Hello everyone! I hope you are all well. I have been a little absent in the last weeks due to having taken some days out of Lima of my birthday and also because my home kitchen is being remodeled. Everything is a mess and I am glad to have learned how to make omelettes in the microwave. But I am not returning empty handed, I want to share with you that I have turned 30 this month and I would like to share a small video a put together to share with you how I received this new decade.

Cumpleaños 30 en Trujillo y Huaraz, Perú

This year I decided to extend my birthday for 4 days, in Trujillo and Huaraz. First I visited Trujillo for my friend Andres’ wedding, and then I went to Huaraz to finally go to Lake 69, which I was unable to visit during Easter Weekend when all my friends went.
You can see the video and also read a little about my trip below.

La Libertad, Trujillo: A Wedding and the Huaca de la Luna
I arrived in Trujillo with Oltursa (bus). The trip was regular although it took a while to leave from Lima and instead of arriving at 8:30 a.m. as scheduled. I arrived almost at 10 a.m. In addition, they turned off the movie Safe House after half hour of starting it, I assume so that we could sleep, but I was already hooked. I wonder how it ended..
Upon arriving to Trujillo, I had a couple of things to do before my friend’s marriage which was at noon: buy my ticket to Huaraz and go to the hairdresser. Luckily I fulfilled that mission in about two hours. With much haste I was only a tad late to the Trujillo Cathedral, which is where the ceremony was held. The highlight was seeing my friend so happy and meeting my friends who had also arrived that day from Lima. I loved the surprise the couple gave us when they danced marinera!

Cumpleaños 30 en Trujillo y Huaraz, Perú
The next day I went to the Huaca de la Luna (the tour lasts about two hours – wear a hat!). In my hotel I was told that if it was safe to go by street taxi so that is how i went. The ride cost ten soles and I checked our journey through Google Maps to make sure we didn’t deviated. My taxi driver was very friendly and when he realized I was visiting from Lima, he narrated the journey, and recommended what and where to eat.
Important, if you only go to the huaca be sure to go first to the ticket office, which is where the museum is. I come first to the huaca and had to take a combi (small van) back (fifty cents) to the ticket office and then hitch a ride on the back of the security guard’s motorcycle. I guess he felt sorry for me when he saw me walk down the road…

Cumpleaños 30 en Trujillo y Huaraz, Perú
The walk through the Huaca was excellent and I highly recommend it. I found it very interesting to know how the Moche culture had lived in this temple by building it up with each generation that occupied it, and also know that practiced human sacrifices. Hopefully they can receive more support in order to study the Huaca del Sol, which is next and has not yet been explored. In addition, it would be great if Harvard scholars would return the paint sample taken from the platform where the priests sat.
In the afternoon, a friend who stayed in Trujillo after the wedding and I made our way to Huanchaco for some ceviche, where we found that it was early dusk. It was a beautiful sunset on the beach. I do not know if it was because of the time we went but there was a some littering in the sand. I recommend better care of this beach, which is well known as a nice seaside.

Cumpleaños 30 en Trujillo y Huaraz, Perú
Ancash, Huaraz: Laguna 69 and Willkahuain
I arrived in Huaraz at 6:30 a.m., officially having turned 30 years old at midnight. Upon arriving to the door of my lodging the Churup Guest House, I found two people waiting for a bus. When asked if they were going to Laguna 69, they answered yes and said that they could wait for me to to leave my bag at the hotel. For me this was the best news because you can only go to the lagoon if you leave at 6 a.m. and I had proposed to myself to go there for my birthday. Inside, I made sure they were a reliable company and confirmed the fee with my lodge (40 soles, plus some paid 10 soles to enter the Huascaran Park).
We drove for about two hours towards a rural village where we had breakfast and bought supplies for the walk (cheese sandwich, two bananas and chocolate). Breakfast was hot coca leaf tea and a cheese sandwich. I felt the cold in my bones but fortunately had a very warm coat. I slept most of the remaining time until we reached the LLanganuco lagoon where we stopped to take pictures. The scenery was beautiful, blue sky, clear water and lush green everywhere. I was in awe to see how this part of Peru is still impeccable.

