From Florianópolis to Machu-Picchu and Atacama Desert
I have been planning this trip for quite a long time, a motorbike trip across South America with my wife, having as one of the main objectives to know the lost city of the Incas, Macchu-Picchu, in Peru.
Besides Macchu-Picchu, we intended to visit other attractive in the South America, as the Titicaca Lake, in the border between Peru and Bolivia and the Desert of Atacama, in special the city of San Pedro de Atacama. Among the some alternatives to become the passage, we decided to a less conventional way possible, just to the fact that we would like to put some flavor of adventure to the trip.Map with the passage options
We set out 3 plans, (as the map above shows), finally, we choose Option 3, leaving of Florianópolis in direction to the States of São Paulo, Mato Grosso do Sul, Mato Grosso, Rondônia and Acre and, from there, we would cross Peru, tracking to the North of Chile, entering on the North of Argentina and, lastly, we would return to Brazil entering through the State of Rio Grande Do Sul.Symbol of the project
Another step was the creation of a badge for the project. In order to characterize the leaving point, we opt to use our bigger representation of the Florianópolis city, the Hercílio Luz Bridge, and also the figure of a Llama, larger symbol of the Mountain range of Andes, which was inserted in t-shirts for use during the trip and to give as gift for some friends .We also confectioned a flag to be affix on the motorbike.
Although the fact we do have a superior motorbike we decide to travel in a Honda NX-350 Sahara, motorbike with a easy maintenance and with a better performance on the roads in really bad conditions that we would found out from the border with Peru.
The Project was divulged on the Internet and was incredible the feedback received from other motorcyclists of most distant places, also from Argentina.
Everything ready, we leave on the 04 of April of 2002 and our first stop was to sleep in Ourinhos-SP, where, for coincidence a motorbike meeting was taking place.
After we have already covered 4,000 km between Florianópolis and the border of Brazil with Peru, now we were really the kick off for our adventure, starting for the passage of the River Acre that separates the 2 countries, with the motorbike loaded on a small wooden boat, because there is not a bridge in that point. The course from this point, of approximately 700 km, was made in really terrible roads, crossing rivers with water on the way, very chilly, rain, precarious infrastructure of supplying, feeding and accommodation, beyond the lack of oxygen in the great altitudes, what it in such a way debilitated our performance as the motorbike performance as well.Atacama Desert
Despite the difficulties of this passage, we had the beautiful vision of the splendid Mountain range of Andes and the friendliness and simplicity of the Peruvian people.
After 700 km of true tracks in the forest, we reach your destination, Macchu-Picchu. Registering in photo the beautiful constructed ruins more than has 500 years for a civilization exceptionally evolved for the time, cruelly decimated by the Spanish conquerors. One is about a place of singular splendor, difficult to express in words when seeing the first images of this place. As already other people had passed there and verify; "Macchu-Picchu is there to be seeing, not to be written”.
After Macchu-Picchu we head in direction to the Titicaca Lake to know the highest lake of the world and one of its most important attractions are the Uros, community that live on floating islands made from a species of papyrus plant, called "Totora", which serves, also, to build boats, as food, construction for the habitations and, also as combustible to cook.Titicaca Lake and Uros
From Puno, to the edges of the Titicaca Lake, we head in southwestern direction of Peru to arrive at the North of Chile. Before the border to Chile, the Desert of Atacama is initiated, with its desolate aspect and of endless roads straight lines, on the other hand, for us, a peculiar beauty. The first cities of the North of Chile, Arica and Arequipa, are surprising prosperity, principally Arequipa, a zone of free commerce. The road that follows bordering the Pacific Ocean, with the desert in the opposing side, is also astonishing beauty.
After, we head in the direction to the South until Antofagasta, another beautiful Chilean city, therefore we intended to see the sculpture called The Great God’s Hand, which finds 70 km to the south of that city, transformed in "cult" point for all motorcyclist that would pass there.
Mão-do-Deserto was, also, our extreme south point of the trip.Mão-do-Deserto
To leave from this point, we head to northeast direction, leaving to San Pedro de Atacama, still in full Desert of Atacama, where we intended to see diverse attractions as the of La Luna Valley, Geyser Del Tatio, Lagoon of the Flamingos and the Salar de Atacama.
From São Pedro de Atacama, we come across to the north of Argentina in direction to San Salvador de Jujuy, a passage of rare beauty, with giant landscapes where we see many cactus and rocky formations in a varied colors that form an interesting contrast.
After 24 days of journey, covering precise 10,080 km, we return to Brazil for the border from Sao Borja, in the Rio Grande Do Sul, as planned, having a beautiful reception organized by the integrant friends of our Motorbike Club that in them 50 waited km before Florianópolis.
Although some difficulties, the way enters the border of Brazil and Peru until Cusco, he was one of that had more marked our trip, therefore it was where we need to surpass our proper limits and rooms. We consider reached our objective, where we evidence the importance of if tracing an objective, to follow it with passion and determination, for, on the end, to feel the sensation of a great objective reached.
Cicero and LourdesAbril/2002
Translate by Chayenne Michelly