attractions of the area. Some of the sites surrounding Huaraz that you must check out during your stay is Chavin de Huantar, Lake llaganuco & Pastoruri. As I made my business rounds I found some other sites worth checking out that tour operators are also offering although not overly popular with the international market, sites such as the thermal baths of Chancos, The ruins of Honcopampa and the waterfall Yuracyacu. If you plan to overnight in Huaraz my best recommendation would be Pyramide Hotel (Parque Ginebra U22), it’s a 3 star hotel offering individual rooms at 35 s/. ($11) and doubles at 50 s/. ($16) try to book your stay at rooms 401 or 402 as they have incredible views of the Cordillera Blanca.
At this point I was running low on brochures I had been handing out to operators. I was able to find a place to print out copies, they charged me 2 s/. for 20 black and white 2 sided copies. I headed back to the plaza de Armas for Lunch, I won’t review the restaurant as the food was bad and overpriced, I’ll only mention that it was next to the recommended el Rinconcito Minero. After lunch, to let the food settle of course, I walked over to the Plaza de Armas to rest on one of the benches, I noticed they were reconstructing the main Cathedral. I also noticed that I was not alone at being the only one with a full belly, there were several people of all ages sprawled throughout the plaza clutching their stomachs. We Peruvians love to eat and lunch, or “almuerzo” as we call it, is the main meal of the day, usually comprising of soup, a salad and a main course accompanied by a freshly squeezed fruit drink or chicha morada.
Today was a pretty straightforward day of business as usual, after my siesta in the Plaza de Armas I continued to talk to the locals regarding locations as well as have meetings with several other tour operators. All in all I came to Huaraz and accomplished what I had to do. Walking throughout the high altitude city will leave anyone fairly drained and I was no exception. Before eating dinner and retiring I went to an Internet cafe to catch up on business and also bought some toothpaste and shampoo at one of the many shops along Luzuriaga. That night I ate a dish called Lomo Satado accompanied with an Inca Kola and Tea. Lomo Saltado is basically chopped up steak served with french fries, rice and a onion dressing and is one of my favorite meals, trust me it tastes better then it sounds. After dinner I called it a night, but not after waiting outside my hotel for about 30 minutes waiting for someone to wake up and open the front door, another small gripe. Tomorrow the I would journey through El Cañon del Pato, a thrilling journey to say the least and one that could have ended it all.
Daily Expenditure – 62.50 s/. = $20
3 – Breakfast – Empanada and Papaya Juice
4 – Laundromat (1 Kilo of clothes)
2 – Photo Copies
2 – Internet
14 – Lunch
2.50 – Pastry ( yea yea I had a craving ok)
4 – Toothpaste & Shampoo travel size
11 – Dinner
20 – Extra night lodging at Hostal Gyula Inn
Note: I will be travelling to Cusco from March 23rd to 27th, so most likely there will be no blog updates in that time, although as part of the Tariy series I will be chronicling the whole trip. Depending on how busy I am in Cusco I will be continuing the blog on Friday. But keep up to date by following me on twitter www.twitter.com/Karikuy