Greetings from Cuenca, Ecuador! I'm currently sitting at my favorite coffee shop called Cafe De Nucallacta. This is a popular destination for digital nomads, retirees, and US expats. I'm finally raking up the motivation to sit down and type this personal memoir about my travels in Peru for 3 months. I arrived in Ecuador late last night on July 10th, 2018 after crossing the border illegally in a speeding taxi going 140 km/hr while jamming out to Bruno Mars. We raced across a security checkpoint at border patrol without a moment's notice. It was a thrilling adventure! This was my only viable option since I never got a passport stamp when entering the country and I wasn't about to get banned from Peru or pay a hefty fine at customs. Luckily, I met a girl at Loki, the largest party hostel in Mancora right on the beach. She was in a similar situation and was already in contact with a guy who could sneak us across the border.
After relaxing and partying on the beach for 5 days, we got a bus ticket to Tumbes. The taxi driver picked us up and the rest is history! My next order of business is getting a work visa in Ecuador. I already have a meeting scheduled with a visa attorney in Cuenca thanks to an introduction from my dentist friend who's lived here for 6 years. I'm also in the process of organizing a photo expedition to the Galapagos Islands with my contact at the Ecuador Ministry of Tourism. My ultimate goal is to be shooting on assignment for National Geographic by early next year! I'm already in contact with a bunch of people over there, including the director of photography. She invited me to visit their office in Washington, DC. I don't have any plans to visit this hotbed of political corruption anytime soon due to my utter contempt for the current administration. Enough said. However, she will keep me in mind for future assignments!
Without further ado, I would like to share a few of my highlights from my epic Peru adventure for the past 3 months! It all started after walking across the International Bridge on the border of Zumba and San Ignacio. I met a friendly Peruvian gentleman who informed me it was free entry. I like to believe everything happens for a reason. I don't keep a journal of all my adventures. For this reason, I remember bits and pieces of everything. To avoid making this a really long rambling post, I'm just going to give the bullet points with a few of my favorite photos. Enjoy!
Hiking to Gochta Falls, one of the tallest waterfalls in the world!
Traveling by bus to Tarapoto to meet up with my cool friend Mike from Malta.
Missing the boat and opting to take a speedboat for 12 hours instead. Arriving in Iquitos, the largest city on the world not reachable by road!
Exploring the Amazon rainforest... lots of mosquito bites, spiders, snakes, and poisonous ants. Swimming in the Amazon river and fishing for piranhas. They don't eat humans FYI!
Exploring the beautiful area of Miraflores for a few days.
Taking a bus to Huaraz and hiking the Paramount Trail in Andes mountains.
Hiking Colca Canyon near Arequipa, one of the deepest canyons in the world!
Exploring the cultural city of Cusco for a few weeks.
Day tour of the beautiful Sacred Valley near Cusco.
Hiking to the top of Rainbow Mountain at 17,000 ft!
Embarking on the Salkantay Trek, a 5-day intense hike to Machu Picchu!
The most beautiful train ride of my life on Peru Rail from Cusco to Puno in exchange for professional photos.
Taking part in an 8-day transformational humanitarian retreat in Cusco, Lake Titikaka, and Machu Picchu! More info at Yoga Por Vida!
Flying in an airplane over the famous Nazca Lines.
Dune buggy adventures in Huacachina, an oasis in the desert south of Lima, Peru.
In conclusion, I've been traveling in South America for 6 months as a photographer, entrepreneur, travel blogger, and digital nomad. I've spent a total of at least 200 hours on buses! Hard to imagine for the majority of people. Life begins at the edge of your comfort zone. You may be curious how I can afford this type of nomadic lifestyle. That's a good question. Sometimes it feels like a miracle. I'm still traveling on a shoestring budget and finances are usually very tight. It's a great way to learn proper spending habits. I always stay at hostels for cheap or with friends. I'm also doing marketing for Airbnb to earn passive income every month.
I want to teach other people how to travel the world as a digital nomad. Watch the video below to learn more about my proven techniques for successful long-term travel.
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