Cumpleaños 30 en Trujillo y Huaraz, Perú
The walk to Laguna 69 began at Cebollapampa, a beautiful meadow with many roaming cows and bulls and beside a river. There is a short walk downhill when you begin and then a long and tangled walk uphill. If you are prone to it, this is where you will start to feel a little fatigue and shortness of breath. I finished my banana and chocolate on my way up.
I will not lie. It took me a lot to get there, I started among the first in line and ended up being one of the last to arrive. I had to stop several times to catch my breath and I was distracted thinking behind what bush I could go to the bathroom. I really thought I would not make it, but I did it (and I have the pictures to prove it). I have to thank the friends I made on my way up and my guide for their words of encouragement and his coca tea.

Cumpleaños 30 en Trujillo y Huaraz, Perú

When I arrived it was everything. I was very happy to have overcome my own exhaustion and have reached my goal. Although I had to walk back all the way I had come, I regained my energy on the lake rocks. It is interesting how an agglomeration of water could bring me and all these foreigners (because the only Peruvians there were me and the guide) to such a great distance and height.
At night and in Huaraz, I was taken to my room at the Churup Guest House, which I loved because it was for one person, it had hot water and 4 bed covers and blankets. I had a delicious birthday crepe at Creperie Patrick, which was a kind of cheese and tomato pie or calzone. This crepe saved me from an empty stomach when I got lost looking for the Ichic Willkahuain ruin the next day so I am proudl to say that I ordered the leftovers to go.

Cumpleaños 30 en Trujillo y Huaraz, Perú

The next morning, exhausted, I went to visit the ruins of Willkahuain and Ichic Willkahuain, which are half an hour of the city in combi. I had the whole day to myself as my bus was leaving for Lima at 10 p.m.

Cumpleaños 30 en Trujillo y Huaraz, Perú
Willkahuain
Maybe I should have read a little more about the ruins because I got lost about 3 times that day. First looking for where the combis left,, then twice looking for the second temple called Ichi Willkahuain. The second time I was lost was the worst as I was an hour long hike, about 1.5 kms uphill of an empty (beautiful) meadow. I really should have realized that I walking was on the wrong path and not go that far, but at least the scenery was beautiful all the way. In addition, I really laughed alot about it and was grateful to have a crepe in my purse. That’s right, I had a crepe in my bag.

Cumpleaños 30 en Trujillo y Huaraz, Perú

Yes I recommend visiting the temples of Willkahuain and Ichic Willkahuain,  but be sure to know where the second one is. If you don’t get lost, this is about a 4-6 hour activity for you. If you want to make it last, there is a 4.5 kms path from the city to the temple. It depends on you.
Recommendations:
  • In case you ever want to go by bus to Huaraz from Trujillo, the bus lines are Linea  and Movil Tours. I bought my ticket from one day to the other so I only found a night ride and in a regular seat (there were no more) thanks to a kind Miss in Oltursa Trujillo who helped me call Linea and Movil Tours to find a passage. I do not know her name but she saved me and helped more than she had to do.
  • If you do not want to be overcharged, check for the estimated taxi fares with your hotels or from your bus counter. In Peru when you take a taxi on the street it is good to know which are safer (those with the number plate and painted side with a sign that says well as taxi).
  • When you book your hotel considers the proximity to the places you will visit. In my case seeks to be at a close distance or you could walk from the Plaza de Armas which is where most of the shops and attractions are. I was fine with my Booking and contacting hotels.
  • Place your hotel and places you visit on a map as Google apps and keep marked if you need them quickly.
  • If you are going to do some hiking for over an hour, I packing something to eat and water. I know I am hungry after an hour. A chocolate goes a long way when you are very tired.
  • Use sunscreen and a hat if you know you’ll be walking in the sun.
  • The bus station in Trujillo charges a fee for using the boarding gate, I think it was around 1.5 soles.
  • If you go, take your charger with you as you may run out of battery and it’s good to get it back
  • I am sure everyone knows this but wear comfortable clothes when traveling. I pack a pair of socks in my bag if I am wearing flipflops or sneakers without socks because I am chilly at night. I also carry something to cover myself like a pashmina o light sweater.