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Peru

Chocolate On The Road: Is Coronavirus Killing Craft Chocolate?

“Having a business is like having children; it doesn’t really make sense money-wise, and it’s the same with a small business.” -Barbara Wilson, Co-Founder of Mindo Chocolate Makers While Covid-19 has ravaged populations around the world, it’s also nearly halted the global economy. Almost every industry around the world is heavily affected, most often in …

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Budget for Volunteering in Rural Peru

Are you thinking of volunteering in South America? Why not volunteer in rural Peru? The options for improving your Spanish and immersing yourself in a unique culture are endless, and on top of all that, it can cost as little as $300USD per month. Keeping Track of Spending After returning from Peru in December, I missed so …

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Peruvian Desserts & Dishes You Must Try in the Sacred Valley

Peruvian desserts and dishes are becoming world famous for their fusion of native cuisines, European styles, and some ingredients imported from Asia. Living in rural Peru for two months, I ate a TON of local food occasionally supplemented by home cooking. Eating lunch out was so cheap. It would have cost me more to make …

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Machu Picchu Ruminations from the Sacred Valley

The majority of businesses in Ollantaytambo were closed for a few days, about a month ago. They tried to shut down the entire town, but some tourists remained behind and some businesses opted to serve them. It didn’t surprise me or disappoint me, because neither party did anything wrong. But I was really looking forward to …

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Backpacking Machu Picchu: How to Get to Aguas Calientes (Photos)

While living in the Sacred Valley of Peru, I went on an adventure to see Machu Picchu on a backpackers budget, widely claimed to be one of the Seven Wonders of the (Modern) World. The trip started on a Wednesday morning, when I got on the van towards the hydroelectric plant and then hiked a …

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Free Incan Ruins in Ollantaytambo: Pinkuylluna

Wondering what to do in the sacred valley, or in Ollantaytambo, Peru? How about visiting Incan ruins with— wait for it— no other tourists? A Sign From Above I have lived in Ollantaytambo for 2 months now, and I rarely, if ever, saw tourists on this or any other mountain side. They tend to stick to the paths. So a couple …

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Becoming a Godmother: On Peruvian Churches

Instead of taking my time and hiking back from Machu Picchu on my last of three saved-up days off, I took the very expensive train back from Aguas Calientes. I had a commitment. That afternoon was ​the confirmation ceremony for my goddaughter. Temporary Godmothership To explain why I, a nonreligious person, agreed to act as (albeit temporary) …

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How to See Salt Mines in Peru: A Guide In Photos

There are salt mines located about a 10 minute drive from Ollantaytambo, my town in Peru. Technically, the town they’re located in is Maras, but the mountains take up so much room that they’re more like Maras-adjacent. However, these salt mines are so famous in Peru that in the store we have bars of chocolate made with …

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