After a late night arrival in Lima, Peru, we then had an early wakeup call the next morning as our Peru Hop bus left at 5.30am. We were picked up from our designated meeting spot in the Miraflores district of the city and settled into the comfy bus seats. Peru Hop is a hop-on-hop-off service that lets you stop at any point along their route then get back on whenever you like as long as you finish the full ticket within a year of starting it. It is more expensive than local transport but is secure, efficient, door-to-door and does include a few extra stops along the way that regular public transport wouldn’t include. The staff are also able to book optional tours and accommodation at the stops on the way there if you’ve left things to the last minute.
Our first stop of the morning was at El Cristo del Pacifico. Although the statue itself is a matter of ridicule for some of the locals due to the shoddy way it was built, it is near an important memorial to a battle against the Chileans. We learnt a good bit of history from here and were able to get a bit of a view of Lima although unfortunately the weather conditions meant we couldn’t see that much.
Next we made our way down the coast with a quick stop at the Hacienda San Jose in Chincha. This hotel has a cute church to look around but the main pull was walking through the slave tunnels underneath. They are a dark labyrinth (torches are provided) that at times get pretty tight. We followed our guide ensuring no one got left behind as finding your own way out would be pretty impossible. The detour there and back from the main highway had us driving through a river as the inclement weather earlier in the year with the flooding meant that the foundations of the bridge were not strong enough for anything heavier than a motorbike.
Our end destination of the day was Paracas. This beachside town is the gateway to the Ballestas Islands but because our boat trip to there wasn’t until the morning we spent our time just wandering along the coast, getting a bite to eat and watching the pelicans swim around the harbour. It is a fairly small, touristy town but was a very pleasant way to while away the afternoon.
Have you taken the Peru Hop buses? Did you find it a good way to get around in Peru?