Lines in the Peruvian desert

Trip Start Jun 13, 2006
Trip End Jun 12, 2007

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Saturday, November 18, 2006

Alex & Dean: On the trip from Ica to Nazca the desert changed from pretty sand dunes to the rocky flatlands that the Nazca lines are cut into. We passed over the lines (the Pan-Am highway actually cuts one of the images in two - the Lizard) but couldnīt see anything of them. Nazca town was a bit of a let down, all we wanted to do was go to the bank and buy our tickets to Cuzco and people just kept trying to sell us things we didnīt want! We decided that flying over the lines was too expensive ($40 each for 30mins), especially after our trip to the Galapagos, so just wanted to go to the viewing tower (El Mirador) to have a look from there. We got offered a trip to see the Nazca lines from the viewing tower plus a couple of museums and cemetery for s/50 each (just under $20) but as we only wanted to see the lines we knew we could do it cheaper ourselves. After an unexciting night in Nazca and yet more fried chicken and chips we got the local chicken bus to El Mirador for a dollar each.

From the top of the tower you can see "the Hands" (a title we would dispute unless the Nazca had only 4 fingers - definitely a frog), "the Tree", the end of "the Lizard" (the rest is under the road) and a few trapezoids. It was interesting but we thought they would be bigger! More interesting was the lorry which we got to watch burn from a safe distance away, it caught fire while we were up the tower. There are a number of theories about the origin of the lines, all of which are wrong - anyone can see that this is just a case of ancient juvenile graffiti!

That all took up a whole hour (and s/12 or $4 between us - bargain) so we spent the rest of the afternoon sampling the delights of Nazca (i.e. bored) before our night bus to Cuzco.
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