For us, the most interesting thing about Cuzco was the camping spot. Camping LaLa is up the hill from the main plaza and only a few hundred meters from the ruins. It’s quite a walk up and down the hill, but worth it to have such a tranquil place.
It’s no secret. We pulled in to see some familiar faces from Arequipa. More travelers came and went while we were there – this is definitely the busiest overlander spot we’ve seen anywhere. The other travelers we meet continue to be exclusively Europeans.
All of the French travelers are families with kids – it’s simply de rigueur. More playmates for Bode and more chatting with proud moms and dads extolling the virtues of the French educational system.
One of the families we met were Belgian. They had been traveling for 4 years around the world in a huge 14 ton beast. Each tire cost more than our car. Another big rig like this had been stuck here for three weeks because of the rains – yet people in these things still brag how great they are and how they can “go anywhere”. Right – stuck in a muddy campsite. Even the narrow city streets of Cusco are off-limits.
Anyway, they were really nice and regaled us with their crazy stories from driving across Africa and Asia. More tempting adventures. Still, schooling three kids on the road may have been their biggest challenge.
Aside from the revolving new friends, there were revolving new pets as well. Every morning a local woman would bring her alpacas, llamas and sheep to graze around us. The chickens and dogs were permanent features and meant we had fresh eggs for breakfast every morning.
Bode wanted to catch a chicken, so we told him to go for it. He took off in a sprint. We thought he’d be busy all morning or wear himself out trying. Five minutes later we heard, “GOT ONE!” He walked up with a hen in his arms and the biggest smile on his face.
We ended up staying 5 nights here (almost caught up!) and hardly walked down to Cuzco the entire time – we didn’t even visit the ruins next door. There was plenty of entertainment right here.
If you’re thinking of camping above Cuzco, Camping LaLa is closing it’s doors at the end of this year. Hurry up!