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Rick and I were just getting used to Peru when we first set our eyes on Pisco, the town that we stayed in for our first big adventure in Peru. We stayed with our tour group in a bed and breakfast place, where you could hear waves crashing against the shore as we slept. That night, we dined on traditional Peruvian foods such as ceviche (raw marinated seafood) and washed it down with Pisco sours; a lime based shot specially formulated by the Peruvians.

We had a free day in Pisco so decided to take the option of visiting the Islas Ballestas by boat. The Islas Ballestas is considered as the Peruvian Galapagos because it forms part of the Paracas National Reservation, known for it’s electric mixture of exotic birds and sea life.

It was an extremely cold day but we didn’t mind. What greeted us was thousands of bird species that I could never have imagined. They were gathered on these small islands and neighboring boats and seemed unaware of the tour boats coming close to them.

We even spotted a few fisherman who called out to us and asked us if we’d like to buy some fish for 20 soles. Talk about at true local experience!

1 fish for 20 Soles, good deal huh?

The most memorable part of this experience was seeing the sea lions in their natural habitat. They were calling out to their friends and sun bathing on the rocks as if on show. We were taken closer to the little islands where these creatures sat, leaving us only metres away. Our little boat was rocking about splashing water around us but everyone was too busy taking photos so they didn’t notice. We even saw a few of the sea lions jump into the water and swim about.

Just having some beauty sleep

The sea lions sitting pretty on the rocks

Then we continued forward towards a rock that was shaped as an arch where it looked like there were a lot of tiny little animals moving about! As our boat veered closer, we could see the thousands of birds and little penguins that were marching around doing their business. I felt like I was watching a documentary on the Discovery Channel!!

Just a bridge like structure right?

Little penguins just like Happy Feet!

This kicked off the beginning of our Peruvian adventures and prepared us for the exciting journey ahead!

Rick and I traveled around South America a few years ago and learnt so much from the experience, mainly because it’s so different to Australia but also because the culture is equally beautiful. I’ve decided to write it down in this blog so that I can share my experiences and travel tips. It was also the first country that I visited, where I was not staying with relatives or a fancy resort so I dared to be scared but felt better for it! Hopefully I can inspire others to do the same.

Have you done something similar? 

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