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BOLIVIA/CHILE: LA PAZ — CALAMARCA — PATACAMAYA — CALLAPA — SAJAMA — TAMBO QUEMADO — SALAR DE SURIRE — ISLUGA — COLCHANE Recently, in a somewhat self-indulgent moment, on somebody else’s blog, I was bemoaning my lack of inclusion in any ‘tribe’. But, really, one of the best – and perhaps most unexpected – things […]

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people and bikes

PERÚ: CUSCO Estrelita is the cycle tourist’s hostel of choice in Cusco and I find myself happily ensconced there – for a what stretches into almost a week – catching up with old friends and making new ones.

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in and out of huaraz

PERÚ: IN AN OUT OF HUARAZ Huaraz is not a pretty town – most of it was destroyed in the 70s by a massive earthquake and the city which rose phoenix-like from the ruins is a rude mass of raw concrete block and cheap brick constructions, a forest of exposed steel reinforcing sprouting from flat […]

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life at the casa de ciclista in tumbaco

Santiago and his family in Tumbaco have been providing travelling cyclists with a place to stay at the Tumbaco Casa de Ciclista for the last twenty years. It must take that unique Latino generosity and the corresponding irrepressible urge to offer hospitality to provide an open house to travelling cyclists on one of busiest of […]

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villa maria

I arrive in Villa Maria sodden, freezing, filthy. I am exiting a hotel that is so dire even I won’t consider staying there. The rooms are raw brick windowless stalls that fit a bed and nothing more. No room to unpack. Everything is wet. There is no place to hang clothes, tent, sleeping bag, to […]

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at sea

Miramar, a tiny ragged port town, is even smaller and more tawdry than Portobello. I make straight for the dock where I am immediately accosted by a man who hurries me to meet Angel, the captain of a cargo boat heading for Colombia. Angel names his price and the deal is done. We leave early […]

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village life

Santa Catalina is not, in general, a village where relationships between the resident expats and the locals run particularly deep or warm so I was touched when Leonida invited me to her home. * A finca is a plot of land, generally with a garden and some livestock, where people eke out a semi subsistence […]

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all in a day’s work

The hostel thing is done and dusted and this is where I work now.

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cloud gazing with lauri

I suppose that people might think that living in a small village on the Pacific coast of Panama is an endless holiday but in general, it is not. However, my friend Lauri came to visit me recently and we  did take a holiday together.

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