Camping Trip Around The World

Jump to: navigation, search

Then, why not fly to Cancun for the next leg of your round the world trip. Here, join a new group and camp all along the Ruta Maya. Next, you can continue travelling around the world with a few months in South America on a camping trip from Quito in Ecuador to Santiago in After this, the next logical stop on your round the world trip is New Zealand, where you can take a hop on hop off bus City Tour Cusco, camping as you go. You can follow this with Australia, and see the very best that Eastern and Central Australia has to offer from Sydney to Moreton Island, the Great Barrier Reef and the Northern Rainforests.

Travel through the open Savannah country, then up to the tropical Darwin and the World Heritage listed Kakadu National Park. Spend time learning some of the aboriginal ancient ways, head South to Alice Springs, hike Kings Canyon then marvel at the enormity of Ayers Rock and the awe inspiring Kata Tjuta (the Olgas). Once you've explored the Land Down Under, you can continue your round the world trip to Africa, travelling all the way up from Cape Town to Nairobi during an epic overland adventure. On a trip like this, you'll see incredible landscapes, culture and wildlife you could imagine.

From the tropical coast of Zanzibar to the austere Skeleton Coast, the Serengeti, the Ngorongoro Crater and Etosha National Parks to Victoria Falls and Swakopmund. That's it - a quick guide to camping around the world from the US to Africa. If you've got the time and the money, you could even continue travelling around the world, all the way up from Nairobi across Ethiopia and the Sudan to Istanbul and then home through Europe. Of course, there are all kinds of ways to travel around the world, so if camping isn't your thing, there will definitely be another way to go.

I guess he didn’t want to stay with us in a 10-bed dorm. As for us, we took one look at Super Tramp hostel - with its graffiti and travel-quote covered walls, free breakfast, and crowds of friendly lounging backpackers - and thought, oh thank god, we’re home. Every time we stay in a hotel, we end up missing hostels. The town of Aguas Calientes is actually pretty cool looking. It’s built in the rainforest at the base of a waterfall. Due to its location, there are no cars in town, so the streets are narrow with tall The only vehicles in town are buses to and from Machu Picchu. The major downside to Aguas Calientes?

The price. The entire town is marked up like crazy to take advantage of the crowds of tourists who tromp through on their way to Machu Picchu and have no idea what a regularly priced Peruvian meal is like. Hint: it’s usually a lot less than 30 soles for a plate. Franz offered to take us on a 3-hour hike to see a waterfall or to visit the local thermal baths. Finally at Machu Picchu after our painful failure on the Inca Trail. We woke up at 4am the next morning, along with everyone else in our 10-person dorm room, and scarfed down the super early free breakfast from the hostel.

We met with Franz and waited in the long line for the bus to Machu Picchu. The bus was bouncy, but the scenery was beautiful: low-lying fog nestling up against gigantic, steep mountains blanketed with rainforest. Anyone who has ever been to Disney or somewhere similarly packed with tourists knows that whenever people flock to a tourist attraction, they turn off their brain and tend to believe this experience is just for them. Arriving in Machu Picchu felt just like that. In the low season, 3,000 people are let into Machu Picchu a day - 5,000 in high season. After the 45 minute wait for the bus, 30 minute wait in the line, and 20 minute crowded uphill walk to Machu Picchu, it was…disappointing. Don’t get me wrong. Machu Picchu is beautiful, and a truly breathtaking sight. But it’s so crowded.

In order to appreciate the quiet majesty of the ruins, you have to avoid selfie sticks, tour groups, and hoards of people trying to take THAT picture. Which is impossible. Without firsthand experience, I think it’s safe to say that Machu Picchu is way, WAY more satisfying after a grueling 4-day pilgrimage. After kicking out a couple who were attempting to meditate in one of the most popular designated picture spots, Franz helped us take our own obnoxious Machu Picchu picture. The group was starry-eyed and excited. They were seeing Machu Picchu with completely different eyes than we were. And we felt the difference. Despite their friendliness, it seemed like we were being pitied.

Our questions of "Oh my god, was it amazing? " were met with a polite and uncomfortable "so how was…your time? Was the town nice? " We also stupidly wore our complementary "I Survived The Inca Trail" t-shirts… but nobody else did. The group left us again to check in at the office. In the meantime, Lia and I got to do what we were looking forward to the most: making llama friends. As anyone who has been to Machu Picchu will tell you, there are llamas everywhere. The llamas even have the right of way throughout the ruins. We found some particularly friendly llamas (that’s a lie, all llamas are sassy and rude and it makes us love them so much more) and finally got the picture that we’d always dreamed of. This is it: THE photo of Machu Picchu that we always dreamt of!

