When I returned from my mission to Uruguay in 1963 (49 years ago), I was able to see such beautiful sites as Iguassu Falls, Lake Titicaca, Cusco, and Machu Picchu, and vowed that someday I would take Virginia back to see them. This summer we partially fulfilled that promise, as we spent ten wonderful days in Peru, not only with Virginia but with our daughter Susan, our son Ricky, and Ricky's wife Janessa and their two oldest children, Taylor and Abby. Photos follow:
The Andes were impressive as we flew over them. Peru has 37 peaks over 6000 meters (19,700 feet) in height.
Cathedral in Cusco
It was winter, at high altitudes, so we dressed warmly most of the time. Here Virginia stands in front of an ancient Inka wall with stones cut so precisely a knife cannot be fit in between them. No mortar was used.
Virginia with baby llama or alpaca and native women in Cusco
Fortress of Sacsayuaman, with mammoth stones cut and fit precisely together
Virginia in front of large stone at Sacayuaman
Don in front of another large stone at Sacsayuaman
Tambomachay--sometimes called the Inka's bath
Photographer's duel on train to Machu Picchu
Town formerly known as Aguas Calientes (recently renamed as Machu Picchu town) at the base of Machu Picchu
Janessa, Susan, Taylor, and Ricky prepare to hike from our hotel (on left) to the top of Machu Picchu
They made it!
Abby at Machu Picchu
Don and Virginia rode the bus up!
See the switchback narrow road climbing up to Machu Picchu
More of Machu Picchu. It's mammoth. Photos don't do it justice.
Scan of a postcard showing a photo from an angle and on a certain date that makes Machu Picchu look like a man's head. I thought it was doctored at first, but I discovered that a picture I took actually looks fairly similar when turned on end. See below.
An obliging alpaca makes for a nice photo at Machu Picchu
Church at Andahuaylillas, known as the Sistine Chapel of the Andes. Photography was not permitted, but we've included scans of a couple of postcards below.
Painting from the Andahualillas chapel of the horrors of hell.
Companion painting of the glories of heaven--complete with a banquet table!
Elderly indigenous man with native dress
Indigenous woman with baby
Ruins of mammoth Inka temple at Raqchi (90 meters long!)
Tourist market in Raqchi.
Note distictive hats
Corn drying at Raqchi
Wonderful buffet lunch at Sicuani
Woman threshing grain
At La Raya, highest point on the road between Cusco and Puno, over 14,000 feet
Scenery at La Raya
One of the Uros Islands in Lake Titicaca--manmade. They are floating islands, made of reeds. They take about 10 months to make, have to be added to weekly, and last for about 30 years.
This island, which we visited, had about six families on it.
Janessa with local child on this Uros Island.
President of the island demonstrates how the islands are made.
Our entire group on the floating island
Climbing up the island of Taquile in Lake Titicaca
On Taquile--a long way from anywhere
Another view of Taquile
Going to church in Puno was a highlight
Remnants of pyramid at Pucara, dating from about 200 B.C.
Typical scene on altiplano between Puno and Cusco
Alpacas near La Raya
Penned up llamas and/or alpacas at La Raya
Demonstrating teachers block road going through Sicuani
Police in riot gear in Sicuani
Road obstructions in Sicuani
More road blockage in Sicuani
Don with Quinn Gardner in 1963 in Pisac, on market day
Same tree in same plaza in Pisac, same guy, different companion
Terraces and ruins at Pisac
Ruins at Pisac
Local musician poses at Pisac
Mammoth ruins of Ollantaytambo in Sacred Valley
Flowers in Urubamba
Textile dying demonstration in Chinchero
Weaving demonstration in Chinchero
Last evening--in Lima