We had to arise early, eat breakfast at 6am and leave by 6:45 to travel out to a canyon about 2hrs away to view condors (birds) and walk around canyon face. The canyon is one if the deepest in the world. It is about 1 degree so very fresh. A beautiful clear day. Along the way we see little villages (we are staying in the Provence capital). Streams cross the road in many places and donkeys and cows roam free. The retaining of the mountain side is very poor and I'm glad the weather is fine. Land/rock slides look extremely likely. The county side is otherwise amazing. Terraced hills with grain growing, rock fences and rock homes. We pass a church which we will stop at on the way back. Apparently when the Catholics came they pulled down an inca temple and used the cooper in their own temple.
At the condor cross lookout we see the condors gliding majestically looking for food to scavenge. Sometimes they swoop close and above our heads. After an hour of viewing we walk along the cliff face we head back to town. We stop to look at the church which has many statues, mirrors and what looks like an offer wing display of flowers and food. There are many stool with ladies selling their wares. 2 lamas and a baby alpaca for photographs for tips.
There were also 2 falcons tied to posts; we were asked not to have photos with them to discourage trade of capturing them in hopes it won't spread to other bird species.
In town they stop for lunch at a restaurant. We enjoy a sabbath fast. :p. we both aren't feeling 100%.
Then 1 hour siesta.
After the rest we walk around the town and up a small hill which overlooks the town. There are still inca tombs. The government was built a looking tower. They still use the hill for earth ceremonies and bull fighting ( which they still do twice yearly). We walk back via a shanty town. Most of the group goes swimming at thermal pools. We go back to the hotel and study the lesson and keep warm. For dinner we all go to a restaurant that also puts on a show. I get quinoa with veges and tomato spaghetti, Malcolm gets mushroom soup and a garlic tortilla (omelette). During dinner some musicians play and traditional dancers portray stories, some about yellow fever. Mal gets picked a few times and does well. I get up too, to the condor song it was all fun. The restaurant was empty except for our group and the food was delivered promptly. Almost too promptly for me! We were wanting to attend the free observatory and planetarium but we were busy dancing and missed the show. One Irish couple from NZ went. After the show and dinner, some went to an Irish pub and we went back to the bridge to see if we could get some night sky photos. By the time we got there it had clouded over. Not many ppl out, but a few security guards waiting by river. Probably trying to stop youths climbing the hill and ruining the tombs and such.
We return to the hostel and pack our bags and prepare for bed. The beds are lovely and big thick feather quilts and alpaca blanket. The hostel is more like a very nice motel. The rooms appear new and still very nice. We had room service during the day.
I have a headache and hope that sleep will make it pass.