The final day on the bikes
Trip Start Oct 16, 2012
136Trip End Apr 20, 2013
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Either way we were both quite happy that we were able to pack up our tent for the last time and set off on the bikes, without any major incidents from camping in the middle of a teenage filled park party
The morning went fairly well as we cycled along the quiet road, in the blazing sunshine. We stopped once to eat our packed lunches and to try to use the internet to look at hostels in Montevideo. My laptop was dead though, as we have camped for 6 nights and had no access to electricity and we struggled to find somewhere to plug it in. After cycling for a few more hours clouds had formed, the wind had picked up and was fighting against us and it started to rain. We used the opportunity to pull into a service station, to shelter from the rain and to check our directions again
The cycle into Montevideo was surprisingly easy, considering it is a capital city and we had no maps. We made our way to the historical main plaza area, and saw the sea for the first time since leaving the coast of Peru. It seems like quite an accomplishment to just cross from one coast to the other but we actually did 3500km before that to get down from the Caribbean coast. As we arrived at the coast we noticed that the housing in Montevideo seemed really poor, with lots of badly maintained apartment blocks, that looked like it was council housing. The main plaza had a rough feel to it, with lots of homeless people sleeping by the side of the road. It all felt rather neglected and like it needed a good coat of paint and a clean up of the streets. We were also almost blown away by the winds, which were coming strongly from the ocean. We wanted to take a couple of photos of us at the “finishing line” but struggled to keep our bikes upright in the winds and didn't dare perch the camera somewhere in case it blew away
We asked a couple of hostels for rooms, but it wasn't going to be easy for us right to the end. Everywhere was full or really expensive (one place wanted $80 for the night, or 50GBP, even though it was a fairly basic hostel). As we queried what we should do a local guy came over to ask about our bikes. He was a bike fanatic and was just about to fly to Italy for a race and then planned to tour around there for a while. He happily took a couple of photos for us, when we explained that we had just finished our five month long journey.
Eventually we found a hostel that was pretty average, but would do the job for a night or two. The Swedish girl that checked us in recommended a restaurant just down that road that sold Chivitos, which she thought we may like. She was correct. They are basically a big beef burger, but have a steak in them rather than burger meat. Then they are topped with ham, bacon, egg, mushroom, olives, tomatoes, lettuce, sweetcorn, carrot, peppers, jalapeņos, tons of
sauce, loads of cheese and probably more ingredients but I can't remember. They were massive and just what we wanted after our long stretch of camping and eating camp stove food. They were also quick, which was great as we were exhausted from the day of cycling and the emotions of finishing our trip.