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It's our 45th!!! Let's go to Peru!!!

We live right on one of the most beautiful and unspoiled beaches in the world, so, of course, we decided to drive nine hours to Punta Sal beach in Peru, to celebrate our 45th wedding anniversary...

I'm using a Claro air card to make this entry, and don't know how much of the limited wide band I will be getting, so here is some fun stuff, out of order, just to make sure that it makes the cut!

We found a really first class restaurant over looking the beach, where we were treated just fine by everyone...

After enjoying a fabulous meal, the waiter told us to wait a moment, as he had a surprise for us...

The fresh crepe with two spoons says "Happy 45th Anniversary" in espanol...it was a shame to eat the writing, but it was so gooooooood!!!  Our friendly waiter was named 'Junior", and his full name was Franco Junior.  I asked, "Oh, is your father named Franco?", and the answer was "No, his name is Juan...".  OKaaay....

 

Our drive from our house to the Ecuador-Peru border was uneventful, except that we were privileged to be able to use Shell and Marsha's GPS, and that is a wonderful invention!  The nice lady talking us all the way down to the border was easy to hear and understand.  In fact, she was right every time!  Once when were were entering a traffic circle with absolutely no signs, she kept telling us take the fist exit, over and over...so we did--and she got us right to the new border crossing...

 

For you folks driving south and planning to cross at the Coastal city near Huaquilas, there are nice new facilities out of town...It is a little confusing, because you have already gone about 3 km into Peru before you see any type of border crossing facilities.  They are all White and Blue and are distinguished by large silo type logos...

The first one you see is on the left, and is not for you!  That building is for returning people...

You must drive 2 more km to find a similar large facility for people entering Peru!

 What is neat, is that Ecuador and Peru share the same desk as you come in.  The Ecuador guy hands you the Ecuador form, and also the Peru form.  It asks all the usual questions...

In the above photo, it is not obvious that you must take your car paperwork down to the other end of the building for processing.

 

For taking the car into the hinterland of Peru, it is a little more complicated in that you must have all your car docs valid, of course, and one more thing, only the owner of the car may bring a car in.  Not a friend or a relative....While the agent was processing my docs, he turned down another person for not being the owner of a car.

 

You also have to buy a short term SOAT which is the national car insurance liability protection that is mandatory for all vehicles in Ecuador and Peru...cost of one month--eight bucks...

 

The day we went through it took about 30 minutes for all the docs to be processed.  No waiting in line at all.

 

Finally we blow out of the station, hit a four lane freeway and are heading south at the spped limit...or a little more...

Peru produces rice and bananas as far as the eye can see...

We drove by these banana plantations for sixty minutes...

 

A couple of notes:  In Ecuador we take fixed price gasoline for granted...it costs about $22 to fill up our SUV...I put $20 of gas into the tank in Peru, and it moved the gas gauge up about an eighth of an inch.  Instead of 18 gallons, I got 4.6 gallons...

Supermaxi I love you!!!  Supermaxi's are all over the larger towns of Ecuador, and they are modeled like Safeway...plenty of selection, and nice merchandising...not so in Peru...only mom and pop stores for us on the north Coast...you don't know what you've lost 'till it's gone!

Take a look...

 Peru has a lot more buildings painted, take a look...

 

After driving south for about two hours we reach the turnoff to Punta Sal...it is a little cove full of expensive homes--some are expensive, and some just cost a lot...

The place we rented had a wonderful view of the beach and ocean waves, but it cost twice as much as one of our suites with about half the amenities...however, it had what we needed...take a look

 

Peru is on 220 voltage, so you must be careful of your appliances.  Rox plugged in her Kindle Fire the first night, and it was charged up just fine in the morning.  Same with phones and computers...I guess they know how to adjust...

Our place provided an air card for pretty good internet, but it only lasted for a day, and then we had to go out looking for the correct kind  of card.  Not a big deal, but more of a hastle than inlimited internet that we have at home...(quit bitchin' Bob).

The beach here at Punta Sol is really nice, hardly used at all, and they say sunny 300 days per year...so not too bad.  It is quite a distance from any larger towns like Tumbes.

 

A Cuenca friend told us that Mancora impressed her more than Montanita, so that was one of the reasons that we traveled in this direction.  We did not stay there, as there were almost no hotels that would let us bring Coquita, or their prices were just too high.

 

Maybe we are spoiled, but we just could not see Mancora as anything but a tourist trap and a big hustle.  The worst part was the motor taxis.  Some of these drivers obey no traffic rules, and almost all of them drive with their lights off on the dark roads at night.  You can imagine our surprise when we meet a car, dim our lights, and when that car passes, we go back to brights, and there in front of us is a three wheeled moto taxi poking along at about 20 mph with no lights!

Here are some photos...

 

 

There is a huge resort complex at the other end of the beach...Rox went down there on her walk and took some photos...tha is, until the guard came rushing up saying "NO PHOTOS!"..

 

 

 

There were tons of staff, hundreds of lounges and cushions, a pool that was like a small lake, and no people...we googled Resorts Punta Sal, and found scathing reviews about the place on Trip advisor...so we guess, there is a little more to the resort business then "build it and they will come"...

Posted on Mon, November 19, 2012 at 07:39AM by Registered CommenterBob & Roxanne | Comments3 Comments

Reader Comments (3)

Happy Anniversary to two fabulous folks. Your smiles tell a wonderful story in itself. Looking forward to seeing you soon.

November 19, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNancy Watson

What a great celebration .... Happy - Happy 45th!!!

November 19, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLynn and Chuck

Great pictures. Thanks for sharing and a belated Happy Anniversary!!!

-Humberto

January 1, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHumberto

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