We may not have finished hiking Machu Picchu, but dammit, we made some really cute llama Once Jose and the group returned, we were treated to a two hour tour of the village of Machu Picchu. Everything Jose said put the group in awe and built upon 4 days of in-depth cultural lessons that we had missed (and I do mean in-depth. Jose went to college for this. As we passed ruin after ruin, not quite grasping the significance of subtle architectural details that made the rest of the group gasp in delight, I realized that everyone else had experienced Machu Picchu the right way. The Inca Trail was a pilgrimage, and here they were reaping the benefits.

4 days of dust, sweat and tears. 4 days of viewing progressively larger and more interesting ruins, and hearing the stories of the people who once lived there. 4 days of fully embracing Pachamama and deeply resonating with how Sacred the Sacred Valley truly is. All we’d done was sit around bored for 2 days. After the tour, most of the group continued to Wayna Picchu, an hour hike (more stairs!) uphill for a sweeping view of the village and surrounding area. You know that tall pointy mountain in the back of any photograph of Machu Picchu? That’s Wayna Picchu. We decided not to do the hike, because it’s extra money and who are we kidding. Instead we opted for the Inca Bridge, a derelict stone pathway that hugs the side of a cliff face.

As we hiked the hour to the Inca Bridge, we realized we were both feeling the same disappointment about not finishing the trail. We hadn’t just failed at hiking Machu Picchu. We had ruined our destination, too. Aguas Calientes, the touristy town just outside of Machu Picchu, Peru, blanketed in rain. We left Machu Picchu before most of the others, sick of the crowds and the overall feeling of regret. Jose told us to meet at a restaurant called Tupana Wasi. If there was any doubt that Alpaca Expeditions is used to gringos with money, this restaurant confirmed it. We took one look at the menu and nearly choked: it was SO far out of our budget. We spent the hour waiting for the rest of the group eating raisins and nuts like chipmunks storing up for winter so we would be less envious of everyone else’s food.

As the others arrived, hugs were had, beers were consumed, and contact information was exchanged. This was the most awkward part of the entire day. The group tried to be polite about avoiding getting our Facebook information, but I’m pretty sure they didn’t even remember our names. Which is OK, because we didn’t remember any of theirs, either. It felt like we had stumbled into the cast party of a close-knit group of actors in a play we’d only caught the first 10 minutes of. We sat awkwardly trying to join in as much as we could as the rest of the group retold stories, shared laughs, and reveled in the life changing experience they had shared. I mean literally life changing, you all. One couple in the group actually got engaged at The Sun Gate! We killed time in town after lunch until our train ride.

Finally, after four days of lucky weather, the skies had opened up into the torrential rain we’d been expecting all along. On the train ride back to Ollantaytambo, we passed KM 82 and the start of the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu for the FOURTH time. It was like we were reliving our Greatest Hits of Inca Trail Failure over and over again. Surprisingly, this was not THE most expensive failure we’ve had. 5,000 cash. It lasted for 2 months, then inexplicably died. RIP, Loretta the Jetta. Honestly, going to Machu Picchu is 100% worth it if only to make llama friends and take pictures like this one.

The 4-day Inca Trail to Machu Piccha is no joke. It is a grueling four day fight against time and altitude. Of the group who actually completed the hike, 3 felt the effects of altitude sickness on Dead Woman’s Pass, and 1 spent a whole day throwing up as he hiked. I mean, he DID finish, though. If you plan to take on this challenge, here are our tips for hiking Machu Picchu. Follow our advice and you’ll be far more prepared than we were! Arrive in Cusco at least 4 days in advance in order to acclimatize. We gave ourselves 5 days and did not feel any of the effects of altitude sickness. Take altitude sickness pills, from the time you arrive in Cusco up through the ascent to Dead Woman’s Pass.

Hit the gym. Hiking Machu Picchu is insanely difficult and gets even harder if you happen to be overweight. At a minimum, you should be able to run a mile without needing to stop (which we still struggle with) You should be able to do around an hour on the Stairmaster (especially helpful for Dead Woman’s Pass). When it comes to strength training, focus on your hamstrings, quads, and calves. We recommend deadlifts, squats, and weighted calf raises. The stronger your legs are, the less likely your knees will get injured. Train like your life (and your trekking fee) depends on it. At a minimum: hike like crazy. Hike weekly. Hike for speed, hike for altitude, hike the hardest hikes you’ve ever done and master them. If you’ve never done a 4,000 foot incline (and decline), find one and do it.

If you can find some high-altitude hikes to do - even a gentle stroll at high altitude will help - do them as often as you can. We’ve also heard swimming can help with altitude training, so long as you’re working hard and holding your breath at the same time. Train with a respiratory restriction mask, like this one. Wearing this ridiculous looking mask might make you feel like Bane from Batman, but it’ll turn you into an altitude-mastering hiking beast. If I had 1 thing that I’d try if I could go back and do it all over again, it would be to buy one of these and wear it on every single one of my training hikes. Research the hiking route. This is something we didn’t do - we assumed all trekking companies did the same route on the Inca Trail from day to day.