I finally know the route for our field trip, so I decided to post it on here. We had a seminar for the past 2 days at uni and now know a bit more about Chile and Bolivia.
Chantal and me are leaving in 18 days (yes, I'm keeping a countdown) and I'm really excited!
We are first spending 2 days in Santiago de Chile to get used to life in South America and get rid of the jet lag; after that we leave for a tour to Chile's lake district "Los Lagos". Our first stop there is going to be Pichilemu which is at the coast and we'll probably go surfing there. We'll go further south to Valdivia, Puerto Varas, Puerto Montt and Pucón then where we'll see lakes, volcanoes and hot springs. Then we'll go up north to Santiago again and on the way visit a winery as well as some waterfalls.
We have about 3 more days in Santiago then before the rest of our group arrives - we'll be 23 people plus two lecturers from uni.
Our trip will start in Santiago and then go north to Valparaiso and Vina del Mar which lie on the coast. After that we'll visit various national parks (Fray Jorge and Pan de Azucar) and the towns of La Serena and Antofagasta as well as some smaller ones along the way. After visiting Antofagasta, we'll leave the coast and travel to San Pedro de Atacama which lies in the Atacama desert. It is supposed to be the driest desert on earth, but who knows... :) We'll spend a few days in the region - visiting the El Tatio geysirs and Atacama salt flats. We'll also stop by at the biggest copper mine in the world - Chuquicamata. From there, we'll begin our way to Bolivia and up to the Altiplano (hope noone will have altitude sickness by then...) We'll see various volcanoes and mountains on the way to La Paz. After spending a few days in La Paz (where I'll do a presentation on the development of the city which is a requirement for the trip) we'll drive to Titicaca Lake and also go to Coroico which lies in the Yungas (a temperate rainforest). This is the only part I'm not really excited about - not because of the rainforest (I've always wanted to go there) but because of the road that leads down there from La Paz. You can see what it looks like here: http://www.adventure-expedition.com/images/sky.jpg It is also referred to as "Death Road" for obvious reasons...Plus we'll be there at the end of the wet season which will probably make the ride even more "unpleasant". Hopefully making it back in one piece, we'll end our trip in La Paz and Chantal and me (and probably also two other girls from uni) will travel to Arequipa in Peru to go to Colca Canyon from there. It is a lot bigger than Grand Canyon and you can see condors there. From Arequipa we'll take an overnight bus to Cuzco and do a 2 day trip to Machu Picchu. Chantal and me then booked a flight to Lima, Peru's capital where we'll have about one day before leaving for Germany.
Well, now you all know what I'll be up to during the next couple of weeks...
I am also leaving for Nice tomorrow morning to visit Julia, a friend of mine who is studying there for one semester. Hopefully it's going to be warmer (and less rainy) there than it is here.
I'll try to post some pictures when I'm back home next week and try out the photo albums here before my "big trip"
Lots of love to you all!