I guess I’ve started this project just in time for my next big adventure – probably the biggest one yet!!! Which is South America. My boyfriend and I will be traveling around Peru, Bolivia and Ecuador together for around 6 months and I couldn’t be more thrilled!
First backpacking trip
This will be my first trip longer than a month and I will only take a large backpack with me, so I am not sure yet how this will turn out in the end. But I know that I am a totally different person when seeing new places and sceneries and meeting people with different cultures and backgrounds. It’s probably one of the things that make me happy regardless of the situation.
We will be traveling from January to July 2017 and have figured out a route, kind of, so that we take advantage of the weather situations in each region. I can tell you, it is not that easy when the weather at the coasts and inland differ so much at the same time. We try to avoid the rainy seasons in the mountains and the jungle in the beginning and enjoy the summer at the ocean. After that we will explore Bolivia and the south of Peru before going north to the amazon region in Peru and eventually Ecuador.
Also, a totally new experience for me will be volunteering in 3rd world countries. We decided that a lot of the time we spend in those countries should also be devoted to helping. We live in such a privileged society, especially the western countries, that we don’t even realize what we grow up with and what is totally normal to us. I don’t want to talk like I know, because I still don’t understand anything that is going on but I hope that by doing all these activities and helping out where people REALLY need support will open my eyes to the world a little bit more. And I hope that one day all that ignorance of the “richer” people will end.
Mostly we find our so-called hosts through a website called Workaway. Basically anyone that needs help with something can offer a “workplace” in exchange of a place to sleep and food, in some cases. On average “workawayers” are required to work 25 hours a week. The projects you can participate in a numerous and there are all varieties of work you can do. Teaching English at a school for underprivileged children, working on eco farms, helping in the reception of guest houses or even animal shelters. Seriously, there is so much you can do, it’s overwhelming. We hope to settle for 2-3 weeks in a few places to get to know local people and their family life, understanding the culture and let everything sink in.
With all the “working”, we also have a lot of time to explore the surroundings and we also planned a considerable amount of time of just traveling, doing some trekking in the Andes and visiting cities and learn about the Inka culture, or just chilling at the beach. Over the last few months we collected some ideas of travel destinations we saw on social media, read about in articles or talked to people about. But I think it will also play a big part that we are in contact with locals who will recommend places or even visit them with us.
At the moment we are still planning and contacting potential hosts but the official start of the journey will be on Tuesday, when we jump on the plane to fly over the Atlantic to our first stop: Lima!
PS: This is a picture of last summer, sailing in Galicia, Spain with an sailing boat rebuild like the ones people used hundreds of years ago. ⛵️