I got to Paracas around 11 AM & joined a tour right from the bus station. I went to the Paracas National Park which is fascinating. It is the driest place on Earth...it rarely rains here. To orinent those of you not familiar with where I am, I am on the coast. Even though it is on the water & it´s cloudy every morning, it rarely rains. So we went out on this road that looks like tar, but is made of salt! Why was it black? Because the rubber from tires has worn off on the salt! This baffled me so much...very cool.
The entire place is sand dunes, but the sand doesn´t really blow around. It has these pebbles on top of it that keeps them mostly in place. Under that is several inches of sandy stuff, then harder sedimentary rocks. There are fossils in the sand from when the ocean covered this area. Here´s the crazy part...absolutely nothing lives in the ground there! Not a single plant or animal. There is no water, so they can´t survive. So interesting!
We stopped at some places along the water & it was so beautiful how there were cliffs falling off into the water. It kind of reminded me of parts on Nova Scotia & PEI in Canada (the cliffs only). And the water is a nice shade of greenish bluish mixed in.
We ate lunch in this tiny town of about 6-7 buildings. These people lived here before it became a national park, so they can still stay there. Three years ago, a big earthquake and tsunami came through this area & some of those buildings were destroyed. Because they are in a national park, they can´t rebuild structures. Of course, when no one was looking, some of the restaurants were rebuilt. But there are only 3 there. Some of the buildings are still there, but aren´t able to be inhabited.
A guy on my tour, who is originally from Sri Lanka, but has lived in Toronto since he was 4 years old, and I walked into the town of Paracas to get a hostel. It was nice to have someone to help with figuring things out. We ended up in a decent place with a room each to ourselves. It´s nice not to share a room tonight :) I forgot to get more money when I left Huacachina & Ica this morning, which was the worst possible place for me to do this. There is only one ATM here & it is inside a building that is often closed...and was when I got to it! The hotel & tour agency for tomorrow are luckily letting me pay tomorrow when the building ¨might¨open! I hope it opens because I leave for Lima in the afternoon!
I hope some of you are still reading my blog. I haven´t gotten any comments in awhile, so I´m not sure. Feel free to comment! Sorry I haven´t responded personally...I don´t know how to through this blog, and many places have had slow internet. But I do love getting comments :)