The blog is not finished! But after the Theft (yes, capital letters), the want/need to update the blog took second fiddle to dealing with the Theft and just finishing the trip sans computer. Since being home, it's been hard to get that motivation to complete it. But I will. Ever so slowly. Please be patient!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Day 16-19: The Pull of Nasca

The following takes place from Monday, December 13 to Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Ever since I was a little kid, I have been fascinated with the mysterious and the unknown. One of my favorite TV shows was Unsolved Mysteries, with my favorite segments being though that delved in the supernatural and unknown. As such, it wasn’t long before I stumbled upon the mystery that is the Nasca Lines.

Now, being in Peru, that childlike fascination with these strange geoglyphs drew me like a magnet. With my bus ticket in hand, I boarded the nearly seven hour bus ride towards what I was slowly realizing was a childhood dream of mine.

The pull of the Lines was finally taking me to the source.

But before all that, I had to get there. Jillian and I had already purchased our tickets for the Cruz del Sur bus Monday morning. Waking up insanely early, we grabbed a taxi and went to the bus station. I had a slight idea what to expect with the bus but was still completely surprised at the luxury. And for only $23 Canadian, we were being spoiled.

View from my seat on the Cruz del Sur bus to Nasca

I had all intentions to sleep along the way but the views from my second floor seat, plus a selection of actually good movies, pretty much cancelled that idea for me. I said goodbye to Jillian in Ica and I was on my own.

The only real harrowing portion of the trip were the really tight corners the bus had to take as it meandered its way down the Andes and into the valley that Nasca is settled in. Bus ride to Nazca

I was met at the bus station by Marie, the daughter of the man who runs the hostel I had booked.

The moment I walked into my room, I was in heaven. A private room!! A TV!!! My own bathroom!!! Screw the sightseeing, all I wanted to do was completely take apart the contents of my backpack and lay them out to air. It was to put it simply, heavenly.

Marie took me out later that day to check out some of the town including the main plaza Main City Square, Nazcaas well as help me buy some stuff for supper later that night.

The next day I woke up early once again as I had booked an overflight to check out the Nasca Lines. For about CDN$90 it was a tad expensive, but totally worth it in the end. There were five passengers(A Spaniard, A French woman, and two Americans) and two pilots altogether. We all climbed into the small Cessna aircraft and within a few minutes were rumbling down the runway and off. IMG_0419

Now, I’ve only flown in large commercial liners so I wasn’t prepared for the amount of turbulance that a little plane like this has. Plus, add in the random quick changes in altitude the plane does when it hits pockets of hot or cool air and my tummy started to be very thankful I had skipped on having much more than a glass of yogurt milk for breakfast. And this was before we started doing crazy 75 degree angle circles around the different line formations so each side would get a chance to view the lines.

How were they you ask? Amazing. While a bit harder to see than I was expecting, my childlike fascination returned as I marveled at the sheer scale of the geoglyphs, and the wonderment that a culture thousands of years ago could draw such shapes which in reality can only be viewed from the air. Why they did it is unknown. We probably will never know.















After the flight, I was still quite woozy so I spent the rest of the day laying in a hammock reading a book and enjoying a plate of just picked mangos. Yummy!

The next day, Wednesday, I took a small tour out to see the Nasca Aquaducts, the series of canals and wells dug by the ancient Nasca people in order to get water. Nasca sees a total of 25mm of rain each year, and it all falls in January or February. All the other water comes from underground rivers. Any rivers on the surface dry up completely as the weather is just too hot. This is one of the driest deserts on earth after all.

Again, my amazement at the will power and genious of these ancient peoples grew even more as I saw the engineering feat needed to not only build these aquaducts, Nasca Aquaductsbut to also get them to work in such a way that they can sustain and entire culture in such a harsh environment. Trees grow in abundance here, but have roots that can go over 25 feet underground in order to reach water. Nasca Aquaducts

I was even able to go all the way down one of these spiral aquaducts to the water. While I was tempted to drink some of it(it was close to 37 degrees out), and it is drinkable, the guide said I shouldn’t until I have been in Peru longer and have gotten used to the water here. It felt nice to splash it on my legs and neck though. Surprisingly cool.

Afterwards, we stopped off at a hill just outside of Nasca to look over what is locally called “The Needles,” another set of lines drawn by the Nasca people. We also checked out a small set of Incan ruins that were also nearby. "The Needles"Inca Ruins - Nasca





Once again, tuckered out from the heat of the day, I lazed around the hotel chatting with a few of the other people who had arrived in the hostel. That night, Juan, the owner of the hostel, took myself, Raphael and Gabriella(The Brazilians), Sebastian and Ana(The German and Chinese couple from New Zealand), and a gentleman from Japan on a little tour of a beautiful park on the opposite side of the city.

Nasca has much more to it than the Lines, even though it is the Lines that draw in the tourists. The people are extremely friendly(especially with being patient at my horrid spanish) and very accomodating.

Next up: Arequipa.


  1. Your trip sounds amazing so far! I didn't know that the people that run the Hostel's actually pick you up and take you out sightseeing. Now that is customer service at it's best! I'm loving the pictures, Corey! Have a wonderful day and I can't wait for the next post!

  2. You're having such a marvelous adventure! Those aqueducts are pretty awesome... I never went to see them. But Nasca is a beautiful town. That's where I went to a little restaurant (on the plaza) and ordered "Fred's Noodles" (fettucine alfredo), lol.
    Excellent post!

  3. I had to look at your aerial photos a few times because all I seen what the geographical things like braided streams and whatnot. But I finally seen what your really wanted us to see. Next time you are on a small plane, have a full tummy. I know that sounds silly, but with a full tummy, your tummy doesn't slosh around so much and you don't get motion sickness as easily. Also try and get some ginger before you go. Ginger actually settles the tummy. I was in smaller planes when I was in La Ronge, and that is what they all told me. Also try and focus on the horizon when you are starting to feel woozie.

  4. Clearly the nazca lines are the spaceport plans for aliens to build when they conquer.....the locals drew them for 2012 when the age of Aquarius begins......or something