Trekking the Colca Canyon, Peru
After a considerable number of days living the high life and extravagance of the irresistible city of Arequipa we tore ourselves away in search of adventure. The seduction of this city had taken a firm hold of us and we had easily and willingly submitted to a blissful routine of evening cocktails in the stunning squares, cultured trips to the ballet, and candle lit alfresco dining. This was certainly a city that stated Romance on every level. However, despite her temptuous nature we decided we could resist her charm for a few days; we had heard rumours that surrounding this beautiful pearl, known as ‘the white city’, was a rugged and wild terrain, asking to be explored. So… although leaving was heartache, the adventure which followed was just the cure.
The Colca Canyon boasted to be the deepest canyon in the world, a bold statement we thought; “how dare it belittle the famous ‘grand’ canyon?” We questioned its arrogance, confident that we could saunter down this ‘steep valley’ no trouble!
We were completely stunned and defeated as we gawped into the deep crevice that was waiting to swallow us. The dramatic, violent drop certainly made us fearful as we began our descent. We now knew never to doubt the claims of this magnificent canyon, it fully deserved all its glory.
Although I would warn that the journey down was by no means a casual stroll and insist that walking boots are a necessity, arriving at the bottom brings a feeling of euphoria that would make me jump out of my seat and tackle that hardship all over again. That and of course the wonderful thermal waters at Colca Lodge, which massaged my aching legs- this was luxury like I have never felt or appreciated before.
After a deep sleep I arose thinking I had achieved Nirvana; I stepped out into the brightness of the day, blue skies above my head and the sound of trickling water from the river at my feet. It was an awakening of absolute tranquillity.
The day that followed continued on this elevated level. We made our way at a casual pace along the riverbed taking in the views of the honest, well worked farmland, being welcomed and greeted by locals as we walked across their land. We felt as relaxed and satisfied as the lamas and donkeys that grazed on these luscious fertile pastures.
This was without a doubt a fruitful, authentic insight and experience of Peru, a country full of boundless natural beauty and mysteries. This was just a taster of the many opportunities that Peru extended, so be prepared to be overwhelmed.