Huanchaco and Lima
The following day, with Markus feeling much better, we boarded a bus to start our journey to Peru. Because we lost a day to sickness we had to skip our last destination in Ecuador: Cuenca.
Our original plans had us staying there for a night and enjoying the city the next day before boarding an overnight bus into Peru, however with the delay in travel, we immediately boarded the overnight bus when we arrived and saw nothing of Cuenca. As we made our way to the border at 2am, Megan began to also experience the stomach bug symptoms. We didn’t make it to our first destination in Peru until noon, with Megan having no choice but to use a basically out-of-order toilet on the bus–there were a lot of tears. From there we had another 4 hour bus ride (plus a short taxi ride) until we reached our final destination of Huanchaco, Peru. The entire journey took over 35 hours and we felt pretty beat up.
The following day Megan was feeling significantly better and we laid around on the beach for a good portion of the day. While the beach is relatively mediocre, we enjoyed the relaxed surfer feel of the town. The next day we took a short bus ride to visit the pre-Colombian ruins of Chan Chan. It was a really cool experience meandering through the walls of this ancient city.
From Huanacho we boarded an 10 hour bus for Lima that was run by ITTSA. This was probably our most comfortable bus journey until now. Working Wi-Fi, really comfortable seats and catering (including some for Peru obligatory Inca Kola). We stayed in one of the most upscale districts in Lima, Miraflores. This was a good base for exploring this large city (8.9 million people and larger than NYC). We only had one full day in the city and tried to make the most ouf of it. We visited the Museo Larco which is home to a wonderful collection of pre-Colombian art and gives a great overview of pre-Columbian Peruvian history. Afterwards we explored the historic city center with all its churches, plazas and colonial architecture. One of the highlights of the day was going to the Parque de la Reserva waterpark which contains many fountains, some of which you can walk through. Markus really liked the city and already put it on the list of places to come back to and spend more time in.